Corus Radio launched 92.5 The ‘Chuck Edmonton at 6 am. Friday morning, a quirky, hyper-local rebrand of its Bright AC format 92.5 Fresh Radio (CKNG-FM).
Brad Phillips, Corus VP and head of FM Radio, says The ‘Chuck is a nod to the city’s nickname “Edmon’chuck,” with the station marketing using the tagline “If You Live Here, You Get It.”
“We wanted to create something that would get attention and would be noticed and resonate with the Edmonton market and our thought was to do a super-localized station that celebrates life in Edmonton, humorously and sincerely, with the stuff between the records all about what life is like in the city. That’s the brand,” explains Phillips.
The rebrand comes with a tweak of the station’s on-air sound, promising more variety and “hits and surprises, interspersed with irreverent slices of this city that we love.”
Greg Johnson, FM program director for Corus Radio Edmonton, describes it as a “pop-rock variety machine.”
“It’s not CHR, it’s not a Rock station, and it’s not Classic Hits…it’s a little bit of all of them right up the middle. Audiences are demanding variety, so we’ll be surprising people with 80s, 90s, 2000s and current music.”
Johnson says the station will also feature less chatter, with fewer than the traditional amount of announcer breaks which will be “super-produced.” The station’s talent roster remains intact, but on-air staff are all now tasked as “content creators,” producing and writing content across the station’s social and digital platforms with a focus on the last 24-hours.
Phillips says it’s the natural evolution of the modern on-air announcer, stopping short of calling The ‘Chuck an experiment.
“This a fully customized, local radio station designed for this market and we’re proud of that. Our go forward strategy is to build radio stations that satisfy local communities. While it’s new for us in terms of the style, we’ve got as much talent as we had, we’re just challenging them to perform differently.”
Early listener reviews suggest the station’s offbeat, localized sense of humour and unpredictable playlist are resonating with its audience.
Edmontonians can join The ‘Chuck Crew this Saturday at the Edmonton Heritage Festival, where the station is inviting listeners to break bread at the city’s largest communal table.