AARoads Forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  

News:

New rules for political content in signatures and user profiles. See this thread for details.

Author Topic: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them  (Read 28569 times)

KEVIN_224

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 1575
  • Age: 48
  • Location: Connecticut
  • Last Login: June 16, 2019, 09:13:16 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #25 on: February 01, 2015, 01:25:00 AM »

In Hartford/New Britain/Middletown:

WZMX-FM 93.7 Hartford (Hot 93.7) alluded to a prior station format of The New Mix 93.7. A previous life of the station was as WLVH-FM, the "Latin Voice Of Hartford."

WKSS-FM 95.7 Hartford/Meriden (Kiss 95.7) alluded to a prior station format of beautiful music. The station became a Top 40 station in 1984, rebranded as 95.7-Kiss FM and competed with WTIC-FM 96.5 of Hartford.

WTIC-FM 96.5 Hartford, alluded to prior station ownership by the Traveler's Insurance Corporation with sister station WTIC-AM 1080. Both stations are owned by CBS Radio today.

WUCS-FM 97.9 Windsor Locks/Hartford is our ESPN Radio affiliate. The letters mean "Ultimate Connecticut Sports."
WRCH-FM 100.5 New Britain/Hartford is A/C powerhouse Lite 100.5 today. The letters alluded to "Rich - FM 100" and a pre-1989 beautiful music format.

WDRC-FM 102.9 Hartford alluded to the Doolittle Radio Company. It's is considered to the state's first FM station.

WMRQ-FM 104.1 Waterbury/Hartford alludes to the station's Modern Rock/Alternative format times: From 1994 to 2003 and from the late 2000s to today. When Clear Channel owned the station, it had a life as WPHH-FM, and was Urban-formatted Power 104.1.

WIHS-FM 104.9 Middletown is a non-commercial religious station. The letters mean "We're In His Service."

WHCN-FM 105.9 Hartford is presently Classic Hits "The River 105.9." The letters may mean "Hartford, Connecticut" for some. They actually stood for "Hartford - Concert Network". It was part of a regional group with then-WBCN-FM 104.1 of Boston and WRCN-FM 103.9 in Riverhead, NY (Long Island).

WCCC-FM 106.9 Hartford was once owned by a prominent Hartford business man named Bill Savitt. a long time jeweler store owner. Supposedly, the letters alluded to something like Cut, Carat and Clarity. I'm not 100% sure though. The station became a long time rocker in the 1970s and even employed Howard Stern. Today, they're a religious K-Love station. (Yawn!)
Logged

SP Cook

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 1859
  • Last Login: June 14, 2019, 02:48:28 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #26 on: February 01, 2015, 08:44:10 AM »

West Virginia area, mostly:

Obviously the easy "WV" is used to death.

TV:
WSAZ - assigned sequentially, reputed to be "worst station from A to Z" but that is an ex post facto joke
WCHS - from radio station.
WVAH - West Virginia Almost Heaven
WOWK - W Ohio West Virginia Kentucky
WKAS - W Kentucky AShland
WVPB - WV Public Broadcasting
WOAY - was supposed to be WOAK, for Oak Hill, WV, FCC misread hand written application
WVVA - West Virginia/Virginia
WVNS - WV's News Station
WSWP - W Southern West (Virginia) Public (Broadcasting)
WVPN - West Virginia Public (Broadcasting) North
WTRF - from radio station
WTOV - W TV for the Ohio Valley
WVFX - WV Fox (network)


RADIO:
WBES - BESt music (actually has been a talk station for decades)
WCHS - CHarleSton (ironically the airport code for the other Charleston)
WCWV - W Central West Virginia
WJLS - W Joe L. Smith (original owner)
WMON - MONtgomery
WSCW - W South Charleston West (Virginia)
WVAF - West Virginia AM and FM
WVPB - WV Public Broadcasting
WFGH - W Fort Gay High (student station, since consolidated into Tolsia High)
WVSR - WV Stereo Radio
WVTS - WV's Talk Station
WMXE - Mix of Entertainment.
WVHU - WV HUntington
WCMI - Where Coal Meets Iron (city motto of Ashland, KY, and my person favorite call sign in the country)
WIRO- W IROnton
WLGC - Wealthy Lawyers of Greenup County (may be apocryphal)
WRVC - W RiVer Cities
WMUL - W Marshall University Labs (student station)
WBKW - W BecKley West (Virginia)
WTNJ - W Tony (Gonzales) and Nicky Joe (Rahall, recently tossed out congressman)
WWNR  - WW Nicky (Joe) Rahall
WAJR - W Agnes J. Reaves (owner)
WCLG W C. Lesslie Goldays (owner)
WWVU - W WVU (student station)
WFBY - FM station in Clarksburg, home of the FBI labs.  Wanted WFBI, but FCC would not let them
WHIS - W Hugh Ike Shott (Senator and former owner)
WHAJ - W Hank and Jim (Shott) his sons
WTRF - W Two Radio Frequencies (first AM FM pair in area)
WWVA - Wheeling West Virginia
Logged

cpzilliacus

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 10222
  • Age: 60
  • Location: Maryland
  • Last Login: May 15, 2019, 09:41:46 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #27 on: February 01, 2015, 10:06:05 AM »

WBAL (TV Channel 11, 1090 AM radio) - Baltimore
WMAR (TV Channel 2) - Maryland
WBFF (TV Channel 45) - Baltimore's Finest Features
WMPT (TV Channel 22) - Maryland Public Television
WJLA (TV Channel 7) - Initials of former owner
WUSA (TV Channel 9) - USA today (station is owned by Gannet)
WRC (TV Channel 4) - RCA televisions and other electronic hardware (NBC was formerly owned by RCA)
WPGC (FM 95.5) - Prince George's County, Maryland
WASH (FM 97.1) - Washington, D.C.
WWDC (FM 101.1) Washington, D.C.
Logged
Opinions expressed here on AAROADS are strictly personal and mine alone, and do not reflect policies or positions of MWCOG, NCRTPB or their member federal, state, county and municipal governments or any other agency.

KEVIN_224

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 1575
  • Age: 48
  • Location: Connecticut
  • Last Login: June 16, 2019, 09:13:16 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #28 on: February 01, 2015, 10:09:48 AM »

@ SP COOK: I'm curious about WBOY-TV (NBC) channel 12 in the Clarksburg/Weston market. (LOL). WDTV-TV (CBS) channel 5 of Weston sounds like a generic FCC assignment. Does WTRF-TV (CBS) channel 7 of Wheeling have any meaning with the call letters?

@ CPZILLIACUS: Gannett also owns and operates KUSA-TV (NBC) channel 9 in Denver. :P
Logged

SP Cook

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 1859
  • Last Login: June 14, 2019, 02:48:28 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #29 on: February 01, 2015, 11:05:42 AM »

@ SP COOK: I'm curious about WBOY-TV (NBC) channel 12 in the Clarksburg/Weston market. (LOL). WDTV-TV (CBS) channel 5 of Weston sounds like a generic FCC assignment. Does WTRF-TV (CBS) channel 7 of Wheeling have any meaning with the call letters?


WBOY, AFAIK, is just a random call letters set.

WDTV was originally the calls of KDKA in Pittsburgh, standing for DuMont TV, after the failed DuMont network of the 1950s, when DuMont went under, that station became KDKA.  Meanwhile WJPB in Weston, WV got to move from UHF (where it was failing) to VHF and took over the WDTV calls, as the area was (and remains) heavily cabled and the call were familiar to people there, as they got TV from Pittsburgh along with local stations.

WTRF stands for "Two Radio Frequencies" and comes from the pre-TV radio stations, the first in the area to be an AM-FM pair.

Logged

SidS1045

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 867
  • Age: 68
  • Location: Stoneham MA
  • Last Login: June 16, 2019, 10:49:14 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #30 on: February 01, 2015, 11:59:02 AM »

KDKA is the oldest radio station I think and got its K before the rule?

KDKA isn't even close to being the oldest radio station, nor did Westinghouse, its original owner, ever claim it was.

KDKA went on the air on November 2, 1920, in time to report the results of the presidential election, but there were many stations transmitting programs to the general public many years prior to KDKA's inaugural broadcast, most notably the already mentioned KQW, which went on the air in 1909.

Westinghouse's claim was that KDKA was the first station to have a license to broadcast issued by a governmental regulatory agency (at that time, the Department of Commerce).  However, again, licenses had been issued by the DoC to radio stations long before KDKA's was issued.  The myth of "the first licensed station" was a product of Westinghouse's aggressive PR department, and thus in some circles the myth became fact, despite reams of evidence to the contrary.

As to KDKA's call sign, for a brief period of time in 1920 radio station call signs were assigned sequentially from a block of call signs reserved for maritime stations.  There were less than ten stations assigned call signs by this method and KDKA is the only one still on the air.
Logged
"A nation of sheep will beget a government of wolves." - Edward R. Murrow

SidS1045

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 867
  • Age: 68
  • Location: Stoneham MA
  • Last Login: June 16, 2019, 10:49:14 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #31 on: February 01, 2015, 12:09:54 PM »

WABC once stood for Atlantic Broadcasting Company back in the 1930-1940's in New York before CBS had to change 880am to WCBS to prevent confusion with 770 AM.

Er, not quite.

WABC/880, owned by CBS, changed its call sign to WCBS in 1946.  WJZ/770, owned by The Blue Network (divested by NBC in 1943) which became ABC, changed its call sign to WABC in 1953.  ABC deliberately waited for a while after its corporate name changed to make sure the public no longer associated WABC with the station on 880.
Logged
"A nation of sheep will beget a government of wolves." - Edward R. Murrow

empirestate

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 4117
  • Last Login: June 13, 2019, 09:41:23 AM
    • Empire State Roads
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #32 on: February 01, 2015, 12:39:32 PM »

WDKX in Rochester is named for Frederick Douglass, M. L. King, and Malcolm X. Must be a country & western station.

WXXI is Roman numerals for 21, the corresponding TV channel.

I always wondered where WMJQ came from. Remember WMJQ?
Logged

bing101

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 2630
  • Last Login: June 14, 2019, 11:45:53 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #33 on: February 01, 2015, 01:17:20 PM »

If KQW-AM now known as KCBS-AM 740 is 106 years old why did KDKA end up getting credit for First radio station in America. KCBS got that claim of First station in America from its previous owner Doc Herrod in 1909 and KQW was based in San Jose,CA. KQW did not move to San Francisco until World War II and CBS later took over KQW San Francisco and renamed it KCBS.
Logged

GaryV

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 881
  • Location: Southeast Michigan
  • Last Login: June 16, 2019, 04:35:28 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #34 on: February 01, 2015, 01:23:27 PM »

WKZO in Kalamazoo.

I wonder, when stations have names that are similar to their call letters, which came first?  I imagine quite a few stations that go by things like "WAAA, Aaaah" took advantage of how their call letters sounded.
Logged

Henry

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 4800
  • Age: 49
  • Location: Chicago, IL/Seattle, WA
  • Last Login: June 16, 2019, 11:29:50 PM
    • Henry Watson's Online Freeway
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #35 on: February 01, 2015, 02:11:57 PM »

More Windy City goodies:

WCGO-Chicago
WFLD-Field Broadcasting (original owner before sale to Fox)
WKSC-Kiss Chicago
WLIT-Lite FM
WLS-World's Largest Store
WNUA-Nu (New) Age (predecessor to longtime Smooth Jazz format)
WSCR-Score
WTMX-The Mix
Logged
Go Cubs Go! Go Cubs Go! Hey Chicago, what do you say? The Cubs are gonna win today!

roadman65

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 9153
  • Location: Orlando, fl
  • Last Login: June 15, 2019, 10:53:17 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #36 on: February 01, 2015, 02:22:58 PM »

WPOZ in Orlando, known as Z88 music safe for the little ears, is called that for the fact they like to call the very music that Bugo here hates, as being positive music for the whole family.
Logged
Every day is a winding road, you just got to get used to it.

Sheryl Crowe

KEVIN_224

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 1575
  • Age: 48
  • Location: Connecticut
  • Last Login: June 16, 2019, 09:13:16 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #37 on: February 01, 2015, 03:45:15 PM »

A little bit of southern Maine:

WCSH-TV (NBC) channel 6 Portland: Original studios were in the Congress Square Hotel.
WMTW-TV (ABC) channel 8 Poland Spring: Original transmitter site was on Mount Washington, NH.
WCBB-TV (PBS) channel 10 Augusta: PBS affiliate started up with a combined effort of Colby, Bates and Bowdoin Colleges.
WGME-TV (CBS) channel 13 Portland: Alluded to previous owners, Guy Gannett Broadcasting. Not to be confused with Gannett Broadcasting, Inc., the current owners of WCSH-TV channel 6.
WPFO-TV (FOX) channel 23 Waterville: "P"ortland "FO"x.
WPME-TV (MY) channel 35 Lewiston: "P"ortland, "ME" (postal abbreviation).
WPXT-TV (CW) channel 51 Portland: "P"ortland "F"ox "T"elevision (was FOX from network's launch until 2001).

WGAN-AM 560 Portland: Alludes to Guy Gannett Broadcasting. See channel 13 above (former sister station).
Logged

SidS1045

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 867
  • Age: 68
  • Location: Stoneham MA
  • Last Login: June 16, 2019, 10:49:14 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #38 on: February 01, 2015, 05:22:55 PM »

If KQW-AM now known as KCBS-AM 740 is 106 years old why did KDKA end up getting credit for First radio station in America.

As I stated previously, it was due to Westinghouse's PR department.  Their claim has been repeatedly discredited, although some continue to believe it.
Logged
"A nation of sheep will beget a government of wolves." - Edward R. Murrow

Stephane Dumas

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 1825
  • Last Login: June 16, 2019, 10:09:24 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #39 on: February 01, 2015, 06:31:42 PM »

The defunct CFCF AM station in Montreal was for "Canada's First, Canada's Finest". It got a spin-off with the tv station CFCF-12.

CHLT 630 AM (now known as CKOY-FM) in Sherbrooke is for the newspaper "La Tribune" who also owned briefly CHLT-TV.

CKAC in Montreal is for "Canadien-Kilocycle-Amérique-Canada".
Logged

jwolfer

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 2037
  • Age: 48
  • Location: Jacksonville, FL
  • Last Login: June 04, 2019, 01:41:20 AM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #40 on: February 01, 2015, 08:07:20 PM »

The defunct CFCF AM station in Montreal was for "Canada's First, Canada's Finest". It got a spin-off with the tv station CFCF-12.

CHLT 630 AM (now known as CKOY-FM) in Sherbrooke is for the newspaper "La Tribune" who also owned briefly CHLT-TV.

CKAC in Montreal is for "Canadien-Kilocycle-Amérique-Canada".
My friend grew up near Buffalo. Listening to alternative music on CFNY Which supposedly stood for  C--Fuck New York
Logged

jwolfer

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 2037
  • Age: 48
  • Location: Jacksonville, FL
  • Last Login: June 04, 2019, 01:41:20 AM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #41 on: February 01, 2015, 08:14:15 PM »

Jacksonville's Fox TV affiliate just changed to WFOX last year after being WAWS since signing on. I am surprised New York didn't get that.

When channel 47 in Jax first came on it was WXAO a religious station standing for "Christ  (written as X shorthand) the alpha and the omega " ( it makes me laugh when some church person gets all bent out of shape about X-mas. Dumbass X is short for Jesus Christ)

WTLV is for channel 12

WJAX is obvious.

We used to have WAIA a reference so The iconic SR A1A

And I used to like WIOI they said w101 for FM 100.7 which in radio dial days was 101 FM
« Last Edit: February 01, 2015, 08:21:22 PM by jwolfer »
Logged

leroys73

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 330
  • Age: 70
  • Location: Dallas Area
  • Last Login: January 07, 2019, 08:33:11 AM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #42 on: February 01, 2015, 09:07:20 PM »

Well WKY in Oklahoma City is west of the Mississippi starting with a W.  Back in the day, 60s & 70s, when I was young, WKY and KOMA also Oklahoma City were the stations with the music.  KOMA was extremely strong back then.  I picked it up in Yellowstone and Big Bend National Parks in a 1970 Impala with an "in the windshield" antenna.

WKY is Oldest in Oklahoma, 3rd oldest west of the Mississippi, second west of the Mississippi, to have W as the initial letter, 28th oldest in the nation.

WBAP is west of the Mississippi, one of a few.  It is a very strong station.

These are only two examples but there are several others because they were "grandfathered" in before the FCC moved the line to the Mississippi. 
Logged
'73 Vette, '72 Monte Carlo, ;11 Green with Envy Challenger R/T,Ram, RoyalStarVenture S,USA Honda VTX1300R ridden 49states &11provinces,Driven cars in50 states+DC&21countries,OverseasBrats;IronButt:MileEatersilver,SS1000Gold,SS3000,3xSS2000,18xSS1000, 3TX1000,6BB1500,NPT,LakeSuperiorCircleTour

bandit957

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 1594
  • A natural gas bunk!

  • Age: 45
  • Location: Bellevue, KY
  • Last Login: June 16, 2019, 11:33:56 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #43 on: February 01, 2015, 09:37:38 PM »

Radio is horrible anymore. I can't even stand to listen to it now.
Logged
The highway to not having your teeth fall out...

Number of remaining teeth: https://goo.gl/maps/dgsWdCme9s72

US71

  • Road Scholar , Master of Snark
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 8513
  • Sign Inspector

  • Age: 59
  • Location: On the road again
  • Last Login: June 12, 2019, 09:37:03 AM
    • The Road Less Taken
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #44 on: February 01, 2015, 10:04:38 PM »

KHOG-TV Fayetteville, AR in the 60's it was an AM radio station. Now it's Channel 29.

KUAF FM Fayetteville  University of Arkansas, Fayetteville

KFSA Radio Fort Smith, AR

KNWA-TV Northwest Arkansas was an FM station in the 60's and 70's,

KSMU FM -Missouri State University (formerly Southwest Missouri State University), Springfield, MO

KARN-FM Little Rock, AR  HQ of the Arkansas Radio Network (formerly KARK radio)

KEMV-TV Mountain View, AR part of AETN (Arkansas PBS)
« Last Edit: November 13, 2018, 07:12:26 PM by US71 »
Logged
a man hears what he wants to hear
And disregards the rest -- Simon & Garfunkel

SidS1045

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 867
  • Age: 68
  • Location: Stoneham MA
  • Last Login: June 16, 2019, 10:49:14 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #45 on: February 01, 2015, 10:49:14 PM »

These are only two examples but there are several others because they were "grandfathered" in before the FCC moved the line to the Mississippi. 

Logged
"A nation of sheep will beget a government of wolves." - Edward R. Murrow

SidS1045

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 867
  • Age: 68
  • Location: Stoneham MA
  • Last Login: June 16, 2019, 10:49:14 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #46 on: February 01, 2015, 10:55:10 PM »

This map shows all the current K/W anomalies on the AM band (excluding Louisiana and Minnesota, which are divided by the Mississippi River):


The key to the colors:
Purple: 1920-1921 anomaly--KDKA.
Blue: pre-January 1923 boundary shift--WBAP, WDAY, WEW, WHB, WJAG, WKY, WNAX, WOAI, WOC, WOI, WTAW.
Gray: ex-portable--WBBZ, WIBW, WMBH.
Dark Green: moved to other side of the Mississippi-- KSGM.
Red: requested call--KFNS, KWAM, WDBQ, WHO, WMT, WSUI, WUMY.
Light Green: government assigned call--KTGG.
Black: reason unknown--KFIZ, KQV, KYW.
Logged
"A nation of sheep will beget a government of wolves." - Edward R. Murrow

bandit957

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 1594
  • A natural gas bunk!

  • Age: 45
  • Location: Bellevue, KY
  • Last Login: June 16, 2019, 11:33:56 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #47 on: February 01, 2015, 11:14:43 PM »

I do know this: Back in the '80s, KWK-AM in St. Louis purchased an FM station that they wanted to call KWK-FM. But the city of license for the FM was Granite City IL, so they had to give it a 'W' call sign. So the FM became WWWK, not KWK.
Logged
The highway to not having your teeth fall out...

Number of remaining teeth: https://goo.gl/maps/dgsWdCme9s72

bing101

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 2630
  • Last Login: June 14, 2019, 11:45:53 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #48 on: February 01, 2015, 11:20:13 PM »

http://radioinsight.com/community/

For more in depth discussion in radio

Well KECA once stood for Earl C Anthony former Owner of 790 am Los Angeles.

Today Its known as KABC Los Angeles

KABC TV 7 is owned by Disney but KABC Radio is owned by Cumulus

KSAN San Francisco stands for San Francisco
KSJO stand for San Jose
KMET stands for MetroMedia.
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/KFOX-TV
KFOX in El Paso Texas but the station is not a Fox Owned station its a Fox Contract station.
The odd part is that KTTV Los Angeles never got the KFOX letters in 1986-1987 when Fox started.

KTWV Los Angeles is The Wave.
« Last Edit: February 01, 2015, 11:24:14 PM by bing101 »
Logged

bing101

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 2630
  • Last Login: June 14, 2019, 11:45:53 PM
Re: Radio Station Call Letters- Where did they come up with them
« Reply #49 on: February 01, 2015, 11:31:25 PM »

KNEW San Francisco based on previous owner Metromedia
KPFK Los Angeles based on Pacifica Radio Ownership
KPFT Pacifica Radio Texas.

KXPR Sacramento Excellence in Public radio, Owned by Capital Public Radio and Sacramento State University.

KOFY San Francisco Coffee.

WINS New York based on Initial Owner International News Service.
Logged

 


Opinions expressed here on belong solely to the poster and do not represent or reflect the opinions or beliefs of AARoads, its creators and/or associates.