|City of license||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania|
|Broadcast area||Greater Philadelphia (Delaware Valley)|
|Slogan||"Philly's Hit Music Station"
"All The Hits"
|Frequency||102.1 MHz (also on HD Radio)
102.1 HD-2 for Evolution (dance music)
|First air date||1948 (as WFIL-FM)|
|Format||Top 40 (CHR)|
|Audience share||4.1, #8 (May '09, Philadelphia Inquirer)|
|Callsign meaning||IOQ looks like 102
Q resembles 2 in Cursive Writing
|Former callsigns||WFIL-FM (1948-1971)|
|Sister stations||WDAS, WDAS-FM, WISX, WRFF, WUSL|
WIOQ (102.1 FM), known as "Q102", is a Top 40 (CHR) radio station which is broadcast in the Philadelphia area. The station appeals to a generally young demographic. WIOQ is owned by iHeartMedia, Inc.. Its transmitter is located in the Roxborough section of Philadelphia, and its studios are located in Bala Cynwyd. It is also known as the first ever playing of Fall Out Boy's This Ain't a Scene, It's an Arms Race.
The 102.1 MHz frequency in Philadelphia was originally occupied by WFIL-FM. In 1948 it was used to transmit some experimental facsimile broadcasts, presumably related to The Philadelphia Inquirer, which was under common ownership with the radio station. On July 10th, 1968, WFIL-FM switched away from background classical music to an early version of an adult contemporary format. Known as Popular 102, the station featured softer pop music of the day with a mix of currents, oldies and instrumentals. Each hour featured a track from a featured album of the week, and voices on the station were pre-recorded announcements and news from the voices at sister station WFIL-AM, including Jay Cook, J.J.Jeffrey, Tommy Tyler and news by the likes of Allen Stone and Glenn Barton.
The station promoted itself as playing "The Nicest Music for the Nicest People." This format continued through May of 1971 when the Triangle Publications-owned station was spun off to Richer Communications.
Album rock era
With the sale of WFIL AM-FM-TV by Triangle Publications, Inc. in 1971 to Capital Cities Broadcasting (later Capital Cities Communications), WFIL-FM (102.1) was spun off to Richer Communications in May of 1971. The call letters were changed to WIOQ representing the script version of IOQ in relation to the frequency of 102. The familiar jingle of Popular 102 was also changed to W102. Initially, the familiar PAMS jingles were updated to reflect the new call letters and all continued as before. By 1972, the station's imaging changed to Stereo Island which trended even softer than the station had been, but added live DJs while the music rotated on an IGM automation unit.
Air staff at this time included Jeff Dean, Lee Meredith, Art Andrews, Alan Drew (Frio), Jere Sullivan, and Jay Mathieu, with Dave Klahr continuing as program director. After a year or so in this format, the station brought back the Popular 102 moniker and started playing a little harder mix of pop tunes. When Dave Klahr left, Roy Laurence was hired as program director and the station's mix, which by then had become Top 40 based with a much more adult presentation than its former AM sister, gradually became more rock-oriented, and by about 1975 WIOQ had a progressive rock format. Around this time the station began using an extract from the album Intergalactic Trot by Stardrive as the music bed for hourly station IDs;
it would remain WIOQ's audio signature for over a decade. The station also started using the moniker "Q102" during that time. The station had trouble competing with established FM rock leader WMMR and aggressive AOR upstart WYSP, and after a few years the owner (by then listed as Que Broadcasting, Inc.) declared bankruptcy. WIOQ emerged from the bankruptcy under the ownership of The Outlet Company, a retailing and broadcasting company based in Providence, Rhode Island.
Under Outlet, WIOQ evolved into an eclectic music format often described as "adult rock". The station played a blend of softer songs heard on rock music stations, some deeper album cuts, a few top 40 crossover hits, and a bit of uptempo jazz. Leading air personalities on WIOQ in this era included John Harvey ("Harvey in the Morning"), Helen Leicht who hosted a show called "Breakfast With The Beatles" on Sunday mornings, David Dye, Ed Sciaky and Michael Tozzi. (Leicht and Dye are now the midday DJs for the adult alternative public station WXPN. The former continues her "Leight Lunch" program at noon, and Dye is the producer and host of the nationally-distributed World Cafe.) After a proposed sale of Outlet's broadcast properties to Coca-Cola's Columbia Pictures subsidiary around 1982 fell through, the station group was acquired by Wesray Capital Corporation, a corporation partially owned by former Treasury Secretary William E. Simon.
Solid Gold 102
After years of low to moderate ratings, on November 9, 1987, the adult rock format was dropped in favor of an oldies format, playing the hits of 1955-1973 and positioning themselves as "Solid Gold 102". On the same day CBS-owned WCAU-FM dropped CHR for Oldies as well, becoming WOGL.
WOGL leaned toward pre-1964 oldies slightly more than WIOQ. WOGL also played somewhat more Philadelphia-based artists than WIOQ. As an oldies station, Solid Gold 102 was in 2nd place to WOGL. WOGL also had a deeper playlist than WIOQ.
Q102 goes CHR
Late in 1988, WIOQ was sold to EZ Communications. On January 18, 1989, the station dropped Oldies and switched to a Dance/Urban/Top 40 (or "Churban") hybrid format. The first song under the new format was "Let's Go Crazy" by Prince and The Revolution. They kept the WIOQ call letters, but became known as "Pirate Radio", although they had no association with the rock-based CHR format of that name at then-KQLZ/Los Angeles, then owned by Westwood One. It soon adopted, for the second time, the handle "Q102."
WIOQ was still owned by EZ Communications until the early 1990s. The station consistently leaned dance and urban, but played varying amounts of rock and AC crossover songs, changing according to chart trends and competitive conditions. In 1991, the station was sold to American Radio Systems. In 1997, CBS bought American Radio Systems, with WIOQ being spun off to Chancellor Media. By early 1998, the station was Mainstream CHR with a slight dance and rhythmic lean. After the Chancellor acquisition, WIOQ became co-owned with 104.5 FM (now WRFF), WDAS, WDAS-FM, WUSL, and WJJZ (now WISX). There were a few rumors that Q102 would adopt a Jammin' Oldies format in 1999, along with reports that WDAS-FM would possibly become a Jammin' Oldies station, but neither happened, as WXXM (now WBEN-FM) flipped to the format in May of that year.
As a result of a large merger in 2001, WIOQ and the other stations in its cluster became properties of Clear Channel Communications. Q102 remains a successful mainstream Top 40 radio station.
On Friday nights, Q102 provided live on-air mixes, and was the only station to bring the freestyle format to the air waves in Philadelphia, which was very popular with the Latino and Italian communities.
The morning drive show was hosted by Chris Booker, with Angi Taylor, Diego, Blaire, and Team, until Booker was fired on May 23, 2008, when the station stated it was switching to a format that focused more on music.
On May 22, 2012, the station held the first Springle Ball concert.
- Elvis Duran and the Q102 Morning Show (6am-10am)
- On Air with Ryan Seacrest (10am-2pm)
- Jared (2pm-4pm)
- Rat & Puff (4pm-8pm)
- Raphael (8pm-12am)
- Mike Miller (12am-4am)
- Elvis Duran and the Morning Show (5am-9am)
- Raphael (9am-2pm)
- Rat & Puff (2pm-7pm)
- Saturday Night Online (7pm-12am)
- Mike Miller (12am-4am)
- American Top 40 with Ryan Seacrest (8am-12pm)
- Nik The Web Chick (12pm-5pm)
- Dawson McAllister (10pm-2am)
- The Freak Show was an afternoon/evening broadcast with Tic Tac, Mikey and Big Bob which catered to single women in the Philadelphia market between 2002 and 2004. The show has since moved to Pittsburgh on 96.1 Kiss FM, where they have similar "gigs" like "hot girl check in". Philadelphia listeners can still tune into the show via WKST's live streaming, however, the broadcast now happens during the morning drive. (Source: http://www.961kiss.com/pages/morningfreakshow.html)
- Chio in the Morning used to be on Q102 from summer 1999 up until late 2005. Chio's last show on Q102 was on Friday, December 16, 2005.
- Logan hosted the afternoon drive show from 1998 until 2004, at which point he was replaced by Kasper. He can now be heard on sister station Mix 106.1.
- Chris Marino hosted nights along with sidekick Rich The Freak on Q102 from July 1998 until July 2001 and received the Philadelphia A.I.R. Award for Best Weekday Evening show in 2000. Chris is currently Director Of Operations for Clear Channel's ten station Hudson Valley New York cluster as well as afternoon host at 96.1 KISS-FM/WPKF.
- Stick On The Radio hosted nights at Q102 from 2001–2002 and received the Philadelphia A.I.R. Award for Best Weekday Evening show in 2001. Stick has since had stints at Z100 New York, Cleveland's 96-5 KISS FM and currently does afternoon drive at WNOU Indianapolis.
- Kasper was the afternoon drive host at Q102 from September 2004 - September 2005 and now can be heard in Cleveland on WAKS, where he is APD/MD afternoon drive host and where he previously worked at before coming to Philadelphia.
- B-Dub was the afternoon host from September 2005 - August 2006. After leaving Q102, he was heard as a swing talent on competitor Wired 96.5 until May 2008, when he left the business briefly to sell Real Estate. Currently, B-Dub is the Assistant Program Director/Music Director and Afternoon Personality at KUPL-FM (98.7 The Bull) in Portland, OR.
- Eddie and JoBo, hosted morning drive between fall 1994 and summer 1995, now host mornings for the 2nd time at WBBM-FM Chicago. The duo hosted mornings at WBBM from 1988–1994, worked at Q102 for a year after being fired from WBBM for what officials described as "Gross Misconduct" and were re-hired by WBBM in 1996 where they were on every morning from 5 - 10am until 2008 when their contracts ended. Currently on Weekday mornings 5:30-10:00 on 104.3 K-Hits in Chicago.
- Club 102 Live at "Egypt at the Waterfront" with DJ Chuck and Joe Mama Saturday Night from 10pm-2am 1997-2002
- Afterhours with Joe Finnest 2am-5am Friday/Saturday morning Saturday/Sunday Morning 1997-2001
- House of Q Sunday night from 10pm-2am 199?-1997
- The Booker Show. Weekday mornings from 6-10am. 2006-2008
- Joey Brooks-Weekdays 2pm-6pm. 2006-2009. Currently at CHUM-FM in Toronto.
- Nocturnal USA After Hours 2am-4am. 2007-2009. Playing House & Dance Music Mixed by: Rocco & DJ Punzo, with Guest DJ's every week.
- Mike Adam (formerly Prolifik) hosted nights at Q102 from December 2012 to August 2014. Currently, Mike can be heard on New York's 92.3 AMP Radio.
From 1990 to 1992, DJ Mike Wills mixed "Freestyle and House music" on Q102's Saturday night Mix Show "CLUB 102" from 10pm-2am alongside Joe Mama.
- The official WIOQ (Q102) website
- Query the FCC's FM station database for WIOQ
- Radio-Locator information on WIOQ
- Query Nielsen Audio's FM station database for WIOQ
Elvis Duran in Philly Website
The Official Elvis Duran Website