Originally created 10/06/04

Beasley's stations have new sounds



Like country music? If not, you now have more opportunities to learn to appreciate it.

Beasley Broadcast Group's decision to convert WGOR-FM (93.9) from an oldies format to country music gives the Augusta market its third country FM station.

The swap occurred Friday afternoon, just minutes after competitor Clear Channel Radio converted its former hit-music station WZNY-FM (105.7), "Y105," to country station WIBL-FM, "The Bull."

It is a variety country station designed to take on Beasley's more contemporary country station, WKXC-FM (99.5), "Kicks 99."

Beasley's new country station, called "The Bulldog," is designed to be a copycat of Clear Channel's "The Bull." Even the slogan: "Today's Country and the Legends" is the same.

"It's that way by design," said Kent Dunn, the vice president and co-general manager of Beasley's nine-station cluster in Augusta. "We put ourselves into a competitive role."

Mr. Dunn said he does not believe having three country FM stations in Augusta is overkill, adding that the market's four urban music stations do well both in revenue and ratings.

"We think there is room for two top country stations in the market, and we want to be the company with both," he said.

The oldies format will move to Beasley's WAJY-FM (102.7), a frequency formerly held by the company's contemporary Christian music program.

That format has been be moved to Beasley's WGUS-AM (1480), which had been classic country station "Big Gus."

Mr. Dunn said the format changes were put in motion once Clear Channel began promoting the new WBIL format.

In an act known in the industry as "stunting," the station began advertising at midnight Thursday, and WIBL went live at 5 p.m. Friday. The new WGOR went live four minutes later.

Reach Damon Cline at (706) 823-3486 or damon.cline@augustachronicle.com.

BEASLEY RADIO CHANGES

Stationold formatnew format

WGOR-FM (93.9)OldiesCountry
WAJY-FM (102.7)ContemporaryOldiesChristian
WGUS-AM (1480)Classic ContemporarycountryChristian