01/09/2012 § Leave a comment
Cleveland’s Smooth FM, WNWV, 107.3 The Wave, is now streaming live online via 1073thewave.net or through the website’s media player link. The Wave returned to the airwaves officially this past Wednesday, January 4 after a two-year hiatus with the new Smooth AC format.
Personally, I am still waiting for the reconnection of the The Wave Classics online streaming (107.3 HD2), which is the “classic” smooth jazz radio station, which is a revival of the original Wave that was on for over two decades before the programming change to AAA alternative rock two years ago. The HD2 online streaming is still down after running the Christmas classic jazz programming over the holidays.
The station had reported technical difficulties with both online streaming channels after the transition to new temporary studios. Now that the main station is streaming once more, I can take the station with me wherever I go with my WunderRadio app on my iPhone or iPod Touch (with wifi).
By the way, I’m thoroughly enjoying the new Wave and the Smooth AC format! It has been a pleasure to listen to new songs and old favorites once more.
01/06/2012 § Leave a comment
Are you looking for eBooks for your Nook or Kindle? My eBook, Faith and Fundamentals For Living a Healthy, Christian Life, is now on sale for only $2.99. This book can also be read on your Nook or Kindle apps for iPhone, iPad, Windows PC or Android. Thanks for checking it out!
12/27/2011 § 3 Comments
Now that the buzz and the dust has settled after Rubber City Radio Group, Inc. purchased WNWV 107.3 FM from Elyria-Lorain Broadcasting Co., the station that is once again referred to as 107.3 The Wave and 107.3 HD2 The Wave returns with fresh new smooth formats on Wednesday, January 4, 2012. For one who has closely followed The Wave and its Smooth Jazz format, the day cannot come soon enough! For two years since The Wave was moved to HD radio and online, I was relegated to listening over the internet and also with my iPhone and iPod Touch (with wifi) through the WunderRadio app when I was not at work.
When you listen today online or to the radio, you will hear Christmas/holiday music 24/7 with a smooth jazz feel (with the exception of the occasional Cheech & Chong classic “Santa Claus and His Old Lady” or John Denver and the Muppets’ version of “The Twelve Days of Christmas”). The holiday tunes continue until the 4th when the new format debuts at midnight.
From what we can see from looking at the new website, 107.3 The Wave will be known as Cleveland’s Smooth FM, and will take on a Smooth AC (Smooth Adult Contemporary) format, which is the morphing of the old smooth jazz format into a modernized combination of smooth jazz vocalists, urban contemporary/R&B vocalists, and fewer jazz instrumentals in the playlist. Smooth AC appeals to a younger demographic (25-54) and is intended to complement the “mature” demographic of smooth jazz listeners. With this change, the Smooth AC format has become more popular in recent years in several large markets while smooth jazz has slid off the radar and onto HD radio, including Cleveland. Since Smooth AC is brand new here, we will soon hear how it will distinguish itself from WNWV’s old smooth jazz format. While the old format was mostly enjoyable, it was distinctly different from other smooth jazz stations around the country. At times, the “old Wave” mimicked a jazzy Adult Contemporary format, and it could have used more frequent injections to the playlist to freshen it up.
The other discovery with the new format change is that the 107.3 HD2 channel will continue to be a “smooth jazz” format. The logo for the HD2 channel is actually a freshening of the old Wave logo with the added name “The Wave Classics.” If you are longing for the good ‘ol days of smooth jazz, the HD2 channel will satisfy your craving (and those jazz instrumentals from artists that you have missed, such as Boney James and Norman Brown). We will now have two smooth radio choices, which is a welcome surprise. If you don’t have HD radio, you can still listen online, but its getting to a point where the HD radio is a must when you finally decide to upgrade your car stereo equipment–HD radio is still free and provides many more stations as an alternative to playing your iPod in the car.
With respect to those persons who enjoyed the AAA format at 107.3 Cleveland, I hope that you will find a station that has a similar appeal where you can latch on. It’s never pleasant to see a station change its formats, and for those of us who lost The Wave two years ago, we understand how unpleasant it is. The good news is that there are many options available, including a myriad of free online sources that can pick up where broadcast radio leaves off. What I hope that true music lovers–even a critic from Scene Magazine–can appreciate is that there are many different places where you can listen to rock or alternative rock, but there are noticeably fewer choices for smooth jazz lovers. Those of us who listen to smooth jazz are extremely loyal, and it is no coincidence that The Wave was a successful radio program for two decades. I’m glad that it’s back, and I look forward to another long and successful run with Rubber City Radio.
Copyright © Melvin Gaines. All rights reserved.
12/24/2011 § Leave a comment
If you receive a Nook or Kindle for Christmas, my eBook, Faith and Fundamentals For Living a Healthy, Christian Life, will be available beginning Christmas Day for a special price (60% off) until January 31, 2012. You can also get my book if you have Nook or Kindle for iPhone, iPad, Windows PC or Android. Merry Christmas!
08/22/2011 § Leave a comment
It’s been a little while since I wrote about our last connection with Smooth Jazz radio in the Cleveland market, WNWV 107.3 HD2 radio, which is not to be confused with the current V107.3 FM station that plays AAA music (adult album alternative) and classic rock. For those of us who still have not purchased an HD radio (I suspect that’s many of us), you can still listen to The Wave via the internet at their website, http://wnwv.northcoastnow.com/listen-live/ or with the WunderRadio app for your iPhone or iPod Touch (via WiFi connection).
The good news is that The Wave is still around to listen to. It’s actually been over a year and a half since the change from FM to HD2 on December 28, 2009. Since then, there have been many instances throughout the country where the Smooth Jazz format has disappeared from the FM band and relegated, if at all, to HD radio formats. Thankfully, there are many more available iTunes apps that can play internet radio or actual radio stations to find Smooth Jazz at your convenience. There are still enough of them to choose from, including Sky.FM internet radio that features a 24/7 Smooth Jazz station, or the offerings through WunderRadio, Pocket Tunes, or iHeart Radio. You can also still listen to Smooth Jazz on the internet through your computer, which is, by far, my best option. It’s on at work every day as background music.
The bad news is more in the quality of the audio stream for The Wave. It has been very spotty recently. I run it on my Windows XP computer during the day at work and I often find myself having to refresh the browser because the stream either stops playing or never completely loads in the player on the website. There is advertising on the site, which is not as annoying as it was at one time, but the ads occasionally seem to hamper the stream or the actual loading of the stream. One day, I was so frustrated with the poor connectivity of the site that I sent an email to the station. That same day, the station GM acknowledged the problem and apologized, and stated that they were working on it. Since that time, their media player on the site was updated at least a couple of times, but it is still very buggy.
As much as I have wanted to switch off to another station because of the frequent problems, I remain loyal to The Wave because I have been listening to it from its early FM days through now. There are no on-air DJs–only music. You will only hear the voice of Mike Kessler (now Mike Gallagher on V107.3) every hour for station identification. Mike was the last morning DJ while The Wave was still on FM after the departure of Tom Murphy. I miss the voices of Murphy, Richard Greer, Starr (overnight), Carmen Kennedy, Michelle Chase, and Mark Ribbins, who managed to stay with the HD2 format after the change for a little while.
Many of the songs that were requested as part of the station’s playlist remain intact, and it is hoped that someone at The Wave will continue to be open for suggestions and add more songs, and pay close attention to the operation of the website. I’m trying to hang in there with it, but it’s been tough when the music stops playing. Smooth Jazz also has an ongoing challenge in the creativity of new music and appealing to a wider audience. As many things appear to run in cycles, my hope is that Smooth Jazz will maintain its loyal following and continue to grow with another wave of great new music. If you love Smooth Jazz, keep listening and buying the music to support it.
08/20/2011 § 2 Comments
My eBook, Faith & Fundamentals For Living a Healthy, Christian Life, is now available on Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble’s website, BN.com. If you have a Kindle or a Nook, you can read my eBook, but you can also use their free apps for iPhone, iPod Touch, Android, and BlackBerry, too!
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12/13/2010 § 1 Comment
It’s been one year since the Cleveland Smooth Jazz radio station (107.3 The Wave) was programmed out of mainstream radio onto HD radio and the Internet. The change was made in spite of the loyal following of listeners, and now we are forced to listen to our computers when we want to hear Smooth Jazz. This has turned out to be more and more frequent for jazz fans throughout the country over the past couple of years, as stations are rapidly disappearing from radio and are only heard on the web or HD radio, if they’re heard at all. It is clear that the genre of Smooth Jazz has slipped to an endangered species status.
Not long after the transition, Mark Ribbins, the online DJ and Program Director, departed from the station. It was sad to hear that he was gone, but I’m thankful that his changes to the format have remained intact. His tweaks to the programming have made listening more enjoyable than it was before it was relegated to the Net. I listen to The Wave most often during weekdays as background music through my computer. It has been a refreshing addition to my workday routine as the music makes the time pass with a very nice vibe.
Today, the Smooth Jazz fan is relegated to search engines to locate our favorite jazz artists and buy the music in much the same way that we now hear it—online. Today’s demographics have moved the face of radio from Adult Contemporary and Arbitron to People Meters, much to my displeasure. The new methodology behind measuring radio listeners cannot possibly reach a significant number of people who readily support their favorite Smooth Jazz and Urban Contemporary performers. They missed most of us a year ago when my favorite station changed. They’re still missing us, because we’re now mostly underground—online or listening with an iPhone or iPod Touch with wifi—and we’ve worked out the logistics to find and listen to what we want to hear. Call us the tech savvy boomers—the new silent majority. We have evolved as the technology has changed. If our favorite music is not on the radio, we’ll continue to adjust and go where it can be found. A year after Elyria-Lorain Broadcasting forced me to go cold turkey, I’m now doing just fine, for Smooth Jazz lives on.