Regional Mexican is the most popular music format among Hispanics in the U.S., and WNUA plans to take on two other stations with the same format – Univision’s heritage WOJO-FM and SBS’ WLEY-FM.
The moves comes as Clear Channel registered two domains on Monday: 955NowChicago.com and 955Elpatron.com, as reported by the reliable Radio Insight website, run by Lance Venta. The first domain suggested a shift back to an English-language format, adapting Clear Channel’s new Now branding, an Adult CHR format which recently launched at KDMX-FM in Dallas (under its previous branding as Mix 102.9, Khloe Kardashian briefly hosted a daily one-hour lunchtime show.)
According to Radio Insight, Clear Channel actually had been sitting on the ElPatron955.com domain (different from the one they registered on Monday) for more than two years – for a rumored format flip that never took place.
Since switching from Smooth Jazz in 2009, Mega 95.5 FM has been a disappointment, with ratings routinely trailing those of WOJO-FM, WLEY-FM, and WOJO’s sister station WVIV.
While not entirely important in this day and age (particularly in the PPM era), it would help a little bit if Clear Channel changed the call letters of the 95.5 frequency. When you think of WNUA, Smooth Jazz still comes to mind – the format the frequency held for 22 years. After switching from Alternative to Oldies in 2005, it took three years for WLS-FM to get rid of the WZZN calls, which date back to the ’80’s format it briefly had in 2000-01.
Even though WGBO-TV long ago dumped its syndicated programming lineup for Spanish-language network Univision, reruns of Perry Mason, Bonanza, The Rifleman, and the names of really, really, bad movies still come to yours truly’s mind whenever I think about the WGBO calls… low-rated programming the station seemingly ran ad nauseam during its days as an independent station.