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|Broadcast area||Pioneer Valley, Massachusetts|
|Branding||WHYN NewsRadio 560|
|Slogan||Springfield's News, Traffic and Weather Station|
|First air date||1941|
|Power||5,000 watts (daytime)
1,000 watts (nighttime)
|Callsign meaning||W HolYoke Northampton|
Fox News Radio
(CC Licenses, LLC)
|Sister stations||WHYN-FM, WRNX|
WHYN (560 kHz "NewsRadio 560") is a commercial AM talk radio station licensed to Springfield, Massachusetts. It serves the Pioneer Valley area of Western Massachusetts and is owned by iHeartMedia, Inc.. Studios and offices are on Main Street in Springfield. The transmitter is on County Road in Southampton. WHYN operates at 5000 watts by day, using a directional antenna, but must reduce power to 1000 watts at night to avoid interfering with other stations on 560 kHz.
The station airs a conservative program schedule on weekdays with a local news and interview morning show followed by nationally syndicated talk shows, mostly from iHeartMedia subsidiary Premiere Networks: Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, America Now with Meghan McCain, Clyde Lewis and Coast to Coast AM with George Noory. Boston-based Howie Carr is heard weekday afternoons. Weekends feature shows on money, law, gardening and religion (some of which are paid brokered programming). Weekend syndicated hosts include Bill Handel, Gary Sullivan, Bill Cunningham, Joe Pags, Ric Edelman and Sean Hannity. (WHYN is a rare iHeartMedia talk station that doesn't run Sean Hannity on weekdays.)
WHYN originally started at 1400 kHz in Northampton, Massachusetts in 1941, but it moved to 560 in the 1950s. The call letters WHYN stand for Holyoke, Northampton. It added an FM sister station in 1946, the first FM station licensed to Springfield. That station continues with the same call letters WHYN-FM. In 1953, television station WHYN-TV Channel 55 also was put on the air (today WGGB-TV Channel 40).
Over the years, WHYN was known as Whyn (pronounced WIN) radio. During the rock and roll era, some of its monikers included "Channel 56," "Radio Five-Six-Oh," "Five-Sixty W - H - Y - N," "Fun Five Sixty" and "The Big Fifty-Six." Many jingles (mainly produced by PAMS) reflected these ongoing themes. In the early '60s, WHYN was the dominant Top 40 radio station (competing with rival 1270 WSPR) with disk jockeys who were on the air for years. These included Phil D-e-e, Bob Allen (a/k/a Robert R. Charest - b. 1939 Springfield MA; d. 20-APR-2008 Coffeyville KS), Bud Stone (deceased) and Little Davy Jones early in the decade. In 1968, the line up was Bob Allen (deceased), Lou Terri (a/k/a Louis Gualtieri - d. 23-OCT-1989 - Age 62), Bud Williams, Ron Savage, Bob O'Brady (a/k/a Robert M. Kennedy - b. 1947; d. 31-DEC-2013 Salem, VA), Norm Lambert (Norman N. Lambert - b. 1922 - d. 08-JAN-2010 - Age 87), Dennis Lee and Fred King. Additional DJs through the rock 'n roll era into the 70s included Jeff Baker, Larry Kruger (Lawrence C. Kruger - b. April 19, 1945 Savannah, GA; d. July 4, 2011 Swansea, MA), Jim Scott, Walt Cooper, Ken Moon , Patti Piech, Chuck Adams, Bill Erickson (who later was a news anchor at WHYN from 1990 through 2006), Ed Mitchell, Jerry Daniels, Gerry Tower, Rich Roy (who was also on WHYN-FM in their beautiful music days), Mike Taylor, Jackson Hill, Jungleman (Peter Pratt), longtime news legend Ron Russell, news anchor Tony Gill, who worked earlier at WBZ and WRKO in Boston, and others. In the '80s, DJs included Doug Hawkes (Roy Douglas Hawkes - d. July 3, 2011 Stone Creek Florida - Age 66), Charlie Donovan, Sherri McBride and Dan Williams (who later did mornings on WHYN-FM with his wife, Kim Zachery). Some early airchecks of the station are at Northeast Airchecks and ReelRadio.
The station programmed mainstream Top 40 until FM stations became more popular for music listening. Automated WAQY (102.1 FM; branded "Wacky Radio") went on the air in 1972 and took some of WHYN's audience. In fact, Jim (James Marshall) Rising was WAQY's first Program Director (circa 1976) after it began live programming. Jim came over from WHYN, where he the station's morning host, to program WAQY. He brought along WHYN's Johnny (Bekish) Michaels.
During the 1980s, WHYN transitioned to a more adult sound, airing Adult contemporary music and adding more news and sports. WHYN was the Springfield radio affiliate for the Boston Red Sox until 2007 when 105.5 WVEI-FM (now WWEI) took the affilition. WHYN was also affiliated with ABC Radio. By the 1990s, WHYN was adding more talk programming and reducing its reliance on music.
The station has undergone several ownership changes over the years starting with the Daily Hampshire Gazette; Guy Gannett Broadcasting (no relation to the present-day Gannett Company); Affiliated Communications (the broadcast division of The Boston Globe); R&R Broadcasting (Robinson & Reece); Wilks-Schwartz Broadcasting; and Clear Channel Communications (now iHeartMedia, Inc.).
Originally, the Hampden-Hampshire Corporation (a consortium of the Daily Hampshire Gazette, the Holyoke Transcript-Telegram, the Greenfield Recorder, and the Springfield Newspapers) owned WHYN-AM-FM-TV. The stations were sold in 1967 to Guy Gannett Broadcasting. WHYN and WHYN-FM were sold to Affiliated Publications in 1979; Guy Gannett retained WHYN-TV, which kept its original studio location and changed its call letters to WGGB-TV. The radio stations moved to downtown's "Marketplace" location, where they remain housed today along with sister stations WHYN-FM (Hot AC) and WRNX (Country music).
- WHYN News/Talk 560 website
- Rick Kelly's New England Airchecks Website
- ReelRadio Dot Com Aircheck Repository
- Chris Tracy's Springfield Radio Tribute Site
- Query the FCC's AM station database for WHYN
- Radio-Locator Information on WHYN
- Query Nielsen Audio's AM station database for WHYN