Square that Circle
Commercial rock radio is one of the few remaining vestiges of a music eco-system that no longer exists. Many historic institutions of music have been reduced to rubble due to the profound changes in the business over the last 20 years. In this post-Napster, on-demand world where all of music is in our pockets, there remains a natural gravitation to terrestrial radio.
It was a different world when the current 99.5 KISS FM format and playlist was settled in to. Then (and arguably now), the rock world was very white and male dominated and came equipped with common tropes of masculinity. It was a world where smart phones and social media didn’t exist. No 360 deals, no digital distribution.
All music fans need to embrace the evolutions of music. And much like the shift from hair metal to grunge – rock fans must embrace the shift from large scale to niche. Did the industry worry about who would be left behind between hair metal and grunge? Music has continued to morph and combine in novel ways and rock music no longer has the massive influence to move a nation of people the way hip-hop and EDM have proven in this demographically different America.
With great power comes great responsibility. There’s a lot of data that shows a positive response to brands who sponsor music events, and brands should be equally as interested in a fresh, updated radio presence for fans’ overall music experience.
It is possible for rock radio in central Texas to better reflect the 2017 rock fan. Central Texas is a destination for live music and entertainment and radio should step-up and be relevant once again.