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Boreal Community Media

New radio stations sign on for the North Shore, Boundary Waters

May 29, 2018 02:02PM ● By Editor
From Boreal Community Media - May 29, 2018

Aurora Broadcasting is launching new radio stations featuring the first Adult Album Alternative (Triple A) music format in Northeastern Minnesota.  Branded as "Radio North of Ordinary", WVVE-FM 95.3 will transmit from Grand Marais and KZJZ 106.7 FM will broadcast from Ely.  

In a news release, General Manager Matthew Butler said, "We're proud to bring the vibrant communities of the Boundary Waters and the North Shore truly local radio.  Our friends and neighbors deserve quality radio and we're passionate about delivering the best in credible news and incredible music for our listeners in a clutter-free and curated listening environment."

"The stations are running commercial free at the onset to introduce listeners to our unique hand crafted variety of progressive music," said Butler, "Minnesota artists both classic and contemporary are featured every hour, a commitment that marks a first for commercial radio in Minnesota".

Boreal Community Media caught up with Matthew Butler to ask a few more questions about the new radio station.

Tell us about Aurora Broadcasting and how you came to acquire the transmitter in Grand Marais?

Aurora was formed to bring local, independent commercial radio to the North Shore and
BWCA. When Red Rock Radio of Duluth sold several stations to Midwest Communications,
it didn’t fit with Midwest’s priorities to own the more rural signals. Aurora then acquired
95.3 FM and 106.7 FM in the BWCA to relaunch them as independent local radio stations.

Where will your studios be located? Will you have live on-air talent?

We’re exploring options for studio locations at present and there will be on air talent
added in the near future.

What was the inspiration behind your musical format? What representative artists might find their way to your playlist?

We’re inspired by great progressive radio stations across the country and worldwide, when
FM radio was a source of music discovery and adventure. Where rock and soul and jazz
and folk all found common ground.

Our goal is a sense of quality and adventure. It’s finding the common threads between the
classics and new talent, between the Beatles and a young Minnesota band like Hippo
Campus, or the classic soul of Sam Cooke and a trending artist like Leon Bridges. It’s less
about genre and more like a great mixtape you’d share with a friend. In any given day you’ll
hear anything from deep tracks from the Beatles & Talking Heads to Spoon, Neko Case and
Wilco along with Minnesota artists like Bad Bad Hats and Jillian Rae. Truly radio for music

As you know, the North Shore has many very talented musicians - are you open to playing their music if they submit a CD?

Absolutely. Local and regional artists are incredibly important to our sound and a thriving
arts community. We’re committed to playing Minnesota music every hour. I’m eager to
hear more from our local talent and put them in rotation alongside the national and
international acts we play. Digital submissions are the quickest way to get music to us -
[email protected]

For our local non-profit organizations, will you read on air announcements or public service announcements?

I’m a believer that a radio station is only as good as the good they do for their community,
and we’re committed to providing support and getting the message out for our local
nonprofits. They can submit items to us at any time via: [email protected]

Is there anything else that you would like to tell future listeners about plans for the

We’re hoping to become their new favorite station, and we always welcome comments, new ideas and suggestions, and song suggestions. Call, text or email anytime. I also want to salute our community and public broadcasters who have done great work locally and regionally, as we’re all a part of providing diverse local voices and keeping local media strong and viable. We’re honored to be a part of the rich musical and creative culture here on the North Shore.

WVVE 95.3 FM will be broadcasting on the same frequency as the former KQDS translator station on the top of Lutsen Mountain with coverage from Two Harbors to Grand Portage.  
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