Before I get to our next Reaching for the Stars entry, I realized that I first need to share some disturbing news in the AT40 world that has radically changed my life.
The local station that played American Top 40 on Sundays for at least 12 years has stopped airing the show.
A week after we returned from spring break I turned on the radio and heard some random song from the ‘90s. This was not AT40! I listened longer and heard a regular DJ who mentioned the weather and went into another song.
Sometimes the station screws up its Sunday schedule, so I was hoping this was a one-time thing.
However, the next Sunday I tuned in and heard the same thing.
This was very disturbing.
I checked the station’s website and couldn’t find any news saying that they had either dumped AT40 or moved it to another time slot. So I fired an email off to the program director, asking for a status update.
The next day he confirmed they had, indeed, stopped airing AT40. He said by dropping the show, that freed up four more hours of locally-produced programming, giving them the most local radio in the city!
It was difficult for me not to send a snarky response back, saying that was exactly what listeners in Indianapolis had been pining for: four more hours of hand-selected songs “from the ‘80s, ‘90s, and more.” Or whatever their dumb tagline is. I’m sure there are like five of us who faithfully listened to Casey each Sunday, so I get it. In the razor-thin margins of radio ratings, can he afford to lose those listeners?
Don’t answer that.
I am very much a creature of habit, and after 12–13 years of tuning a radio to a local station, say 45 out of 52 Sundays, and hearing Casey countdown the hits from the ‘80s, it kind of rocked my world to lose that little anchor to my weekends. Which is a little silly since I listen to the iHeart Radio Classic American Top 40 station several hours each week while cooking, cleaning, etc in the kitchen. I wanted that Sunday countdown that was always connected to the calendar, knowing I would be sitting on an April morning hearing exactly what I had been listening to on an April morning when I was 12. That symmetry pleased my strange brain.
Of course, there was an easy way around this. There are dozens of stations around the country that play the old AT40s on Sunday mornings. A lot of them are streaming online. In fact, I knew KCMO-FM in Kansas City was one of those stations. Why not listen to the exact same broadcast a few of my KC brothers-in-music check out?
So, now, on Sundays I fire up the KCMO stream and listen to Casey. It has become less automatic that my old routine, though, which is one reason the frequency of these posts has slowed down a bit. I have several queued up for the summer months so hopefully that means we get back into a more regular flow here soon.