Bell Media Rebrands 13 Canadian Country Stations As Pure Country

In a swift strike towards nationalized branding, Bell Media launched a new national Country brand in Canada today as all twelve of the company’s stations in the format have rebranded as “Pure Country” while another flips to the format.

The thirteen “Pure Country” stations will also feature a national midday show hosted by Shannon Ella. Ella previously hosted middays for what was “BX93” CJBX London ON and 1260 CKHJ Fredericton NB. They will also all carry iHeartMedia’s Bobby Bones Show on delay in evenings with local morning and afternoon shows remaining.

The new brand also takes the place of what had been Alternative “98.9 The Drive” CKLC Kingston ON, which had been stunting since yesterday.

INSTANT INSIGHT: The nationalization of radio across the globe continues to slowly take shape. “Heart” in the UK has been consolidating its on-air lineups. We’ve seen baby steps taken here with Cumulus’ “Nash-FM” and “Nash Icon“, but nobody yet has built critical mass with a commercial terrestrial music brand in the United States or Canada. Yet, Educational Media Foundation’s Christian AC “K-Love” gives a semi-blueprint on how to properly build a national audio brand.

iHeartRadio Canada falls head over boots for country music today with the launch of PURE COUNTRY, Canada’s first-ever, national country music radio brand. Rolling out beginning today across 13 Canadian radio stations from Northern B.C. to Truro, NS , as well as the iHeartRadio Canada app and PureCountry.ca, PURE COUNTRY delivers everything country music listeners love, but now with a new name and look.

PURE COUNTRY is anchored by local morning and drive home shows, while iHeartRadio Canada host Shannon Ella hosts a nationally syndicated midday show weekdays on all PURE COUNTRY stations. Ella plays all the biggest country hits, keeps listeners up- to-date on the latest music news, and chats with some of country music’s biggest artists. Ella joins the PURE COUNTRY team after previously being on air with Today’s Country BX93 in London and KHJ in Fredericton.

“We are thrilled to bring this new brand to iHeartRadio Canada, right in the midst of the rapidly growing popularity of country music in Canada,” said Nikki Moffat, President, Radio and Local TV, and SVP Finance. “Across Canada, listeners can hear all their favourite country songs complemented with exclusive content, including one-on-one candid interviews with country megastars.”

“With PURE COUNTRY, our country stations can benefit from the scale of a national brand while maintaining a local focus,” said Rob Farina, Head of Radio Content, Strategy, and iHeartRadio. “We look forward to bringing PURE COUNTRY energy to local communities across Canada.”

Additional programming on PURE COUNTRY includes the IHEARTRADIO PURE COUNTRY COUNTDOWN, hosted by Sophie Moroz and Jeff Hopper, airing Saturday and Sundays (check local broadcast times) on all PURE COUNTRY stations across Canada. The hosts count down the 20 biggest songs of the week, plus brand new music with “What’s On Tap”, a throwback with “Pure Country Yearbook”, and music from the “Feature Artist of the Week.”

PURE COUNTRY also airs BOBBY BONES DAILY SHOW during the evenings, and BOBBY BONES COUNTRY TOP 30 COUNTDOWN on the weekends (check local broadcast times), broadcasting from Nashville, TN. Bones is the youngest-ever National Radio Hall of Fame inductee, and has been dubbed “the most powerful man in country music” by Forbes.

PURE COUNTRY will also get exclusive access and behind-the-scenes footage from some of the biggest country music festivals this summer including Cavendish Beach Music Festival and Boots and Hearts Music Festival.

PURE COUNTRY is set to deliver exclusive prizes and contests, kicking off with the $25,000 Pure Country Cash Code contest, running across all PURE COUNTRY stations beginning tomorrow, May 29 until June 21. Listen for the code word three times daily and enter the code word online at PureCountry.ca (check local website) to qualify for $25,000. One winner will be randomly drawn.

The following iHeartRadio Canada stations are now rebranded as PURE COUNTRY:

Ottawa’s Pure Country 94
Fredericton’s Pure Country 103.5
Nova Scotia’s Pure Country 99.5 (Truro)
London’s Pure Country 93
Central Ontario’s Pure Country 106 (Orillia, Barrie, Midland)
Pembroke’s Pure Country 96.7
Peterborough’s Pure Country 105
Sudbury’s Pure Country 91.7
Dawson Creek’s Pure Country 890
BC North’s Pure Country (Terrace, Prince Rupert, Kitimat)
Brandon’s Pure Country 101
Regina’s Pure Country 92.7
Kingston’s Pure Country 99

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1 Comment
  1. Theater of My Mind says


    Bobby Bones…on delay? Could Bell not find a Canadian talented enough to be their live, national evening DJ?

    Bobby Bones is successful because iHeart in the US gave him the support to get him there. Why can’t billion-dollar Bell do the same with a Canadian host? It’s not like there’s a shortage of homegrown talent…Maybe one of the jocks Bell just fired would be a good candidate.

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