|City||Los Angeles, California|
|Broadcast area||Greater Los Angeles|
Feel Good Los Angeles (General)|
The Best Mix of the 80s, 90s and Today (Secondary)
Your Official Holiday Music Station (Nov.-Dec.)
|Frequency||103.5 MHz (also on HD Radio)|
94.7 K234CR (China Lake, CA)|
103.9 K280DT (Thousand Oaks, CA)
|Repeater(s)||103.5 KOST-FM1 (Santa Clarita, CA)|
|First air date||1957|
Christmas music (Nov.-Dec.)
|HAAT||949 meters (3,114 ft)|
|Callsign meaning||West/Pacific KOaST|
(AMFM Broadcasting Licenses, LLC)
|Sister stations||KBIG, KEIB, KFI, KIIS-FM, KLAC, KRRL, KYSR|
Listen Live (aac)
KOST (103.5 MHz) is a commercial FM radio station licensed to Los Angeles, California. KOST is owned by iHeartMedia and airs a Soft AC-leaning Mainstream AC format. It is one of three AC radio stations in the Los Angeles/Orange County area, along with co-owned hot adult contemporary station KBIG and Entercom-owned smooth AC/urban AC KTWV.
KOST, along with iHeart's other L.A. stations, has studios and offices on West Olive Avenue in Burbank. The transmitter is atop Mount Wilson alongside most L.A. based television and FM radio stations. Those FM stations, along with KOST, are considered "superpower" grandfathered Class B FM radio stations, since their effective radiated power greatly exceeds the level the U.S. Federal Communications Commission sets for Class B FM stations at the height on Mount Wilson.
Noted radio programmer Gordon McLendon bought KGLA in the 1960s, changing the call letters in November 1966 to KADS. McLendon, with permission from the Federal Communications Commission, experimented with an all-advertisement format, hence the call sign choice. One of its features was that listeners could purchase their own commercials on KADS, not unlike classified advertising in a newspaper. FM radios were still not widely owned in the 1960s and the experimental format was not successful.
In March 1968, the station adopted the KOST-FM call sign, along with a substantially all-music format (i.e., no news bulletins), which was unusual if not unique given then-prevailing license obligations to broadcast at least some news. The station aired a mostly-instrumental beautiful music sound. In 1973, Cox Communications purchased KOST to pair with its newly-bought KFI (640 AM). KOST, with its call sign pronounced "coast" in a stage whisper, continued its easy listening sound through the 1970s. This popular format was also heard on rivals KJOI (98.7 FM) and KBIG (104.3).
In the early 1980s, KOST gradually added more vocals, and on November 15, 1982, the station switched to a soft adult contemporary format. Former Sacramento radio personality Bryan Simmons was KOST's first host when the station signed on with its new format.
On February 3, 1986, Mark Wallengren and Kim Amidon made their debut as KOST's new morning hosts. The Mark & Kim Morning Show was one of the longest running shows on Los Angeles radio, airing for more than 20 years until ending in 2007.
AMFM/Clear Channel/iHeartMedia era
In September 1999, Cox Communications swapped KOST and sister station KFI with AMFM, Inc. for 14 stations in several East Coast markets. AMFM was then purchased by Clear Channel Communications in 2000. (In 2014, the company's name was changed to iHeartMedia, Inc.) Over the years, the station has garnered solid ratings. Christmas music is aired from early November to Xmas Day since 2001.
KOST experienced little turnover among the air staff until the 2000s. On November 29, 2007, morning show co-host Kim Amidon departed the station. This was followed by KOST's original midday host Mike Sakellarides (who moved on to KTWV) and longtime traffic reporter Mike Nolan (who was eventually rehired at KOST). In October 2008, former KYXY San Diego radio personality Kristin Cruz joined Mark Wallengren as co-host of KOST's morning show. Cruz left the station in May 2014. In 2009, the midday shift was voice-tracked by former WLTW New York City personality Karen Carson.
In February 2011, Carson resigned to join CBS Radio-owned WWFS in New York. Both Christine Martindale and Ted Ziegenbusch filled in on the midday show until August 2011, when former KBIG midday host Kari Steele took over. Steele now hosts KOST's public affairs program The Sunday Journal broadcasting every Sunday following Animal Radio, providing interviews with community organizations. Also in August, longtime KOST afternoon personality Bryan Simmons left KOST. Simmons had been on the station since 1982, except between 2002 and 2004 when he hosted the Boogie Nights show at KBIG.
In December 2012, Christine Martindale was among the radio personalities laid off from Clear Channel stations. On January 17, 2013, it was announced that Martindale would join KKGO (105.1); her first day at Go Country 105 was February 4.
Ellen K, a former co-host on the KIIS-FM morning show and On Air with Ryan Seacrest, took over the KOST morning show on October 19, 2015. Mark Wallengren, who had been part of the KOST morning show since 1986, switched to afternoons, replacing Bruce Scott who joined the station since 2012.
KOST broadcasts two digital subchannels:
- KOST-HD1 is a digital version of KOST's analog signal.
- KOST-HD2 is an HD simulcast of the talk radio format heard on co-owned KFI (640 AM).
From November 2013 until February 2015, KOST's HD3 signal relayed the syndicated Christian contemporary hit radio station Air1. In early February, the station's HD3 signal went dark and the Air1 feed moved to a subchannel on co-owned KHHT (92.3 FM).
Translators and booster
|City of license||Facility
|K234CR||94.7||China Lake, Kern County, California||28582||9||0 m (0 ft)||D||FCC|
|KOST-FM1 (booster)||103.5||Santa Clarita, California||198146||500||0 m (0 ft)||D||(booster) FCC|
|K280DT||103.9||Thousand Oaks, California||14241||5||215 m (705 ft)||D||FCC|
- "HD Radio Guide for Los Angeles".
- "Directory of AM and FM Radio Stations in the U.S." (PDF). Broadcasting Yearbook. Broadcasting Publications Inc. 1968. p. B-17. Retrieved June 6, 2018.
- "An FMer finds a niche with classified advertising" (PDF). Broadcasting. Broadcasting Publications Inc. August 14, 1967. p. 46. Retrieved June 6, 2018.
- Garay, Ronald (1992). Gordon McLendon: The Maverick of Radio. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press. pp. 138–144. ISBN 0-313-26676-X. ISSN 0732-4456. LCCN 91-35968. Retrieved June 6, 2018.
- "Wallengren Takes KOST Mornings" (PDF). Radio and Records. February 7, 1986. p. 6. Retrieved June 6, 2018.
- "AMFM Secures So. Cal. Seven With Cox Deal" (PDF). Radio and Records. September 10, 1999. p. 6. Retrieved June 6, 2018.
- "CC's Restructuring Sleigh Ride Off The Cliff" (PDF). Radio and Records. December 7, 2007. p. 12. Retrieved June 6, 2018.
- "Kristin Cruz Exits KOST". AllAccess.com. All Access Music Group. May 13, 2014. Retrieved June 6, 2018.
- "Kari Steele Joins KOST For Middays, Bryan Simmons Exits". AllAccess.com. All Access Music Group. August 29, 2011. Retrieved June 6, 2018.
- Horgan, Richard (January 17, 2013). "Laid Off KOST-FM Personality Christine Martindale Goes Country". Adweek. Retrieved June 11, 2017.
- Venta, Lance (October 7, 2015). "Ellen K Moves From KIIS To KOST". RadioInsight. Retrieved June 11, 2017.
- "2007 Industry Achievement Awards". Radio and Records. September 28, 2008.