From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
WVCO logo.png
City Loris, South Carolina
Broadcast area Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
Wilmington, North Carolina
Branding 94.9 The Surf
Slogan The Carolina's Beach Music & Classic Hits Station
Frequency 94.9 MHz
(Channel 235)
First air date 1993
Format Oldies/Beach music
ERP 11,000 watts
HAAT 149 meters
Class C3
Facility ID 57036
Transmitter coordinates 33°59′39.00″N 78°46′16.00″W / 33.9941667°N 78.7711111°W / 33.9941667; -78.7711111
Owner Carolina Beach Music Broadcasting Corp.
Webcast Listen Live
Website 949thesurf.com

WVCO (94.9 FM, "94.9 The Surf") is an American radio station in the Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, market. They play a mix of oldies/Carolina beach music/shag.


By the mid-1990s, WVCO aired the same programming as WYAK, which was country music.[1] On October 1, 1996, Pinnacle Broadcasting Co. announced its purchase of WYAK, WMYB and WRNN-FM. Once completed, Pinnacle intended to continue the lease agreement of WVCO's former owners.[2]

On January 1, 1997 the station played "Macarena" over 2,000 times (including several mixes) then became "WELVIS" for the weekend of Elvis Presley's 62nd birthday,[1] then stunted with various musical styles, and finally switched to smooth jazz.[3]

After Frank Sinatra died, WVCO played just his music the entire weekend.[4]

On August 18 and 19, 1998, the station repeatedly played Vanessa L. Williams singing the words "pick the pieces up and start again" followed by a tape rewinding. The new beach music format began with "Summertime" by Billy Stewart. This marked the first time the music that began along the Grand Strand had a radio home.[3] "Fessa" John Hook hosted the syndicated "Top 40 Countdown", "Fish Fry Show" and "Classics Show" on the Rhythm 'N Beach Network, including WVCO, and "Ocean Drive Pavilion Show", on WVCO only.[5] 94.9 the Surf described its music format as "Beach, Boogie and Blues". The music was categorized as rhythmic oldies but included much more variety than the typical radio station. Many songs were from the 1950s, and the station's focus was beach music, a style made popular on the South Carolina coast. Personalities included Billy Smith, Ted Bell and Ray Scott. The station aired the syndicated On the Beach radio show hosted by Charlie Brown.[citation needed]

In 2006, WVCO moved its studio from Myrtle Beach to 429 Pine Avenue in North Myrtle Beach,[6] the current home of WNMB/900 and the former home of WNMB/105.5.[7]

WVCO added the syndicated Mike Harvey show and Clemson University football and basketball.[8]

WVCO was named Station of the Year at the Carolina Beach Music Awards for nine years in a row.[9][10] In the middle of 2009, WVCO moved out of the WNMB North Myrtle Beach Pine Avenue location to another NMB site to allow for expansion at WNMB.

In mid-December 2010, WVCO owner Harvey Graham died. The station was then left in legal limbo because of a pending civil case involving a failed condo development that Harvey Graham was building near the WVCO transmitter.[citation needed] The Surf 94.9 went off the air on January 16, 2011, as a result of owner Harvey Graham's bankruptcy filing in November 2009 and the legal problems with the failed condo case.[11] The station returned to the air on April 14, 2011, with reduced power but restored to full power operation by May 2011[citation needed] under new owners Norman-Worley. Ted Bell moved back to WVCO to host a midday show.[12]

Death of WVCO co-owner Bill Norman and subsequent investigation[edit]

Owner Bill Norman suffered a serious stroke[13] on September 29, 2012,[citation needed] and died at Grand Strand Regional Medical Center on October 14, 2012,[14] from what initially was labelled a "cerebral vascular accident" on the death certificate. On October 19, 2012, the Myrtle Beach Police Department launched an investigation into Norman's death. WMBF-TV reported on December 6–7, 2012, that a 53-year-old nurse, Janet Kupka, had given Norman 20 milligrams of morphine instead of the prescribed 4 milligrams. Kupka allegedly admitted to a witness that she gave Norman the drug Diprivan. Norman was brain dead due to the stroke. Norman's body had been cremated and was not available to be autopsied. The cause of death may be changed to an overdose.[13] In a filing with the FCC, Norman's widow is listed as his personal representative and owns 50% of WNMB in that capacity, in addition to the 50% stake she already held.


  1. ^ a b Toby Eddings, "Catching Up on News in the Area," The Sun News, January 12, 1997.
  2. ^ Andrew Shain, "WYAV-FM Owner Buys WYAK-FM, WMYB-FM, The Sun News, October 2, 1996.
  3. ^ a b Toby Eddings, "Beach Music Hits MB Radio," The Sun News, August 20, 1998.
  4. ^ Jeannine F. Hunter, "Local Radio Pays Sinatra Homage," The Sun News, May 16, 1998.
  5. ^ Toby Eddings, "WYAK changes its lineup and image," The Sun News, Apr. 25, 1999.
  6. ^ "Money," The Sun News, September 3, 2006.
  7. ^ Kathleen Vereen Dayton, "NMB to Get AM Radio Station All Its Own," The Sun News, December 16, 2000.
  8. ^ http://home.carolina.rr.com/myrtlebeachdays/Page65.htm, Retrieved on 2008/09/09.
  9. ^ "Newsmakers". The Sun News. January 4, 2007. 
  10. ^ "Business Pulse," The Sun News, November 23, 2008.
  11. ^ Palisin, Steve (January 20, 2011). "Beach music lives on in Myrtle Beach area". The Sun News. Retrieved January 20, 2011. 
  12. ^ Palisin, Steve (October 15, 2012). "Longtime Myrtle Beach area radio personality dies". The Sun News. Retrieved October 20, 2012. 
  13. ^ a b Staff; Maginnis, Sean (December 6, 2012). "Patient dies from possible drug overdose, nurse charged". WMBF. Retrieved January 4, 2013. 
  14. ^ "The year in review". North Myrtle Beach Times. December 27, 2012. Retrieved January 4, 2013. 

External links[edit]