KSON (FM)

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KSON
KSON 103.7KSON logo.png
CitySan Diego, California
Broadcast areaGreater San Diego
Branding103.7 KSON
SloganSan Diego's #1 New Country
Frequency103.7 MHz (also on HD Radio)
First air dateFebruary 1965 (1965-02) (as KSDO-FM)
FormatFM/HD1: Country
HD2: Legendary country "Nashville Legends"
Language(s)English
ERP26,500 watts
HAAT210 meters (690 ft)
ClassB
Facility ID59816
Transmitter coordinates32°50′20″N 117°14′59″W / 32.8389°N 117.2498°W / 32.8389; -117.2498Coordinates: 32°50′20″N 117°14′59″W / 32.8389°N 117.2498°W / 32.8389; -117.2498
Callsign meaningSan DiegO's #1 New Country (station slogan)
Former callsignsKSDO-FM (1965–1971)
KOZN-FM (1971–1979)
KJQY (1979–1995)
KMKX (1995–1996)
KPLN (1996–2005)
KSCF (2005–2012)
KEGY (2012–2017)
OwnerEntercom
(Entercom License, LLC)
Sister stationsKBZT, KWFN, KXSN, KYXY
WebcastListen Live
Listen Live (HD2)
Websitekson.com
KSON Legendary Country (HD2)

KSON (103.7 FM, "103.7 KSON") is a commercial radio station licensed to San Diego, California. Owned by Entercom, the station broadcasts a country music format.

The station's current call letters and programming originate from a sister station now known as KWFN. Following Entercom's merger with CBS Radio, the new sister stations swapped signals to improve KSON's reach following the divestment of its former simulcast partner on 92.1 FM. Prior to its current format, KSON had aired beautiful music, top 40, various adult contemporary formats, and classic rock formats, as well as CBS Radio's ultimately unsuccessful hot talk format Free FM.

KSON broadcasts in the HD Radio format; its second subchannel features a legendary country format branded as Nashville Legends.

History[edit]

The station originally signed on in February 1965 as KSDO-FM, and aired country music. It was co-owned with KSDO AM. In 1971, KSDO-FM became KOZN-FM, playing a beautiful music format. On May 20, 1979, the call letters were changed to KJQY and the station was known as "K-Joy". The station evolved into an adult contemporary format in the late 1980s as "Sunny 103.7", then on February 16, 1995, it became "Rock Mix 103.7" KMKX, playing classic rock music.[1]

On July 5, 1996, the call letters changed to KPLN and the station was then known as "The Planet", continuing with a classic rock format.

CBS Ownership[edit]

Free FM[edit]

On October 25, 2005, the station changed formats from classic rock to an FM talk format with the brand "Free FM", and their call letters changed on October 28 from KPLN to KSCF. In December 2005, Howard Stern left the terrestrial airwaves and moved to Sirius Satellite Radio. At the beginning, Adam Carolla was their morning show host. He started January 3, 2006, replacing Stern.

On March 1, 2006, The Phil Hendrie Show was replaced by the Dick and Skibba Show, a local show formerly from 97.1 Free FM. The show aired in the 7pm-10pm time slot, then the only live and local talk show in San Diego in the evening. As a result, this pushed Phil Hendrie to a later 10pm-1am time slot. Dick and Skibba were fired on February 14, 2007, according to program director Jim Daniels, the show was too cerebral for San Diego.

On March 5, 2007, the Generation Y University show replaced the Dick and Skibba show. The show was hosted by three 23-year-old men who were all Mt. Carmel High School alumni who grew up in Rancho Peñasquitos. The show had previously aired on Sunday afternoons from 5pm-7pm. The show was cancelled on April 25, 2007 and replaced by Generic Radio. The show, hosted by Howie and Pags, was an irreverent look at the stories of the day, including observational humor, interviews and live in-studio musical performances by many local acts.

At first, CBS Radio had high hopes for KSCF with extensive marketing aimed at attracting the adult male demos, but ever since they switched formats from KPLN to Free FM, the station's ratings started to drop. In fall 2005, (when 103.7 became Free FM), ratings were 2.2, mainly due to Howard Stern being the morning show host. In the beginning of 2006, 103.7's ratings dropped in half to a rating of 1.1, due to a much less popular Adam Carolla morning show. The ratings would later slip in Summer 2006 to a rating of 1.0, and remained at 1.0 in the Fall 2006. [1]

In the end, the attempt to make Free FM a success in San Diego had proven to be too difficult and like other Free FM sister stations in New York City (WFNY) and San Francisco (KIFR), which returned to active rock and classic hits respectively, KSCF decided to switch formats in June 2007. To add to the demise of the Free FM family of stations, Its sister station in Phoenix (KZON) flipped to Rhythmic Contemporary at the same exact time as KSCF's format switch.

Sophie @ 103.7[edit]

On June 22, 2007, at 3 p.m. (PDT), KSCF flipped to Oldies as "K-Surf 103.7." The first song played was "Surfin' U.S.A." by The Beach Boys. They were supposed to be the market's first FM Oldies outlet since 2005, when XHOCL had the format prior to its flip to Regional Mexican. The last song played in the short-lived oldies format was "Bobby's Girl" by Marcie Blane. Following "Bobby's Girl" at 5PM (PDT), the Oldies format turned out to be a stunt as the station revealed its true format, a Modern AC as Sophie @ 103.7, adapted slightly from sister station KLLC in San Francisco, which is known as Alice @ 97.3. Its first song under this format was Jack Johnson's "Upside Down", followed by Fall Out Boy's "Thnks fr th Mmrs."

Energy 103.7[edit]

Logo as "Energy 103.7"

On March 29, 2012, CBS Radio announced that at 5 p.m. that day, it would flip KSCF to a CHR format with a heavy emphasis on upbeat Rhythmic, Dance and Pop hits targeting Teens and Adults 18–34 years old, as "Energy 103.7". In a statement made to radio industry website All Access, SVP/Market Manager Bob Bolinger noted that "Today's charts are dominated by energetic and upbeat Top 40 hits and the fans of this popular music are among the most engaged and digitally focused listeners. Using a powerful combination of over the air and online will produce a superior product and great results for brands that support the station." On April 2nd, KSCF changed its call letters to KEGY.[2][3][4]

On September 4, 2012, radio show host AJ Machado announced via AJ in the Morning's Facebook page that he would be joining KEGY in morning drive. AJ and his longtime producer, Hula, have been without a radio show home since leaving Star 94.1 in mid-July of the same year.

Format swap and Entercom merger[edit]

KSON moves to 103.7[edit]

On February 2, 2017, CBS Radio announced its intent to sell KEGY and KYXY to Entercom (which owns KBZT, KXSN and KSON), as part of a merger.[5] Prior to the completion of the transaction, both KEGY and KSON announced that they would be moving to different signals; the two stations ultimately swapped. Immediately after the deal closed on the 16th at 9:00pm (which would be midnight on the 17th at Entercom's headquarters), the new owner flipped the station to country and KSON moved to 103.7. 97.3 then began stunting with a loop advising listeners of the swap, while KEGY's Energy programming was temporarily moved online-only over the weekend before re-launching there the following Monday.[6] The callsigns were swapped on November 24, completing the move.

HD Programming[edit]

KSON broadcasts using an HD Radio transmitter, the HD1 channel is the digitized standard signal as required by law, current other channels are as follows:

  • HD2: Nashville Legends

Previous HD channels[edit]

  • HD2: Until the sale to Entercom, a simulcast of KROQ-FM in Pasadena
  • HD3: Until the sale to Entercom, House of Sophie, a dance hits format, later became Entercom Radio alternative music after the format change and sale. HD3 channel is off air as of November 17, 2018

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.americanradiohistory.com/Archive-RandR/1990s/1995/RR-1995-02-24.pdf
  2. ^ "Sophie 103.7/San Diego Gets Top 40 'Energy'" from All Access (March 29, 2012)
  3. ^ San Diego to Receive "Energy" Boost- RadioInsight
  4. ^ http://formatchange.com/sophie-103-7-hits-energy/#.T3U08uxYuOA
  5. ^ CBS Radio to Merge with Entercom
  6. ^ "KSON San Diego Moves To 103.7; Energy To 97.3 On Monday". RadioInsight. 2017-11-17. Retrieved 2019-03-12.

External links[edit]