|Broadcast area||Indianapolis, Indiana|
|Slogan||Right Kind of Talk|
|First air date||August 18, 1948|
|Format||Talk (WFDM-FM simulcast)|
|Power||1,000 watts daytime
13 watts nighttime
|Former frequencies||1590 kHz (1948-1955)|
|Owner||Pilgrim Communications LLC|
WXLW (950 AM, "Freedom 95") is an AM radio station owned by Pilgrim Communications LLC serving the greater Indianapolis, Indiana area. The station operates on the AM radio frequency of 950 kHz. In the fall of 2006, the studios were moved from Monument Circle in downtown Indianapolis to a different location along US 31 in Franklin. The WXLW transmitter and antenna are located between Georgetown and Moller Roads on West 56th Street on the northwest side of Indianapolis. Previously known as "ESPN 950" from 2002 until January 2008, the station now airs a mix of local and national talk shows.
WXLW went on the air on August 18, 1948 at 1590 kHz with 1 kW power with a non-directional single tower at its studio location on Kessler Blvd. at West 30th Street in Indianapolis. In January 1955, the station moved to its current allocation at 950 kHz with an increase in power up to 5,000 watts with a 3-tower directional antenna. The station was Adult MOR with local news and known announcers Howard Dorsey, Greg Smith, Art Roberts and Bob Morrison. WXLW was also famous for their popular annual Watermellon Festival which featured musical acts like singing duo Homer & Jethro. In the 1960s, the station featured a large mobile studio, "The Traveler", that traveled all over central Indiana promoting events for clients. Bill Shirk, from Muncie, Indiana, owned WXLW in the 1970s through most of the '80s. In the early-to mid-1970s, the station programmed a high-energy hit music format and the station was known as "Super XL" doing outrageous promotions with big-name image voices like the late Gary Gears from Chicago and tons of jingles. One of WXLW's most remembered contests involved giving away Indiana Pacer basketballs. The station touted WXLW has balls! In the mid-'70s Super XL was doing exceptionally well against other full-time AM stations like: WIFE (1310) and WNDE (1260) and WNAP-FM (93.1). By 1976, the station had segued to adult contemporary with long-time Indianapolis personalities such as Joe Pickett, K.C. Jones, and Lou Sherman. Steve Miller was Program Director through most of the period (1974–79). For a brief time in 1979, WXLW tried a Sunday-only disco format called "Space Station Shirk", which was hosted by Big Mark Edwards and Steve Miller. WXLW was a daytime-only radio station from sign-on until 1986, when the FCC granted it limited power night-time operations and a very small coverage area. WXLW's last format before flipping to a simulcast of sister-station WFDM-FM was sports, which lasted from 2002-2012.
Sister station WXLW-FM began broadcasting August 27, 1948, on 94.7 MHz. It duplicated the AM station's programs but continued to broadcast after sunset. Both stations were owned by Radio Indianapolis, Incorporated.
Station broadcasting information
WXLW broadcasts using 1,000 watts of power between sunrise and sunset. Between sunset and sunrise, it broadcasts with 13 watts of power. The station uses a directional antenna system. More information is available at the FCC query for WXLW.
WXLW changed from its religious programming to ESPN Radio on July 8, 2002, shortly after WNDE switched from ESPN to Fox Sports Radio. On January 7, 2008, ESPN Radio switched from WXLW to WFNI. In the aftermath of ESPN's switch, WXLW became a Sporting News Radio affiliate in 2008, which later became Yahoo! Sports Radio in August 2011.
- "WXLW Indianapolis Launched on 1590 KHz" (PDF). Broadcasting. August 30, 1948. Retrieved 4 January 2015.
- WXLW website
- Query the FCC's AM station database for WXLW
- Radio-Locator Information on WXLW
- Query Nielsen Audio's AM station database for WXLW
- Indiana Radio Archive, WXLW
- FCC History Cards for WXLW