June

KRBE (104 KRBE) – Houston – 6/13/98 – Dino

Per Wikipedia – on Saturday nights from 1996 to 2002, 104 KRBE aired “The Beat” – one of the most progressive dance music programs on U.S. radio – live-to-air from The Roxy, which was of the premier nightclubs in Houston. This is a sample of the program from June 13, 1998 (recorded 18 years ago tonight).

KRBE (104 KRBE) – Houston – 6/27/98 – Dino

Per Wikipedia – on Saturday nights from 1996 to 2002, 104 KRBE aired “The Beat” – one of the most progressive dance music programs on U.S. radio – live-to-air from The Roxy, which was one of the premier nightclubs in Houston. This is a sample of the program from June 27, 1998 (recorded 17 years ago tonight).  

WBBM-FM (B96) – Chicago – 6/14/98 – Tim Spinnin’ Schommer

During a significant portion of the 1990′s, Chicago’s B96 offered a Dance music-heavy format focused on currents — making it one of the very few major market, full signal commercial stations in the U.S. to find success with that formula. By the end of the decade, the station began taking a more conventional approach to its regular format, focusing on hip-hop and R&B hits. However, B96 still aired significant amounts of Dance during its mixshows. This is a sample of the rather unique Sunday evening “Street Flava” program, which featured regular programming interspersed with Dance mixes from multiple genres, hosted by guest DJs.

WJHM (102 Jamz) – Daytona Beach FL – June 1990

Recorded 25 years ago this month, here’s a sample of WJHM as Urban-formatted “102 Jamz”, recorded during mixshow programming. More information about the history of this station can be found at Wikipedia.

WFAT (96.5 The Fat One) – Kalamazoo, MI – 6/8/98

According to Wikipedia, the WFAT call letters lasted a decade and a half on 96.5 FM in Kalamazoo, yet represented a wide variety of formats. This montage (recorded 17 years ago today) is a sample of the station’s brief attempt at a format that appeared to be a hybrid between Mainstream CHR and Hot AC.

WSNX (104.5) – Grand Rapids, MI – 6/1/98 – Brita, Fast Eddie

WSNX was one of the standout CHRs of the mid/late 90′s.  It offered an upbeat, recurrent-friendly music mix accompanied by outstanding jingles & sweepers, voiced by the late and great Brian James. Very impressive for a medium-sized market. This aircheck was recorded 17 years ago today.

WPOW (Power 96) – Miami – Kid Curry, Felix Slammin’ Sama – 6/24/99 & 6/25/99

Miami’s Power 96 is one of America’s heritage Rhythmic CHRs.  It has always offered an approach custom-tailored to its unique market – a rarity in an increasingly homogenized and corporate-dominated radio environment. This aircheck of the station was recorded 15 years ago this month.

WBPM (B94) – Kingston/Poughkeepsie, NY – 6/20/98

WBPM (B94) in New York’s Hudson Valley is one of the most unique stations I’ve ever heard. Musically, it offered an unfocused Rhythmic CHR format that featured many not-so-mainstream Dance selections.  Production-wise, it used dated jingles and sweepers — presumably from the station’s glory days in the 1980’s — voiced by the legendary Charlie Van Dyke.

WPNT (Chicago’s 100.3) – 6/10/97 – Todd Manley

This is the first version of “Chicago’s 100.3”, recorded about 3 months before a format/name change to AC as “Windy 100”.  However, the presentation on this aircheck made it sound like the transition was going to occur much sooner. The station adopted the “Chicago’s 100.3” name again a decade later, with another variation of the Adult Contemporary format. And following another change to “Rewind 100.3” in 2010, “Chicago’s 100.3” returned yet again in December 2013. More details about the history of 100.3 FM can be found on this Wikipedia page.

KIBB (B100) – Los Angeles – 6/25/97 – Nino

  Following the “worst-to-first” success of New York’s WKTU in 1996, a number of stations around the U.S. attempted similar formats (essentially Rhythmic AC) in their markets. B100 was one example – but the station never came close to achieving KTU-like numbers. It debuted in the Fall of 1996, emphasizing 70′s and 80′s Dance/R&B selections and positioning itself with the slogan “LA’s Hot FM.” Several months later, Viacom sold the station to Chancellor (which became AMFM). During the Spring of 1997, Chancellor tried to improve the station by making it more current-intensive, but the end result was a rather unfocused format. The station’s slogan became “The Rhythm of L.A.” (and eventually, as heard on this aircheck, “The New Rhythm of Southern California”). H...

WHJX (101.5 Channel X) – Jacksonville, FL – 6/14/94

During the early to mid 1990’s, a handful of radio stations in the United States – such as 101.5 Channel X – adopted an MTV-like approach. Specifically, they blended together modern rock and urban hits — and not just the most mainstream selection from each genre. To maintain some balance, Channel X also incorporated selections that are best described as “pure pop”. However, according to this message board posting, WHJX did not stick with this approach for very long; after about 4 months, it returned to an Urban format. This aircheck was recorded 19 years ago today.

“WFSH” (Fresh 106) – “New York” – 6/13/97

Fresh 106 was one of the earliest Internet-only streamers. Its high-energy presentation, voiced by the legendary Mitch Craig, its use of the fictional WFSH call letters, the presence of mainstream commercials and the availability of FM-quality streams made it sound very much like a traditional radio station. Reviewing the “FAQ” section of the defunct Fresh 106 Website via archive.org: Fresh 106 targeted the New York City market, but was apparently based in San Francisco. Musically, the station seemed to position itself between hip-hop/R&B-dominated Hot 97 (WQHT) and recurrent/classic dance-heavy 103.5 WKTU, taking many potshots at the latter. Fresh 106 debuted on 3/21/97. Functioning archived versions of the Fresh 106 website are available through 5/31/02, implying that it ...

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