|Broadcast area||Albuquerque, New Mexico|
Santa Fe, New Mexico
|Branding||103.3 Ed FM|
|KKOB, KKOB-FM, KOBQ, KRST, KMGA, KNML, KTBL|
First air date
|1987 (as KIDI)|
Former call signs
Call sign meaning
|FReD spelled backwards (former branding)|
|HAAT||1,293 meters (4,242 ft)|
KDRF (103.3 MHz) is a radio station in Albuquerque, New Mexico. It is owned by Cumulus Media and has an adult hits format as "Ed FM" and uses the slogan "playing stuff we like". Its studios are located in Downtown Albuquerque and the transmitter tower is located atop Sandia Crest east of the city.
The 103.3 frequency signed on in 1987 as KIDI with a Spanish-language contemporary music format. By 1992 it would switch to a country music format as KASY ("Y-103/Cat Country") to challenge KRST. KASY was owned by Ramar Communications and in March 1996 it was sold to Citadel Broadcasting for five million dollars. The following month Citadel would also acquire KRST and KRZY AM & FM from Crescent Communications for 23 million dollars and by October of that year Citadel would divest both KRZY stations to a Spanish language broadcaster. KRST would keep the new country format and 103.3 would become KTBL ("K-Bull") which would play classic country. This would give Citadel complete dominance over the popular country music radio market in Albuquerque until 2000 when Clear Channel Communications launched KBQI-FM "Big I 107.9" to challenge KRST which had also hired morning personalities Tony Lynn and Miles Copeland. KRST saw its ratings slashed as a result. In 2001 Citadel would then move to challenge Clear Channel's hold on rock radio in Albuquerque by changing the formats on 103.3 and 96.3.
In February 2001, 103.3 would drop its classic country format and moved the KTBL callsign and format over to 1050 AM. After stunting from February 12–14 with all R.E.M., U2 and Dave Matthews Band each day, 103.3 would launch as "The Zone" on February 15 with callsign KTZO. KTZO originally had an adult alternative music format, playing in 20 song sets as a "quality rock" station. The Zone was designed to challenge Clear Channel's KPEK-FM "The Peak", which was playing mostly "softer" alternative bands at the time, but still played a great deal of pop songs targeted at a mostly female audience. Like its eventual successor, KTZO would attempt to run without DJs until fall of 2001, when it had added an airstaff which would include former KTEG morning host Micheal Moxey in morning drive. Other personalities included Don Kelly, Leah Black, Scott Souhrada, and later Forrest, Brian and Kit Missile. The format shifted to modern rock in early 2003, adding hard rock acts like System of a Down and Korn, but also keeping bands like Coldplay from its old format and also playing 1990s alternative bands like Green Day and Bush as well as modern bands like The White Stripes, Modest Mouse and The Killers which were not heard on other local stations. It also held an annual "Battle of the Bands" competition for local bands. The winner would receive regular airplay on the station. Soular gained a local fanbase after winning the first competition in 2002. Feels Like Sunday and Hollis Wake would win later contests.
The format drew decent Arbitron ratings and was often well ahead of KTEG (which at the time skewed toward active rock).
KDRF was originally launched on December 30, 2004 as "Fred FM", but in March 2005, XM Satellite Radio claimed the name "Fred" to be a trademark of their classic alternative station. The name was then shortened to "Ed" to avoid fighting a costly legal battle. The station has no DJs and has a wide playlist of Top 40 hits from the early 1970s to the present. KDRF is also streamed online. Since 2015, eD FM does "80s Throwback" playing all hits from the 1980s about every other weekend.
In April 2007, eD-FM enlisted Tom Dickson of Blendtec to do a Will It Blend? version to promote the station. The three 30-second commercials show different styles of music CDs being blended, showcasing the station's variety format (of course... It Blends!). The commercials aired on all Albuquerque TV stations over a 4-week period. The commercials returned in Fall 2007 after the first campaign saw improved ratings for the station.
Citadel merged with Cumulus Media on September 16, 2011.
The KTZO call letters originated in San Francisco back in the 1980s when James Gabbert owned the TV station, which is now KOFY-TV.