Hillbilly Willy Over & Out

June 21, 2017

Wherever you go, there you are.

Early this month, Hillbilly Willy resigned from Retro 105.9 due to creative differences. He was with the station for 1 1/2 years as DJ & Station Manager. Despite gaining advertisers, attracting new audiences and topping the Nielsen AB survey, the station also lost some listeners to FM2. Some listeners said that mass-based programming & retro songs don’t mix.

As a result, Retro is left with no Station Manager. To fix this problem, here’s a list of suggestions for the management:

The management should make use of the DJs. Bring the weekend warriors brought back to Weekdays. Give Bobby Ante the post as Station Manager, if possible. Joshua can go on air again. Reassign Karen as a morning newscaster. Look for another newscaster for the afternoon, perhaps a veteran one. Both of them can do boardwork on Saturdays. And Retro can go automated every Sunday. The Monday – Saturday schedule could go like this:

6am: JOSHUA / KAREN (S)
9am: RUDOLF RIVERA
12nn: TRIGGERMAN
3pm: JOEY PIZZA
6pm: BRUCE ROMANO / <Newscaster 2> (S)
9pm: ANDY TUNA / CLUB RETRO (S)

I’m still hoping for good changes for Retro.

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PRR 2015: Philippine Radio in Review

December 30, 2015

2015 is about to end in a few days. But before we bid goodbye to this year, here is a look back at what happened in the world of Philippine Radio. This article will analyze on the Top 10 newcomers, comebacks, reformats & restructures in Metro Manila (and a few in other key cities).

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This list ranges from newcomers to restructures to ventures.

1. 8TriMedia’s Big Move

8tm

8TriMedia Broadcasting

Late last year, 8TriMedia, a media company of Jojo Soliman, began as a blocktimer on DZJV 1458, airing its programs during nighttime (6pm onwards).

Last April, 8TM bought time from DWBL 1242 to air its programs. From 4 programs, they expanded to 7 on this 20-Kw station. The roster is consisted of veteran newscaster Miguel Gil, singers Lloyd Umali & Ima Castro, showbiz columnists Shalala & Rodel Fernando, and former Manila mayor Fred Lim, among others. Percy Lapid (who used to be with DWIZ) used to host a program on DWBL Katapat. However, he later joined the 8TM roster.

Recently, in October, 8TM made a bigger step by buying time from DZRJ 810, the so-called “Voice of the Philippines”. From 7 programs, they expanded to 10 on this 50-Kw station. Their programs can be heard from 9am – 7pm straight. Tolits Laureño (of Brgy. LS) and DJ Toni (of Home) joined the 8TM roster.

Time by time, 8TriMedia slowly grows bigger, it’d probably set up its own station one of these days.

2. Retro Invades Cebu

dycd

103.5 Retro Cebu

Last January, after almost 12 years on the air, 103.5 Wild FM left the airwaves without any formal announcement, leaving its listeners nonplussed & disappointed. However, it went back on air a month later, but this time playing Classic Hits. Hence, on March 16, 103.5 Retro Cebu was born. This was the 2nd retro station set up by UMBN (the 1st one was Davao’s 95.5 Hit Radio, owned by ACWS-UBN).

After a few months, Cebu’s 1st & only retro station proved to be a huge success. As a result, UMBN will rebrand Hit Radio as Retro Davao next year.

3. Mom’s Radio

mom

Mom’s Radio

After 5 years of absence, on October, Mom’s Radio has returned to the airwaves. Estima Content, the program provider for Mom’s Radio, renegotiated with SBN.

However, it can be only heard on 3 key cities: Cebu, Bacolod & Davao. Prior to the return, those stations had a mere 8 hours of airtime, playing only a variety of music. Now, they have a longer airtime, with a ton of interesting programs.

4. The Ultimate Revamp

dwdu

UFM 105.5

Last March, Central Luzon’s most powerful FM station got revamped. D’Ultimate rebranded as 105.5 UFM with a CHR format & a new slogan “You’re On The Right Side”. All the DJs are now using English, except for its News/Talk-oriented programs.

5. Retro Revamp

Retro

Retro 105.9

Last October 12, Hillbilly Willy (who was recently fired from Wish for unknown reasons) was appointed as Station Manager of Retro 105.9. His “mission” is to improve the station’s programming, as it was a mess since Sgt. Pepper left.

Trouble came when Willy was sent a restraining order from UNTV, refusing him to use the Morning Flight. However, this doesn’t stop him from using that name. [see below]

A few days later, Jimmy Jam was fired [see below] and later replaced by Bruce Romano (of RX, Kool & Energy). The latter enjoyed some fame on Energy as Prinsipe Mola & its 1st & only Mola-serye, Digmaan Lusob Mola. Later on, Bobby Ante (who used to be with HBW in WKC) joined the Retro roster. In Addition to those, every Saturday night is reserved for a guest DJ, .

Retro Discoteria & Retro In Love were replaced with Club Retro & Retro Romance & new hosts DJ Papi & Maxine (of Radio Romance) respectively.

6. Wish Well

Wish

Wish 107.5

Goodbye, Hillbilly Willy. Hello, T-Bone. Last October 12, T-Bone (who, I guess, resigned from DWIZ) took the place of Hillbilly Willy, who was fired before. As a result, Morning Flight, in which Willy requested to use while he was with the station, was reverted to Morning Wish. Wish also unveiled its new slogan “All Hits 24/7”, along with a new set of stingers.

JJ Sparx is back again from his 1-year hiatus & goes on board every Sunday morning. He was also appointed as director of  UNTV’s International News Divison.

A month later, Jimmy Jam joined the station as Program Director & T-Bone’s substitute every Saturday. Its playlist improved; it now plays a majority of 70s, 80s & 90s. As a result, Saturday Hitback was phased out.

7. Home Radio’s Natural Changes

home

97.9 Home Radio

After Holy Week, 97.9 Home Radio revamped once again as an English-speaking station with a CHR Local format, a mix of CHR/Top 40 & OPM. And it even dumped its Tagalog ID in favor of its new slogan “Be You”. In short, it completely exited the Hot AC market.

Miguel “Migz With A Z” Anzures (of RT/Hit) was appointed as station manager. Most of the jocks were replaced with new ones, including Anne (of Wave; who left after around 2 months). Nonetheless, Braggy & Castri were retained. In addition to that, The Vault was replaced with Guilty Pleasures, playing only 2000s music.

Recently, the “Natural” slogan was finally dumped in favor of its new slogan “The Music of Now” & “The Home of The Millennials”.

8. Sgt. Pepper invades Wave

wave

Wave 89.1’s new logo.

Last March, Sgt. Pepper (who left Retro a month before) was appointed as Station Manager of Wave 89.1. New & recurring programs were introduced, such as Quarter Attack, Street Mix & Bass Hour. The Flow was revamped as a program to promote Pinoy Hip Hop. BITD: Back In The Day was replaced with SOS: Saturday Old School, focusing only on Classic Hip Hop & R&B. Hence, the new slogan “Change The Game”.

Among the people who joined the Wave roster are former Max FM  DJs Peter Clay (who left last October) and Zip Cody, R&B singer Jay-R & Fil-Am Hip Hop group Q-York.

pepperwave

Sgt. Pepper on Margaux’s remark about Macca.

A month prior to this, Pepper slammed Margaux (who joined Play the next month) for not being familiar with Paul McCartney (who has been popular for the last 6 decades) and thanking Rhianna & Kanye West for bringing him to fame. H-Town later defended Margaux that she was just “joking”. This is probably one of the reasons why Pepper moved to Wave.

9. iFM: Your New Bestfriend

ifm new

93.9 iFM’s new logo.

Last November, 93.9 iFM revealed its new logo & slogan Ang Bestfriend Mo. It’s been around 4 years since they changed its slogan several times, from Ambot sa Kambing na may Bangs to Ang Radyo Ko, iFM, Hiyang na Eh? to #RamdamKita. Last June saw the return of Nikka Dyosa (formerly Celine Labuyo of Energy).

Their identity changed from Barkadooter to Kakambing to Bestfriend. Let’s hope that their new identity would last as long as their former Puwede era.

10. EZ Shop Radio

Radio-Station-Ez-shop

EZ Shop on Radyo Agila & Pinas FM.

Recently, at the height of the INC leadership controversy, EZ Shop ventured into radio through EBC‘s radio stations. This block can be heard everyday on Radyo Agila & Pinas FM. This is another first in Philippine radio history.

Other Changes

There are other events, which aren’t mentioned in my Top 10. So, I’ll summarize them.

  1. DZME 1530 is Radyo Uno no more. DZME phased out its long time slogan in favor of “Ang Pagbabagong Hanap Mo Sa AM”, continuing the FM on AM trend. (After Holy Week)
  2. Brgy. LS 97.1 ranked #1 on Nielsen’s most listened FM station in Manila, beating the long-time topnotcher Love Radio. After 8 years, Mike Enriquez’s wish came true. (December)
  3. Brigada News FM continues to expand with Pampanga (92.7) & Davao (91.5). 92.7 was initially as a repeater for Manila/Batangas station, but later on began airing a few originating programs, such as Brigada Lovelines, hosted by John Ericson (of D’Ultimate). (April-August)
  4. 95.1 Kiss FM was sold to DCG Radio-TV Network (owner of Retro) & moved from its long-time home in Broadcast Village to to its new home at the newly inaugurated 1022 DCG Tower 1. (July)
  5. Saved Radio on 106.7 Energy FM has expanded to an 18-hour program. As a result, K-Pop Sarap moved to Saturday Nights, while Digmaan Lusob Mola & The Best of 106.70s were scrapped for good. Recently, as a result of Dear Pangga (a Sunday early morning program, which is a mere revival of Energy Lovelines) being scrapped, it can be heard all-day Sunday. (June)

Sorry if I missed some other events. But, the list goes on.

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Time to wrap things up. A blocktimer moves to a more powerful station with more programs. An “exchanging papers with seatmate” peg happened between Retro & Wish. A station, which entered the battle in the Hot AC market & lost in the long run, made a good move by entering the CHR market. A Hot AC station kept on changing its identity (looking for a better one) in order to survive the stiff competition. A particular station reformatted because of Politics & Crab Mentality.


Life As A Radio Observer

February 16, 2015

When I was young, I was interested in a lot of things. Aside from being interested in Jeepneys (which led me to be a patokista), Computers, Computer Games (which made me take up CPE), Cartoons & Comics (which made me create my own comic, but cancelled it during Senior year for reasons), I was also interested in Radio.

In this blog, I’ll talk about my observation on the radio. I know it may be boring, since this post is very long, but you’ll know how my taste of music rides along with the stations I used to listen to back in the day.

FROM THE FM WAVES

It started when I was in Grade School. Almost every night, on my way home, my mom & I were tuned in to Citylite 88.3. I was tuned in to DM 95.5 & RJFM. Back in the day, DM played a whole lot of classic hits during evenings & the entire Saturday. RJ plays mostly classic hits & made me gain interest with the Beatles (which I’m a fan of since 4th Grade). During Christmas of 2004, I received a radio for my gift. From then on I was addicted to it, especially when I was doing my homework. In early 2006, I began listening to the legendary 99.5 RT. It was known for playing the hits first than the other stations in the metro. But, I was after its 24K Friday, wherein it played classic hits, especially songs only heard on that station before, every Friday. The same year, I began listening to 923 Joey, only for Solid 70s & Totally 80s, which aired back-to-back during Saturday nights. In late 2006, after singing a rap song with one of my friends, I began listening to Blazin’ 105.9. Despite growing interest in Hip Hop, it closed shop around 3 months later. Aside from that, at that time, I was also occasionally hooked up to Campus Radio 97.1 & 103.5 K-Lite.

EXPANDING MY OBSERVATIONS

2007 was the year of change for Philippine radio. DM was gone, Blazin’ was gone, Joey became X, RT became Hit, K-Lite became Heart & Campus became Brgy. LS. Since DM went off the air, I often find myself listening to Hit FM, which is much similar to Magic. And it played classic hits (this time from 80s & 90s) every Wednesday. The first time I listened to Brgy. LS, was around 2 days after Valentine’s day, the day Campus changed format from CHR to Hot AC. I hated it at first, but slowly began liking it because the Campus jocks were still there (but with different names). Every other morning, I’d wake up listening to Barako Jones (Braggy), especially saying “magandang” many times. Going back to Hit, last September, Hit brought back 24K Friday, but this time it played only 80s & some 70s. While its Saturday program, #1 Hit Weekend, played only 90s. 2 days earlier, the morning jocks mentioned those after I realized there was no more Old School Wednesday. This lasted until November, when it phased out 24K in favor of the #1 Hit, which kinda disappointed me. Early that year, I was also occasionally tuned in to 96.3 WRock, notably during Friday Classics & Past Dance, and 107.9 Underground Radio.

In early 2008, I began listening to Max FM (which was formerly Heart), just for Carl McFly’s Back In The Day Café, a weeknight program airing classic hits. I stopped listening to Brgy. LS when I realized Enriquez fired most of its old jocks in favor of a “better” team & its format became worse. Like I said, I only liked it as long as the Campus jocks were still there. It wasn’t over for them, as they resurfaced on 99.5 as Campus FM. From its pilot broadcast, I was often tuned in to it. In the mid-year, one of my parents confiscated my radio for often leaving it on overnight. However, this didn’t stop me from observing radio. Mid-august was the time I realized that it was Campus no more, which happened a few days ago. So, on the 1st of September, I was surprised to hear that 99.5 RT was back. I got to listen to its pilot broadcast, even on my way to school. I even heard 2 versions of I Kissed A Girl/Boy. I had another chance to experience this station. And I even got to hear the pilot broadcast of 24K Weekend, which is cool. From its pilot broadcast, I was often tuned in to it.

In early 2009, I began listening to 106.7 Dream FM,  notably during Early Years & Decadance (I never miss a single episode). During mid-May, I was surprised that WRock became Easy Rock. Last September, RT underwent some changes. Joshua Z & The Brewrats left in favor of U92, a VJ-manned station of MTV which started airing the next month. In return, RT saw the comeback of King DJ Logan & Jeremiah Junior (who used to be part of the original RT). After Ondoy, I only realized that WRR was gone. Good thing I got to listen to the launch of Tambayan.

In mid-2010, I only realized that Max FM was gone in favor of a Hot AC station, which launched last August. Around October, I was shocked that NU107 would close shop the next month, though I rarely listen to that. Good thing I recorded its last minutes on air. And the next day, Radyo5 signed on for the 1st time. Coincidence, I think not. Looks like another Hot AC brand, Win Radio, entered the market the other day, and I don’t like it.

In early 2011, I began to tune in to Easy Rock.  At that time, it used to have a very good playlist, just like WRock. But in June, it made some changes to its playlist, which made me listen to the station less.  During Summer, I was happy that 95.5 would go back on air, but with a new name, Pinas FM. It is manned by mostly veterans from the Pinoy Radio roster. Despite the changes, I still got to listen to its Rock program & Retro Friday. Around late May, I just realized that Energy FM would sign off on 91.5 & move to a “higher” frequency on July. Good thing I recorded its last minutes on air. I didn’t expect another Hot AC station to air at that frequency. Anyway, I was even surprised that Dream FM closed shop to give way to Energy FM last July 1. No wonder I heard the same mixes on Decadance for the 1st 3 Fridays of that month. Around July, when UR 105.9 moved online, a new Jazz station was born, and that is Radio High 105.9. This station has 15-minute segments, which feature a specific genre, whether Jazz, New Age, Standards, OPM, Retro or Remakes. I often listen to it, notably for its High on the 70s, 80s & 90s. Since late this year, I began making phone calls during 24K Weekend, wherein I requested JJ for at most 3 songs & sometimes we talked about some things related to radio.

During Summer of 2012, Energy FM made some changes in its Weekend programming. It’d play 80s & 90s during Saturdays, and 60s & 70s during Sundays, which. At this time, I realized that Energy FM has a more vast Retro playlist than any Hot AC station in the Metro. So, I’d occasionally listen to it, along with 24K. However, when June came, it’d play a mix of 70s, 80s & 90s on those days. And around early September, that programming was reduced to only Sundays. In May, my interest in Hip Hop grew once again. So, I began listening to Wave 891, notably for its Wave Back Wednesday, where it plays Old School music. In June, Easy Rock made some changes to its playlist again. Its Friday Classics began playing Rock & Dance music, including some songs which I used to hear during All Day Easy. And it downsized its All Day Easy playlist to make it sound similar to Love Radio’s. At the end of this year, I stopped listening to this station. In short, I’m tired of listening to the same set of songs 2 to 3 times everyday. In October, I was very surprised that RT would be off the air again that month. It turned out that it’d be in transition for the time being, with some of the veteran DJs replaced with Junior DJs. December was really the time RT would be off the air. During its last 24K, I called some DJs not just to request for a song just like I usually did, but to also know what’d happen to RT. I didn’t get to listen to its last minutes & record it, since I surprisingly took a deep sleep. Regrets. Good thing I got to listen to the pilot broadcast of 99.5’s new brand called Play FM. I listened to it on my way to school & on my way home. I even got a glimpse on its midweek program called Playback, where it plays mid 90s to mid 2000s music. No 80s music. I was expecting a program which is similar to 24K, though. At this time, I began listening to 105.1 Crossover, notably for its Crossover Weekend, where it plays Retro music. It reminds me of my younger years. Going back to Play FM, I finally visited its booth during its 2nd week on the air. I originally planned to visit when RT still existed, but my finals week was the only time available.

2013, I was kinda uncomfortable since RT’s demise. After around 4  months of listening to Play, I lost interest in it because of the DJs I know left & I realized that this station is not for my taste of music. Last Summer, I realized that Energy FM would revive its Retro programming. Same format as before, but only during Weekend mornings hosted by Kenji. In mid-2013, when I realized that Mr. FU would return to Energy FM, I thought that it’s a sign that Wow FM would end soon. And I was right. Last August marked the return of K-Lite. I got to listen to its pilot broadcast, even on my way to school, and I find it OK.

On March 2014, I was surprised that a new station would invade the metro, which would replace Radio High. Come the end of that month, Retro 105.9 was born. This station plays only Retro music, this is kinda better than RJFM. I got to listen to its pilot broadcast. I even get to listen to the veteran DJs once again. From then on, I often listen to this station. I can say this station is just right for my taste of music.

Until now, I occasionally observe the FM waves. So, I can say that the list goes on and on.

AM: THE OTHER SIDE OF THE MOD

Mid-2007 was the time I began listening to AM. At first, I often listened to DWIZ 882 & GVAM 792 (which is from Pampanga). I also monitored the stations beyond 1000 KHz, notably DWDD, DWBL, DZXQ, DZJV & DWSS (which played mostly music before than today). In 2009, I found myself listening to DZXQ at often times.

Back in early March 2011, I was surprised that DZXQ went off the air. So, I called its office to ask why. And someone replied, someone bought the station. I even asked Horacio Paredes (who used to work with that station) via email. And he responded through 2 of his articles in Abante. He said that most of his mates are now with DWSS.

From this point, I rarely listen to the AM Band, though I’d sometimes listen to DWSS (via Internet).

END OF THE LINE

Time to wrap things up. I’m quite different from any other people from my generation, who like & enjoy today’s music. Since Grade School, I’m more into Retro music, especially Classic Rock, Dance & New Wave. Sometimes, I’m into Hip Hop, whether Old School or New School. My radio observation kinda reflects on the type of music I listen to. And, this is the time I realize that music of the late 20th century sounds way better than today’s music.


PRR 2014: Philippine Radio in Review

December 28, 2014

2014 is about to end in a few days. But before we bid goodbye to this year, here is a look back at what happened in the world of Philippine Radio. This article will analyze on the Top 10 newcomers, station reformats & restructures in Metro Manila (and a few in other key cities).

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First, I’ll talk about the Newcomers or the stations which made their debut this year.

1. Retro 105.9

Retro 105.9

Retro 105.9

Last March 28, Retro 105.9 DCG FM invaded the Metro’s airwaves. This station plays oldies, similar to its rival RJ 100.3, manned by veteran DJs who used to work with legendary stations, such as 99.5 RT & Campus Radio 97.1. Initially, they have Jimmy Jam, The Triggerman, Braggy, Joey Pizza, Joshua (initially a pinch-hitter), The Mole, Rudolph Rivera, Andy Tuna & JJ Sparx.

Retro has later expanded its format & added new programs. After Holy Week, it began playing some OPM. It also launched SRO (Saturdays Retro On Stage) & Top 20 @ 12, both hosted by The Triggerman. Since mid-October, they launched Retro Discoteria (from Max FM), and recently Retro In Love.

Last September, DJs shifted from 4 hours to 3 hours of airtime 6 days a week. Since mid-October, the management added King DJ Logan & Sgt. Pepper to its roster, leaving JJ Sparx out of the scene again. Despite becoming a huge success during the following months, this affects the classic programming of some CHR stations in the metro.

2. Brigada News FM

104.7 Brigada News FM

104.7 Brigada News FM

6 years ago, Brigada News FM began its operations in General Santos. A few years later, it expanded to Koronadal, Zamboanga & Cebu. And late last year, it acquired most of the stations from Baycomms.

Last April 28, as an answer to Radyo5 92.3, Brigada News expanded its operations to Manila as 104.7 Brigada News FM. Originally as a station in Batangas, it has now “pirated” the Metro’s airwaves, but retained its old studio as a technical facility. The station is manned by personalities, formerly from Bombo Radyo & RMN, & DJs.

During the next months, former RMN personalities, notably Weng dela Peña, actor/comedian Dennis Padilla & Leo Navarro, joined the station. It also began airing numerous programs from its station in Cebu & General Santos, notably The Baby Nicole Show. Despite transmitting 25 kW of power from its OMNIA 11, it can’t be heard in some parts of Metro Manila.

3. Wish FM

Wish 107.5

Wish 107.5

Last June 26, upon UNTV‘s 10th (supposedly 13th) anniversary, 107.5 exited from the Hot AC (mass-based) market, as Win Radio moved to 91.5 a day later. For more than a month, it remained in transition to be an Adult Hits station.

Last August 10, 107.5 Wish FM went on air, together with a “Wish Concert” at the World Trade Center, & introducing its radio bus, used for The Roadshow. This new station plays mostly oldies & less hot hits, much similar to 100.3 RJFM, manned by DJs, whether veteran (a few from 93.9 WKC) or newbie. They’ve got Hill Billy Willy (who’s also the station manager), Ray Holiday, Jelly Kiss, Uncle Harry, Princess, AliceFlynn Rider & Dr. Clark (Daniel Razon). And its programming is almost the same as RJFM, making it its closest competitor.

Speaking of 91.5, 91.5 Win Radio is manned by DJs mostly from the Big Radio roster (2 of them from the Win roster).

4. Oomph! Radio

Last November, Viva Entertainment ventured into radio by acquiring Ultimate Entertainment’s Mango Radio stations. Hence, the birth of 105.1 Oomph! Radio in Cebu, manned by Viva’s newbie DJs. Sooner, it’ll expand in Davao & Zamboanga.

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For the rest, I’ll talk about the stations which changed their format & programming.

5. Home Radio’s (Un)natural Changes

97.9 Home Radio

97.9 Home Radio

Last March 17, after 14 years as a Soft AC station, 97.9 Home Radio entered into the Contemporary Middle of the Road (or simply mass-based) market, with its slogan Natural. Under the management of DWIZ program director & announcer Bryan Quitoriano, who used to be known as Idol T-Bowne from DM 955, Star FM & Yes FM, the same DJs had changed their names, which are lifted from food.

If management thought that entering competition would be a success, it has happened the other way round. After Holy Week, the station underwent several changes with its name & staff, from changing its uprimary name, retiring the “Home Radio” brand, changing the frequency nomenclature, firing the female DJs, slowly moving away from the mass-based market, to bringing back the “Home Radio” brand. In short, the station is going nowhere, trying to fit in with the trend & ending up losing in the long run. They should’ve entered the CHR market, wherein there is less competition, instead.

Last July, despite the numerous changes, it also launched its evening radio show hosted by singers Duncan Ramos and Jimmy Bondoc.

6. K-Lite: The Take Me Around Station

103.5 K-Lite

103.5 K-Lite

103.5 K-Lite proved to be one of the victims of Retro 105.9’s programming. After Holy Week, K-Lite revamped into a CHR station with The Beat of Manila slogan. It’s a bit similar to Magic 89.9, but its retro playlist consists of only 90s. At this point, it was manned by around 4 DJs (2 of them which are retained), leaving the rest of the airtime with automated programming.

Last August 18, to compete with Retro 105.9, it revamped (again) as a Classic Hits station, carrying the Metro Manila’s Official Take Me Back Station slogan. Described as the “younger” Retro, it plays music from 90s to mid- 2000s. And what’s good is that it has become lively once again; a few more DJs joined the station, and it launched Club Rewind, which airs during Saturday nights.

Last November 24, it brought back The Hits and Lite Favorites slogan (initially used during its comeback last year), although nothing has changed on its playlist. However, it added 80s on its playlist, but this time on a separate program called Past Forward (every Wednesday). This kinda reminded me of the old K-Lite before its reformat.

7. From Universities to Communities (Campus to Barangay)

Brgy. LS 97.1

Last February 17, Barangay LS 97.1 marked its 7th anniversary with the Isang Bansa, Isang Barangay tagline. As a result, RGMA’s provincial FM radio stations, which used to carry the Campus Radio brand (including Cebu’s RT, Davao’s Wow & Kalibo’s Super Radyo), adopted the Barangay branding, as an answer to ABSCBN’s MOR.

This includes program reformatting, wherein each station has its own version of most programs, including Talk to Papa, Potpot & Friends, Radyo Nobela & Three Play, among others.

8. PBA on Radyo5

PBA on Radyo5

PBA on Radyo5 (Behance)

Since June, PBA games, beginning with the ’14-’15 season, are now aired on TV5. In addition to that, it is also heard on Radyo5 stations nationwide & online via InterAksyon.com. This is a good opportunity for PBA fans, who are living in the Philippines & anywhere in the world. They can listen through the internet or their cellphones.

9. Energy FM’s Food For The Ears

Energy FM's new set of DJs.

Energy FM’s new set of DJs. (Facebook)

Last March 17, 106.7 Energy FM launched a new slogan Ang Sarap with a new set of DJs, whose names are lifted from food. On its menu, they have Celine Labuyo (Sili Labuyo), Sheena Ngag (Sinangag), Gina Tan (Ginataan), Barbie Q. (BBQ), Ken Ton (Canton) – Aya & Dale, who used to be with Wow FM – & Jim Butido (Embutido) – who used to be known as Choupaski before the revamp. No news was heard from the other veteran DJs after management dismissed them from the station, aside from DJ Mac & Cathy G., who moved to Radyo Asenso InterNetwork a few months later.

10. Pinas FM goes OPM

Pinas FM 95.5

Pinas FM 95.5

Since October 5, Pinas FM now plays only Original Pilipino Music, making it the first and only station in the country to do so, to support the promotion of Filipino musical artists.

Other Changes

There are other events, which aren’t mentioned in my Top 10. So, I’ll summarize them.

  1. Win Radio moved from 107.5 to 91.5 (June 28).
  2. MBC’s O&O Hot FM stations rebranded to Yes! FM as part of the latter’s expansion once again (February).
  3. DZRH celebrated its 75th anniversary (July 15).
  4. 99.5 Play FM launched its new jingle, & now airs American Top 40, which used to be aired on Magic 89.9 (mid-year).
  5. Wave 891 underwent program & staff restructuring, including firing some of its veteran DJs in favor of newbies & change of voiceover, & renamed most of its special programs, including Throwdown (formerly Soul Review) & BITD: Back In The Day (formerly Snapback/Wave Back) (September).
  6. YouTube star Lloyd Cadena now hosts a program on 93.9 I! FM called Gabi Ng Hanash (June).
  7. RX 93.1‘s The Morning Rush celebrated its 18th year on the air, making it the longest running morning program on Philippine Radio.
  8. DZBB 594 ranked #1 on Nielsen’s most listened AM station in Manila.
  9. DZJV 1458 extended its airtime to 16 hours daily, broadcasting until 10pm (October).

Sorry if I missed some other events. But, the list goes on.

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Time to wrap things up. Retro 105.9’s programming has become an impact of the classic programming of some CHR stations. Hence, most of them would focus more on the 90s & early 2000s, & either play some 80s (or completely phase them out, just like Mellow & Play did). A station entered the battle in the mass-based market & lost in the long run. As usual, some stations reformat and/or re-arrange their programming, & personalities either move to other stations or venture into other commitments.


Retro 105.9 Gets Stronger

October 29, 2014

Retro 105.9 has proved to be a huge success, 6 months after its debut last March 28. Nowadays, older people are getting hooked to this station. As a result, this affects the classic programming of CHR stations in the metro. A majority of them phased out much of their 80s playlist & began focusing on the 90s & beyond. Aside from the changes, Retro faces new competition with a few stations. Since this August. 103.5 KLite was revamped for the 3rd time as a “younger” Retro, playing only 90s & early 2000s music. (It doesn’t make much sense if KLite is dubbed as The Official “Take Me Back” Station. It’d be better if they dub themselves as The Official 90s Station.) Wish 107.5 was launched & is much of another RJ in the making, playing songs from the 70s to today.

Before I talk about Retro’s big change, I’ll explain some of its additional changes for the past 6 months. After Holy Week, it began playing some OPM. It also launched SRO (Saturdays Retro On Stage), wherein live performances from various bands perform, hosted by The Triggerman & a particular guest DJ. Since August, JJ Sparx turned his morning program to a talk-oriented show, probably to compete with other stations with talk-oriented programs during mornings & to attract more listeners. Newscaster Karen & another chick Anjanette (from Citylite 88.3) joined his crew. Last September, all the DJs, including Joshua (who was usually a pinch-hitter), had 3 hours of airtime 6 days a week. And Jimmy Jam has a new segment, wherein he features remixes from various DJs.

THE BIG CHANGE

Last October 20, a lot of changes occurred. The DJs are back to their 4-hour boardwork. Its classy stingers were phased out in favor of modern ones. Cris Cruise (who used to be with Kiss FM 101.1 & NU107) is now the station manager/consultant. And what’s surprising is that 2 DJs have joined the family. King DJ Logan (who used to be with Citylite 88.3, 93.9 KCFM, Magic 89.9, 103.5 Max FM, 99.5 RT, & recently Wave 89.1) takes over the mornings with The Morning Show of Mass Destruction. It’s not actually his 1st time to do a morning show (Though it’s his 1st time to be in a booth w/ windows). He used to host on Magic’s morning show back in the early 2000s, Max FM’s Morning Zoo Crew & RT’s Disenchanted Kingdom was initially aired during mornings. He is as talkative as The Triggerman, his topics are more interesting than JJ Sparx’s. Based on the 7 stations mentioned, PBA scribe & sportswriter James Ty III describes KDL as a well-traveled DJ (KDL used to say this when he used to be part of BNO), just like a journeyman in basketball. I gotta admit, he’s got a good playlist. I can remember back when he used to be with RT, he used to sit in during 24K Weekend around twice. Sgt. Pepper (who used to be with Magic 89.9 & 103.5 Max FM, where he used to be its station manager) takes over the evenings. He was known as the pioneer of Magic’s Friday Madness, back before RT’s 24K came along. Hence, he also has a good playlist. Aside from the new DJs, they have a new program called Retro Discoteria (which used to be heard on Max FM), which features club mixes from the 70s, 80s to 90s, manned by abt.DJs. This airs during Saturday nights, competing with Nino Belza’s Club Rewind on KLite. It kinda reminds me of his 24K In The Mix on RT, though.

These result to the change in the Weekday schedule of other DJs. Joshua takes care of the midday, Jimmy Jam is now back to his afternoon slot (he used to board during evenings) & Andy Tuna boards on an earlier (late night) timeslot. During Weekends, the veterans take over. From Rudolph Rivera in the morning (he was the morning man back in his WKC days), The Triggerman in the midday (he used to board during noon back in his Campus Radio days), to Joey Pizza in the afternoon. Looks like we’ll get to hear the Top 20 @ 12 during weekends only. So, it seems that JJ Sparx (and Anjenette) disappeared from radio once again for some unknown reasons. Listeners said that JJ’s topics/debates were pathetic, lame & a bit boring (in their opinion, though).

END OF THE LINE

Retro is getting stronger with its recent changes & improvements, now that it’s entering a new competition. Like I said before, this is way better than RJ. With its new weekday line-up, KLite is its nearest competitor. If the latter 3 DJs had been retained, then RJ would still have been its nearest competitor. It’s good to hear KDL & The Sarge back on air once again. With these changes, I’m very sure this station will last for a very long time.


Retro 105.9 Invades Metro Manila

March 29, 2014

This morning, Metro Manila has become Retro Manila with Retro 105.9 DCG FM. This station plays a whole lot of oldies, similar to its rival RJ 100.3. And what’s also interesting is that this station is manned by a lot of veteran DJs. Jimmy Jam (also from WXB 102, KY 91.5, UR 105.9, and RJ 100.3), The Triggerman (also from EI 93.1), & Braggy (also from MMDA Radio 1206 & Sports Radio 918) are the jocks from Campus Radio, the station that students used to love until Mike Enriquez killed it. Joey Pizza (also from KY 91.5, Blazin’ 105.9 & Citylite 88.3) & Joshua (also from 103.5 K-Lite, and U92) came from the legendary 99.5 RT. The other veterans in this station are The Mole (from The Giant 97.1, DM 95.5, RJ 100.3 & recently DZRJ 810 as a newscaster), Rudolph Rivera (who just left RJ 100.3 last month, and used to work with WBL & 93.9 WKC), Andy Tuna (from RX 93.1 & Kiss Jazz/DWST 101.1) & JJ Sparx (I believe, from KY 91.5 & 99.5 RT). And their mission is to bring back Old School Radio, the way radio should be.

Before I talked about what happened today, you may be asking yourselves what happened to the ill-fated Radio High 105.9. This station played a lot of Jazz & some soft AC in between. Initially, it used to have 15-minute segments which played a specific genre each, but this was scrapped off (except for some of its special programs) after a year to compete with 105.1 Crossover, which remains the only Jazz station in the Metro. Recently, this station went low from high when it suffered from financial losses because of increasing of Hot AC stations that play a lot of crap. After almost 3 years on air, Francis Lumen decided to end his airtime lease contract with 105.9. Despite this, the station continued play the usual throughout the entire March, but this time with teasers about Retro 105.9.

This is the 5th time 105.9 has rebranded. DWLA used to be LA from 1992 – 2000, which played rock; Blazin’ from 2002 – 2007, which played hip-hop; UR from 2007 – 2011, which played classic & modern rock, just like the old DZRJ did before; and Radio High from 2011 – 2014, which played Jazz & some soft AC. Enough of Radio High for now. Let’s go to what happened during Retro 105.9’s pilot broadcast, shall we.

Before I hit the bed last night, I began hearing some 80s tracks (this began since yesterday evening), which showed some signs of what today’s broadcast would be like. I believed it was static since midnight, when I woke up at around 3:30 this morning. It went on air at around 5am. Andy Tuna was the 1st on board, but he didn’t speak that much and played more music. At first, I thought he’d be on air until around 8am, but it turned out that JJ Sparx would be on board at 6am. It seemed kinda strange to me, he had only an hour of airtime for today, but I found out that he’ll be on air tomorrow 2am.

JJ Sparx began his boardwork at 6am with General Public’s “Tenderness”. I’m not that familiar with this DJ, but as I browse his FB for some clues, it turns out that he’s the station manager. Throughout its 1st few hours, I hear no ads, but just his voice & a mix of 70s, 80s & early 90s. Every 55th minute of every hour in the morning, this lady (I forgot the name) brings the latest news through News @ 55. [UPDATE] A few days later, I realized that DCG means Domingo C. Garcia, the station’s owner.

10am came Rudolph Rivera (or rather Rrrrrrudolph Rivera) with a peg, “Ladies and gentlemen, Ace of Base. The Sign… of old age.” I used to listen to him when he was with RJ 100.3, through his Smilabration show. Speaking of RJ, I used to listen to this station a lot when I was in grade school, digging for oldies, especially The Beatles. Nowadays, I rarely listen to it. No wonder he left RJ to join the bandwagon. It seems that he just played the oldies, RJ style. I was kinda surprised that I heard a couple of 60s music, one of them is from the Zombies. And at this time, an ad or 2 aired every hour.

At 2pm, Jimmy Jam returned to the airwaves after around 4 years. He’s from Campus Radio. I wasn’t that familiar with the said station, (I listened to this a few times) I was much of an avid listener of Campus 99.5. He even had his stint with RJ. This time, Jimmy Jam played more of classic rock, notably a few from the mid-90s, like Green Day & Dishwalla. At this time, a set of around 4 ads were aired every hour, unlike this morning. And what the station has for now is their hotline.

The evening starts with Joey Pizza, who has made a comeback after some time. As far as I know, he used to be part of the legendary 99.5 RT. (Good thing Jeremiah Junior told me via phone about what happened back in the day when the old RT existed.) I never heard Joey Pizza’s voice before. So, we had the chance to hear it. And it seems that he’s playing oldies, RT style, with some 90s tracks.

Before the day closes, 10pm, The Triggerman “bolts himself into this station” after 6 years, with his program Boreless Show. Another jock from Campus Radio, he used to host one of the very popular countdowns on Philippine Radio, Top 20 @ 12. He talks about a ton of interesting stuff, notably what happened to him during his Campus Radio days. He said, “I’m not gonna say Campus Radio because I am not on Campus Radio. I am not on 97.1.” He talked about being “kicked out” of Campus, when its format was earning P8-10 million a month. Back in 2007, Campus revamped as Hot AC station, Barangay LS, and they (he, Jimmy Jam, John Hendrix, Joe Spinner, Braggy, & the rest) retained for almost a year before scumbag Mike Enriquez fired them. Its current format now earns P13 million a month. Ironic, isn’t it. He even played the songs whcih were featured in his Top 20 @ 12. During his program, his guests were some of the Retro DJs & Richard Steele (who used to work with DM, DZEC & Campus, now with DZMM).

Come this weekend, we’ll get to hear Joshua, Braggy & The Mole. So, I’ll upload some of the recordings of Retro soon. And, Niko Battalones has also kept track of this in his live blog.

Time to wrap things up. I gotta admit, since I’m more into oldies, I kinda like Retro 105.9. It’s good to hear those veteran jocks on board once again, notably Jimmy Jam, Rudolph Rivera, The Triggerman & Joshua Yu (the ones I’m very familiar with). They play a great mix of 70s, 80s & 90s the Old School style, and it’s way better than RJ, which plays 60s – today (mixing 70s – 90s with 21st century music isn’t my type). Less commercials, occasional talk (more on greetings & music), more music w/ classy vintage stingers. This is the type of “retro” we music lovers want to hear on the radio. With this, Retro has outsmarted RJ in some ways. It somewhat picked up where a part of 99.5 RT left off, since RT had a very vast collection of music back in the day, including some rare gems, back in the day. It’s like listening to 24K everyday. One of these days, I’ll make a request on their hotline, just like what I did when RT was around. Now that Retro’s pilot broadcast was indeed a success, we’ll expect more from this station on the long run. I hope this station will last for a very long time, especially for people who are digging in for more classics.