BOSTON (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Legendary Boston rock station, WBCN will be slipping into the pages of history after CBS changes both the call sign and the format of the station to all sports radio.
WBCN has been airing rock in Boston since it changed format from a classical music station in 1964 (fully transitioning to progressive rock and then AOR in the mid-1970s. In 1969, the WBCN was one of a very select number of stations around the country to play bootleg copies of the "Get Back" studio sessions by the Beatles after obtaining a reference acetate of a possible song-lineup for the Beatles forthcoming "Let It Be."
WBCN allowed for significant leeway for DJs in playlists and was instrumental in breaking bands such as U2 and The Cars and hosted the first punk rock show (hosted by Oedipus) which helped to break bands such as the Ramones, the Clash, and the Police.
Well into the late 1980s, WBCN was the preeminent AOR station in the Boston market but faced increasing pressure from alternative and talk radio, inducing a format change 1994 for WBCN to alt-rock.
By the late 2006, WBCN found itself struggling for ratings after syndicated shock-jock Howard Stern moved to Sirius Satellite radio. Stern had helped to push morning drive-time ratings for WBCN and with continuing pressure from other alt-rock stations in the market, the station's paymasters at CBS opted for the change in format.
WBMX, another CBS Boston outlet will be moved to FM104.1 (formerly WBCN's frequency and WBCN debut on August 13th at 98.5 with the new call letters WBZ-FM, the Boston Globe reported.
"WBMX will feature the same great music and personalities familiar to listeners with improved signal coverage benefiting the at-work listener." said a press release from CBS on the change. – CelebrityAccess Staff Writers