Join Riverfront Times Press Club. Because No News is Bad News.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Beethoven Rolls Over; St. Louis to Lose Only Classical Music Station

Posted By on Wed, Oct 7, 2009 at 9:53 AM

click to enlarge kfuo.jpg
After 61 years on the airwaves, a last-ditch effort to save Classic 99.1 (KFUO-FM) was all for naught. Yesterday the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod announced the sale of the classical music station to Christian music broadcaster Joy FM.

The church owns the rights to KFUO and began quietly negotiating the sale of the station earlier this year to Joy FM.

A group of donors to the listener-supported KFUO attempted their own effort to purchase the station and keep classical music on the St. Louis radio dial, but the group couldn't come up with as much money as offered by Joy FM.

One of the reasons for that could be that the church refused to provide the donor group a copy of the term sheet for the 100,000 watt station.

Today Post-Dispatch classical music critic Sarah Bryan Miller quotes the Rev. Dr. Paul Devantier (a Lutheran clergyman who wanted to retain the station for classical music) as saying:
"The church body is making it very easy for (Joy FM) to purchase the station, offering to finance it. If that opportunity, if those same terms had been offered to individuals in the (LCMS) and the community, which has been so supportive, the station could have maintained its format, the tradition of the station, and its service to the church, the community and the world."
Counters the church's attorney, Kermit Brashear, in an article in the St. Louis Business Journal: "Nobody made a real offer of more than $8 million except Joy FM."

The deal still needs support from the Federal Communications Commission. Pending that approval, the station transition will finalize in March -- at which point the classical music will cease.

Tags: , ,

Riverfront Times works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of St. Louis and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep St. Louis' true free press free.

Read the Digital Print Issue

September 23, 2020

View more issues


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Best Things to Do In St. Louis

© 2020 Riverfront Times

Website powered by Foundation