Listen to Austin 360 Radio

Contemporary Christian station Spirit 105.9 nears 1 year on Austin's airwaves

Gary Dinges, Static

Staff Writer
Austin 360

It's like no other station in town.

And that's exactly what staffers were aiming for when Spirit 105.9 made its debut on Austin's airwaves just less than a year ago.

The station offers contemporary Christian music, reaching an estimated 170,000 Central Texas listeners each week, according to figures from its owner, CRISTA Ministries.

General manager Tim McCoy, a longtime Austin radio executive, credits outreach efforts at some of the area's 1,100 churches, a regular presence at community events and a media blitz that included billboards around town and TV ads aplenty for helping to make the station a success right out of the gate.

"There was a very strong appetite in this area for a contemporary Christian radio station that was live and local," McCoy said. "Never before have I felt so welcome in a community.

"I'm the luckiest person in radio. I am so blessed."

Spirit has more than 20 full-time employees working from its offices on Capital of Texas Highway (Loop 360) at Westlake Drive — more than many Austin stations owned by big-name broadcasters with deep, deep pockets — and McCoy expects to bring on even more people in the coming months.

"While a lot of the stations in town are consolidating," he said, "we're adding folks."

McCoy says three pillars — family, faith and fun — guide everything Spirit does. That means broadcasts that parents can listen to with their kids, regular in-studio concerts with well-known Christian artists, listener trips to shows at venues in places such as San Antonio, members of its promotions team at events big and small, and TV commercials featuring singers from area church choirs.

"We have a promise to our listeners not to put on anything that isn't family friendly," he said. "We really want to make Central Texas a better place for you and your family."

Spirit 105.9 FM

On the web:spirit1059.com

Weekday lineup:

‘Mornings with Steve and Amy,' 6 to 10 a.m.

Matt Case, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

‘Afternoons with Martha,' 3 to 7 p.m.

‘Evenings with Scott and Sam,' 7 p.m. to midnight

Around the dial ...

Look for Anne Hudson, traffic reporter for 96.7 KISS-FM and other Clear Channel stations here in Austin, on Time Warner Cable's YNN. Her reports on the local fashion scene air Wednesdays and Fridays at 5:55 a.m., 8:55 a.m., 11:55 a.m., 2:55 p.m., 5:55 p.m. and 11:55 p.m. ... Speaking of Clear Channel, the San Antonio-based radio giant has announced plans for the two-day iHeartRadio Music Festival at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas. Set for Sept. 23 and 24, the fest will feature performances by a number of big-name acts, including Lady Gaga, Carrie Underwood, Coldplay, Steven Tyler, Kenny Chesney, Rascal Flatts and more. Tickets went on sale Saturday. Get details at iHeartRadio.com .

gdinges@statesman.com; 912-5987

Austin likes to ‘Party'

LMFAO's ‘Party Rock Anthem' has — just barely — become the most-played song on Austin radio stations, according to AllAccess.com.

The song had a combined 235 plays July 5-11 on 96.7 KISS-FM and 102.3 the Beat, bumping Pitbull's ‘Give Me Everything' into the No. 2 spot, with 233 spins. Adele's ‘Rolling in the Deep' came in third at 212.

Here are the top five songs played on a sampling of local stations:

Beat 102.3

LMFAO, ‘Party Rock Anthem' – 121 plays

Pitbull, ‘Give Me Everything' – 120

Chris Brown, ‘Look at Me Now' – 118

Nicki Minaj, ‘Super Bass' – 118

Big Sean, ‘My Last' – 66

93.3/102.7 KGSR

Eddie Vedder, ‘Longing to Belong' – 34 plays

Adele, ‘Rumour Has It' – 33

Coldplay, ‘Every Teardrop is a Waterfall' – 31

Death Cab For Cutie, ‘You are a Tourist' – 31

Head and the Heart, ‘Lost in My Mind' – 28

KASE 101

Blake Shelton, ‘Honey Bee' – 51 plays

Justin Moore, ‘If Heaven Wasn't So Far Away' – 50

Chris Young, ‘Tomorrow' – 49

Zac Brown Band, ‘Knee Deep' – 45

The Band Perry, ‘You Lie' – 45

Mix 94.7

Adele, ‘Rolling in the Deep' – 68 plays

Pink, ‘(Expletive) Perfect' – 60

Christina Perri, ‘Jar of Hearts' – 58

Black Eyed Peas, ‘Just Can't Get Enough' – 57

OneRepublic, ‘Secrets' – 52