|City of license||Pleasantville, New Jersey|
|Broadcast area||Atlantic City, New Jersey|
|Branding||99-3 The Buzz|
|Slogan||"Blazin' 18 Jamz In A Row!"
"South Jersey's Hits and Hip-Hop Station!"
|First air date||1974|
|Audience share||9.2 (Fall 2010, http://www.pressofatlanticcity.com/life/article_7947cab5-12ed-5646-a26a-2a9df12d61f3.html)|
|Former callsigns||WGRF (1974-1984)
|Owner||Equity Communications, L.P.|
|Sister stations||WAIV, WAYV, WCMC, WEZW, WMID, WGBZ, WTTH, WZXL|
WZBZ is a radio station also known as "99.3 The Buzz" in Atlantic City, New Jersey. The station plays a Rhythmic Contemporary format. Its studios are located at the Bayport One complex in West Atlantic City, and its transmitter is located north of the Casino district in Atlantic City.
WZBZ's initial sign on was in 1974 as WGRF, an adult contemporary station and sister station to 1340 AM, WMID. WGRF was branded as Stereo 99. Together, WGRF and WMID were referred to as "The Dynamic Duo"; WMID was "The Jersey Giant" and WGRF was "The Jersey Mermaid." In 1983, WGRF became WLQE, a soft Adult Contemporary station branded as Lucky 99. In 1988, the Lucky 99 moniker was dropped and the call letters were switched to the FM version of its sister's call letters, becoming WMID-FM. The station continued with an Adult Contemporary format for another year and a half before switching to classic rock branded as "MID Rocks." In 1995, sister station 102.3 WSJL began simulcastin WMID-FM. This format would last seven years, until it became a smooth jazz station with the call letters WSAX in 1997. WSJL continued simulcasting 99.3 as 102.3 WJSX.
Meanwhile, 105.5 WBNJ in Cape May County had flipped in February 1999 to a Dance/Rhythmic A/C station known as WZBZ, "The Buzz 105.5." Don Brooks, owner and general manager, hired Ted Noah in January 1999 to launch the radio station in its new dance format. His first official full-time on air position and programming job at 19 years old. Ted programmed and directed The Buzz musically and was also the afternoon announcer for the first 3 years. The station operated in Atlantic City right in front of The Tropicana Casino. Ironically its signal reached the actual broadcast facilities. The broadcast tower served the extreme southern end of the Atlantic City/Cape May market on 105.5 FM "B 105.5 The Buzz, The Beat Of South Jersey". It mainly covered Cape May, Southern and Western Atlantic and Eastern Cumberland Counties its first year.
In January 2000 the station then picked up 99.3 WSAX as a second frequency. This brought the station to cover the entire Atlantic City/Cape May market along with the fringes of the Monmouth-Ocean market. The WZBZ calls were moved from 105.5 to 99.3, replacing the WSAX calls; 105.5 became WGBZ. 99.3 was now the primary Buzz frequency, with 105.5 as the simulcast. Later that year the station added radio personality Shane Coyle as its main night DJ following from Ted Noah in the afternoons. Mike Ray "Big Daddy" was hired later on as well. A syndicated morning show "Bob and Sherri" was added to the line up. This left over nights and mid-days automated, as well as some weekend mornings.
In less than a years time Shane Coyle's position was made automated, having only Ted Noah live in the afternoons. Another Fill in and weekend DJ was added to the line up: Ms. Kelly Rich or known on the air as "Kelly D-Vine". Kelly was the main mid-day weekend DJ and Ted Noah's main fill in. TJ Thompson briefly hosted weekend shifts on the Buzz, usually Saturday afternoon/evening and Sunday afternoon.
In late February 2002 Ted Noah resigned passing Programming responsibilities to Rob Garcia. Rob also took over the afternoon time slot. With the resignation of Ted Noah Kelly Rich also resigned and removed herself completely from the broadcasting business. Within 2 months time of Rob acquiring the programming and on air position, WZBZ, along with all its sister stations WGBZ, WMID and WMID-FM (the former WSJL/WJSX), were purchased by the competition. The new owner, Gary Fisher/Equity Broadcasting then changed the Dance format to Hip-Hop and RnB. Rob Garcia and Big Daddy Mike Ray remained on air. In 2007, the WGBZ calls on simulcast 105.5 were changed to WSNQ.
On June 5, 2008, WZBZ flipped from rhythmic "99.3 The Buzz" to mainstream Top 40 Kiss FM brand as "99-3 Kiss FM." Days before the official format change, they silently started adding top 40 songs to their playlist.
To avoid competition with sister station WAYV 95.1 and to boost ratings back up, a week before thanksgiving WZBZ started to remove the top 40 songs from their playlist and re-added Rhythmic songs from all dayparts except overnights which still had some top 40. Later, the station's playlist returned to Rhythmic Top 40 songs and on December 5, R&R moved WZBZ back to the rhythmic airplay panel.
In the fall of 2010, 99.3 Kiss FM was the highest rated station in the Atlantic City/Cape May, with Arbitron Ratings at 9.2.
On March 8, 2013 at 12:00pm, the station re-branded to its former name "99.3 The Buzz."
- Keisha Nicole (3pm-7pm)
- Weekend Top 30 w/Ramiro (7am-10am)
- Party Jam w/DJ Grooves (8pm-12am)
- Official website
- Query the FCC's FM station database for WZBZ
- Radio-Locator information on WZBZ
- Query Nielsen Audio's FM station database for WZBZ