Buffalo, NY—This week the remaining members of 97 Rock’s “Morning Bull Show,” Rich Gaenzler, Chis Klein and program director, John Hagar were terminated as a result of a racially insensitive on-air conversation. Co-host Rob Lederman was fired immediately after the exchange occurred two-weeks prior. Despite the shakeup Johann Flutenflam, an executive vice president at parent-company, Cumulus Entertainment pledged the classic rock station would continue with the same unimaginative programming that’s filled the airwaves of Western New York since the launch of the station under the moniker of WGRQ (Q-FM 97) in the mid-1970’s.
Flutenflam wanted to reassure listeners 97 Rock is as committed to the classic format as ever. “Don’t worry, we intend to remain faithful to the great rock music we’ve been playing for years,” he said fighting back a big yawn. “You’ll still hear the same ten Zeppelin songs we’ve been playing for decades—along with the same Stones, Skynyrd, Fleetwood Mac and REO Speedwagon songs—you heard it from a friend, who heard it from a friend.”
Along with a playlist that has reduced once great songs and artists to utter meaninglessness—like the wall of pictures going upstairs at your mom house that hasn’t changed since 1973, Flutenflam said 97 Rock would also continue with the same radio contests and promotions listeners have come to expect. “We’ll still be doing shoutouts and listener requests. We’ll be giving away radio swag and concert tickets and of course, the classics like two-for-Tuesday and month long celebrations in Rocktober.
But as much as people like to accuse 97 Rock of standing still the station is planning some new and innovative promotions. To reflect its aging audience this week the station announced it will be giving away a year’s supply of extra strength Viagra and a gallon of organic uberlube to the lucky listener that can identify the five factors that most contributed to the smooth broken glass gravel of Slick Tom’s voice. Later this summer in celebration of the station’s one trillionth spin of the Eagles “Hotel California,” six listeners will win knee replacement surgery with all associated physical therapy (winners must be able enter Canada to claim prize, since universal healthcare and knee replacement surgery in Canada costs a couple dozen donuts).
Flutenflam said he doesn’t want listeners to take him at his word. Instead he wants them to tune in right now so they can hear their favorite Boston song. And, if it’s not playing now, it will be in about ten minutes. With a smile Flutenflam said, “ Let’s just say it’s more than a feeling.”