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|City||Golden Valley, Minnesota|
|Broadcast area||Minneapolis-St. Paul|
|Branding||Wellness Radio 1570|
|First air date||October 27, 1961 (as KUXL)|
|Power||3,800 watts (day)
230 watts (night)
|Callsign meaning||Taken from sister station and former Radio Disney owned-affiliate KYCR (Kids DIZney)|
|Former callsigns||KUXL (1961-1988)
|Owner||Salem Media Group
(Common Ground Broadcasting, Inc.)
|Sister stations||KKMS, KYCR, WWTC|
The station signed on the air on October 27, 1961 as KUXL and has a long history of being a religion-oriented radio station. In the 1960s and 1970s, KUXL played gospel and R&B music, prior to becoming full-time religious. During this period and for many years after, the station was restricted to daytime operation. Its studios and offices were originally located at 4820 Olson Highway in Golden Valley and later on Duluth Street. The transmitter and antenna were first co-located with KQRS (AM) on Highway 100 and later on the station's own tower a block away from the Duluth Street studios, next to Highway 100.
In the mid-1960s, the station was operated (owned) by Marvin Kosofsky (he was in Shreveport, Louisiana) and hired Ralph Hull (a.k.a. Paul Anthony, eventually becoming Preacher Paul Anthony "preachin' the blues", R. Hull, interview, July 22, 2017. Kosofsky hired Bob Smith (a.k.a. Wolfman Jack), who relocated from Del Rio, Texas, to run the station with a mostly R&B format. Also at KUXL at this time were Art Hoehn (a.k.a. Fat Daddy Washington) and former KDWB personality Ralph Hull (a.k.a. Paul Anthony/KDWD; Preacher Paul Anthony at KUXL and at XERB, "The Nazz" I plagerized it from Lord Richard Buckley, Chicago, entertainer for gangster-types and had several albums who was an idol of Bob Dylans as well. He tried to get the young kids to get interested in classics such as Shakespeare, and 'Naz' as in Christ walking across the water...although Ralph Hull admits to using the name from Buckley due to his appreciation for his wisdom). It was this trio of broadcasters who took control of "border blaster" station XERB 1090, in [Rancho Del Mar, approx. 15 miles south of Tijuana, Mexico [Baja California]], in 1965 ['we did KUXL in Minneapolis and went there in 1966' Art Hoehn was in San Diego and we sent tapes to him and transported them to the transmitter). They operated the "Big X" from Minneapolis initially, then relocated to Southern California in 1966.
KUXL sponsored numerous concerts by such artists as Ike and Tina Turner, the Four Tops, BB King, Solomon Burke, the Temptations, Jimmy Reed, Jr. Walker, the Impressions and Fats Domino. Added July 23, 2017, interview with Ralph Hull: "When I put on shows, Preacher Paul (of KUXL) presents...some of these artists, the station didn't pay for them because I promoted them. I borrowed money from the bank and did everything, including the marketing and promotion even putting up the posters and booking the auditoriums and big ballrooms (The Marigold in Minneapolis).
KUXL was a ratings success in the early 1970s. Some of the on-the-air talent from that era included Maury Bernstein, a noted musicologist/folklorist who later hosted for National Public Radio. Bernstein was the major authority on Scandinavian music in the U.S. Bob Allard was famed Twin Cities talk show host and television (KMSP) newscaster. Allard was one of the best-known voices in Twin Cities broadcasting history. Allard was known for portraying the character "Cactus Jim" on both radio and television in Iowa in the 1950s. Chris Robbins, also known as John Ryan, also worked for WTCN-TV. Brian Tolzmann was the youngest major market news director in the country at the time. He later hosted a nationally syndicated radio show, and worked with former KUXL manager Wolfman Jack on several national concert shows. Steve Blitz and talk show hosts Joe Barbeau and Jim King were also part of the staff.
Added July 22, 2017 10:30 p.m. PDST, Sooke, British Columbia, Canada by Lorraine Pawlivsky-Love. Live interview with  "KUXL had been a jazz station, so they heard about me so I brought my own music to the station that I had been playing, that I was previously fired for. First time I came in was mid-December 1964 and Marvin Kosofsky was the owner who hired me. He had me audition for 2 1/2 hours doing the show for him. I could see that he was really appreciating what I was doing. I could see he had tears in his eyes. In the end, he says youre my disc jockey, so at the end of the year the station mananger will be coming up and his name is Bob Smith "Wolfman Jack" on XERF (most powerful at 250,000 watts although we only used about 80,000 watts in the evening and 1000 during the day!). At KUXL I became the DJ (across the Rio Grande River) Vacuna now known as Ciudad. That's where the transmitter was located. I was the DJ for the daylight station and Smith was the manager. Later in the summertime when the station stayed on, I hired additional staff of two young black men, Ron "the Rajah" and Billy G, the Prime Minister of R n'B! There was another guy who was from Minneapolis called Gary, a teenaged blind kid. He had more inclination and intrigue about the radio business then most sight DJs, but Smith couldn't get his head around a blind working at the station.
We would argue sometimes, Smith and me, about he felt it was too strange. He wasn't that enlightened. We hired some black kids. I was ready to move on and I started working Saturdays remote in a bar while having a good time drinking and played the records and commercials in a two by four area in the bar. I would play songs like Otis Redding (my number 2 man behind Ray Charles) and the 'womens' would come down to the bar and give me big hugs. The folks would come in and buy me so many run and Cokes that I couldn't read the commercials, which may have lead me to alibiing my lines. It was the beginning of my relationship with the audience. The censors didn't like this too much but the audience sure did. I would go to the censorship department and there were 2 guys there that I would confer with on the script but the timing didn't always work out. It was terrible working at ABC for this reason.
When I went to KABC FM (am/fm/tv in Los Angeles) after being hired by both the ..... I would start talking on the 'bridge' and I was real encumbered by the current guy who couldn't read the 'grooved' between the record. They finally sent a woman who could read along the lines for the commercials. They realized I wasn't reading left to right, and because I wasn't happy with censors...I started 'f**king' with them because I didn't like censors.
We had pre-programming from New York, Whiskey A-Go-Go etc. and because I was so slick with my takes, they often didn't catch my slips of the odd profanities. I was tripled censored after a few slips into the commercials. They couldn't fire because the sales department and the programming department, they even asked if I done time asking if I was talking to the ships offshore!? Lord Richard Buckely (Chicago). I used to used a term "W for your head..." and this would really confuse the programers and production people, getting them really pissed off and agitated with eash other. They were concerned about the censorhip and trying to make me conform!
This is about the time when the 'soldier/veteran from the My Lai' wanted to talk to me about the Vietnam war. The station was politically aligned with the 'conservative right' and the station was actually on lock down. I always wondered if the U.S. Military were trying to hide the attack. There was a lot of protest going on, 1/3 protesting; 1/3 sitting on the fence and 1/3 were anti-protestors. I had already been hired to be the General Manager at KPPC/ the a.m. station was only on the air for a few daytime hours, but the f.m. station was on 24 hours. Because I was going to be the GM on my way out of ABC, I was ready to leave because of the slowness and conservatism, and corporations. KPPC was an independent KMPX in San Francisco and KPPC in Pasadena. the tower was on top of the church Pasedena Presberterian and that's what the a.m. was used for. In the days of old, the am was used for the 'big deal' broadcasting. FM was not taken as seriously. We were all ego freaks in radio, so we...
This guy comes in off the street in person...I didn't have an actual show and using automated show mostly reading commercials, so when this crazy story comes from this guy...I was a veteran and I understood that this was act of treason and I knew that he was a 'broken humanbeing' probably going to commit suicide (Lt. Calley was his C.O. who gave the orders to gun down the Vietnamese women and old men in the village) What do you do with a piece of news like that? I could have gone to the news guys and I was just a disc jockey, so what did I know then? He would have been better off at the bigger stations. At KPPC, a couple more guys came in a told the same stories. A side story, a Yakima Indian was my guru, and reading about Red Cloud, The ones that did in Custer, anyway they were battling the white guys from Europe. The fighting involved killing the women and children and this is what was happening in the Vietnam war. The U.S. military did this in the 1800's so I believed what he said. Council Bluffs Iowa, learning why this was called Council Bluffs...due to the warring factions. They fought among themselves but the white colonists gave them a reason to group and fight against the 'white' man.
I wasn't on the air, I had already heard this story and after now that a couple guys come forward and I felt like I had a thing about this guy. So I decided to broadcast that 'we were getting reports about the My Lai Massacre' and we were careful to say that this may or may not have happened. This was a big decision on my part to possibly expose the U.S. Military. It taook a little bit of time but the 2/3 protesting the war were as a direct response from people finding out about the Vietnam War, about 1969. I was fired from KPPC and although I was tremendously successful moving and renovating the office, but I asked why they were cutting me loose because of a "judgement problem" and this was to become the end of my broadcasting career in the U.S. The Secret Service came to my house and I said I would I talk to them with a Castro-style cap on my head. They asked if I was going to try and assissinate Richard Nixon, the then president. They even went to POrtland and spoke to my Dad before talking to me. They even asked if I thought that Richard Nixon was responsible for my firing from the radio station! Being the former General Manager of this LA station, we would get updates in conferences by the Washington, D.C. militatry as well as local dignitaries like the L.A. mayor. We were pissing off them as being rabble-rousers responsible for promoting profanity, program to our culture, the format to the intent of the audience rather than talking like black folks? It called attention to "Ralph" and it was a huge disaster as my family and employment were falling apart. My wife and I had 2 children, 2 1/2 and 1 1/2 and we ended our marriage separating. My wife stayed in the U.S. and instead of paying my step-father back the money he lent me for the house, I gave the money to Kay and the kids.
Before I go too far, I didn't realize the immense significance of what the My Lai incident would do to my life. Because I blew the whistle, I felt I needed to leave and headed to Canada. When the 'shit' hit the fan, I was made aware that Seymour Hersh had been credited with 'spilling the beans' about My Lai and Abagrab in Iraq. He was an investigative journalist that I had heard was credited with breaking the story, although I was too scared to stay because I had learned, from my own experiences, not to trust the U.S. military.
Additionally, I brought the 'blues' to the Twin Cities...monthly magazine contributor and the local 'black' newspaper as a reporter/writer. I workied at rock and roll stations and it didn't appeal me I wouldn't play it. I did an hour of Ray Charles in 1963 on the rock n'roll station even though the station owners wheren't that happy. The major stations where getting a great response from the audience in the form of fan mail and even money! In Carmel, California I got an interwiew invitation to meet and got invited to work for them! If you let me play my music I'll work for you...even as the moving van was loading up our belongings I was still stunned at the prospect of working on the west coast! I inherited an all-night call in show as well, but the actual job was in St. Paul). I was also by being invited to host a call-in show for rock n' roll. The manager, Don French (a drinker, by the way) would stay up listening then asking me to 'tame it down' but I got the 'night' people. I never had to censor the audiences thoughts as long as they didn't swear on the line!
French finally got so angry because I sounded like "Detroit" instead of the Twin Cities, as he asked me to leave 'my music, my records' at home and only play the top 40 or 50? The GM showed up at 5 a.m. the next morning and fired me, after getting up the station manager to finish my show. It was totally absurd!
Back to the reason radio station owners wanted us to lose money was because these stations were often purchased to be losing operations so that they could be 'money losers' for tax purposes.
The call letters changed to KYCR in May 1988.
KYCR was in 1994 purchased by Children's Broadcasting Corporation, parent of the Radio Aahs children's format, becoming a sister to Aahs flagship station WWTC (1280 AM). KYCR retained its religious format as studios were co-located with WWTC at Excelsior Boulevard and Highway 100 in St. Louis Park. In 1995, the transmitter was moved a few miles south of its longtime tower to WWTC's 4-tower transmission facility in St. Louis Park, west of Highway 100 and south of I-394.
KYCR was acquired by religious and conservative broadcast company Salem Communications in 1998. Two years later, they bought WWTC, and both stations moved to the facility of Salem's KKMS in Eagan (transmission continued from the WWTC/KYCR site in St. Louis Park). From 2002 until 2007, KYCR was a time-shifted version of WWTC "The Patriot" as "The Patriot II". The format was then changed to a general talk format with its own identity, simply known as "AM 1570: The New Talk of the Twin Cities". In April 2007, KYCR lost syndicated talk-show host Don Imus from the lineup after the network cancelled the show. After two months of a "Dr. Laura" replay in the slot, the show was replaced by The War Room with Quinn and Rose from WPGB in Pittsburgh, becoming the first affiliate for the show in the midwest. Until April 2009, other programming included Dennis Miller, The Radio Factor, Laura Schlessinger, Lars Larson, Janet Parshall, and Mark Levin.
On August 13, 2008 North Dakota State University in Fargo, ND announced that AM1570 would become the home of NDSU Bison football broadcasts for the 2008 season. This makes the station the first affiliate in the Twin Cities area for NDSU sports.
The station attempted yet another format change on March 30, 2009, this time to an all-business format, carrying programming from the Bloomberg News business network. The station's slogan changed to "Business 1570 -- Twin Cities Business Radio."
On December 15, 2015 KYCR began stunting with a loop directing listeners to KDIZ 1440 AM, when KYCR's business news format moved to that station. On December 24, Salem changed the call letters of 1570 AM to KDIZ. It was announced by Salem that on January 11, it relaunched this station as "Wellness Radio", a first-of-its-kind Health & Wellness format.
- Broadcasting Yearbook 1964, page B-84
- Secret Stash Records, page 27
- Ralph Hull
- Wellness Radio Debuting In Minneapolis - Radio Insight (published January 6, 2016)
- Query the FCC's AM station database for KDIZ
- Radio-Locator Information on KDIZ
- Query Nielsen Audio's AM station database for KDIZ
- Radiotapes.com Featuring historic airchecks and videos from Twin Cities radio stations including a video of KUXL from 1986.