KALX

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For the airport in Alexander City, Alabama, assigned ICAO code KALX, see Thomas C. Russell Field.
KALX
KALX (FM) logo.png
City of license Berkeley, California
Broadcast area San Francisco Bay Area
Frequency 90.7 MHz
Format College radio
ERP 500 watts
HAAT 238 meters
Class A
Facility ID 68999
Transmitter coordinates 37°52′40″N 122°14′44″W / 37.87778°N 122.24556°W / 37.87778; -122.24556Coordinates: 37°52′40″N 122°14′44″W / 37.87778°N 122.24556°W / 37.87778; -122.24556
Callsign meaning University of CALifornia [sic]
Owner University of California
Webcast Listen Live
Website KALX Online

KALX (90.7 FM) is an FM radio station that broadcasts from the University of California, Berkeley in Berkeley, California. KALX, a community- and student-run radio station licensed to the University of California, Berkeley, broadcasts in stereo with 500 watts of power. The station employs three full-time paid staff members, but is largely run by its nearly 300 volunteers, including Berkeley students and other members of the local community.

History[edit]

The station originally began broadcasting in 1962, as a carrier current station. By 1966, KALX (then known as Radio KAL, the call letters being derived from Berkeley's nickname "Cal") had moved from Berkeley's dormitories to Dwinelle Hall on campus, and Berkeley administrators began investigating the possibility of applying for a broadcast frequency for the station. KALX received its broadcast license and made its first FM broadcast, with 10 watts of power, in 1967. The studio in the basement of Dwinelle was modest, a small chamber sequestered off from a sizable library of albums.

In the 1970s, KALX was taken off the air for a short period by the faculty oversight Radio Policy Board after the station manager and friends had abused their use of university automobiles for private use and run up large bills for long distance phone calls to their contacts in Los Angeles and elsewhere. After an investigation, the station was put back on the air with new management.

In 1981, the station began a successful fundraising drive to boost its power level to the present-day 500 watts, a level that was reached in 1982.[1]

KALX became the official radio station for the Oakland Athletics just days before the season opener in April 1978. Larry Baer, a junior political science major who was the station's sports director and business manager, negotiated the agreement with team owner Charlie Finley. The situation was made possible because of the Athletics' subpar on-field performance and attendance and the uncertainty surrounding Finley's threats to move the ballclub to Denver.[1] Baer, who would later serve as a San Francisco Giants executive beginning in December 1992, was the play-by-play announcer.[2] Sophomore mass communications major Bob Kozberg and station producer/engineer Steve Blum also worked on the broadcasts.

The arrangement lasted only sixteen games. One month into the season, Finley decided to keep the Athletics in Oakland and awarded the broadcast rights to KNEW.[1][3] Nonetheless, the setup made the A's a laughingstock in the Bay Area. At the time, KALX only operated at 10 watts, rendering it practically unlistenable more than 10 miles from Oakland Coliseum. This led one fan to joke about the A's radio network stretching all the way to Hawaii by asking, "Honolulu? How about here?[4]

Format[edit]

KALX offers a diverse range of public affairs programming. KALX offers many kinds of Public Service Announcements throughout its daily broadcast.

Notable Alumni[edit]

KALX has provided a training ground for numerous individuals who have had careers in television and radio. These include Lisa Stark of ABC News,[5] Sarah Wallace, Andrew Reimer, Kristen Sze, Bob Sarlatte,[6] and Robert "Doc" Pelzel.

References[edit]

External links[edit]