By GUY D’ASTOLFO
The Mahoning Valley’s newest radio station will go on the air Monday at 10 a.m.
The station, dubbed Star 93.7 FM, will have an urban- adult contemporary format. It is the first new radio station in many years in the area.
Skip Bednarczyk is the owner and operator of the station, which has its studio and offices in the 20 Federal Place building, downtown.
The station was originally supposed to go live more than a month ago, but bad weather delayed the mounting of broadcast equipment on an antenna.
Bednarczyk said he used the extra time to fine-tune the format.
The station will actually go on the air Saturday. It will just broadcast a ticking-clock sound all weekend, punctuated every 15 minutes by an announcement for the station.
Bednarczyk was the manager of JAMZ 101.9, the popular urban contemporary station that was sold and switched formats more than a year ago.
JAMZ had a much younger target audience than Star 93.7 will have.
“It’s so much different than JAMZ,” said Bednarczyk. “You will hear Earth, Wind and Fire, KC and the Sunshine Band, Michael Jackson, Luther Vandross, Barry White. ... It will be a variety of hits and old-school music, with a much broader appeal than JAMZ. You’ll hear these songs and say, ‘I remember that one.’”
Unlike JAMZ, the new station will not play hip-hop or rap music.
Star 93.7 will start off with 5,000 songs in a row without commercials. “That will take us through 10 or 15 days,” said Bednarczyk. “Then we will add the Steve Harvey Show [6 to 10 a.m. weekdays] and the Keith Sweat show [7 p.m. to midnight weekdays], and we will be live in the studio throughout the midday.”
Star 93.7 FM is actually broadcasting from the frequency of local station WGFT-AM 1330, which Bednarczyk also owns. Using the translator, which is mounted 940 feet high on a Boardman broadcast antenna, it will send its signal over the FM band at 93.7.