Classic rock makes a comeback; Local station launched this month for classic rock fans

Eduardo Gallegos launches Rocket 105.5 this April, a new classic rock radio station that focuses on hits from the 70s, 80s and 90s. Courtesy Photo

CAMERON COUNTY— Fans of Led Zeppelin, AC/DC, Motley Crue, Nirvana and other classic bands will get to listen to their favorites in a local Rio Grande Valley radio station.

Eduardo Gallegos, owner of 105.5 Rocket decided to launch his classic rock station two weeks ago after four years of planning it.

Gallegos acquired the radio license from an auction from South Texas College back in 2015. Gallegos said this was the last F.M. radio license available in the Valley.

“ It’s taken since 2015 to about last year to be able to get the equipment available and the tower where we were going to transmit from,” he said.

“ We signed on last year in May and in December of 2019 we started playing 80s and 90s rock music trying to tease the listeners to our format,” Gallegos said.

For him, classic rock is a genre that had not been heard in Valley radio stations in a while. At the beginning a name had not been set but music was being played to see the public’s reaction.

Gallegos began looking for people wanting to join in the team. The studio is based in Brownsville, but the tower is located in Port Isabel. Areas such as San Benito, South Padre Island, Los Fresnos, Rio Hondo and Arroyo City have access to the station.

Gallegos said Harlingen residents are able to tune in from their vehicles but might need to use their Internet services to stream at home.

Though uncertainty was hovering over Gallegos’s business it did not stop him from launching the station.

“ We started getting a lot of calls and people wanting to participate but then the COVID-19 started and we pushed back the launch date,” he said.

“ People who initially said they were going to support said they would wait until this passes over but I still needed to launch the station because we were already ready,” Gallegos said.

The station has been on the air since December but just this April it started to have on air personalities that curate playlists at different times of the day.

“ We are ready to serve our audience and when the time permits events for the Valley, promotions with clients, etc. That is what a radio station is meant to do, create traffic for a location or event,” he said.

“ Because of the situation we are just trying to have interactive communication with the people who have started to like us on our social media pages,” Gallegos said.

The station has a Facebook, Instagram and Twitter page where fans can follow for updates. Gallegos said advertisers have already shown interest in the station.

“ It’s a working progress but we are getting there,” he said.

Currently the station is creating a buzz within itself according to Gallegos. He explained classic rock is defined by songs that are older than 30 years.

“ Our main focus is for people that are 35 plus and beyond are very aware of and they grew up with. It gives them a good feeling and a way to remember good times,” Gallegos said.

“ The call letters are KRIX and that is a heritage call letter. It used to be on a rock station here in the Valley that used to play in 70s and 80s and then it was sold and changed the letters. I recovered those call letters just to bring back the nostalgia for everybody who grew up with KRIX rocking the Valley,” he said.

Gallegos did research before launching it to make sure what worked for the diverse community of the Valley.

“ Everybody who listens to the station falls in love with the music because they have heard it in movies, dances and its music for a generation,” he said.

“ I felt like this type of format wasn’t being offered here in the Valley and we would like to do community concerts or battle of the bands that can do local promotion. Radio is a mass media and the lower Rio Grande Valley needs a local radio station that 35 plus want to hear,” Gallegos said.

ecavazos@valleystar.com