By Marvin Baker, a new weekly column in The Kenmare News
Posted 6/20/17 (Tue)
Nobody talks about AM radio anymore. Sometimes you have to wonder why AM stations are still on the air? Who is listening?
They have their purpose. In this part of the world, we can listen to Minnesota Twins or Toronto Blue Jays baseball, weather reports are aired often and if you like talk radio, you’ll like AM.
But not so many years ago, AM had a much larger footprint in the broadcasting world. Especially during the 1960s, when FM was just getting its foot in the door, the AM stations ruled.
In fact, many of us will remember how nighttime radio was different than daytime radio. At night we could (still can) pick up radio stations from all over the place and a lot of them were worthy of our listening.
The first one that comes to mind is XEROK, 800-AM in
This radio station, which now broadcasts a Christian format, was incredibly powerful. It was broadcasting on 150,000 watts, three times the maximum power allowed
KAAY, 1090-AM in
Late at night it had a segment called “
WLS, 890-AM in
In the 1960s and early ‘70s, WLS was known for introducing the latest music in the
WLS has always maintained its 50,000 watts of AM power, even today, while it broadcasts a C-Quam AM stereo signal.
We also tuned into KOMA, 1520-AM in
There are numerous other stations that I remember listening to in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s, some of them from places you wouldn’t expect.
Do you remember some of these?:
• WHAS 840-AM,
• WJR, 760-AM,
• WLW, 700-AM,
• KOA, 850-AM,
• KSL, 1160-AM,
• KMOX, 1120-AM,
• WCCO, 830-AM,
• CKRC, 630-AM,
• CKCK, 620-AM,
• KFI, 640-AM,
• KSTP, 1500-AM,
• KCMO, 710-AM,
CKRC went off the air and later emerged as an FM station in
• WRNO was a shortwave radio station in
Another shortwave radio station we listened to often was Radio Canada International. That signal was coming out of
By the early 1970s, FM was beginning to find its place and a few radio stations began popping up here and there. FM was already popular in
But since radios were already equipped with FM dials, it was worth investigating to see what would be available.
There were two FM stations in
In 1973, I discovered CKY-FM, a
Now CITI-FM, 92.1, it became the holy grail of FM radio because of its sheer power and remains a classic rock gem today.