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103.9 KBZR

KBZR (103.9 FM) – Coolidge/Phoenix, AZ – 9/30/96 (S.T.E.V.E stunt)

KBZR KPTY The New 103.9 STEVE S-T-E-V-E

For six months in 1996, KBZR (103.9 FM)/Coolidge, AZ offered one of the most creative stunts in radio history.  In between an automated Rhythmic Oldies format was a series of clever interstitials (voiced by station owner Jerry Clifton) indicating that the station was “moving in from the desert” (referring to a pending signal upgrade to allow for better coverage in the metro Phoenix area) and looking for someone — or something — named “Steve”.

This aircheck was recorded exactly one month before the stunt ended.  By this point, the station had begun simulcasting on additional frequencies through Central and North-Central Arizona (presumably to compensate for the extended delays in upgrading the 103.9 signal), and it was revealed that “Steve” was actually an acronym (S.T.E.V.E.) who had been shot dead.  (Yes, you’re supposed to be confused).  In addition, a few Rhythmic currents had been added to the playlist.

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11 Comments

  1. For those that didn’t know, “Steve” was an acronym for “Songs That Everyone Vociferously Enjoys.”

    Robyn

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  2. When I was 20, I remember when I went to Phoenix for a week in the summer of ’96. While searching our rental car’s radio for music, we stumbled upon 103.9. For that entire week we were mesmerized by the old school vibe and the hilarious adverts for local businesses…

    Whenever were in the car, which was a considerable amount of time, we had 103.9 on. It had a profound impact on me as the material and creativity of the promos were absolutely surreal. It opened up an entire new genre of music for me.

    Unfortunately, when I returned to Phoenix the next summer, the station had converted to an entirely different format and was complete R&B Top 40 crap.

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  3. God Bless & Hell Yes! This means so much. This is the station that will come back, it was its before its time. Your first GOOD time with tequila is similar, why have these songs vanished?… because they are golden with palm trees and sunshine and hot days even dusty at times smug faces and no cares. Grab your bit.

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  4. hahah oh wow, this is CLASSIC!!! Jerry Clifton and Rick Thomas at their best!

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  5. God, I’m old…….

    Reply
  6. God listening to this takes be back! I miss the party station this needs to cine back because radio is crap now

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  7. WOW!!! JUNIOR YEAR IN HIGH SCHOOL I DITCHED CLASSES, ME AND MY HOMIES WOULD JAMMED TO 103.9. SO MANY GOOD MEMORIES 🙂 FCUK IM OLD. AGE IS GETTING TO ME HAHA 32 NOW SIGH

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  8. Steve???

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    • Yes R Dub, That S.T.E.V.E.!

      Reply
  9. Modern Radio has mostly forgotten the art, the theatre of the mind, the spark that radio or any other platform can and should be to be entertaining…Content was then, and is now king. JERRY CLIFTON IS AN ARTIST.

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    • Don’t Forget Jerry Was Also Known As The Station Voice As Power 96 From 1986 To The Mid ’90’s.

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