99.5 The Wolf FM offers music shows featuring classic and new Country hits, along with talk shows about country music history and personalities who have left an indelible mark.
Each May in Detroit’s Hart Plaza, WJR-FM hosts its Downtown Hoedown event showcasing both emerging and established artists. This annual gathering has become one of the key launching pads for some of country music’s most successful acts.
KPLX is a radio station dedicated to country music with 99.5 FM. Owned and operated by Cumulus Media, this station broadcasts to Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex as well as online. Listeners can access KPLX via its website where news reports appear regularly as well as contests offering amazing prizes!
WABX Radio was established in Detroit, Michigan in 1948 as an album rock station playing all of the top hits from albums. By early 1980s it had fallen on hard times, prompting its original owner to sell to Liggett Broadcasting that same year and switch over to CHR format with pop and rock product; but unfortunately this strategy did not last.
WYCD achieved top 10 status in Detroit ratings in 1990 and hosted its annual Hoedown, an exhibition of up-and-coming artists who later went on to become major stars. WYCD became also widely known for live interviews with major country artists as well as its coverage of local events.
Cait & Bradley host New Country NOW!, an entertainment program covering country news and celebrity interviews. Additionally, the station features top country music tracks as well as hosting contests and giveaways for listeners.
Rod & Mandy host another popular program on US Country called The Front Porch, featuring both old-school and current hits, comedy sketches and celebrity interviews – along with weekly contests offering listeners a chance at winning $10,000!
This station enjoys great support in Detroit and serves as an invaluable source of information regarding local events. They have also been longstanding sponsors of The Hoedown – a free country music event held downtown every May – an important supporter.
KMTB provides its listeners with the latest Hot New Country music in an entertaining, large-scale format, featuring entertaining local on air personalities and supporting multiple community events each year. KMTB draws in younger, active Country audiences. Their slogan is “Kick 99”. Additionally, classic Country is played featuring hits from the 1990s and 2000s that resonates well with its listeners who are often highly engaged with radio.
Audacy, Inc. owns and operates this station that first began broadcasting as “New Country 99-5 YCD” in 1999 on American Drive in Southfield. Since then it has competed against top 10 rated stations like AM 1270 WLKE and FM 98 WJLB for top ratings in their market and offered music shows featuring classic and current Country hits as well as talk shows to discuss its history and personalities that helped define country music culture.
According to Nielsen Audio’s ratings, iHeartMedia’s Big 95.5 has officially overtaken CBS Radio’s 33-year country franchise US 99.5 in Chicago market in terms of listenership aged 25-54 – surpassing their respective shares by 0.3%. According to these latest Nielsen Audio results released Monday evening, Big 95.5 ranks 15th overall among listeners aged 25-54 and has outshone US 99.5 by 1.2% share among this target group.
WLKE was licensed for AM and FM broadcasting on 1170 kHz in 1971 with an in-house beautiful music format that ran until 1976. From May 1984 until July 1990, its call letters were changed to WGGQ as it used Drake-Chenault’s All Hit Radio format before switching over to an automated country music format in August 1981.
In 1989, WHYT made a successful transition to Hot New Country format and rose quickly through the rankings to third in 12+ rating book. Unfortunately, their ratings did not remain positive after they changed to Rock 40 format in late ’80s with heavy emphasis on hair bands and other rock-oriented acts in place of traditional CHR programming.
Radio stations frequently change formats; at one time the 99.5 FM frequency was home to the country music station WPYX, before becoming soft adult contemporary under “Lite 99”, later returning back to country under K-99 Country in 2022 and challenging longstanding market leaders such as V-103 and The Mix in ratings battles.
Losing WNSH is a devastating blow for country radio. While it only represents one station in one radio market, its departure demonstrates just how far mainstream country has fallen out of popular culture compared to hip-hop; hip-hop’s dominance over country shows how few listeners remain loyal to country-focused formats – an event highlighted by the demise of WNSH which highlights this reality and also illustrates that many more listeners may no longer tune in altogether.
As well as losing one major country station in New York, WGY-FM in Milwaukee is shifting away from modern country music and towards classic hip-hop in response to declining performance of modern country in their city and region. Furthermore, this change aims to attract an ever growing audience of hip-hop/rap fans into its format.
Country music’s listening audience largely comprises older listeners, so most young country singers are catering towards this demographic. Unfortunately, younger people generally aren’t fond of classic country tunes which is why current country acts are struggling on radio stations.
Record labels and the industry are extremely concerned by the declining popularity of country music on radio. A significant amount of money is at stake here and record labels must find ways to entice younger audiences back into this genre by adopting more contemporary sounds that appeal to them.
KPLX Country Radio Station, owned and operated by Cumulus Media and broadcast throughout Dallas metroplex area. Studio facilities for this country music radio station can be found in Victory Park district of Dallas; their transmitter can be found in Cedar Hill. Offering a variety of entertaining shows that focus on both current and classic country hits as well as genre history; also offering daily news reports.
On February 2, 1940, Zenith began operations with experimental station W9XEN as experimental radio. Zenith then sold their asset to General Cinema Corporation who intended to change to WICV call letters and introduce rock format but due to litigation this did not take effect until February 1978.
As soon as the name was changed to Big 96, WEFM competed with WCZY and WHYT in Chicago market, seeing its ratings improve and even holding onto one of the 20 spots during 1988 spring ratings. But in 1989 the ratings began declining again, leading to WEFM being outcompeted by Power 96.
In 2000, WUS99 changed to US99 and began airing country music programs, soon becoming a market leader. WUS99 pioneered live Country Hoedowns featuring artists like Reba McEntire, Trace Adkins and Montgomery Gentry performing at these events.
At both of the Country Radio Broadcasters/Country Aircheck Awards ceremonies in 2010 and 2011, US 99.5 won Major Market Station of the Year with its morning show hosted by Lisa Dent and Ramblin’ Ray receiving Major Market Personality of the Year honors. Furthermore, US 99.5 received both Country Radio Broadcasters/Country Aircheck Award Major Market Morning Show honors while Marci Braun won Major Market MD of the Year honors as weeknight host/MD of this station.
In 2014, iHeartMedia acquired Big 95.5 and changed its format, becoming best known as Blake Shelton and Carrie Underwood’s home station as well as featuring their syndicated Cait and Bradley show. Additionally, Big 95.5 has developed an established social media presence making it a go-to spot for country music fans.