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Go 95.3 Minneapolis To Launch Tuesday

Go 95.3 KZGO Minneapolis St. Paul Hip-Hop Northern Lights Broadcasting 96.3 KTWNNorthern Lights confirmed this morning that Rhythmic CHR “Go 95.3” KZGO will launch on Tuesday, January 5.

CityPages reports that the station will mix local and indie artists with the usual Rhythmic pop/Hip-Hop mix. Peter Parker, who previously worked in the market at the defunct “B96” has joined the station has music director and will host afternoons. Parker was most recently in afternoons at Radio-One Urban “Z107.9” WENZ Cleveland.

Original Report 1/3: Even with the PPM not requiring listeners to recall a station’s name or frequency, we’ve rarely seen broadcasters open up and utilize identical branding for two unique formats in a market. That looks to change as soon as this week in Minneapolis.

Following Northern Lights Broadcasting’s announced acquisition of 95.3 KNOF St. Paul in September, the company reserved new KZGO call letters and registered Go953.com, Go953MN.com and GoNorthMN.com leading to the thought that Alternative “Go 96.3” KTWN Edina would move to 95.3. The company is going to launch as second “Go” branded station on 95.3 with an Urban or Rhythmic CHR format to complement 96.3.

The streaming page for the new station appeared earlier this week featuring the following description of “Go 95.3“:

The modern evolution of hip-hop is live on Go 95.3. On the radio and online, we are the independent source for new lyricism, beats, and rhythm moving the Twin Cities. With playlists flowing from our rich local scene and communities around the globe, our curated mix is on rap music’s cutting edge. Reach out. We’re listening to you too.

The Minneapolis/St. Paul market currently has no current based Urban, Urban AC or Rhythmic CHR. Both iHeartMedia and Cumulus did launch Classic Hip-Hop stations over the course of 2015.

Profile photo of Lance Venta
Lance Venta is the Owner and Publisher of RadioInsight.com and a consultant for RadioBB Networks specializing in integration of radio and the internet. Lance has two decades of experience tracking the audio industry and its use of digital platforms.

8 Comments

  1. Profile photo of Nathan Obral


    I’m curious about how the Pohlads settled on “Go” for a brand. Nevertheless, this is very intriguing, and if urban/CHR is a go (pardon the pun) it definitely fits a wide-open format hole in the market.

  2. Profile photo of maytableinc


    Historically speaking, alternative stations in the past, especially during the 90’s, have played a few hip-hop/urban themed songs (look at House of Pain’s Jump Around that still gets airplay on some alternative based stations). So I don’t think Northern is “going” for a different demographic and I think it’s a nice complement to their current station. But ratings wise, 96.3 still has a long way to “go” to make an impact in the Twin Cities.

    • Profile photo of Nathan Obral


      AAA is a tough format to build up, and the Twins PBP rights hurts their cause more than it helps. 95.3 will have a bigger and quicker impact.

  3. Profile photo of Kyle G.


    From the sounds of it, maybe they are going for an “Urban Alternative” sound like CHRY-FM in Toronto? Maybe a little more mainstream than CHRY, seeing as KTWN is more mainstream than most AAA/Alternative stations. I’d love for this to happen, though.

    I also feel like this format, combined with the Classic Hip-Hops that have popped up in the Twin Cities in 2015, would blow KMOJ out of the water. Which would be kind of sad because of how community-oriented they are.

    • Profile photo of ksradiogeek


      If B96 really did hurt KMOJ in the 10 or so years they were on, KMOJ would’ve been done long ago.

  4. Profile photo of only1moore


    Well, at least the Twin Cities once again have a Rhythmic. Sounds like we could see a resurgence in the format for 2016.

  5. Profile photo of saladressing


    Great to see Rhythmic CHR returning to the Twin cities. I had heard that it was possibly the only market in the top 50 without a commercial urban or rhythmic.

    With regard to the same name as its sister station, it kind of reminds me of the varying flavors of BBC Radio available on the FM dial in the UK.

  6. Profile photo of Eric Jon Magnuson


    That shared branding makes more sense now–both with a mini-portal for both stations at http://gomn.com, and with the umbrella name “Go Radio”/”Go Media”.

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