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#LessThan200Words: On 105.9 Like FM

Retro 105.9 quietly signed off without any publicity. So what are the reasons why this station fell from grace, and how will its replacement Like FM be able to fare in a tough radio environment?

Timow's Turf

(Requested by Rexdel Yabut Mallari. Apologies for the rush writing but the Turf is not done yet.)

THE RUMORS and observations this closing month from PinoyExchange over DWLA 105.9 FM in Metro Manila came true.

Retro 105.9 shut down last Friday without formal notice — despite the warning signs — and is replaced with 105.9 Like FM, for the sixth try (fifth under blocktimer since 2003), the following day. The genre of the newly branded radio station is leaning to adult Top 40 or a mix of current and classic hits.

For the shocked and non-oriented loyal listeners, many reasons why the format change: both neighbors’ (FM2 104.3 and Wish 107.5) rise, dwindling listenership (translating into low revenue), migration of DJs and outstanding and unsettled obligations from the last blocktimer.

Because of that, the aforementioned requester knew the situation will go worse but he made suggestions on who would be…

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hits, music, Philippines, radio, songs

Another Revamp for Retro 105.9 DCG-FM?

So much for being No. 1 in the upscale market.

Once again, Retro 105.9 DCG-FM is making some changes to its menu. For now, the station does not utilize any on-air talent (save for news reporter Karen Wu) and plays automated music instead.

Rumor has it that the station asked its DJs to file their dismissal papers for no reason at all. It is possible that a bad case of declining revenue has something to do with the issue.

However, a later report from a PinoyExchange insider clarified that the dismissal papers are only temporary and that some of the Retro DJs are being brought back as part of a possible revamp of the station. If that is true, then find out what will happen next.

While Retro 105.9 DCG-FM emerged as the top upscale FM radio station in Metro Manila, the emergence of 104.3 FM2 as its main competitor in the classic hits genre made it difficult for Retro to maintain its foothold in the market. As its impending revamp shows, nothing is cast in stone.

Listeners can only hope that Retro 105.9 DCG-FM will find a way to maintain some long-term viability amid increased competition. After all, it will be a shame to see this pioneering station go after all these years building up its reputation as the ‘home of the classics’.

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hits, music, Philippines, radio, songs

In 100 Words: Yes the Best? More Like Yes the Worst!

Looks like nothing has changed on 101.1 Yes the Best.

Despite a massive and heavily hyped rebrand that took several months to materialize (even going as far as labeling the station as the ‘Home of the Millennials’), the sound of Yes the Best remains virtually the same as its previous incarnation. They are still a ‘masa’ station with ridiculously named DJs, playing some OPM, dance and hip-hop tracks, and even classic rock ballads from years past.

If Yes wants to truly live up to their billing as the ‘Home of the Millennials’, the station should have morphed into a Top 40 CHR station ala Magic 89.9 and 99.5 Play FM. This is poor advertising on MBC’s part, one that will definitely fool the more educated listener.

Sorry, but the rebrand of 101.1 Yes the Best is a thumbs down. Get your priorities straight, MBC.

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hits, music, Philippines, radio, songs

104.3 FM2 Poses New Challenge to Retro 105.9 DCG-FM

Retro 105.9 DCG-FM has a new rival.

Almost three years to the day Retro 105.9 made history as Metro Manila’s first classic hits-oriented radio station, a new network of the same genre began to emerge out of nowhere. On February 2, 104.3 FM2 made its maiden broadcast, with Bong ‘Sonny B’ Aportadera and Carlo ‘Carlo Jose’ Villo sharing the day-to-day operations of the new station.

For those who are not familiar with this station, DWBR 104.3 is owned by the Philippine government via the Philippine Broadcasting Service. Thus, the station is part of an umbrella that includes the People’s Television Network (PTV-4), DZRB Radyo ng Bayan 738, DZSR Sports Radio 918 and DZRM Radyo Magasin 1278.

The station was originally known as 104.3 Business Radio, playing mostly songs of the ‘big band’ era. They also covered business news that cater to affluent citizens, hence the name.

However, on January 15, Business Radio officially left the airwaves after over 30 years in operation. It was clear to Martin Andanar and the PCOO that the station is losing its luster, with its brand of ‘big band’ music getting out of touch with a modern generation of listeners.

As a result, the station underwent a drastic makeover in order to attract a younger audience. Thus 104.3 FM2 was born, with a playlist mainly dedicated to 80s and 90s music.

The establishment of FM2 became a turning point in the classic hits genre of FM radio in the country. While Retro 105.9 DCG-FM remains the premiere source for throwback songs, the emergence of FM2 could pose a threat to their dominance.

That said, listeners now have two options to find the music that they love and grew up with. Not to mention that both stations operate in the daytime and deep into midnight.

The entry of FM2 is only the beginning for Martin Andanar’s rebuilding of the PBS Group. Next up is an unnamed FM station on the 87.5 band, which is still in the testing stage.

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Yes FM Rebrands, Targets Millennials

The similarities between MBC sister stations 90.7 Love Radio and 101.1 Yes FM have been well-documented.

Ever since the Manila Broadcasting Company converted Yes FM into a Hot AC (‘masa’) station in 1998, the competition between Yes and MBC’s older flagship station Love Radio became intense and at times cordial. Both stations were in the top two in the ratings, and they even boasted that so-called fact in various stingers.

Unfortunately, the similarity in format proved to be a hindrance for Yes FM. By playing virtually the same type of music and catering to the same audience as Love Radio, Yes was always in the shadow of its older counterpart, and thus, they were treated like a ‘puppet’ to MBC.

It was clear to MBC that Yes needed a facelift. So in July of this year, they decided to give Yes a new sound, rebranding the station as 101.1 Yes the Best.

While semblances of its old ‘masa’ self continue to exist, the new Yes the Best is now dominated by music that is typically heard in CHR stations, with some mix of OPM and other Asian pop music. The new format of Yes is also targeted toward millennials (i.e. those born in the 1980s to the early 2000s).

Yes the Best also had a talent exchange with older station Love Radio prior to the reformat. Erstwhile Love Radio DJs Shai Tisai and Raqi Terra were moved to Yes in exchange for Tanya Chinita and Kara Karinyosa, who were moved next door to Love Radio.

Nagmahal. Nasaktan. Nag DJ. #AnongKalokohanToBes 😂😂😂

A post shared by DJ Shai Tisai (@shaitisai) on

In all honesty, the new sound of Yes the Best makes sense. Though the new format may prove to be consequential to its ratings, distinguishing Yes from the older Love Radio may be the best decision that MBC made, which could also benefit the FM radio industry in general.

Let’s just hope that the new Yes the Best model can be sustainable for a long period of time. With a new generation of listeners now coming to their senses, Yes the Best should live up to their billing as ‘The Millennials’ Choice’.

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entertainment, hits, music, Philippines, songs, talent show, television

Dance Kids Ends, I Love OPM Begins

Another talent show invades ABS-CBN. But this is no ordinary talent show. Find out why in this article.

JRDV'S WORLD

ILoveOPMtitlecard After the success of Dance Kids, I Love OPM is the latest of ABS-CBN’s weekend offers, a singing search for foreigners who love and appreciate Original Pilipino Music. (Photo: ABS-CBN)

After the success of Dance Kids, which saw the dance duo Lucky Aces won last Sunday, ABS-CBN will launch its new offering, a singing search for foreigners who really love Original Pilipino Music.

Enter I Love OPM.

I Love OPM is a singing search like no other. Unlike most singing search that we see on TV (the latest is the revival of Born To Be A Star which aired on TV5), this singing search features foreigners who loved and appreciate Original Pilipino Music (OPM).

The said singing search is hosted by It’s Showtime mainstay Anne Curtis and comedian Eric Nicolas. The judging panel includes Toni Gonzaga, Lani Misalucha and Martin Nievera.

Catch the journey of these aspiring foreign singers…

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