.101.7 The Fox is Off the Air — What Happened?

In a surprising twist that has just about everybody scratching their heads, longtime hard-rock radio station 101.7 FM The Fox has officially been pulled off the air.
According to a source close to the station, employees of the Fox found out about the change in a meeting at 11am today. Immediately afterward, the station went off the air at noon.
The replacement station, “Hot 101.7, Sonoma County’s Hit Music Station,” is currently playing Top 40 hits (as I type this, it’s Ke$ha’s “Tik Tok”). If listeners notice any resemblance to another local Top 40 station, it’s no coincidence. Maverick Media, the Fox’s parent company, recently conducted an audit through a third-party surveying company and found that among those polled, Top 40 is more appealing in this region than hard rock.
Said another source: “They hired this company that finds out what music works, and what music isn’t working, and they felt like in order to keep a competitive edge in the market, they needed to strong-arm the only station that didn’t have any competition.”
That station, Y 100.9, airs on a weaker signal in Sonoma County, and the Maverick Media executives at the meeting seemed confident that Hot 101.7 will be able to overpower the smaller station “out of business,” the source said. (Y 100.9 is owned by Sinclair Communications, which also owns 95.9 the KRSH and 96.7 BOB-FM.)
Hot 101.7’s new site declares: “We asked Sonoma County what they wanted from their favorite radio station. You told us you wanted a HOT station that played hit music with LOTS of music.” (As I type now, it’s the Black Eyed Peas, “Just Can’t Get Enough.”)
Public response so far has been predictably negative, with the new station’s Facebook page filled with “fans” who are making their voice clear: “What the HELL!!!!” writes a typical fan. “No more freaking pop stations!!! I want the old FOX back. Gimme my rock back. I am beyond sick to my stomach. UGH!!!!!!” Elsewhere on the station’s Facebook page, fans complain about having their posts removed by the administrator.
A page for “Fight Hot 101.7” has cropped up just today, along with an even bigger page called “Bring Back the Fox,” and a public protest is planned for Friday, March 25, at 4pm.
Without a doubt, this marks the end of an era for Sonoma County radio. For over 20 years, the Fox has been a Sonoma County standby, serving up classic hard rock like AC/DC and Metallica to more recent music from System of a Down, Disturbed and Velvet Revolver. About a month ago, longtime program director Scott Less left 101.7 the Fox for the Pacific Northwest, but apparently, even prior to Less’ departure, a “skeleton crew” had been running things with barely any financial support from Maverick Media.
Based in Connecticut, Maverick Media are the same people who thought it would be a good idea to fire Steve Jaxon, one of the greatest DJs in Sonoma County, and who aren’t available for comment (their website has been perpetually “under construction” for well over a year). Located over 3,000 miles from the station’s Fox Plaza, they’ve seemed perpetually out of touch with what Sonoma County actually wants, and have now killed the station that gave the building its name. (Right now, they’re playing Britney Spears, “Womanizer.”)
The employees of the Fox have been told that they’ll be able to keep their jobs, but in what capacity exactly is unclear. Currently, Hot 101.7 is broadcasting with no human DJs at all, playing canned tracks on a piped-in feed from corporate headquarters. Sad.


  1. strange thing is, the same thing happened up in portland oregon a couple of weeks ago:
    it was totally out of the blue for local listeners. being an ex-portlandian, many of my friends on facebook are living up there. One day they would be complaining about it being not ‘hard’ enough, and the next day they were lamenting that it had been totally replaced by talk radio without warning.
    I am not proposing there is a direct connection, but i wonder if there was a common ‘third party’ influence? I mean, does anyone smell the possibility of a proverbial rat? Is there a radio consultancy group going around telling media organization to put an end to this raucous heavy metal music in favor of more vanilla broadcasting. I know what your saying ‘this could never happen in america’, but who knows, maybe? maybe the land of the free and the brave is being replaced by greed to get paid? or worse yet, the weak and afraid?

  2. Fu*k Maverick Media for thinkin they know what a Nor*Cal wants! … They’re back east, they have NO fuckin clue.

  3. This was the only station I listened to for about as long as I can remember. Hope that fans can bring Fox back. Sad sad day.

  4. What “maverick media” doesn’t (and never did) understand, is that they destroyed one of the best radio stations in history! They took over a station that was about the music, and created a local community of musicians, music lovers, and fans of music, and spit in the face of that community…again! They systematically tore down everything that was special to the listeners!
    I’ve listen to The Fox, since it’s inception! And back then, it was a bold statement and a love for heavy rock that drove it. Over the years, they developed “their sound”, just like a band does. They were, and are, one of us!
    The question is: what does it take for a corporation to remember it’s roots…how it got their in the first place? Maverick Media played a foul hand once again! But do they realize: they’re not in Wisconsin anymore? This is northern California! And we know what we want!!! We want our rock, and we want it hard!!! And obviously the company hired to do the survey (if there really was one), didn’t give a shit about the truth!!! They just delivered their “report” and collected their money!

  5. Heres the Number for Maverick Media may not be the number were all looking for but its bound to get a response
    (203) 227-2800

  6. Put the Fox back on you will lose all customers in Sonoma County will not listen this bullshit your putting on now I want my hard rock station back your going to lose more money out of this than you think dumb shits. I can not believe you would do this without asking the people in Sonoma County and not just here other Counties listen to this station too so your going to FUCK everyone in this well guess what its going nationwide protest stop listening to all radio until you put Fox back on with our hard rock damn it.

    • i know what you mean i want to protest and make bumper stickers and flyer’s and shit i grew up listening to the fox this is fucking bullshit!

  7. I want my rock music back what the hell i hope we fans can bring back what was the only thing on the radio that was true music!!!!!!!!!!!

  8. The change is the result of Changing Demographics in Sonoma County. The recent release of Census data has many companies and organizations trying to figure out how to reach the larger Latino population in Sonoma County. The loss of the rock station is unfortunate, but it is a sign of the times.

  9. What the hell is this bullshit? That building wudnt exist if not 4 THE FOX. How much has THE FOX contributed 2 The Last Day Salon, Flamingo Hotel(tats n blues), and of course that event at the fairgrounds 2day….ya that one. This is truely a sad day. I WILL BE AT THE PROTEST FRIDAY @4PM SMACK DAMN IN FRONT OF THE FOX PLAZA. SHOW SUM SUPPORT!!!

  10. I remember getting this poll call a while back. I told them I listened to the Fox 99% of the time and the other 1% was the River. They kept asking what else… It felt like they were hoping I’d say something like what they are playing now.

  11. WTF!!! i turned The Fox on yesterday and katey perry was sing hot and cold!?? WTF!! thats not rock, I WANT MY ROCK BACK!!!! i don’t want to listen to rhianna, if i wanted to i’d go to another station, I WANT TO LISTEN TO ROCK!! what other station is there? i went to The Fox’s website and its gone, did they even announce that this was going to happen? were else am i suppose to listen to new releases?! it’s being taken over by pop and other sh*t! I listen to Rock, I freaking live in Sonoma County and there was no effing poll that i know of. i’m not listening to THAT kind of music on my favorite station until they BRING BACK 101.7 The Fox!!!!!!!!!!

  12. They polled the people who listed to this kind of crap. I suppose its Opeth for my ride to work until fox comes back online.

  13. Where are the local bands going to be played? Who is going to put on the awesome shows for local bands to play? Are our local bands just going to be stuck in their garages now instead of having the chance to be on the radio? WTF?

  14. What bands need to do is bring back rock. You want glam rock? Hard rock? Metal heads? Hair bands? Then make it popular again with the young kids. Otherwise, these people are going to keep on churning out hip hop brats.

  15. What a horrible way to end a good week. Out of the fuckin blue we go from twenty years of AC/DC,Pantera, and Marilyn Manson to fuckin Britney spears? Lady Gaga? Hot 101.7? wtf. We better rally for the station we’ve supported and loved ,represented for so many years.I’d love to punch whoever is personally responsible in the fukin head.Fuck the Black Eyed Peas – I want Bullet for my Valentine and Smile Empty Soul. I’m just beside myself