|Broadcast area||Greater Hartford|
|Branding||News Radio 1410|
|Slogan||Hartford's News, Weather & Traffic|
|Translator(s)||92.9 W225CH (Hartford)|
|Repeater(s)||97.9-2 FM WUCS HD2 (HD Radio)|
|First air date||July 15, 1935 (as WMFE)|
|Callsign meaning||W POPular music (earlier format)|
|Former frequencies||1380 kHz (1935–1941)|
Premiere Radio Networks Westwood One Network|
Fox Sports Radio
Fox News Radio
iHeartMedia, Inc. |
(Capstar TX LLC)
|Sister stations||WHCN, WKSS, WUCS, WWYZ|
WPOP (1410 kHz; "News Radio 1410") is a commercial AM radio station in Hartford, Connecticut, broadcasting a talk and sports radio format. The station is owned by iHeartMedia, Inc. Studios and offices are on Columbus Boulevard in Hartford, and the transmitter site is off Cedar Street in Newington, Connecticut. WPOP programming is also heard on the HD2 signal of co-owned WUCS 97.9 FM.
Weekdays begin with The Vinnie Penn Project, a wake-up talk and interview show shared with co-owned AM 960 WELI in New Haven, which also supplies Connecticut news briefs for WPOP. Also heard on weekdays are syndicated talk shows from Boston-based Howie Carr, Mark Levin and America Now with Buck Sexton. Some daytime hours are supplied by Bloomberg Radio. Fox Sports Radio is heard overnights and several hours on weekends. Weekends also feature syndicated shows from Glenn Beck, Joe Pags, Gary Sullivan, Leo Laporte and Handel on the Law, all syndicated by Premiere Networks, co-owned with WPOP by iHeartMedia. Three of Premiere's most successful syndicated talk shows are not heard on WPOP because they are carried by talk radio rival AM 1080 WTIC: Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Coast to Coast AM with George Noory. Most hours on WPOP begin with world and national news from Fox News Radio.
On June 28, 1935, the station first signed on at 1380 kilocycles as WMFE in New Britain, Connecticut, about 10 miles southwest of Hartford. The station, owned by the State Broadcasting Company, began as a daytimer powered at only 250 watts, although its power increased to 1,000 watts, operating full-time, several years later. The station was an affiliate of the NBC Blue Network and changed its call sign to WNBC in 1936. (The station that would become better known as WNBC 660 AM in New York City carried the call letters WEAF at this time.)
In 1941, the station switched to its present frequency of AM 1410, boosted power to its current 5,000 watts, and moved its city of license to Hartford. It changed its call letters to WHTD to reflect its move to HarTforD, and became affiliated with the Mutual Broadcasting Network. In 1956, as it gave up network comedy and drama programming to television, it switched its call sign to WPOP, signifying that it played POPular music.
WPOP was a highly rated Top 40 radio station during the 1960s and early 1970s. The station achieved its highest level of success during this era, as it vied with rival 1360 WDRC for youthful listeners in the Hartford radio market. WPOP was acquired by entertainer and TV talk show host Merv Griffin in 1973, who also owned WIOF (now WMRQ).
In June 1975, WPOP dropped its hit music format, switching to All-News, carrying NBC's News and Information Service, with a sizable local news staff covering Connecticut news stories. When the NIS network ended two years later, WPOP continued the All-News format using its own anchors supplemented by CBS Radio News and the Associated Press radio service. By the late 1980s, talk shows were added and the station cut back on its news segments. Affiliation switched from CBS Radio to ABC Radio's Information Network. In 1994, Merv Griffin sold the station to SFX Broadcasting, Inc., which also owned FM 105.9 WHCN.
On January 13, 1997, SFX Broadcasting switched WPOP's format to all-sports; most of its programming was provided by One-on-One Sports (now SB Nation Radio), but it also carried The Fabulous Sports Babe and weekend programming from the ESPN Radio Network, based in nearby Bristol, Connecticut. The station ended its One-on-One Sports affiliation on February 28, 1999, becoming a full-time ESPN Radio affiliate. In 2000, WPOP and WHCN were bought by Clear Channel Communications, the previous name of iHeartMedia, Inc. On January 27, 2012, WPOP's sports format began simulcasting on co-owned FM 97.9 WPKX, previously a country music outlet. The FM station eventually changed its call letters to WUCS, with the CS standing for Connecticut Sports. WPOP switched from ESPN Radio to Fox Sports Radio on March 5, 2012, with ESPN Radio remaining on WUCS.
On August 17, 2015, WPOP changed its format from all sports to a mix of talk and sports, branded as "News Radio 1410".
- "Call Letter Origins". Radio History on the Web.
- "WPOP Facility Record". United States Federal Communications Commission, audio division.
- "WPOP Station Information Profile". Arbitron.
- Broadcasting Yearbook 1938 page 62
- Broadcasting Yearbook 1949 page 94
- Broadcasting Yearbook 1979 page C-37
- Keveney, Bill (January 11, 1997). "WPOP Shifts To All Sports". Hartford Courant. Retrieved May 23, 2017.
- Goldberg, Jeff (January 30, 1999). "WPOP, 1 On 1 Sports Ending Relationship". Hartford Courant. Retrieved May 23, 2017.
- Goldberg, Jeff (February 24, 1999). "Thursday Debut For ESPN Radio". Hartford Courant. Retrieved May 23, 2017.
- WPOP Hartford Makes Long Awaited Talk Flip
- Query the FCC's AM station database for WPOP
- Radio-Locator Information on WPOP
- Query Nielsen Audio's AM station database for WPOP
- History for WPOP
- FCC History Cards for WPOP
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