Tracey V. Bell’s, 95.1 FM, Chicago will become a 100% digital station, at the
end of March 2021.
At the initial launch of the station, station officials developed and launched a digital App which can be accessed
wherever there is Wifi direct from Apple and Android play store. Unlike other streaming apps, it maintains audio in
real-time even when switching between devices.
An unintentional dress rehearsal, in May 2020, 95.1 FM operated solely from its digital App, due to a flood at the
Sears Tower, which stripped the station of its FM signal, for 3 weeks. During that month, the station’s audience
A 24-hour music station, 95.1 FM Chicago, now streams across the US, 79 other countries, and has more than 300K
listeners. Its APP earns more than 2MM impressions a month and on average, the station adds more than 20K new
digital listeners each month. Moreover, the station’s number of weekly digital listeners exceeds all competitors in
Chicago, the nation’s 3rd largest market, who vie for the same listener.
As such, 95.1 Chicago is set to become the first Black-Female owned, radio station to proactively go ALL digital,
and compete on the national scale, with international in its sight. Bell made the strategic decision so that the station
can focus on enhancing digital solutions in this budding digital age. Immediately, the decision elevates the station to
be considered with streaming leaders, Pandora and Spotify.
Taking streaming to another level, the 95.1 Chicago App has become the first and ONLY to innovate audio AND visual via the inclusion of a digital theater, within the same app. With successful performances in 2020 that included international Smooth Jazz artist Nick Colionne and the
R&B legendary Whispers, the performances streamed coast to coast through the 95.1 Chicago App.
When asked about the impact on Chicago, the station’s birth city, Program Director, First Lady, who also dubs as
Midday Personality and Mixer on the station said; “New York has its fashions. LA has its movie stars and Chicago
has its Music…like Curtis Mayfield, The Emotions, The Chi-Lites, Sam Cooke, Earth Wind & Fire, Chaka Khan,
Jennifer Hudson, Minnie Ripperton, Common, and the list goes on. It makes sense that we share this music with the
world. That’s what it means to take Chicago around the world.
We are the only station systematically playing this kind of music…and we go deep not just what charted. So now, we elevate our culture to the next level by launching digital. 70% of our audience already listens via our App so we are just giving the people more of what they asked us
for. As far as our local advertisers, small businesses with an online business model will receive incremental
Excited to lead Black-Female owned radio into the digital age, Bell emphasized that none of this is possible, without
God. “He [GOD] combined music, message, and mission. The timing of it all epitomizes Victor Hugo’s meaning of
nothing is more powerful than an idea whose time has come.”
Tracey V. Bell
www.951FMChicago.com and www.theibmcompany.com,