A public radio station at Middle Tennessee State University will be switching formats, in an effort to attract new listeners.
Starting Sept. 2, WMOT-FM 89.5 will change from its current format of jazz and classical music, to become the first station in the region to focus on Americana music.
“The success of this kind of music nationally is growing,” said Greg Reish, Director of the Center For Popular Music at MTSU. “It’s the perfect time for us to become Middle Tennessee’s voice of Americana.”
The 100,000 watt station’s new format will feature specialty shows and music centered around the genre, and also the weekly Music City Roots variety show, and MTSU sporting events.
The station has partnered with the creative team behind Music City Roots on the new format, and the station will continue as a training ground for students.
“We’re going to have morning drive time shows that will be hosted by a variety of people who have tremendous experience in Americana and roots radio,” said Reish.
The station's playlist will include thousands of songs from the past, and current Americana music.
WMOT has been on the air since 1969 and reaches as far north as Bowling Green, Kentucky and as far south as the Alabama border.
MTSU officials behind the change said it has been in the works for over a year, and it’s exciting to see it come together.
“A lot of work, a lot of preparation has gone into this,” said Reish. “We’re excited to see that finally go out to the public.”
After the switch, MTSU’s jazz station will be broadcast on 92.3 FM in Murfreesboro and 104.9 FM in Brentwood and Nashville beginning in November.
MTSU and Music City Roots will hold an event at 11 a.m. on Sept. 2 at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum to formally announce the new format.