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107.7 to add on-air talent; Buffalo near top in NFL rating Sunday

 By Alan Pergament

This is what I'm thinking:

Some readers of my blog wrote Thursday that they were happy to see that 107.7 FM has returned to a music format similar to The Lake, which occupied the frequency before WBEN-AM took it over two years ago.

However, Greg Ried, the general manager of Entercom Radio stations in Western New York, notes that The Lake "was not alternative." The new format is alternative. Ried said The Lake was classic rock and is still carried on 107.7 HD-2 and online at

By the way, Ried said Entercom plans to hire some on-air talent for Alternative Buffalo 107.7 but wrote that how many and at what times they will be on the air hasn't been determined.

I don't often carry self-serving statements or quotes from releases, which is why I didn't include those in Thursday’s release announcing the new alternative format on 107.7.

A couple of things struck me about the release.

First, it stated "this new station will connect the best of today's modern alternative music with young, educated, white-collar professionals who are active, mobile and always online."

In other words, it doesn't really care if it gets old-timers like me who like Mumford and Sons, The Lumineers and fun.

Then there was this quote from Ried: "We are building Alternative Radio 107.7 to compete and win. On Day 1 we will stand alone as the exclusive alternative station in Buffalo. With our unique sound, Alternative Buffalo 107.7 will target an audience in the heaviest acquisition years of their lives. Alternative Buffalo 107.7 will deliver modern consumers who need to buy and buy right now."

In other words, Entercom thinks it can make a lot of money on the station. The quote was aimed at advertisers.

Some regular listeners of the Buffalo State College station, WBNY-FM, 91.3 FM, dispute the line that 107.7 will be the "exclusive" alternative station. WBNY calls itself "Buffalo's Original Alternative." But Reid undoubtedly was referring to commercial radio stations.

Sports Beat: Former Buffalo Bill James Lofton makes his debut at 11 a.m. today as the co-host of SiriusXM Blitz on the NFL Channel. It airs every Friday from 11-1 p.m. Lofton, who has a very busy broadcasting career, will also appear on several other programs on the satellite service… ESPN radio's broadcast of the Pittsburgh-Minnesota game Sunday from London has a distinct Buffalo flavor. Tonawanda native Bill Rosinski is doing play-by-play and former Bills General Manager Bill Polian is the analyst. And Beth Faber, who still lives in Buffalo, is the producer. It might not be carried here since Entercom carries sold-out Bills home games on KB so fans in Ralph Wilson Stadium can hear them live. Bills flagship station WGR carries the game on a delay so it can be matched up with TV... The 39.7 rating that the Bills-Jets game had on Channel 4 in Buffalo made this market the third-highest rated among all NFL cities last Sunday. Buffalo was only beaten by New Orleans (47.8) and Indianapolis (40.2).  Smaller markets often get higher ratings, though the number of viewers isn't as high as it is in major markets where a rating point is equivalent to more households.

The syndicated reruns of high-priced "Modern Family" on WNYO-TV didn't even hit a 1 rating at 6:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. for the first three days of the week. The ratings should go up as soon as WNYers realize the reruns are carried there. This season’s one-hour Wednesday premiere of the ABC series that won another Emmy as best comedy had an 8.7 rating on Channel 7, which was only behind the difficult-to-watch season premiere of NBC's "Law & Order: SVU" (9.0)  on Channel 2 on Wednesday. And "Modern Family" has much more desirable demographics than the aging "SVU."

NBC’s move of last year's Monday hit "Revolution" (6.7) to 8 p.m. Wednesday appears to have cost it some local viewers, but that series had a huge DVR and On Demand audience last year. It was third in its time slot here to CBS’ "Survivor" (7.4) on Channel  4 and the ABC comedy combo of "The Middle" (8.3) and the premiere of "Back in the Game" (7.4).

Glad to see that HBO has renewed "Boardwalk Empire" for a fifth season even if I've only seen the fourth season premiere because Sundays have been so programming rich. "Boardwalk" is averaging an impressive 7.5 million viewers weekly this season and remains one of the pay-cable network's top-rated shows. Of course, many fans watch it on days other than Sunday. The competition at 9 p.m. Sunday is pretty tough this week – it airs opposite the series finale of AMC’s Emmy-winning "Breaking Bad," which is on a basic cable network.


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