Friends 91. 9 FM, the FM channel from the ABP Group, has gone on air from 8 AM on February 28, 2007. The channel will follow an adult contemporary format focusing on friendship and promises to break through the clutter of choices available in terms of songs being played on radio at present. It says it will take listeners back to the best years of their lives.
The target audience for Friends 91.9 FM comprises the Bengali-speaking population in the age group of 25 and above. Said Jaideep Banerjee, Programming Head, “We are essentially a station for the Bengalis. We are very optimistic about being able to connect to our TA of Bengalis and Bengali-speaking listeners.”
According to Banerjee, the station will be playing songs that the now 20-40-year-olds grew up with. “There’s this whole thing about growing up, you connect a lot of incidents in your life to music. We aim to replay the best moments by playing all those songs associated with the best years of their lives,” elaborated Banerjee.
Although the popular picks will be from 1971-2003, there will be some space for contemporary hits too.
Apart from its regular RJs, popular singers from Bengal like Lopamudra Mitra, Srikanto Acharya, Anjan Dutta, Nachiketa, Rupam Islam will hold weekend and special shows. Well-known Bengali film actor and stage personality Soumitra Chatterjee will host special programmes on Tagore.
The first song to go on air from the station was the station’s theme song sung by twelve of the best singers from Bengal.
The creative communication is being handled by Bates Kolkata. The multi-media campaign is based on a song ‘Coffee houser shei adda …’ sung by popular Bengali singer Manna Dey. The launch campaign has been conceived by a series of teasers. Says Banerjee, “The coffee house epitomizes friendship and ‘adda’. Here it has been used as a communication tool.”
“To strengthen our station’s positioning as ‘the friend you always had’, the base line of the station is ‘Bandhu ….tomar Jonnya,” added Banerjee.