The Rock (radio station)

Last updated

The Rock Logo.png
Broadcast area New Zealand
Slogan "Rock Is Our Religion."
Format Mainstream rock
Class Terrestrial/Internet
Owner MediaWorks New Zealand

The Rock is a New Zealand mainstream rock music radio station. The station targets males 25-44, but has a significant female fan base. It plays rock music and showcases up-and-coming New Zealand bands.


The Rock has unpredictable features and countdowns, most notably The Rock 1500, an annual music countdown based entirely on songs voted for by listeners.

Some of its broadcasts have been controversial, and the Broadcasting Standards Authority has upheld many complaints against it.

The Broadcasting Standards Authority is a New Zealand Crown entity created by the Broadcasting Act 1989 to develop and uphold standards of broadcasting for radio, free-to-air and pay television.


The Rock began broadcasting on 1 December 1992 in Hamilton as The Rock 93FM. The original line-up included Chris Clarke on breakfast (replaced by Mark Bunting after 2 months) and Roger Farrelly on Drive. Originally, The Rock 93FM was based in the basement of Radio New Zealand Broadcasting House in Hamilton, headquartered in the studios for ZHFM. The transmitter was originally located on the top of Waikato Hospital. In 1993 The Rock moved to new premises at 564 Victoria Street in Hamilton

Hamilton, New Zealand City in North Island, New Zealand

Hamilton is a city in the North Island of New Zealand. It is the seat and most populous city of the Waikato region, with a territorial population of 169,300, the country's fourth most-populous city. Encompassing a land area of about 110 km2 (42 sq mi) on the banks of the Waikato River, Hamilton is part of the wider Hamilton Urban Area, which also encompasses the nearby towns of Ngaruawahia, Te Awamutu and Cambridge.

Radio New Zealand New Zealand radio network

Radio New Zealand, commonly known as Radio NZ or simply RNZ, is a New Zealand public-service radio broadcaster and Crown entity that was established under the Radio New Zealand Act 1995. It operates a news and current-affairs network, RNZ National, and a classical-music and jazz network, RNZ Concert, with full government funding from New Zealand on Air. Since 2014, the organisation's focus has been to transform RNZ from a radio broadcaster to a multimedia outlet, increasing its production of digital content in audio, video, and written forms.

The station purchased a collection of FM frequencies from the Christian Broadcasting Association and transferred them to Nevada. Using the first of these frequencies a local version of The Rock was started in Taranaki in 1993, this station was originally broadcast on 100FM but after Nevada Resources Ltd and Energy Enterprises merged, the station moved to 95.6FM. A third The Rock station was started in the Bay of Plenty in 1996 with local programming. In 1997 The Rock created a regional network by replacing the Taranaki and Bay of Plenty stations with the Hamilton-based The Rock station and also networked into Rotorua. [1]

Rotorua City in Bay of Plenty, New Zealand

Rotorua is a city on the southern shores of Lake Rotorua from which the city takes its name, located in the Bay of Plenty Region of New Zealand's North Island. It is the seat of the Rotorua District, a territorial authority encompassing Rotorua and several other nearby towns. The majority of the Rotorua District is in the Bay of Plenty Region, but a sizeable southern section and a small western section are in the Waikato Region. Rotorua is in the heart of the North Island, 60 kilometres south of Tauranga, 80 km (50 mi) north of Taupo, 105 km (65 mi) east of Hamilton, and 230 km (140 mi) southeast of the nation's most populous city, Auckland.

Nationwide expansion

In 1998 The Rock began networking to other regions in the North Island. In 1999, The Rock moved to Auckland, and began broadcasting from there. Later that year, Energy Enterprises and Radio Otago merged to form RadioWorks; as a result, the station was networked into the South Island. In Christchurch, Radio Otago had already been operating their own rock station called C93FM and this station was networked to Dunedin and Invercargill, C93FM actually played a Classic rock format similar to Radio Hauraki. RadioWorks replaced C93FM in Dunedin and Invercargill with The Rock and kept C93FM operating in Christchurch, but changed its format to Adult Contemporary and launched The Rock on a separate frequency. C93 no longer operates as the station failed to attract listeners after the format change. Christchurch C93FM listeners were gutted that their local Classic Rock station had a format change and had to give way to a Network station, the phones rung for weeks with upset listeners not liking the format change to Adult Contemporary. Today The Rock broadcasts in almost every market in New Zealand. [2]

North Island The northern of the two main islands of New Zealand

The North Island, also officially named Te Ika-a-Māui, is one of the two main islands of New Zealand, separated from the larger but much less populous South Island by Cook Strait. The island's area is 113,729 square kilometres (43,911 sq mi), making it the world's 14th-largest island. It has a population of 3,749,200.

Auckland Metropolitan area in North Island, New Zealand

Auckland is a city in the North Island of New Zealand. Auckland is the largest urban area in the country, with an urban population of around 1,628,900. It is located in the Auckland Region—the area governed by Auckland Council—which includes outlying rural areas and the islands of the Hauraki Gulf, resulting in a total population of 1,695,900. A diverse and multicultural city, Auckland is home to the largest Polynesian population in the world. The Māori-language name for Auckland is Tāmaki or Tāmaki-makau-rau, meaning "Tāmaki with a hundred lovers", in reference to the desirability of its fertile land at the hub of waterways in all directions.

Radio Otago was a radio company that operated a group of local radio stations in radio markets around New Zealand from the 1970s to the late 1990s. Radio Otago was started in 1971 when Dunedin station 4XO was started, 4XO was originally branded as Radio Otago 4XO. During the 1980s and 1990s Radio Otago expanded their operations by starting up stations around Otago and the rest of New Zealand, and also by purchasing existing stations.

The only remaining original member of The Rock crew is Rog. Other DJs left, including Greenman, who went on his OE to the UK, Beachy (Christopher Beach) who moved into sales and Julie Mofett, who now works at Radio New Zealand. [3]


The Morning Rumble

The morning radio show is known as The Morning Rumble, the members of which are currently Roger Farrelly (Rog), Bryce Casey, Andrew Mulligan and John Day. Rog has been a co-host on the show since its inception. Simon Doull spent several years as a co-host, left and returned in 2015, when Bainbridge joined. In March 2011 Andrew Mulligan joined.

Bryce has attempted to break two world records during his tenure on the show, his most notable attempt being to break the record for the longest time ten-pin bowling continuously. He fell short by only a few hours. [4]


Roger, or Rog as he's known, joined the Morning Rumble in 1994. Prior to that he had worked the afternoon shift at The Rock. Rog serves as a ‘knob' of sorts for the Morning Rumble crew, and his ongoing banter and power struggles with Bryce provide a lot of the show's entertainment. Jen provides the female perspective on the show and reads the news, while John reads the sports news. The producer is Ryan Maguire.


On Fridays a section of the show was called 'Do Stuff To Jono Fridays'. This formed a large part of the entertainment value and was an early distinguishing feature of The Rock. Jono was made the victim of stunts such as 'The Human Slushy', 'The Pyramid of Fire', 'Human Coleslaw', 'Sleigh of Fire', 'The Skater Ramp of Doom', a full body wax, and giving Jono a tattoo on his bottom but not telling him that it was a love heart with the other DJs names. [5]

In 2006 when Jono got his own slot with Robert on weekday afternoons, the show then became "Do Stuff To Jimmy". Stunts included putting electrodes on his nipples, and other assorted painful and humiliating acts. Jimmy is no longer working at The Rock, and there is currently no 'Do Stuff' segment. A one-off 'Final Ever Do Stuff To Jono' stunt was planned and executed in September 2009, during which Jono performed a 'Mega Stunt' - riding a BMX bike down a steep slope, through pyrotechnics and a pane of glass, and finally scaling a ramp to jump over a parked ute. [6]

The Rock organized a "win a wife" competition in early 2011. The winner would travel to Ukraine to meet a girl via the "Endless Love" dating agency. In response the Ukrainian group Femen organized a topless protest against this competition (in March 2011). A Femen activist advised: "Femen warns the 'lucky' winner of the New Zealand competition that he can expect an unhappy ending in Ukraine". [7] [8]

Rock Workdays

Jen Bainbridge takes over on-air from 10:00am – 3pm fronting the 'Rock Workdays' show which also features a requests hour between 12-1pm.

Rock Drive

The Rock's drive show has Duncan Heyde who is the EP / Anchor of the show with co-host Jay Reeve and Jim Cawthorn as the third wheel.

Rock Nights

Mike Garvey hosts Rock Nights. In 2018 he started training to 'Backflip his way into New Zealand Radio History' by learning how to back flip a motorcycle, 7pm Monday Nights features the popular and long running Dr John Podcast, Hosted by Mike Garvey and Duncan Heyde Dr John answers listeners medical question for an hour between 7pm - 8pm. Friday nights at 9pm RPM is broadcast, RPM an hour long music show featuring a playlist of Rock Punk and Metal, a replay of the show broadcasts on sunday nights at 9pm.

The Rock 1000/1500

The Rock 1500 is an annual countdown feature, counting down the 1500 biggest rock songs ever, as voted by listeners in an online poll. The chart order, including which bands and songs feature on the countdown, are determined by listeners via a voting system on the station's official web site. The countdown runs on weekdays over a three-week period and is broadcast throughout New Zealand. In 2016, the list expanded by 50% as The Rock 1000+500, it was previously called the Rock 1000. Since 2017, it has been known as the Rock 1500.



North Island frequencies

Northland Whangarei FM 90
Auckland Rodney FM 100.1
Auckland FM 90.2
Coromandel Mercury Bay FM 105.5
Bay of Plenty Tauranga FM 94.2
Waikato Hamilton FM 93
Rotorua Rotorua FM 92.7
Taupo Taupo FM 94.4
Gisborne Gisborne FM 94.1
Hawke's Bay Wairoa 94.1 FM
Napier FM 95.1
Taranaki New Plymouth FM 95.6
Whanganui Whanganui FM 95.2
Manawatu Palmerston North FM 95.4
Wairarapa Masterton FM 95.1
Kapiti Paraparaumu FM 91.9
Wellington Wellington FM 96.5

South Island frequencies

Nelson Nelson FM 94.4
Marlborough Blenheim FM 91.3
Canterbury Christchurch FM 93.7
Ashburton Ashburton FM 97.3
South Canterbury Timaru FM 91.5
North Otago Oamaru FM 104.8
Central Otago Alexandra FM 98.3
Queenstown Wanaka FM 89.8
Queenstown FM 100
Dunedin Dunedin FM 93.4
Southland Invercargill FM 90.8

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  1. The Rock Internet Archive
  2. The Rock Internet Archive
  3. Jono and Ben at Ten
  4. The Rock DJ bowling his way to world record
  5. Do Stuff to Jono
  6. Final Ever Do Stuff to Jono
  7. "Ukraine protest over NZ 'win a wife' competition prize". BBC News. 2 March 2011. Retrieved 15 March 2012.
  8. "Ukraine feminists protest 'Win a Wife' competition". Khaleej Times. 1 March 2011. Retrieved 15 March 2012.