KABQ (AM)

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KABQ
KABQ 1350.jpg
City Albuquerque, New Mexico
Broadcast area Albuquerque metropolitan area
Branding AM 1350 KABQ
Slogan Albuquerque's Progressive Talk
Frequency 1350 kHz (also on HD Radio)
104.7 HD2
First air date 1947
Format Progressive talk
Power 5,000 watts (day)
500 watts (night)
Class B
Facility ID 65394
Callsign meaning Albuquerque
Former callsigns KVER
Affiliations Westwood One Network
Premiere Networks
Westwood One News
Owner iHeartMedia, Inc.
(Clear Channel Broadcasting Licenses, Inc.)
Sister stations KABQ-FM, KBQI, KOLZ, KPEK, KTEG, KZRR, K251AU, K265CA
Webcast Listen Live
Website abqtalk.com

KABQ (1350 kHz, "Progressive Talk 1350") is a commercial AM radio station in Albuquerque, New Mexico. It is owned by iHeartMedia, Inc., and features a progressive talk radio format. It carries nationally syndicated shows from Stephanie Miller, Thom Hartmann, Norman Goldman and Clark Howard. On weekends, syndicated shows include Kim Komando, Bill Handel on the Law, Ring of Fire Radio and repeats of weekday shows. World and national news is supplied by Westwood One News.

KABQ's studios and offices are on NE Jefferson Street in Albuquerque.[1] The transmitter is located off NW Montoya Street, also in Albuequerque.[2] KABQ is powered at 5,000 watts by day using a non-directional antenna. But to avoid interfering with other stations on AM 1350, it reduces power at night to 500 watts and uses a directional antenna, with a three-tower array. KABQ programming is also heard on the HD-2 subchannel of 104.7 KABQ-FM.

History[edit]

In 1947, the station signed on as KVER at 1490 kHz.[3] It was owned by Intermountain Broadcasting and was powered at only 250 watts. KVER was a network affiliate of the Mutual Broadcasting System.

The station moved to 1340 kHz in 1949. An advertisement in the 1950 edition of the Broadcasting Yearbook said 1340 KVER is "The choice on the dial for Albuquerque." It listed KVER's programming as drama (including programs from MGM and Mutual), sports and live events, as well as Spanish-language programming, reminding readers that over 50% of Albuquerque residents speak Spanish.[4]

In 1956, the station was acquired by Duke Broadcasting.[5] It became a full-time Spanish-language radio station.

In 1959, the station was acquired by Sadia Broadcasting and moved to 1350 kHz, as KABQ.[6] The move allowed it to increase its power to its current 5,000 watts by day and 500 watts at night. The station continued to serve the Mexican-American community. In 1972, the station was acquired by the Albuquerque Corporation.[7]

In March 2000, Clear Channel Communications, a forerunner of today's iHeartMedia, acquired the radio station.[8] Clear Channel switched the format to sports radio, using the Fox Sports Radio Network.

In 2004, KABQ became a full-time affiliate of Air America Radio, carrying that network's line up of liberal hosts, including Al Franken, Rachel Maddow, Chuck D, Randi Rhodes, Marc Maron and Janeane Garofalo.

In 2007, Clear Channel Communications placed this station, along with 104.7 KABQ-FM, into the Aloha Station Trust to comply with Federal Communications Commission limitations. Clear Channel was over the FCC limit for the number of radio stations it could own in one radio market. However, AM 1350 KABQ has returned into the iHeartMedia portfolio.

In 2010, the Air America Network discontinued its broadcasts after the parent company declared bankruptcy. The station continued its progressive talk format using programs from other networks, including several hosts who originally were with Air America. In May 2014 both Ed Schultz and Randi Rhodes, who had the longest running programs on the station, had ended their shows. Thom Hartmann, who had been heard in PM drive time, took over Schultz's midday time slot while Leslie Marshall moved to early afternoons. Norman Goldman has replaced Rhodes in late afternoons.

The station has generated decent ratings for a 5 kW AM station over the years and is usually ranked the second most listened to commercial talk radio station in the market behind 770 KKOB, owned by Cumulus Media.

References[edit]

TV Comes to New Mexico by George Morrison

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 35°06′02″N 106°40′34″W / 35.10056°N 106.67611°W / 35.10056; -106.67611