WAAL
Broadcast areaBinghamton metropolitan area; Southern Tier
Frequency99.1 MHz
Branding99.1 The Whale
Programming
FormatClassic rock
Affiliations
Ownership
Owner
WHWK, WNBF, WWYL
History
First air date
March 1954 (1954-03) (as 95.3 WKOP-FM)
Former call signs
WKOP-FM (1954–1975)
Call sign meaning
Play on the word "Whale"
Technical information
Facility ID7920
ClassB
ERP8,700 watts
HAAT291 meters (955 ft)
Links
WebcastListen Live
Website991thewhale.com

WAAL (99.1 FM; "The Whale") is a commercial radio station licensed to Binghamton, New York. It airs a classic rock radio format and is owned by Townsquare Media. WAAL is the oldest FM radio station in the Binghamton metropolitan area. It is an affiliate of the New York Giants Radio Network.

The studios and offices are on Court Street in Binghamton.[1] The transmitter is off Ingraham Hill Road, also in Binghamton, amid other towers for local TV and FM stations.[2]

History

WKOP-FM

In March 1954, the station signed on as WKOP-FM at 95.3 MHz.[3] It was the FM counterpart of WKOP (1360 AM; later WYOS). The two stations simulcast and were network affiliates of the Mutual Broadcasting System. They were owned by Binghamton Broadcasters, Inc. At first, WKOP-FM broadcast at only 420 watts, a fraction of the station's current power.

In the 1960s, WKOP-FM received Federal Communications Commission (FCC) permission to move to 99.1 MHz, with an increase in power to 33,000 watts.[4] By 1970, it ended its simulcast with WKOP 1360 and began playing a progressive rock format.

WAAL

In 1974, the station was sold to Butternut Broadcasting, which switched the call sign to WAAL, running an AOR format.[5] The station was known as "WAAL (pronounced like whale) Stereo FM 99". The station dropped its AOR format in October 1985 for Top 40/CHR after the drop of CHR station WWWT-FM for adult contemporary due to the station's complaint on its listeners. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, it was known as "The Hot FM" and was affiliated with the ABC FM Network.

Wicks Broadcasting bought WAAL in 1996, and changed its format to classic rock.

Citadel ownership, then Townsquare

WAAL was acquired by Citadel Broadcasting in 1998 from Wicks Broadcast Group in a $77 million deal that included a total of 16 radio stations.[6] Citadel merged with Cumulus Media on September 16, 2011.[7]

In 2013, in a $281 million, multi-station deal involving Cumulus, Townsquare Media and Peak Broadcasting, Townsquare acquired all of Cumulus Media's Binghamton radio stations, ihcluding WAAL.[8] The classic rock format has remained in place on WAAL.

References

  1. ^ 991TheWhale.com/help
  2. ^ Radio-Locator.com/WAAL
  3. ^ Broadcasting Yearbook 1955 page 210
  4. ^ Broadcasting Yearbook 1970 page B-134
  5. ^ Broadcasting Yearbook 1978 page C-144
  6. ^ Citadel Communications Acquires 16 Radio Stations From Wicks Broadcast Group for $77 Million
  7. ^ "Cumulus now owns Citadel Broadcasting". Atlanta Business Journal. September 16, 2011. Retrieved September 16, 2011.
  8. ^ TownsquareMedia.com/press/"Townsquare Acquiring Assets from Cumulus and Peak"

42°03′32″N 75°57′04″W / 42.059°N 75.951°W / 42.059; -75.951