WXRV (92.5 FM; "The River") is an adult album alternative radio station licensed to Andover, Massachusetts, and based in Haverhill, with a signal covering most of northeast Massachusetts and southern New Hampshire, and audible as far away as Plymouth, Massachusetts, and Portland, Maine.

Broadcast area
Frequency92.5 MHz
Branding92.5 The River
FormatAdult album alternative
  • Northeast Broadcasting
  • (Beanpot License Corp.)
First air date
June 1959[1]
Former call signs
  • WHAV-FM (1959–1983)
  • WLYT (1983–1995)
Call sign meaning
Technical information[2]
Licensing authority
Facility ID49385
ERP25,000 watts
HAAT217 meters (712 ft)
Transmitter coordinates
42°46′23.3″N 71°5′59.2″W / 42.773139°N 71.099778°W / 42.773139; -71.099778 (WXRV)
Repeater(s)See § Boosters
Public license information

Background edit

The station's slogan is "Independent Radio", proclaiming its status as being a single station separate from the large mass-media conglomerates such as iHeartMedia and Audacy with freedom from the idea of corporate playlists and national content. This enables WXRV to play a very wide variety of music, ranging from blues and folk to contemporary alternative and classic rock, as well as songs from numerous local musicians and lesser-known musical acts.

Despite the station's transmitter location, WXRV attempts to primarily serve the Greater Boston area; its signal also reaches into the nearby Manchester and Portsmouth markets. To overcome signal issues near Boston, the station applied for four on-channel booster stations in the Boston and MetroWest areas in August 2015.

The studios are still located in Haverhill, in the original WHAV art deco building. The current station inherited a facility on the top floor of its studio now called the River Music Hall, which was designed for broadcasting live performances in the pre-rock era, and is used today to broadcast live performances and to record performances for later broadcast. In 2007, their studio location began using photo-voltaic solar power for a portion of the station's power consumption, making it one of the few such solar-powered radio stations in the world at the time.

Starting in 2001 the River began its Riverfest Festival each summer. It is held in Newburyport, Massachusetts, and has had performers such as Matt Nathanson, Eric Hutchinson, Fastball, Barenaked Ladies, Anderson East, Phillip Phillips, and the Sam Roberts Band appear.

As of 2023, WXRV has an eight-person on-air staff: Dana Marshall (host of the Sunday morning 'Brunch By the River' program), Charlie Wilde, Carolyn Morrell, AJ Crozby, Duncan, Lori D, and Olivia Lowe (host of 'Under the Covers').[3] Current substitute hosts Stephanie Battaglia. Past on-air personalities include Annalisa Pop and Rita Cary.

Broadcast history edit

Originating in 1947 as WHAV, an AM station in Haverhill, an FM station was founded in 1948, but went dark in the early 1950s. WHAV-FM was restored on its current frequency in 1959. It became soft rock-formatted WLYT (Lite 92.5) in 1983, and gained its current identity as WXRV on August 1, 1995.[4][5]

For several months after Northeast Broadcasting acquired WKBR (1250 AM) in Manchester, New Hampshire, in 1997, that station offered a temporary simulcast of WXRV.[6] The station is now separately-owned WGAM.

In February 1999, WXRV began simulcasting on WVFM (105.7 FM) in Campton, New Hampshire,[7] which Northeast Broadcasting had just acquired.[8] For a brief time during 2012 and 2013, the station—which in 2005 had been renamed first WUSX[9] and then WLKC[10]—was programmed separately (though retaining the "River" branding and AAA format), before returning to the WXRV simulcast. In 2014, Northeast Broadcasting acquired a second New Hampshire station, WWHK (102.3 FM) in Concord; that station began broadcasting WXRV programming on May 2, 2014, though WWHK broadcast separate news, weather, and advertising.[11][12] On March 28, 2016, WWHK changed its call letters to WXRG. WXRG and WLKC were sold to the Educational Media Foundation in 2020.[13]

In 2008, WXRV began simulcasting in the northwest part of Central Massachusetts on WXRG (99.9 FM), licensed to Athol, Massachusetts,[14] which itself was rebroadcast on daytime station WTUB (700 AM) in Orange and Athol starting in late 2011.[15] In April 2013, WXRG took on the WFNX call sign, which had been previously used by an alternative rock station in Boston owned by the Boston Phoenix, first on 101.7 FM (now WBWL) and later as an Internet radio station; Northeast Broadcasting acquired the call letters after that station shut down along with the Phoenix.[16] WFNX and WWBZ (the former WTUB) dropped the WXRV simulcast in May 2014 and began stunting with a wide range of music while preparing to launch new formats for the stations on June 9, with listeners being asked to vote on which of the songs being played should be included in the new formats.[17][18]

In May 2016, WFNX announced that it would end the variety hits format after May 29, 2016, and return to simulcasting WXRV, citing a lack of advertiser support, in its announcement, WFNX said it needed ten businesses to advertise on the stations on an annual basis to cover their operations costs.[19] WFAT (the former WWBZ) concurrently announced that it would also resume a simulcast of WXRV,[19] but continued to broadcast its oldies format until Northeast Broadcasting sold it to Saga Communications in January 2019 (the station is now WQVD). WFNX continued simulcasting WXRV until 2020, when it was sold to the Educational Media Foundation[20] and became K-Love station WKMY.[21]

In late May 2014, WXRV added a translator in Needham, Massachusetts, W243DC (96.5 FM);[22] the initial application for this facility had been made in 2003.[23] In 2023, Northeast Broadcasting sold W243DC—by then relocated to One Financial Center in Boston—for $550,000 to Gois Broadcasting; it would become a translator for WAMG.[24]

Boosters edit

Call sign Frequency City of license FID ERP (W) HAAT Class Transmitter coordinates FCC info
WXRV-FM1 92.5 FM Framingham, Massachusetts 198698 33 horizontal
99 vertical
34 m (112 ft) D 42°18′23″N 71°22′45.2″W / 42.30639°N 71.379222°W / 42.30639; -71.379222 (WXRV-FM1) LMS
WXRV-FM2 92.5 FM Dover, Massachusetts 198697 33 horizontal
99 vertical
139 m (456 ft) D 42°22′42.4″N 71°16′3.1″W / 42.378444°N 71.267528°W / 42.378444; -71.267528 (WXRV-FM2) LMS
WXRV-FM3 92.5 FM Newton, Massachusetts 198696 33 horizontal
99 vertical
104 m (341 ft) D 42°24′51.1″N 71°12′37.2″W / 42.414194°N 71.210333°W / 42.414194; -71.210333 (WXRV-FM3) LMS
WXRV-FM4 92.5 FM Boston, Massachusetts 198695 400 horizontal
1,200 vertical
32 m (105 ft) D 42°23′13.3″N 71°4′34″W / 42.387028°N 71.07611°W / 42.387028; -71.07611 (WXRV-FM4) LMS
WXRV-FM5 92.5 FM Boston, Massachusetts 198907 24 horizontal
24 vertical
237 m (778 ft) D 42°20′57.4″N 71°4′29.2″W / 42.349278°N 71.074778°W / 42.349278; -71.074778 (WXRV-FM5) LMS

References edit

  1. ^ "The Merrimack Valley Radio Dial: WXRV(FM)". The Archives @ BostonRadio.org. Retrieved December 28, 2011.
  2. ^ "Facility Technical Data for WXRV". Licensing and Management System. Federal Communications Commission.
  3. ^ "On Air Hosts". 92.5 the River. Retrieved March 22, 2021.
  4. ^ "River Music Hall". The River Boston. Retrieved August 16, 2020.
  5. ^ "WLYT/Boston Flips To Progressive; Lankford New GM" (PDF). Radio & Records. August 4, 1995. p. 3. Retrieved September 11, 2023.
  6. ^ Fybush, Scott (August 7, 1997). "A Change of Sale". North East RadioWatch. Retrieved May 29, 2014.
  7. ^ "Format Changes" (PDF). The M Street Journal. May 29, 1996. p. 1. Retrieved April 3, 2023.
  8. ^ "Marathon Goes The Distance With $16 Million Deal". Radio & Records. January 22, 1999. pp. 6, 8. Retrieved April 3, 2023.
  9. ^ Fybush, Scott (June 20, 2005). "Burlington TVs Join Forces". NorthEast Radio Watch. Retrieved April 3, 2023.
  10. ^ Fybush, Scott (September 5, 2005). "Hall Buys Big in Burlington". NorthEast Radio Watch. Retrieved April 3, 2023.
  11. ^ WWHK Concord Begins WXRV Simulcast
  12. ^ Doyle, Megan (May 1, 2014). "92.5 the River begins simulcast on Concord station". Concord Monitor. Retrieved May 2, 2014.
  13. ^ Venta, Lance (August 27, 2020). "EMF Acquires Four In Northern New England". RadioInsight. Retrieved December 8, 2023.
  14. ^ Fybush, Scott (May 5, 2008). "The Sales Market Heats Up". NorthEast Radio Watch. Retrieved May 29, 2014.
  15. ^ Fybush, Scott (December 12, 2011). "NERW 12/12/2011: Philadelphia All-News Battle is Joined". Fybush.com. Retrieved March 5, 2023.
  16. ^ "WFNX Lives On ... Sorta". All Access. April 10, 2013. Retrieved May 15, 2013.
  17. ^ Venta, Lance (May 29, 2014). "Northeast To Launch New Central Massachusetts Formats". RadioInsight. Retrieved May 29, 2014.
  18. ^ "Take Control of Your Radio". Archived from the original on June 13, 2014. Retrieved September 11, 2023.
  19. ^ a b Venta, Lance (May 3, 2016). "Two Central Massachusetts Stations To End Programming". RadioInsight. Retrieved May 21, 2016.
  20. ^ "Deal Digest: Boston's 'The River' Loses Suburban Signal". Inside Radio. January 23, 2020. Retrieved June 13, 2020.
  21. ^ "Athol". Positive Encouraging K-LOVE. Educational Media Foundation. Retrieved June 13, 2020.
  22. ^ Fybush, Scott (May 26, 2014). "NERW 5/26/2014: Entercom to Morning Team – Buzz Off". Fybush.com. Retrieved December 8, 2023.
  23. ^ Fybush, Scott (April 8, 2013). "NERW 4/8/2013: Top 40 Back on the Cape". Fybush.com. Retrieved December 8, 2023.
  24. ^ Venta, Lance (November 24, 2023). "Station Sales Week of 11/24". RadioInsight. Retrieved December 8, 2023.

External links edit