|City of license||Birmingham, Alabama|
|Broadcast area||Birmingham-Hoover-Cullman Metropolitan Area|
|Branding||99.5 Nash Icon|
|First air date||1977 (as WVOK-FM (K-99))|
|Callsign meaning||W Z Rock and Roll (previous format)|
|Former callsigns||WVOK-FM (1977-1978)
|Sister stations||WAPI, WJOX, WJOX-FM, WJQX, WUHT|
WZRR is an FM radio station licensed to Birmingham in the U.S. state of Alabama. The station is owned by Cumulus Media. Other stations in the market that Cumulus owns include WJOX-FM (94.5), WJQX (100.5), WUHT-FM (107.7), WJOX-AM (690) and WAPI-AM (1070). The station has studios in Homewood and its transmitter is west of Red Mountain.
The station broadcasting at 99.5 FM in Birmingham first signed on in 1977 as WVOK-FM. "K-99", as the station was called, was Birmingham's first full-time album rock station; previously, WJLN-FM (now WZZK) and WERC-FM (now WBPT) dabbled in that format on a part-time basis. K-99 played an eclectic mix of rock songs from artists of the 1960s and 1970s, and was a ratings success. When its AM sister station WVOK (now WJOX) was sold in 1978, the call letters of the FM station were changed to WRKK, but the K-99 handle was retained.
In 1981, WAPI-FM (now WJOX-FM) changed its format from easy listening to album rock, thus giving Birmingham two stations in the same format. This continued until the next year, when the new owners of WRKK changed the station's format to country music. The on-air name of the station was modified to "K-99 Country". Competing against market leader WZZK, the new WRKK was not successful. In an attempt to change K-99's fortunes, in 1984, the call letters were changed to WQUS, and the on-air name of the station was changed to "U.S. 99". Neither the new name nor the hiring of the popular Birmingham morning drive team of Tommy Charles and John Ed Willoughby improved the fortunes of the station.
In 1985, U.S. 99 dropped country music and changed its call letters to WLTB, "Lite 99", programming a soft adult contemporary format. At 6:00 p.m. on Christmas Day, 1988, the 99.5 frequency became the new home of classic rock in Birmingham, with the new call letters of WZRR and the new on-air name "Rock 99". The very first song that was played was "All Right Now" by Free. The station stayed true to that format for just over 23 years. In 1995, the on-air name of the station was changed to "Classic Rock 99.5". From 2002 until the next year, it was known as "99.5 the Buzzard".
In 2003, the name was changed again, this time to "Rock 99.5", using basically the same logo as it did in the late 1980s. In 2010, the name was once again shortened to "Rock 99" and the slogan heard most often on the station was "Alabama's Best Rock".
In April 2010, the station added the locally-originated Mojo Morning Show. The rest of the on-air line-up included Lori Ray, Blazeman and Jason Mack. WZRR was one of Birmingham's two classic rock stations. Despite competition, it maintained a rock format for over twenty years. Citadel merged with Cumulus on September 16, 2011.
On New Year's Day 2012, at midnight, Cumulus pink-slipped Lori Ray and Jason Mack and flipped WZRR's long running rock format to Top 40, branded as "99.5 The Vibe." The final song played on "Rock 99" was "Girls, Girls, Girls" by Mötley Crüe, while the first song played as "The Vibe" was "Party Rock Anthem" by LMFAO. Cumulus already had two similarly formatted and branded stations in addition to WZRR: in Kansas City on KCHZ ("95.7 The Vibe"), and in Toledo, Ohio on W264AK ("100.7 The Vibe"), which has since changed format. The "i" letter in the station's branding is similar to those of Cumulus' "i"-branded stations such as KLIF-FM ("i93") in Dallas/Fort Worth, TX.
On August 15, 2014, at midnight, after playing Bang Bang by Jessie J, 99.5 dropped its CHR format and began stunting with the songs Sweet Home Alabama by Lynyrd Skynyrd and All Summer Long by Kid Rock on a loop, while running liners advising listeners to tune in at 3pm. At that time, 99.5 flipped to traditional country, being one of the first stations to adopt Cumulus's new "Nash Icon" branding as 99.5 Nash Icon. The first song on 99.5 Nash Icon was Gone Country by Alan Jackson.
- Tribute page to K-99 FM, the original station on 99.5 in Birmingham
- Query the FCC's FM station database for WZRR
- Radio-Locator information on WZRR
- Query Nielsen Audio's FM station database for WZRR