Rocky Mountain Public Media, Colorado’s largest statewide, member-supported, multimedia organization and parent of Rocky Mountain PBS and KUVO radio today announced it has received a $350,000 grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) to add an urban alternative station to reach young, multicultural audiences through their digital devices.
“Rocky Mountain Public Media is thrilled to embark upon an essential experiment with CPB to identify and engage a younger, more diverse audience that is increasingly listening online,” says Amanda Mountain, president and CEO of Rocky Mountain Public Media. “Our learnings will ideally benefit all public media and ensure we remain relevant as so much changes in our communities.”
KUVO’s main daily broadcast channel on 89.3 FM Denver, 89.7 FM Breckenridge and 88.5 FM Vail will continue broadcasting jazz, blues, news and culturally diverse programming, with three hours of the new urban alternative programming on weekends. Borrowing from the popularity of urban contemporary music, including hip hop and R&B, the urban alternative station will also include:
- a 24/7 broadcast on KUVO HD2 and the KUVO app;
- live performances in KUVO’s performance studio recorded for broadcast on KUVO’s Jazz and Urban Alternative channels, as well as on Rocky Mountain PBS’ weekly arts program, Arts District;
- a four-hour broadcast daily in partnership with Denver Open Media’s radio channel on 92.9 FM and live performances on its all-access public TV channel;
- dedicated hosts for a distinct listening experience; and,
- participation in, and hosting of, community events and music festivals.
“We remain committed to our KUVO jazz station and its rich cultural history going back to 1985 in Colorado and see this CPB funding as vital for connecting with new audiences in our community through hip hop, R&B and urban alternative music,” said Tina Cartagena, senior vice president of radio and new media for Rocky Mountain Public Media. “The new station also introduces new listeners and viewers to our other arts and cultural programming, and exposes them to the value of public media.
Two other stations – in Houston and Norfolk, Va. – also received CPB grants for the urban alternative initiative. All three stations will work with Paragon Media Strategies to test and refine the format in their individual markets, including research to identify the music mix that has the greatest local market appeal.
“We will let our community tell us what hip hop, R&B and urban alternative looks like in Colorado,” Cartagena said