103.9 KPTY

KPTY (103-9 the Party) – Gilbert/Phoenix, AZ – 8/3/00 – Rudeboy

In the late 1990’s and early 2000’s, 103.9 FM — which targeted the Phoenix area from rural/suburban signals –  held a number of different formats.

It began in the Spring of 1996 with a six-month Rhythmic Oldies stunt format named “S-T-E-V-E”.

On October 30th of that year, it officially signed on as “The New 103.9, Arizona’s Party Station”, with a hip-hop-oriented Rhythmic CHR format and enjoyed impressive ratings (especially considering the signal limitations).  Its target, the more dance/pop/R&B-oriented KKFR “Power 92”, took notice and transformed itself into a pure hip-hop/R&B station within 9 months.

A year later, 103.9 FM (whose calls had become KPTY) went in a completely different direction, offering a mix of alternative/modern rock and hip-hop in a format unofficially known as “Extreme CHR”, under the name “Party Radio @ 103.9”. (It eventually evolved to 100% alternative/modern rock.)

Ratings continued to tumble, and so on the first day of the new millennium, the station relaunched  with a 100% boy-band/girl-band format that was the antithesis of the previous format.  Yet, it inexplicably hung on to the “Party Radio @ 103.9” name for a while longer.

At some point in 2000, KPTY altered its name to “103-9 the Party” and, ironically, evolved into the type of station that it initially set out to destroy: a dance/pop/R&B-friendly Rhythmic CHR.  KPTY attempted to sandwich itself between KZZP 104.7 FM (which had become a Mainstream CHR the year before) and KKFR.  This aircheck of “103-9 the Party” was recorded in early August 2000.

Exactly five years after it began, the Party finally ended — the station became the new home of Modern Rock KEDJ “The Edge” on October 30, 2001.



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