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New Hip Hop and R&B Radio Station Hits Boston Airwaves

After weeks of speculation, WTKK NewsTalk 96.9 officially relaunched as POWER 96.9 on Wednesday.

Jan. 3rd Update:
A day after its launch of Power 96.9, the station morphed again into an electronic dance channel. See here for the update.

Original Story from Jan. 2nd:
Capping off a year of several radio station changes in the city, a new hip hop and R&B radio channel officially replaced WTKK's NewsTalk 96.9 this week. 

Power 96.9 launched Wednesday at 10 a.m., after a heartfelt good-bye from morning hosts Margery Eagan and Jim Braude set to Journey's "Don't Stop Believing."

"America did not fall off the fiscal cliff," joked Braude, "but we are falling off the radio cliff."

Greater Media Inc.'s 96.9 WTKK has been a talk radio station in the city since 1999. It played host to now-infamous radio show personalities such as Don Imus and Jay Severin.

The station noted the change change comes after "much careful consideration of the direction of the station’s format and overall ratings over the past several years," in a statement released on Tuesday.

“We would like to thank Jim Braude, Margery Eagan, Michael Graham and the entire News Talk 96.9 WTKK-FM staff for their many contributions to the station and Talk Radio format over the years in Boston,” said Greater Media Boston Market Manager Rob Williams in the statement. “They are true professionals and we are very grateful to them.”

The 96.9 WTKK recently rebranded itself as NewsTalk 96.9 in September, but it failed to see any market growth against its competitors, according to RadioInsight.com

More About Power 96.9
The new station promises to become Boston's Hip Hop and R&B station.

"Live and local, the new 96.9 promises to bring a fun new sound to the Boston community!" Greater Boston Radio, Inc. said in a statement released Wednesday

The station's first few songs were Rihanna's "Diamonds," Rick Ross's "Diced Pineapples, and "Monster" by Kanye West, Jay-Z, Rick Ross, Nicki Minaj and Bon Iver. 

Talk Radio Leaving Boston
With the latest talk radio departure in the city, there is now just one more all-talk (non-sports) station in Boston: WRKO-FM. 

The past year was big for changes on Boston's radio airwaves, with the sale of 101.7 WFNX to Clear Channel to form 101.7 The Harbor in July, the launch of 103.3 AMP Radio by CBS. And we can't forget the change from 104.1 WBCN to CBS's MIX 104.1. 

A further recent shakeup on the radio scene was the firing of hip-hop radio personality Pebbles from JAMN 94.5 in December 2012. 

Will you be tuning in to the new station? Are you upset at losing NewsRadio 96.9? Tell us in the comments. 

Bob Brambo January 03, 2013 at 12:20 AM
The change in format is bad enough, although the various personalities of WTKK, as do I, believe in the right to run ones business as they seem fit, but the way it was handled, with a total lack of dignity, class and respect for the employees and loyal listeners makes it seem as though a ten year old child inherited the station and changed the format on a whim. I hope you get what you deserve.
Joanne nevers January 07, 2013 at 01:21 AM
I will not be listening to the new 96.9 -I looked forward to talk radio including the money show - very disappointed! We have enough music stations!!

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