Stingray set to flip Classic Hits stations in Edmonton and Vancouver

Stingray has announced that it’s flipping its Classic Hits stations in Vancouver and Edmonton.

LG 104.3 (CHLG-FM) Vancouver and 96.3 Capital FM (CKRA-FM) Edmonton will be re-branded as 104.3 The Breeze and 96.3 The Breeze, respectively, playing “easy, relaxing, and familiar favourites.” The format flip will happen at midnight on Dec. 26.

Stingray says listeners can expect a broad playlist spanning five decades, from the 1970s through today, featuring artists like Lionel Richie, Elton John, Ed Sheeran, Whitney Houston, Sarah McLachlan, Billy Joel, and Adele.

Steve Jones, SVP Brands & Content, Radio, told Broadcast Dialogue, that the company has been watching the rise of The Breeze format in several U.S. markets over the past year, including San Francisco, Philadelphia, and Detroit, among others.

“We saw an opportunity in both Edmonton and Vancouver to fill a void that was glaring,” said Jones. “Both markets lack a radio station like this, and Edmonton has no AC station at all. So, we saw a window for ratings and revenue growth in two of Canada’s best radio markets, and we decided to seize it.”

Jones said right now there are no plans to roll out the format in additional markets, but they’ll be watching the success of the brand in Edmonton and Vancouver closely.

In Vancouver, the on-air staff will remain intact, including Kelly Latremouille on mornings and Graham Hatch on afternoon drive. In Edmonton, Sean Burke will remain on the morning show, while Jake Taylor will transition from her current midday gig on Capital FM to sister station K97 (CIRK-FM). Jones said the station will be recruiting for afternoons in 2019.

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