Friday, April 12, 2013

Memphis Radio: The Return of 96X

The radio station that brought 1990s alternative rock and grunge to Memphis is back.

Flinn Broadcasting announced Thursday, April 11, that 96X has returned at WIVG 96.1-FM.

According to Bill Dries at, before the format switch Thursday afternoon, just in time for afternoon drive time, the station had been playing “Blister” by Violent Femmes continuously.

In its previous incarnation, 96X was at 95.7 and was owned by the Clear Channel broadcasting group that also included Rock 103 and WREC-AM.

The new radio station’s Facebook page includes the old 96X logo complete with the lizard and the station’s slogan of “Never Blend In.”

When the radio station debuted in 1994, its playlist included such new bands as Pearl Jam, Nirvana, Soul Asylum, Soundgarden, Cracker and Green Day. All were bands that weren’t getting airplay in other commercial radio formats in the Memphis market. They represented a different sound and a different audience than the long established artists being featured on album rock, classic rock and album oriented rock radio stations at the time.

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