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Kiss 104.1 to get a more youthful musical facelift

dm_logo_kiss

The "old school" portion of the logo will soon be gone.

Kiss 104.1 will get a facelift on Monday. A home to 1970s and 1980s classic R&B hits for 18 years, the station will add more songs from the past 20 years into its mix to try to draw more youthful listeners, said Tony Kidd, vice president of programming for Cox Media Group’s radio division.

Kidd said he’d like to draw more listeners in their early 30s.

There will be no personnel changes but the station will go commercial-free at least on Monday, he said.

Though still a solid top-five station in overall listeners, Kiss ratings have slipped a bit in the past two years and its audience has aged. In the April Arbitron ratings, Kiss tied for fifth place overall but was eighth among 25 to 54 year olds. In April, 2010, the station was tied for fourth in overall ratings but second among 25 to 54 year olds.

Kiss is going directly after Majic 107.5/97.5, which plays mostly R&B songs from the past 20 years, though Kidd said it won’t play as many current songs. Majic has beaten Kiss the past three months among 25 to 54 year olds, the longest stretch since Arbitron began using people meters in early 2009.

The average age of a song on Kiss right now is 25 years old, according to Mediabase 24/7. Its syndicated morning show with Tom Joyner does play some newer tunes but very few are on the regular rotation the rest of the day.

Its current most popular artists, based on the past week’s airplay are Luther Vandross, Michael Jackson, Earth, Wind & Fire, Stevie Wonder and the O’Jays. Majic’s five most popular artists the past week also include Vandross, Jackson and Earth, Wind & Fire but features Jodeci and Mary J. Blige, artists that broke through in the 1990s. The average age of a song on Majic is 15 years old.

UPDATE on Memorial Day: Here’s what the station played from 6 to 7 a.m. today, according to the Kiss website. Of the 14 songs, four are from the past 20 years, two from the past couple of years. Before the changes, the station would play maybe two songs an hour since 1990 and virtually none from the past five years.

6:02 a.m. The Gap Band “Yearning For Your Love” 1981
6:07 a.m. Toni Braxton “He Wasn’t Man Enough” 1997
6:11 a.m. Stevie Wonder “Knocks Me Off My Feet” 1976
6:15 a.m. Shalamar “This Is For The Lover in You” 1980
6:19 a.m. Marsha Ambrosius “Far Away” 2011
6:23 a.m. Sade “Sweetest Taboo” 1985
6:27 a.m. Funkadelic “One Nation Under a Groove” 1978
6:32 a.m. Brownstone “If You Love Me” 1994
6:37 a.m. Teddy Pendergrass “Joy” 1988
6:42 a.m. Whitney Houston “You Give Good Love” 1985
6:47 a.m. Chuckii Booker “Games” 1992
6:50 a.m. K’Jon “On the Ocean” 2009
6:55 a.m. Minnie Riperton “Memory Lane” 1979
6:58 a.m. Teena Marie “Square Biz” 1981

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By Rodney Ho, rho@ajc.com, AJCRadioTV blog

38 comments Add your comment

tvBoy

May 27th, 2011
7:10 pm

i love kiss 104.1, but it doesn’t take a genius to know that the ratings are slipping because kiss has played the same tired songs for years and years and years. a face lift will be great. a coupla old skool mix shows would be great – they had a little of that going for a while on friday nights in place of ’slow jams’ at one time i believe. fire it up on blue lights in the basement, get a good dj and do live remotes on saturday club circuit, like at sharon’s showcase.

Chadddd Scotttt: welcome to McDonalds Can I Take your Order?

May 27th, 2011
10:25 pm

ALL IN! FAMILY :)

brent in ATLANTA

May 28th, 2011
8:34 am

They are going to mess it up, and “grown” folks are not going to listen.

Anderson

May 28th, 2011
12:36 pm

I agree with tvBoy. I’ve listened to Kiss 104.1 off and on for years and it has gotten predictable and stale. IMO,though overdue this is a real smart move by the station. It will definitely renew my interest in listening to the station’s music.

There is another Atlanta station that can learn from Kiss 104.1. Are you paying attention B98.5? You are facing the same type of dilemma as Kiss 104.1 in terms of an aging audience and songs rotation.

Jim R.

May 28th, 2011
7:44 pm

I haven’t listened much to B98.5 since the late 1990s, but I was in a store recently that had the station on, and it sounded like they were playing the same 10 songs as they did back then.

JIMMY

May 28th, 2011
8:01 pm

18 years?? This can’t be right. It began in 2000 (it was Jazz Flavors until then) and it has to be at least 2018 for it to have been what it is for 18 years, but it’s only 2011.

Prettygirl1908

May 29th, 2011
12:01 am

I’m sooooo tired of listening to this mess children in their 20’s want to hear. Why are we always catering to a segment of the population who are even working yet?

khtz hottsoundz

May 29th, 2011
12:42 am

I’m simply just loving ALL these changes taking place on Atlanta radio. Star 94 sounds great, WiLD 105.7/96.7 has been fixed up, V103 tweaked things a bit, B98.5 is currently transitioning to their new updated (or more normal ac) sound, 104.1 will also start transitioning & tweaking… WSB News Talk 95.5 (and I believe WGST if I remember correctly) are also improving, and there are one or two other classic music stations I’ve left out. It’s about time things started changing, and I’m glad it’s all happening before I move back there. … (and ONCE AGAIN, I dropped the hint, so some of you probably know who this is!)

khtz hottsoundz

May 29th, 2011
12:46 am

Now, it would be nice if one of the college / school stations did something a little more different (from each other) for a change. It would be nice if one of them adopted a style like school station C89.5 in Seattle…

hmmmm

May 29th, 2011
10:31 am

When you are at the high end of the 25 to 54 age group, all you can say is, am I getting old :lol: I listen to 104.1 and 107.5 about the same amount; throw in alittle WCLK, alittle WAOK and a pinch of WSB and a serving of 790 the zone (Stews). With that variety, I don’t have an issue with a particular station becoming stagnant.

New Jack Swing Jay

May 29th, 2011
10:37 am

THANK GOD! We want to listen to our oldies from the 90’s and not the same old stuff from the 70s. We 30 somethings have been longing for this for a while now. Thank you for finally listening.

Downtown Heffa

May 29th, 2011
10:46 am

Finally! I knew there was much more to this station than listening to Teddy Pendergrass, Stevie, and Luther. These individuals are great, but it get a little boring listening to their songs all day long!

James

May 29th, 2011
10:46 am

Over the past 15 years radio in general has gone down the toilet and Atlanta has led the way.Great artist’ are still releasing worth while music that cant get air time.And the beat goes on..

James

May 29th, 2011
10:49 am

So this is why KISS offered Youngblood a cut in pay to stay knowing that he wouldnt take it and leave..Kiss 104.1 “Less Music,More Garbage”

Monique

May 29th, 2011
11:11 am

Now if they would just take Frank & Wanda off of the air, Atlanta radio would be great.

Silks

May 29th, 2011
11:14 am

I knew something MORE was up when they released YoungBlood. The reason that this is not going to work is because people (when it comes to music) are creatures of habit. Yes there will be a few who can and want to hear ONLY music from the 90’s but that area is already sewn up with stations 103 and a few others. I guess they will move Tom Joyner next….smh Whereever youngblood goes…..we will certainly follow. Any updates or comments on YoungBlood visit our facebook page in his honor http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Youngblood-WILL-Return/216666688345632 Thanks

sink

May 29th, 2011
11:21 am

Atlanta. Where can I find a jazz station?

Old'skool

May 29th, 2011
11:43 am

Maybe if they stop playing the same songs over and over. I’m sure there were more than 40 songs made in the 70 and 80s and more uptempo music instead of the slow jams 24/7

Kariqua

May 29th, 2011
12:13 pm

Now, with that being said, V103 need a complete facelift. Frank and Wanda really gets under my skin. Wanda has no class at all. I can’t stand V103. Especially the little(wannabe caucasian) chick with the squeaky voice. El, i think that’s her name. Bunch of d.m phonies!!

barbara

May 29th, 2011
12:27 pm

I really miss youngblood. I don’t listen to 104.1 since he left. I hope another station pick him up.

IRA LOVETT

May 29th, 2011
12:28 pm

please tell me what happen to youngblood??

BinLagrange

May 29th, 2011
12:57 pm

I love 104.1,but the Saturday morning music was to far back and it was the same thing every weekend with youngblood. I’ve noticed over the past 3 to 4 weeks that the music sounds a whole lot better and it was a tremendous upgrade. The ratings speak, I’m glad someone listened.

Decatur

May 29th, 2011
1:00 pm

Wow. The suits finally figured out nobody wants to hear the same 2 Isley Brothers songs, Flashlight and Funkin for Jamaica.

BinLagrange

May 29th, 2011
1:05 pm

@kairqua, I agree, Wanda Smith is the most classless person I’ve ever heard on the radio and her jokes are so stupid. She always has something to say about the way that somebody looks, maybe she should take a look in the mirror before commenting. Yes, El is very irritating. The TV show should also be removed because hearing Wanda is bad enough, but looking at her is even worse.

BinLagrange

May 29th, 2011
1:07 pm

Is it me or does frank ski seems a little on the sweet side.

Karen Arm

May 29th, 2011
1:26 pm

Bring back Youngblood,then you will have a Facelift……..ok.Youngblood was your best DJ period……

atlnative

May 29th, 2011
2:07 pm

Kiss 104.1 should play great songs rather than hit records.Great songs can be played thirty years from now and sound wonderful.Hit records can come and go and nobody cares.Sometimes,the B-side has better music than the A-side.

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younglistener

May 30th, 2011
3:23 pm

Enjoying this “face lift” that Kiss 104.1 has under gone. Wasn’t a listener of Youngblood… but when I would flip past on Saturday mornings… it was the same ol’ blues music… so yea… glad he’s gone. Keep up with the change kiss.
@sink… Jazz can be found on 91.9 WCLK FM

Ted

May 30th, 2011
3:49 pm

With the exception of local radio, who still listens to local radio anymore? Two words: Internet radio

happy

May 30th, 2011
6:57 pm

I have two words for Kiss’ change…Thank God!!! It was so long over due….the station sounds a million times better already!!!!

Netradiojock

May 31st, 2011
9:22 am

I hope that YOUNGBLOOD gets back on at 107.5/97.5 after his six months non-compete. I think that he would be a great addition to the Saturday morning programming.

Netradiojock

May 31st, 2011
9:23 am

@Ted….AMEN. That is what I do.

1baddman

May 31st, 2011
12:07 pm

I have nothing against Kiss 104.1 fm ;but for the last 15 or so yrs it was not only the same old school artists,but the same old songs you played from them (maze -joy and pain,/before i let you go, anita baker’s rapture or just because or TP’s close the door /you’re my latest my greatest inspiration,etc; don’t get me wrong i loved those songs; but you get tired of hearing it twice every other hour and this new format could work if Kiss bring in more music and don’t played the same stuff over and over again; btw Kiss 104.1 for a moment i thought you took TJMS off this morning b/c he wasn’t on at 6 am but came on at 7 am a little warning next time please.

nik

May 31st, 2011
4:44 pm

there are a multitude of radio stations that cater to the age demographic of 25-50 who perfer late(new jack swing) 80’s and 90’s music and its selfish of kiss 104 to abandon listeners who want hear soul, funk, blues and r&b not just luther vandross.

delinda mcd

June 1st, 2011
2:17 pm

I will listen with or without the “old school” name. I just love the music.

Cecc

June 2nd, 2011
7:55 pm

WE NEED YOUNGBLOOD BACK PLEASE,WE WANT YOUNGBLOOD,WE WANT YOUNGBLOOD

Thomas F

June 4th, 2011
7:54 pm

I think it was a SERIOUS mistake letting Youngblood go, especially over a few dollars. He has a HUGE following in Atlanta, both on radio and the internet. This segment of the population will probably follow Youngblood wherever he goes. KISS should consider that fact. Work out the contract and bring back Youngblood.