Brian Phillips, chief content officer for Atlanta-based Cumulus Media, was the program director during 99X’s early years and given his current position at Cumulus, was able to bring back not only the station’s original alternative rock format but also many of its original players.
The surprisingly strong ratings and revenue enabled Phillips to hire Melancon. He called her an “important original contributor. It’s time for us to add some cool and fun at night.”
Melancon is joining a station that includes fellow on-air hosts who were all around during 99X’s 1990s heyday including morning hosts Steve Barnes and Leslie Fram, midday host Steve Craig, afternoon host Will Pendarvis and weekend host Matt Jones.
“I have so many good memories of my time there and the people I worked with ― and not just the other jocks,” said Melancon. “It truly wasn’t like a job. Instead, it was more of a family. Going back is like heading home for a family reunion after not seeing my family for a really long time. Like a family, there are always going to be disagreements, but you know that you are always there for each other. It’s good to be home.”
Melancon worked either part time or full time at 99X from 1992 to 2008.
Melancon over the years has also done traffic and jockey work at other stations, taught at different schools and produced podcasts for Creative Loafing.
Since its return, 99X has focused largely on classic alternative music, only occasionally spinning newer music from older acts.
Melancon said she plans to air an hour of new music every evening though which hour has not been finalized.