WKIE/WKIF/WDEK (Energy 92-7 & 5) – suburban Chicago – 1/6/03 – Chris Shebel
This montage represents approximately the final ~50 minutes of suburban Chicago’s Dance CHR, “Energy 92.7 & 5” (WKIE Arlington Heights, WKIF Kankakee, WDEK 92.5 DeKalb). It occurred just a few days before what would have been the station’s two-year anniversary.
Included are goodbye announcements from several of the station’s on-air personalities. Also featured are commercials for soon-to-be-former competitors B96.3 (WBBM-FM) and 103.5 Kiss-FM (WKSC) promoting themselves to Energy’s audience.
The audio heard here was recorded from Energy’s webcast. While the sound quality is less than ideal (but listenable) — it actually represents the sign-off as it was meant to be heard. After Program Director Chris Shebel said “goodbye”, a technical issue prevented the final song from starting right away, resulting in about 7 seconds of dead air. Apparently, the new owners interpreted the dead air as giving them the green light to launch the replacement (Spanish-language) format — and that version of the switchover can be heard at our sister site, FormatChange.com. But the webcast kept going for about 3 more minutes, and ended with Energy’s legal ID.
This is, hands down, one of the best finales/sign-offs I’ve ever heard. Energy respected its listeners and offered full disclosure about what was going on — a rarity when the time comes for a format change. It’s a shame that more radio stations/operators don’t have the intestinal fortitude to take this approach.
Much more information (including a *video* of Chris Shebel’s final speech and the aforementioned technical issue) can be found at energychicago.com. Also check out the Wikipedia page for WCPT (the call letters that, as of this writing, represent the 92.7 signal in Arlington Heights.)
I remember listening to this as it went down. I absolutely hated losing 92.5, it kept me going at work. Thank you so much for posting this! Memories…