Support the independent voice of Phoenix and help keep the future of New Times free.
We just spoke with Phoenix alt-radio station The Edge 103.9's General Manager, Nat Galvin and former and future program director, Marc Young, who confirm the station is now under the control of Riviera Broadcasting's creditors and undergoing a "format modification." Since Friday, the station has been on "iPod mode" without DJs.
Young, a former program director who was let go after an ownership change and has been working in Chicago since, has been re-hired and plans to return to Phoenix next week. He says the station does not plan a whole-sale format change, but will be making "modifications" with the idea of making the station more about what loyal listeners want -- as determined by the station's research and a survey currently posted on their site.
"The focus is presenting radio the way it was meant to be," Young says. "Listeners want control and they want input in to what they hear."
Galvin says "cost cutting" moves have been made but that there will be "no dramatic changes" to the on-air talent when humans re-take the boards next week. The plan is to play more 90s smash alt-rock hits -- "Gold" in radio terms -- and less new music, Galvin says.
"We were pushing new music pushing too hard," he says. "We'll see the station be 60-70% Gold, with some Millennial Gold, and some new stuff."
In addition to big hits of yore, the station also plans to play more "deep cuts" from iconic 90s albums, he says, giving the example of Pearl Jam's Ten as an album with "four or five" songs worthy of radio play.
At the same time he promises more variety -- there's 600 records in the station's playlist now, he says, as opposed to 250 -- with occasional forays in to, say, Johnny Cash.
"We played Johnny Cash last Friday," he says. "Not that we're going to do that all the time, but we can. With all due respect to Clear Channel and CBS... there's nobody telling me what to do from New York City, and thats very cool."
Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.