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|City of license||Florence, Kentucky|
|Broadcast area||Cincinnati, Ohio|
|Branding||Christian Talk 1160|
|Slogan||Cincinnati's Christian Voice!|
|First air date||1984|
|Power||5,000 watts day
990 watts night
|Former callsigns||WFKB (1984-1987)
|Owner||Christian Broadcasting System Ltd.|
At 1180 AM
WCVX originally signed on in 1984 as WFKB 1180 AM, a 1000 watt daytime-only station licensed to Florence, Kentucky. WFKB was required to sign off at sunset to protect WHAM in Rochester, New York which was — and is — the clear channel station on that frequency. WFKB was a full service station which served northern Kentucky, and offered news every hour along with Adult Contemporary, or MOR music.
WFKB changed to a country format by 1986, and was paired with WIOK-FM in Falmouth, Kentucky as an AM-FM combo. In 1987, WFKB was acquired by Amber Broadcasting. The format was changed to Adult Standards or Nostalgia, and the call letters were changed to WMLX to reflect a former station in the market that had done the same format.
In 1989, WMLX was acquired by Hoker Broadcasting, which also owned then-WOFX-FM at 94.9 MHz. The two stations were affiliated until 1992, when WOFX-FM was sold to Heritage Media. WMLX was then a stand-alone station, and was purchased in 1993 by KLM Communications, which was headed by Dr. Kenneth L. McDowell.
Move to 1160
In February 1993, WMLX was granted Special Temporary Authority by the FCC to move to 1160 AM and broadcast 24 hours per day at 1000 watts daytime power and 500 watts at night. Call letters were changed in March 1993 to WBND, to reflect the station's new identity as "The Blend." This format was an attempt to merge the very popular Nostalgia/Standards format with an Urban Adult Contemporary format, which had been KLM's original plan for the station.
An early attempt at a Saturday sports talk show was hosted by Cincinnati basketball legend Oscar Robertson. A Sunday jazz show was hosted by local musician Wilbert Longmire. By 1995, WBND had been sold to the owners of WNKR-FM in Dry Ridge, Kentucky and the call letters changed to WKYN to reflect an emphasis towards northern Kentucky news and sports.
The station's signal was eventually upgraded to 5000 watts daytime and 990 watts nighttime, with different directional patterns for day and night. From the station's new transmitter site near Union, Kentucky, WKYN was now directing more than 10,000 watts towards downtown Cincinnati during the day. At night, the power directed at Cincinnati was only 1629 watts.
The lower power, coupled with typical nighttime AM skywave interference, caused the post-sunset signal to be listenable in limited areas of the market, mainly northern Kentucky and the western side of Cincinnati. (WQRT still uses this transmitter site with the same signal parameters.)
New owner, new format
Despite the nighttime limitations, the station's new, more powerful signal caught the attention of Chancellor Media, which owned WUBE-AM & FM and WYGY-FM in Cincinnati. In 1995, WUBE-AM - at 1000 watts on 1230 AM - had begun running a sports-talk format known as "1230 The Score."
Programming consisted of "Imus in the Morning," The Fabulous Sports Babe, a local afternoon show, and network programming from One-On-One Sports in the evening and on weekends. Chancellor purchased WKYN in 1996 and moved "The Score" to the more powerful WKYN signal.
While the new "Score" was much more powerful during the day, WKYN's nighttime signal was lacking (as noted above) in areas north of the Ohio River and east of downtown Cincinnati where WUBE-AM had provided a strong signal.
The home of the Bengals
At the conclusion of the 1996 NFL season, WKYN stunned the local radio and sports communities by winning the rights to be the official home of the Cincinnati Bengals for three seasons. The games would also be simulcast on powerhouse sister station WUBE-FM, the city's dominant Country station.
On Cincinnati Reds opening day in 1997, the station changed call letters to WBOB and became known as "1160 BOB." The station eventually dropped syndicated programming during the day, and ran a live and local sports talk format from 6:00 AM to 7:00 PM each weekday. There were also various live weekend shows. During this time, WUBE and WBOB became a sports combo, simulcasting some programs to make up for individual signal deficiencies. The stronger 1160 AM was known as "BOB", while 1230 AM was known as "BOB 2", similar to the ESPN and ESPN2 cable networks.
In 1999, WBOB's parent company - by then known as AMFM, Inc. - merged with Clear Channel Communications. Because Clear Channel already owned the maximum number of stations allowed in the Cincinnati market, WBOB was spun off to Salem Communications, along with sister station WYGY-FM (now WFTK and owned by Cumulus Media). WUBE-AM (now WDBZ) was sold to Blue Chip Broadcasting, while WUBE-FM was sold to Infinity Broadcasting.
Bengals play-by-play then shifted to competing all-sports station "1360 Homer" WCKY and "92.5 The Fox" WOFX-FM, both of which were owned by Clear Channel. In addition, WLW would also carry the games once the Reds season ended, giving the network three flagship stations. Most of the WBOB hosts also made the transition to WCKY at this time, which is still the arrangement, even though WCKY now broadcasts at 1530 AM. As of September 2008, the FM simulcast for Bengals games was moved to WEBN-FM 102.7. Due to the privatization of Clear Channel, the company is required by the FCC to divest WOFX-FM.
The Salem years
In August 2000, WBOB was officially acquired by Salem Communications. Salem kept WBOB's sports talk format, but changed the emphasis from local sports to an ESPN Radio format. There was a local show in the afternoon featuring WBOB Program Director Doug Kidd and reporter Gregg Waddell. This show would eventually be cancelled in favor of ESPN programming.
A local midday program was introduced featuring WLWT-TV sportscaster Ken Broo and Waddell, but that show would also be short-lived. Another local program featured Cincinnati Business Courier columnist Andy Hemmer talking about the business of sports during his show, "The SportsTicker with Andy Hemmer."
In late 2003, Salem dropped ESPN from WBOB and flipped it to a news/talk format. It was programmed like most other Salem-owned talk stations, using the Salem Radio Network of talent such as Dennis Prager, Michael Medved, Hugh Hewitt, Bill Bennett and Mike Gallagher. In addition, other syndicated hosts aired on WBOB including Laura Ingraham and Bill O'Reilly.
In February 2006, Salem sold WBOB to Christian Broadcasting System and exited the market altogether in exchange for a station in Detroit, Michigan. At that time, Alchemy Broadcasting became the lease holder of WBOB and changed the format to Oldies and the call letters to WDJO.
History of the WDJO call sign
1160 and 1230 connections
The WMLX call letters and nostalgia format were originally on 1230 AM between 1981 and 1985. Those call letters and format would later appear in 1987 on 1180 AM, the predecessor to 1160 AM. The "Score" sports talk format was launched on 1230 AM in 1995, then moved to 1160 in 1996.
The WDJO call letters and Oldies format originally appeared on 1230 AM between 1985 and 1990. Those call letters and format are currently on 1160 AM. Alchemy Broadcasting operates the station which is leased to them by its current owner Michigan-based Christian Broadcasting Systems Ltd.
WDJO moves to AM 1480
On Monday May 18, 2009. WDJO announced a move to 1480 AM, the former WCIN which previously aired a smooth jazz format. As part of the move,both 1160 and 1480 began simulcasting the transition asking listeners by way of on-air promotional announcements by Charlie Van Dyke and the station's website to switch to 1480.
On Saturday May 23, 2009, WDJO commenced its new branding "Oldies 1480."
Until May 28, messages interrupted oldies music on the 1160 frequency, directing people to the 1480 frequency.
Throughout May 28, a 30-minute infomercial for a dietary supplement was run over and over.
On May 29, Christian programming and music was heard. Content is coming from Alchemy.
On May 26, 2009, Christian Broadcasting System, LTD filed a request for the WQRT call letters for their Florence, KY station on 1160 AM.
On June 3, 2009, The Cincinnati Enquirer's John Kiesewetter reported that conservative talk featuring Laura Ingraham, Neil Boortz, and Dr. Laura Schlesinger would debut on 1160 AM on June 15, 2009. Financial talker Dave Ramsey will also join the lineup. Coincidentally, 1160 AM was the original Cincinnati home of Laura Ingraham and Dave Ramsey when it was News/Talk WBOB in 2003.
WQRT Real Talk 1160
On June 15, 2009 the station's call letters changed to WQRT and debuted a conservative talk format. The station was briefly known as "Q1160" and even registered a web address at www.q1160.com. After several hours on the air, the station's management realized that any use of the letter Q in radio was servicemarked by WKRQ-FM, which has been known as "Q102" for over 30 years. By the afternoon on June 15, the station had edited out the "Q1160" reference in all imaging and had registered the new web domain www.realtalk1160.com. The station's primary image line was "Cincinnati's Real Talk 1160." The station's lineup was primarily from the 24-hour satellite feed of Talk Radio Network, as part of TRN's initiative to distribute its programming in bulk. It was also the home of former WLW host Andy Furman, who was on in the morning and in late afternoon.
As of December 13, 2010, WQRT cleared Dennis Miller, which replaced Dr. Laura Schlessinger, with the latter's move to Sirius XM Satellite Radio in 2011. WQRT is one of several stations that dropped the show early, before it ended terrestrial radio distribution.
On Wednesday January 2, 2013, WQRT let go its local on-air staff, after Dean Miuccio finished his "Cincinnality" morning show. Syndicated programming replaced the local content, and the station went dark after the Notre Dame football game on Monday January 7th. On February 1st, the station obtained the Christian radio format and WCVX call letters from 1050 AM, which is now known as Urban Gospel WGRI.
- Official website
- Query the FCC's AM station database for WCVX
- Radio-Locator Information on WCVX
- Query Nielsen Audio's AM station database for WCVX
- Reference Cincinnati Enquirer Article