|City of license||San Francisco, California|
|Broadcast area||San Francisco Bay Area|
|Slogan||Better Music for a Better Day|
|Frequency||96.5 MHz (also on HD Radio)|
|First air date||July 1947 (as KRON-FM)|
Christmas Hits (Nov. - Dec.)
|Callsign meaning||refers to San Francisco landmark Coit Tower|
|Former callsigns||KRON-FM (1947–1975)
(Entercom License, LLC)
|Sister stations||KGMZ, KUFX, KRBQ, KBLX|
KOIT (96.5 MHz FM) is an AC (Adult Contemporary) radio station in the San Francisco Bay Area of the United States. Its slogan is "Better Music for a Better Workday". The station's programming was also simulcast for many years on 1260 AM. KSFB, a station carrying Roman Catholic programming, now operates on the latter frequency.
KOIT is owned by Entercom Communications which also operates San Francisco radio stations KUFX, KRBQ, KBLX, and KGMZ. The station has studios in the city's SoMa district, and transmits from Sutro Tower in San Francisco, with a power output of 24,000 watts effective radiated power. The signal can be received throughout the Bay Area with relative ease. There is also a booster station in Martinez, California called KOIT-3 that improves the coverage in the Diablo Valley area.
96.5 KOIT airs an Adult Contemporary format featuring artists like Kelly Clarkson, Bruno Mars, Katy Perry, Journey and Colbie Caillat. Since 2003, KOIT has been playing all holiday music beginning the week before Thanksgiving through Christmas Day, December 25. KOIT is known as "The Bay Area's Official Christmas Music Station." This highly-popular programming significantly increases the station's audience during the holiday season. The station confirmed that they would play holiday songs for the 2014 season.
The station signed on the air July 1, 1947, under the callsign KRON-FM. It was owned by the deYoung family, and was co-owned with KRON-TV and the San Francisco Chronicle newspaper. The station had a limited broadcast schedule (airing only during the evening hours). The station shut down on December 31, 1954; when it returned to the air as non-commercial station in 1957, KRON-FM began carrying an evening-only program schedule devoted to classical music. During the 1960s, KRON-FM devoted a full hour (7 to 8 p.m.) to a complete Broadway show album. Since the station had no commercials, no underwriters, and no on-air fund drives, the Chronicle operated the station as a public service. Staff announcers delivered short newscasts on the station's evening broadcasts. In December 1970, KRON-FM began simulcasting a Spanish-language newscast from KRON-TV by Terry Lowry.
In 1975, the deYoung's Chronicle Publishing Company, which was the then-parent of KRON-TV and the Chronicle, sold KRON-FM to Bonneville International, who changed the station's callsign to KOIT. On December 13, 1983, Bonneville International purchased KYA (1260 AM) from KING Broadcasting, changing the call letters to KOIT with 96.5 going to KOIT-FM per FCC convention. The KYA call letters remained in service at KYA-FM (93.3, now KRZZ) and went into retirement in 1993. In 1983, KOIT was playing a lot of instrumental music, sort of like the "elevator music" that was being played at KBAY 100.3 FM in San Jose. They did have a few vocal soft rock songs here and there, but the bulk of the music was instrumentals. Then in late 1987, KOIT changed their music format, and started playing music from the 1980s, 1970s, and 1960s. In the first few years (1987 to 1995) after KOIT changed their format, a lot of oldies songs were played, mixed in with soft rock from the 1970s and 1980s. It was actually similar to the old KLOK[disambiguation needed] AM and FM before they got turned into a Spanish-language station. Thus, songs such as I Only Have Eyes For You by the Flamingos, By The Time I Get To Phoenix by Glen Campbell, Venus by Frankie Avalon, What The World Needs Now Is Love by Jackie DeShannon, The Air That I Breathe by the Hollies, and Smoke Gets In Your Eyes by the Platters were being played by KOIT, even as late as 1994 and 1995. A TV commercial that KOIT had back in the early 1990s was a clip of a song from every decade: "Just My Imagination" by The Temptations (1960s); "Your Song" by Elton John (1970s); and "That's What Friends Are For" by Dionne Warwick (1980s). Sometime around 1995, KOIT started leaning more towards adult contemporary / soft rock from the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s, and totally dropping the 1950s and 1960s songs. It continued that way for a long time, until 2001 or 2002, when they started playing more hits from the 1990s and 2000s. However, even as recently as 2009, KOIT was playing approximately one song from every decade (70s, 80s, 90s/2000s) in 3 songs. They would play a 2000s or 1990s song, and then a 1980s song, and then a 1970s song, and then they would start that cycle over again. In 2009 or 2010, KOIT started playing a lot of more recent hits from the late 2000s and early 2010s, and they continue to play that sort of music to the present day now.
On January 18, 2007, Bonneville announced a station swap with Entercom Communications, with KOIT and Bonneville's other San Francisco area FM radio holdings going to Entercom in return for three of Entercom's stations in Seattle, Washington and Entercom's entire radio cluster in Cincinnati, Ohio. This trade marked Entercom's re-entry into the country's fourth largest radio market. Entercom officially took over KOIT-FM via a local marketing agreement on February 26, 2007, and Entercom and Bonneville officially closed on the deal on March 14, 2008, with KOIT and the other San Francisco FM stations formerly owned by Bonneville becoming owned by Entercom outright. KOIT's AM sister station was concurrently sold to Immaculate Heart Radio, and became KSFB in December 2007; however, KOIT-FM did not drop the "-FM" suffix until September 2010.
"Fresh FM" branding
According to Radio & Records, KOIT acquired the "Fresh FM" branding for the San Francisco Bay Area on February 6, 2007. KOIT integrated the branding alongside their "Lite Rock, Less Talk" slogan.
- "San Francisco Chronicle Launches Its FM Outlet" (PDF). Broadcasting. July 7, 1947. Retrieved 2 October 2014.
- Bay Area Radio Museum | History | Audio | Archives
- Broadcast Legends - Terry Lowry
- Official Website
- KOIT-FM On-Air Playlist
- Query the FCC's FM station database for KOIT
- Radio-Locator information on KOIT
- Query Nielsen Audio's FM station database for KOIT