WNKN Joins Classic Country Simulcast With WNKR

Classic Country 105.9 WNKN Middletown Cincinnati 106.7 WNKRGrant County Broadcasters has relaunched 105.9 WNKN Middletown OH as a simulcast of their Classic Country 106.7 WNKR Williamstown KY.

The new “Classic Country 105.9 & 106.7” will focus on Country hits from the 1960s up until 2007. The move brings back the format that was heard on then “Rebel 105.9” WPFB-FM prior to its acquisition by Northern Kentucky University in 2011. The existing WNKR lineup of Larry B in mornings, Gina Matthews in middays, and Program Director Peter Z in afternoons remains in place. Former “B105” WUBE Cincinnati Program Director Tim Closson will join the station for weekends.

WNKN joins a crowded Country battle in both the Cincinnati and Dayton markets. In Cincinnati the station will compete directly with Hubbard’s “B105” WUBE and “97.3 The Wolf” WYGY as well as Cumulus’ “Nash-FM 94.1” WNNF. Dayton competitors include Alpha Media Classic Country “101.5 Hank-FM” WCLI, Cox Media’s market leading Country “K99.1” WHKO and iHeartMedia’s “B94.5” WYDB.

Grant County Broadcasters purchased WNKN from Northern Kentucky University in July for $4 million cash and $1.3 million in advertising. The station ended its non-commercial AAA format on Thursday.

Grant County Broadcasters, owners of WNKR-FM 106.7 in Dry Ridge, KY, has launched its second Classic Country radio station in the tri-state.

WNKN-FM 105.9, licensed to Middletown, OH signed on this morning with local radio legend Larry B. Larry B has been the morning man on WNKR 106.7 for 19 years. He previously worked at the 105.9 frequency when it was playing country music as “The Rebel”.

The new signal reaches from north of Dayton, OH to south of Florence, KY.

Both stations play Classic Country music from the 60s to 2007, primarily focused on the 1990s. “Our listeners are people who love pure country music. “Today’s country music has evolved to include elements of rap and harder rock music”, says VP of Programming Peter Z. “There’s an audience for that and there are several radio stations serving that up. Our goal is to satisfy the pure country listener with the likes of Alan Jackson, George Strait, The Judds, Reba, Clint Black and more.”

Jeff Ziesmann, owner and CEO of the stations says he’s long believed the only thing he could do to improve on WNKR is to put it on a bigger signal where more people could enjoy it. “Between 105.9 and 106.7, we’ve increased our reach substantially”.

In addition to Larry B in mornings, Gina Matthews will handle the workday hours and Peter Z will cover the afternoon drive home. Michael Monks, publisher and editor of The River City News is News Director. Joining current staffers Jay Anthony and Tomcat Michaels on weekends will be Tim Closson, a member of the Country Music Broadcasters Hall of Fame, who has years of success programming country radio in Cincinnati.

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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.

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