|Branding||Classic Country Radio|
|First air date||1963|
|Power||500 watts day|
|Callsign meaning||"We're Busy"
(BZI as acronym)
|Former callsigns||WGIC (1963-1984)
|Affiliations||Fox News Radio
Oho News Network
Ohio Ag Net
|Owner||Town And Country Broadcasting, Inc.|
|Sister stations||WEDI, WKFI|
WBZI "Classic Country Radio" is a daytime-only AM broadcasting station in Xenia, Ohio, United States, at 1500 kHz operating with 500 watts. Its current owner Town and Country Broadcasting operates it with a country oldies format serving Greene, Clark, eastern Montgomery and surrounding counties. Its downtown studios are located on West Second Street and transmitter on East Kinsey Road (the former studio location.) World news from Fox News Radio is aired at the top of the hour in addition to farm and agriculture news from the ABN throughout the day.
Began operation in November 1963 by founder Xenia Broadcasting Inc. as WGIC (for: "Greene Information Center.") It is Xenia and Greene County's first and oldest full service AM radio station. Crosstown competitor WHBM (now WZDA licensed to Beavercreek) was the first Xenia FM station being founded one year earlier. Several format changes took place on the station during the 1970s,most noted as contemporary hit-formatted "G-15" using an automation package called "Stereo Rock" produced by Dallas-based TM Productions being used successfully on FM stations at the time(notably the former WPTH-FM in Ft Wayne,WFBQ-FM in Indianapolis and WCIT-AM in Lima). The format was switched over to 95.3 FM in 1978 as "I-95"(where the WBZI calls originated.) As a result, WGIC swapped contemporary hits for southern gospel competing with crosstown rival WELX (now WGNZ).
The former WGIC and its news department played a huge role in relaying information and desperately needed help between the listening public and the local residents in the aftermath of an F5 tornado which ravaged the city of Xenia and the neighboring communities of Beavercreek and Wilberforce on April 3, 1974. As such, WGIC operated on an emergency basis past its daytime hours-only license during this time.
WBZI-FM switched to country in 1980 competing with WONE (AM) in Dayton and the former WJAI-FM in Eaton.(now WGTZ.) Several other format and call letter changes took place quite frequently for the FM station throughout the 1980s and 1990s. It is currently 80's Classic Hits WZLR.
WBZI moved to AM 1500 in 1984 for about a year, then reassigned later in 1988 and with it the country format (after a two-year stint as WLGY from 1985 to 1987.) It is currently managed by Joe Mullins, son of fiddler and Bluegrass personality Paul "Moon" Mullins who retired from radio broadcasting in 2005 due to the impact of Parkinson's Disease. Moon died in 2008. Like his father, Joe is also a bluegrass musician as well as a broadcaster. In addition to managing the station, Joe is also the current afternoon personality with two programs, Hymns from the Hills and The Banjo Show. The latter is a bluegrass program, which the radio station is heavily tied to. In fact, Mullins is the lead singer of a local bluegrass band, The Radio Ramblers, who've since appeared on national programs in the last several years, in an attempt to spread their music beyond the southwestern Ohio region. Bucks Braun (formerly of WONE (AM) in Dayton) is morning personality from 6am until 12noon Monday-Friday. WBZI and its sister stations are also known for the daily call-in classifieds show, Trading Post with Roy Hatfield and/or Greg Gabbard, where frequent call ins from normal people as well as the more popular callers such as "Junior Junior", "Waldo", "Chef Larry" and "Hillbilly Mel" among others.
On the weekends, typically from 9am until 4pm on Saturdays and 1pm to 5pm on Sundays, the airwaves are ruled by DJ/steel guitar musician, Chubby Howard, who frequently appears at steel guitar events and at local venues throughout southwestern Ohio. He often tells stories of his recording sessions, his love of steel guitar legends and pioneers, and the several years he toured in Boxcar Willie's band in the early '80s. WBZI is one of the very few radio stations branded "classic country" that regularly features music from the '50s through the '90s, with a few traditional sounding current country artists added in. A typical broadcast day could feature artists as diverse as Ernest Tubb, Josh Turner, Kitty Wells, Conway Twitty, Connie Smith, The Kendalls, George Jones, Hank Williams, Dolly Parton, Alabama, Sonny James, Brad Paisley, and others. Weekday morning DJ Bucks Braun has several features during his time-slot, including a comedy spot, where he picks out a comedy song or a comedy routine to spotlight...so there's a chance you can hear not only classic country artists and traditional modern country on his show but can also hear a daily comedy recording from any number of comical personalities: Ray Stevens, Jerry Clower, Jeff Foxworthy, Brother Dave Gardner, Hudson and Landry, Andy Griffith, Bill Cosby, spoonerism routines from Archie Campbell, Foster Brooks, among others.
Their web-site features a listen live feature.
Classic Country Radio
Classic Country Radio is also heard on:
W262BG 100.3 in Xenia serving Xenia and nearby communities.
- Classic country
- Bluegrass music
- Christian country music
- Southern Gospel
- List of radio stations in Ohio