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Rock radio gets some bite on 94-3 The Shark

Kurt Cobain, center, with the band.

Kurt Cobain, center, with the band. Credit: Anton Corbijn

A Shark surfaced on Long Island’s airwaves today.

Starting at noon, WWSK 94.3 FM – known as 94-3 The Shark -- began its run as L.I.’s newest rock station with its first song, Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit.”

The station’s mantra, “Everything That Rocks,” is reflected in a playlist that includes: Red Hot Chili Peppers, Green Day, Led Zeppelin, Metallica, Beastie Boys, Pearl Jam, Linkin Park, Stone Temple Pilots, Soundgarden, Sublime, Nine Inch Nails, Smashing Pumpkins, Van Halen and Foo Fighters.

“The radio listeners of Long Island have spoken - they want more variety and a rock station that isn’t boring,” David Bevins, chief operating officer of The Shark’s owner -- Connoisseur Media -- said in a statement. “The Shark will provide listeners with the energy and attitude that can’t be found on any other local Long Island rock station.”

Connoisseur Media also owns KJOY/98.3 FM, B103/103.1 FM and AM adult standards WHLI/1100.

The new station takes over what used to be the New 94X, which debuted in 2010 and played songs aimed at Generation X. The Shark is going after male listeners aged 18 to 49, a departure from the more inclusive Gen X demographic.

The 18 to 49 demo “fits well with in our cluster,” Dave Widmer, general manager for Connoisseur Media’s Long Island group of stations said. “We’ve done an extensive amount of market research,” he said. “It’s a clear lane that’s open right now” on Long Island radio.

Widmer also acknowledged the Island’s rich rock history, but said at this time there are no plans to play local rock acts on the station. But this is, after all, The Shark’s first day. “Check back in a couple of months,” he said.

PHOTO: Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit" opened the era of The Shark at noon Friday.

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