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“The Future of Rock and Roll” is sad these days, at least on the radio. The famous 97X out of Oxford, Ohio, announced earlier this year they sold their radio frequency and will no longer broadcast on the radio waves.If you’re not from Cincinnati, Dayton or Oxford, you may be familiar with the station via the Internet, or maybe you remember that scene in “Rain Man” when Dustin Hoffman says “97X BAM! The Future of Rock and Roll.” That’s the radio station I’m talking about.

The station is completely different from any format I’ve heard in Richmond or Lexington, and I was happy I could listen to it at home (on clear nights) and on my computer, but 97X leaving the airwaves is depressing.

Apparently the future of rock ‘n’ roll is not the radio; it must be music videos, CDs and Web sites. This is especially sad for someone who doesn’t have a CD player in their car (hey, some of us still drive ’87 Celicas). There is no point in scanning the airwaves on road trips since there’s never anything pleasing to my ears.

I really hate this trend of radio stations closing. In case you forgot, Eastern’s student-run WXII closed last semester. There is the same 20-song rotation on the oldies station and the same 10-song rotation on the pop stations. As for country radio, I don’t know a whole lot about it – sorry I’m not a fan.

97X is one of the most famous radio stations in the country, possibly because of its Internet site, but also because of its eclectic music. Nowhere else have I heard John Vanderslice, Camera Obscura, Sigur R¢s or Azure Ray on the radio. And 97X was playing Death Cab for Cutie, N*E*R*D, Ben Kweller, The Get Up Kids and The Von Bondies far before anyone else in this area.

I’m glad Linda and Doug Balogh started up the station in 1983; I just wish it could have lasted longer.

For anyone interested, the Southgate House in Newport is having a Sign Off, Log On Show on May 2. The Southgate House isn’t allowed to say which radio station this is a tribute to, but I think we all have a pretty good idea. Bands to play this gig are TBA.

For more information on the 97X switch to Internet, visit www.woxy.com.

Reach Katie at

katherine_weitkam@eku.edu