Buz’n 102.9 Rebrands As The Wolf; Adds Thunder

Buz'n 102.9 The Wolf KMNB Minneapolis Greg ThunderAs expected Entercom revamped Country “Buz’n 102.9” KMNB Minneapolis this morning with a new name.

Now “102.9 The Wolf“, the new name completed the revamp of the station’s lineup and presentation in recent months. But the station did not stop there as it also announced the addition of Greg Thunder to its morning show.

Thunder will join incumbent morning hosts Paul ‘PT’ Thomas and Mandy James with Mike Dubs moving back to evenings after joining the morning show in October. Thunder, who most recently co-hosted mornings at iHeartMedia Hot AC “Cities 97” KTCZ and also worked at Hubbard Hot AC “KS95” 94.5 KSTP-FM from 2004-2010. Thunder also has Country experience at KMPS Seattle and KILT-FM Houston.

The rebranding to “The Wolf” also comes with a music shift to “country hits from then and now” as opposed to focusing just on New Country.

Entercom, the #1 creator of live, original, local audio content in the United States, today announced the launch of 102.9 The Wolf (KMNB-FM) in Minneapolis, MN. The station, formerly BUZ’N @ 102.9, will continue serving the Twin Cities and surrounding markets, playing country hits from then and now, featuring artists like Luke Bryan, Kenny Chesney, Carrie Underwood, Tim McGraw and Florida Georgia Line, among others.

“102.9 The Wolf will be the Twin Cities’ station for the biggest country hits from then and now,” said Shannon Knoepke, Senior Vice President and Market Manager, Entercom Minneapolis. “From today’s leading artists to all-time essential country favorites, every song beats the pulse of Nashville all day, every day. We’re excited for our fans – ‘The Wolfpack’ – and clients to continue on this journey with us as we create a close-knit community of fans.”

The station also announced updated programming, effective immediately. KMNB welcomes on-air personality Greg Thunder as host of the station’s morning show “The Wolf Wake Up Crew,” which airs from 5:30 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. CT. Thunder recently held on-air roles for KTCZ-FM in Minneapolis, KGOR in Omaha, NE and sister stations 100.3 The Bull in Houston and 94.1 The Sound in Seattle.

Subsequently, current morning show anchor Paul “PT” Thomas will expand his role to also host “Home Town Country Sunday Night,” which will air Sundays from 8:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. CT.

The new weekday lineup is as follows:

5:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.: “The Wolf Wake Up Crew”
9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.: Fish
2:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.: Lucas Phelan
6:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.: Mike Dubs

Original Report 11/25: Is Entercom planning a change at Country “Buz’n 102.9” KMNB Minneapolis?

The station is promoting “the buzz is about to wear off” with a change to take place on Monday, December 3 at 7:00am with posts on its website thanking Minnesota and Western Wisconsin for seven great years. Since launching the Country format in December 2011, KMNB has yet to take down iHeartMedia Country “K102” 102.1 KEEY. In the October 2018 Nielsen Audio ratings KEEY was seventh in the Minneapolis/St. Paul market with a 5.4 share. KMNB was fourteenth at a 3.3 share.

INSTANT INSIGHT: With Cumulus currently in Christmas music stunt mode prior to flipping back to Soft AC “Love 105” on its 105.1 WGVX Lakeville, 105.3 WLUP Cambridge, and 105.7 WWWM-FM Eden Prairie/Minneapolis trimulcast there is some logic in seeing Entercom wanting to beat them to the punch. However, if we were to venture any guess it would be 99% on Entercom rebranding KMNB. Nowhere in its promotion does it say the Country format going away, rather just on the Buz’n name going. Additionally the station just debuted a new morning show in October.

  1. wolfenforcer32 says

    I could see them keeping the same format, but possibly having a new moniker, say like 102.9 The Wolf, sort of as a tribute of sorts to the Timberwolves of the NBA.

    1. Charles Everett says

      Props for the new name but not for the reason you gave. The Wolf is a common handle in Country radio — look to Dallas, Seattle, and St. Louis for good examples. Plus the NBA’s demographics don’t mesh with Country.

  2. Steve Varholy says

    I never understood CBS’s logic in naming a country station Buzzin’. But then again, CBS did a lot of things with their radio division that didn’t always make sense – the nationwide roll out of FreeFM for example…

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