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KOY ElPatron93.7-1230 logo.png
CityPhoenix, Arizona
Broadcast areaPhoenix metropolitan area
Frequency1230 kHz (HD Radio)
Branding93.7 El Patrón
FormatRegional Mexican
OwneriHeartMedia, Inc.
(iHM Licenses, LLC)
First air date
1950 (as KRIZ)
Former call signs
KRIZ (1950–1978)
KFLR (1978–1990)
KAMJ (1990–1991)
KISP (1991–1992)
KYOT (1992–1994)
KISO (1994–1999)
Technical information
Facility ID63914
Power1,000 watts
Transmitter coordinates
33°26′10″N 112°6′34″W / 33.43611°N 112.10944°W / 33.43611; -112.10944Coordinates: 33°26′10″N 112°6′34″W / 33.43611°N 112.10944°W / 33.43611; -112.10944
Translator(s)93.7 K229DB (Phoenix)
WebcastListen Live

KOY (1230 kHz) is a commercial AM radio station in Phoenix, Arizona, and is owned and operated by iHeartMedia, Inc. The station broadcasts a Regional Mexican radio format and is branded as "93.7 El Patrón". The studios are located in Phoenix near Sky Harbor International Airport.

KOY is powered at 1,000 watts, using a non-directional antenna. The transmitter is located southwest of Downtown Phoenix near the intersection of Interstate 17 and Buckeye Road.[1] Programming is also heard on 250 watt FM translator K229DB at 93.7 MHz.


KOY's previous logo

KOY was the first radio station in the state of Arizona, signing on in 1921 as Amateur Radio station 6BBH on 360 meters (833 kHz). Earl Nielsen was the holder of the 6BBH call sign.[2] At that time, broadcasting by ham radio operators was largely unregulated.

In 1922, the station received its commercial broadcast license, under the Nielsen Radio & Sporting Goods Company business name, with the call sign KFCB. While the KFCB call letters were sequentially assigned, the station adopted the slogan "Kind Friends Come Back" to match the call letters. A Phoenix teenager and radio enthusiast named Barry Goldwater was one of the new station's first employees. Goldwater would go on to become a U.S. Senator.

When the AM broadcast band was opened in 1923 by the Department of Commerce, KFCB moved around the dial, as did many stations at the time. It was on 1260, 1230, 1310, and 1390 kilocycles before moving to its long-time home of 550 kHz in 1940. KFCB became KOY on February 8, 1929.

From 1932 to 1949, KOY was the CBS Radio Network affiliate for the Phoenix area. It carried the line up of CBS dramas, comedies, news, sports, soap operas, game shows and big band broadcasts during the "Golden Age of Radio." It became the Mutual Broadcasting System affiliate for Phoenix in 1949, after KOOL 960 AM took the CBS affiliation.

In 1936, Earl Nielsen sold KOY to Prairie Farmer, dba Salt River Valley Broadcasting Company. He remained Station Manager for a couple of years. Prairie Farmer was also the owner of WLS 890 AM in Chicago at the time.

In March 1937, KOY moved its transmitter from its long-time home on N. Central Ave. to 12th St. and Camelback Rd., though the station never maintained studios there. That location is now the home of a car dealership. The 550 transmitter was relocated to a site near 36th St. and Southern Ave. in south Phoenix, in 1968.[3]

For a brief period KOY entered the television business, sharing the operations of Channel 10 with KOOL (now KSAZ-TV). Because early television involved large expenses and very small income, KOY management ended the television endeavor and decided to concentrate on radio.

KOY also had a sister station, 95.5 KOY-FM (now KYOT). KOY-FM was known in the 1980s and early 1990s as Y-95, a contemporary hit radio (Top-40) station and was owned by Edens Broadcasting, headed by Gary Edens.

As network radio moved to TV in the 1950s and 60s, KOY switched to a full service middle of the road format of popular music, news, talk and sports. Then as adult contemporary music listening switched to FM, KOY began playing adult standards. KOY had good ratings but because it played older music, its audience was also considered older than the demographic that most advertisers sought. Station owner AM/FM (now iHeartMedia) purchased the call letters, studio, and sports radio programming of KGME 1360, and moved it to 550 in April 1999. The KOY call letters and adult standards format was shifted to AM 1230, which had a smaller coverage area than AM 550.

As of August 19, 2013, KOY's format flipped to business and money programs, relying on syndicated shows from Bloomberg Radio and paid brokered programming.

Logo as "KFYI 2"

On August 5, 2014, KOY flipped from Business Talk to Conservative Talk. It branded itself as an extension of 550 KFYI, calling itself KFYI 2. Selected Bloomberg Radio programming was carried during early morning and weekend hours.[4] Other hours, it ran syndicated conservative talk hosts from co-owned Premiere Networks and other suppliers.

On September 14, 2017, KOY changed its format from conservative talk to Spanish-language Regional Mexican music, branded as "93.7 El Patrón." Programming began to be simulcast on FM translator K229DB 93.7 MHz.[5]

1230 kHz in Phoenix[edit]

1230 kHz, and its pre-NARBA predecessor 1200 kHz, has been occupied in Phoenix since 1940.

From sign-on in 1940 to March 1941, KPHO occupied 1200 kHz and was carried the dramas, comedies, news and sports of the NBC Blue Network, which later became ABC. Prior to KPHO's sign-on, both NBC Red and NBC Blue network programs aired on 620 KTAR. On March 28, 1941, KPHO and all other stations on 1200 moved to 1230, when the North American Regional Broadcasting Agreement (NARBA) took effect. On September 21, 1949,[6] KPHO moved to 910 kHz. 910 was later the home of KJJJ and KFYI, and is now KGME XTRA Sports 910.

In 1950, AM 1230 returned to the air under a new license as KRIZ, which became a successful Top 40 station beginning in the late 1950s. KRIZ was discontinued in 1978, replaced by Christian radio KFLR. KFLR moved to FM 90.3 in the 1980s. After that, 1230 was KAMJ, KISP, KYOT, and KISO prior to becoming KOY in 1999.[7] It had various formats: adult contemporary (simulcast on 101.5), talk radio, sports radio, urban adult contemporary and classic country.

While the station did carry the KYOT call sign, it never simulcast KYOT-FM. The call sign was parked on 1230 until Sundance finished acquiring what was then KOY-FM. The station did not change back to KISP after KYOT-FM launched despite its "Kiss" branding; when management decided to change it back, the KISP calls were not available so it settled for KISO. KAMJ was the original Phoenix home of Rush Limbaugh, before he moved to KFYI.

The 1200/1230 transmitter has been located at 2345 W. Buckeye Rd. in Phoenix since sign-on in 1940. Howard Loeb, KRIZ's original owner, bought the facilities from KPHO (which had built new towers upon moving to 910).[8] The KRIZ studios were also located there. In 1984, the KRIZ call letters were assigned to a radio station in Renton, Washington.


  1. ^ Radio-Locator.com/KOY
  2. ^ For KOY's history, see link [1] Archived 2008-09-28 at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ Federal Communications Commission. FCC History Card: KOY (550) (PDF) https://licensing.fcc.gov/cgi-bin/prod/cdbs/forms/prod/getimportletter_exh.cgi?import_letter_id=43860&.pdf. Retrieved 22 June 2017. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  4. ^ "KFYI2 Launches In Phoenix - RadioInsight". 5 August 2014.
  5. ^ El Patrón Arrives in Phoenix Radioinsight - September 14, 2017
  6. ^ "KPHO Ups Power Effective Today". Arizona Republic. September 21, 1949. Retrieved May 3, 2019.
  7. ^ "KOY Call Sign History". United States Federal Communications Commission, audio division.
  8. ^ "Sixth Phoenix Radio Station Gets FCC Okay". Arizona Republic. March 9, 1950. p. 28. Retrieved May 3, 2019.

External links[edit]