|Broadcast area||metro Atlanta|
|Slogan||"Atlanta's Inspiration Station"|
|Frequency||102.5 MHz (also on HD Radio)|
|First air date||1997|
|Callsign meaning||W PraiZE (play on "Praise")|
|Former callsigns||WAMJ (2001-2009)
|Sister stations||WAMJ, WHTA, WUMJ|
WPZE ("Praise 102.5") is a radio station located in Atlanta, Georgia. Operating on 102.5 MHz, it is assigned Mableton as its city of license, and transmits from a location in southwest Atlanta, near I-285 and Langford Parkway, with studios located at Centennial Tower downtown. The callsign was previously assigned to what is now WUMJ in Fayetteville, Georgia until they were moved to 102.5 FM along with the Urban Gospel format on February 16, 2009. The previous call sign WAMJ was moved back to the 107.5 FM frequency (formerly WJZZ-FM) to reunite with the "Majic" branding and format which started simulcasting on WUMJ.
The station is the result of Docket 80-90, the FCC plan to allow more stations on the air by reducing the required spacings. During the mid-1980s, it was decided that one of these new stations would be assigned to the west-northwest side of metro Atlanta. Several applicants requested the new allotment be assigned to one of four cities: Mableton, Lithia Springs, Douglasville, and Forest Park. The frequency already belonged to WGHR in Marietta, the student radio station at what is now Southern Polytechnic State University — however the forced downgrade to second-class status left the class D station vulnerable. It applied for the new allotment and to have it reserved to Marietta and as noncommercial, however the FCC refused this, leaving WGHR with no chance of upgrading. The remaining contenders applied in 1988, and had a lengthy battle in court. After many years of legal wrangling over the frequency, the station came on the air in 2001, forcing WGHR at SPSU to 100.7, and then off the air completely due to WWWQ's move-in on 100.5. The station was assigned the call sign WAWE FM on November 24, 1997 during its construction permit.
As WAMJ "Grown Folks Radio"
On June 27, 2001, the station was then assigned the WAMJ call sign just before it went on the air. The call sign was moved from 107.5 FM, which then upgraded to a Class C3 station and took on the call sign WJZZ-FM and adopted a "Smooth Jazz" format. The Urban AC from then-"Majic 107.5," which originated three years before, came along also, although the "Majic" nickname was never used throughout WAMJ's tenure on 102.5, and took on a more oldies approach to R&B. (Competitor WALR did this same tactic on 2003 but only because WFOX (now WSRV) was an experimental urban station for a few years.)
In April 2004, Radio One acquired New Mableton Broadcast Corporation (WAMJ's owner) for approximately $35 million. Radio One operated the station under a local marketing agreement beginning in August 2001. Radio One then completed this acquisition during the fourth quarter of 2004, under the name ROA Licenses (Radio One Atlanta Licenses), which also owned WJZZ-FM, WPZE-FM, and WHTA-FM.
In October 2005, the station changed format to Urban Adult Contemporary with the addition of current R&B and soul songs; it only skewed more to an Urban Oldies/Classic Soul heavy segment of the format months later. The station was branded as "Grown Folks Radio." When attempts to secure broadcasting rights to The Tom Joyner Morning Show failed, WAMJ began carrying The Steve Harvey Show in the mornings, and syndicated talk programming (including the Al Sharpton program and The Michael Baisden Show) during the midday and afternoon hours. Evenings and weekends remained dedicated to music, however.
As WPZE "Praise 102.5"
WPZE originated its current format in 2001 on 97.5 FM. On February 16, 2009, "Praise 97.5" moved to 102.5 FM from 97.5 FM, which changed formats to a simulcast of Majic 107.5 (as WUMJ). At this time, the WAMJ call sign was returned to 107.5 FM (formerly WJZZ-FM) to reunite with the "Majic" branding. The current incarnation of WPZE is home to the Houston-based Yolanda Adams Morning Show and Coco Brutha Live in the evenings.