KFTK

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For the military airport at Fort Knox, Kentucky assigned the ICAO code KFTK, see Godman Army Airfield.
KFTK
City of license Florissant, Missouri
Broadcast area Greater St. Louis
Branding FM News Talk 97.1
Slogan In Touch and Up to Date
Frequency 97.1 MHz FM (also on HD Radio) 97.1-2 FM "MyRedLounge"
First air date 1977
Format News/Talk
ERP 100,000 watts
HAAT 171 meters
Class C1
Facility ID 73890
Callsign meaning K FM TalK
Owner Emmis Communications
Webcast Listen Live
Website 971talk.com

KFTK is a commercial radio station located in Florissant, Missouri, United States, broadcasting to the Greater St. Louis area on 97.1 FM. KFTK airs news/talk local and syndicated programming leaning to the conservative side of talk and opinion. Owned by Emmis Communications, the station's studios are located in the Powerhouse building at St. Louis Union Stations, while the transmitter is located in O'Fallon.

It is affiliated with Fox News Radio and features Fox News personality Sean Hannity. Other syndicated shows that appear are Mark Levin, Michael Savage, Dave Ramsey, and Bill Cunningham.

Local talent includes former KMOV reporter Jamie Allman (mornings), Dana Loesch, and Dave Glover (afternoon drive), the lawyer-turned-comedy/current events talk show host whom the station developed its lineup around when it changed to a news format. Other local weekend talent include Dr. Randy Tobler, Dave Finkelstein (auto talk), Bob Stockdale (money talk), Max Foisey (movie show), and Rodney Boyd.

History[edit]

In the fall of 2000, Emmis Communications added to its St. Louis radio portfolio by purchasing properties from Sinclair Broadcasting, who wanted to focus on its television properties. 97.1 FM ran a classic rock format known as "97FM The Rock!" which had pulled listeners away from Emmis' rock station KSHE. Upon purchasing 97.1, Emmis changed formats to an FM talk station. Initially the station focused on a female audience, which included such syndicated personalities as Bob and Sheri, Clark Howard, and Dr. Laura, using the name "97.1 FM Talk." Failing to reach much of an audience, the station shifted towards more political talk in 2002, adding such talkers as Don Imus, Bill O'Reilly, and Sean Hannity. The station briefly changed its name to "97-1 the Link...Real Life Radio" but soon returned to the "FM Talk" moniker.

KFTK is the only talk station in St. Louis that carries more than one nationally syndicated radio show. The two main talk stations in St. Louis, KTRS and KMOX carry mostly local shows. KTRS carries Coast to Coast AM, while KMOX airs Rush Limbaugh.

Previous to the station's Classic Rock station, the frequency was home to a variety of call letters and formats throughout the '80s and '90s. The station originally signed on the air in the Mid 1970s, as KSCF – standing for St. Charles & Florissant, with a "Middle of the Road" Easy Listening format. One of the original owners was Harlan "Grant" Horton, a longtime St. Louis broadcaster at KSD, WRTH, KMOX, KXOK AM 630 and WEW. The sign on of 97.1 caused KADI-FM to move from their original frequency of 96.5 to 96.3 to accommodate the new radio station.

K-Lite 97.1/Breeze 97[edit]

In 1980, after the KCFM call letters were dropped by 93.7, they were picked up by 97.1, and the station had an Adult Contemporary format until 1985, when the calls would change once again to KLTH "K-Lite 97" with a Soft Adult Contemporary format. KLTH gradually segued into a format called "Breeze 97," which was "New Adult Contemporary," an early predecessor to the Smooth Jazz format. In 1989, the station was sold once again, and the new owners flipped the station to Top 40 "Hot 97" with the call letters KHTK. The Top 40 format died when former Top 40 station WKBQ was briefly under lease by the station's owner Saul Frischling of Pittsburgh, and both top 40 stations were merged at 106.5, taking personalities from both stations.

Mix 97.1 KXOK[edit]

Around 1992, the call letters of 97.1 were switched to KXOK-FM known as "Mix 97-1" with an Urban Adult Contemporary format with Urban Oldies from the former KXOK 630AM was moved to FM. Mix 97.1 would try to comptete with the Urban AC leader in Saint Louis, KMJM ("Magic 108"). The two stations simulcasted briefly before the AM was taken off the air completely, pending a sale to a religious broadcaster.

In 1999, Frischling sold Mix 97.1 to Sinclair Broadcasting, who owned ABC Affiliate KDNL TV-30. At that time, the Urban format was dropped, and the station switched formats to Classic Rock as "The Rock" while retaining the KXOK-FM call letters. The station enjoyed the most success seen on the frequency to that date as a competitor to Emmis Broadcasting's KSHE 95.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 38°46′44″N 90°43′44″W / 38.779°N 90.729°W / 38.779; -90.729