Classic alternative

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Classic alternative is a radio format focusing on alternative music from the late 1970s to early 1990s, with particular focus on the early days of MTV.

Music Choice added 1990s' alternative to its classic alternative station in late 2011.

Typical genres[edit]

Some stations with an "all-'80s" format have added elements of the 1980s and '90s classic alternative format to their regular playlist. Cox's KHPT in Houston and WPOI in Tampa are prime examples of all-'80s stations that heavily relied on artists such as Peter Schilling, The Cranberries and New Order. KHPT flipped to a classic alternative format after its run as an all-'80s station. The same goes for KJAQ in Seattle, one of the first stations in the country to try this format.

Digital cable music service Music Choice (originally DMX) provided a station labelled New Wave for several years. The station was later renamed "Retro-Active", and later Classic Alternative, all of which played seventies to eighties new wave, post-punk, synthpop, etc. After several years, the station filtered in 1990s (and even sometimes post-millennium) artists. However, an artist like David Bowie can often fit in classic alternative because he meets the criteria.