Broadcast areaBuffalo–Niagara Falls metropolitan area
Frequency1120 kHz
BrandingHot 98.9
FormatTop 40 (CHR)
First air date
1947; 77 years ago (1947) (as WWOL)
Former call signs
WWOL (1947–1986)
WHTT (1986–1987)
WTKS (1987–1988)
WHTT (1988–1999)
WMNY (1999–2005)
Call sign meaning
Buffalo BuFfalo
Technical information
Facility ID53967
Power1,000 watts days only
Translator(s)98.9 W255DH (Buffalo)
WebcastListen live

WBBF (1120 kHz, "Hot 98.9") is a commercial AM radio station in Buffalo, New York. It airs a top 40 (CHR) radio format and is owned by Cumulus Media. The studios and offices are on James E. Casey Drive in Buffalo.

WBBF broadcasts with a power of 1,000 watts as a daytimer. Its transmitter is on Dorrance Avenue at Onondaga Avenue in West Seneca, New York.[1] Because AM 1120 is reserved for Class A, clear channel station KMOX in St. Louis, WBBF must leave the air at night to avoid interference. WBBF programming is heard around the clock on FM translator W255DH on 98.9 MHz.



The station signed on in 1947 as WWOL. In 1954, its FM counterpart WWOL-FM (now WHTT-FM) signed on, simulcasting WWOL. In the 1970s, WWOL-AM-FM aired a country music format, later switching to oldies as WHTT and WHTT-FM.

In the 1990s, WHTT (AM) broke away from its simulcast with WHTT-FM, as the AM station was sold to Mercury Communications and changed its format to a brokered programming business format. It began using the call sign WMNY, which represented the word MoNeY.

Switch to WBBF

The WBBF call letters were used on several radio stations in nearby Rochester for over fifty years, including stations now known as WROC, WBZA and most recently, WFKL, which dropped the call sign in early 2005. Then-WMNY picked up the WBBF calls shortly thereafter.

The station had been a part of the Totally Gospel Radio Network from September 1996 until December 2006. The network moved to a stronger 24-hour signal in Western New York on sister station 1270 WHLD as well as other stations across the U.S., including FM station WFWO in 2010.

Spanish-language Christian

In 2007, a Spanish-language Christian music and talk station was launched by Totally Gospel Radio Network. All of the Spanish-language programming on WBBF which was initially produced by the Totally Gospel Radio Network was sold to Assemblia Iglesia, a local Hispanic ministry headed by Pastor Sam Rivera.[citation needed]

When Cumulus Media switched WHLD from adult standards to CBS Sports Radio early in 2013, the company planned to move the former WHLD format to WBBF, but people in the Spanish speaking community wrote to Cumulus about the station's value to Western New York Latinos. The ministry's programming remained.[2]

The original Totally Gospel Radio Network format returned to the airwaves on WBBF in January 2016 during drive times, along with a blend of Urban Gospel and Hispanic Christian programming throughout the week. Totally Gospel Network returned as the primary format on WBBF as of September 2017.

WBBF went silent on July 16, 2019, and resumed broadcasting December 20. For the following 14 months, the station resumed simulcasting WHTT-FM as temporary programming, identifying itself as WBBF only in station identification.

Classic hip hop

Previous logo

On February 27, 2021, WBBF dropped its simulcast with WHTT and flipped to classic hip hop, branded as "98.9 The Vibe", with programming sourced from the co-owned Westwood One Radio Network. The 98.9 FM translator indirectly reunites the WBBF call letters with one of the frequencies it used during its time on Rochester radio.[3]

WBBF was one of three Buffalo AM stations, along with WUFO and WWWS, offering programming for the Buffalo market's African-American community. WBBF, WUFO and WWWS have FM translators and use the FM dial position to identify themselves. They compete with full-power FM station WBLK, which has an urban contemporary format.

Top 40/CHR

On July 14, 2023, at 6 p.m., after playing "Feels Good" by Tony! Toni! Toné!, WBBF switched to Top 40/CHR, branded as "Hot 98.9", with the first song being "Flowers" by Miley Cyrus. The format flip was the closing domino in a series of format changes that had taken place in Buffalo over the previous month, most directly nearby WKSE on 98.5 (the market's previous heritage top-40/CHR station) shifting to an adult lean following the sale of its own hot-AC sister station WTSS to a religious broadcaster in June.[4]


  1. ^ Radio-Locator.com/WBBF
  2. ^ Kwiatkowski, Jane (2013-01-14). "Hispanic radio station fights for its survival". Buffalo News. Retrieved 2013-01-24.
  3. ^ Buffalo Gets A Classic Hip-Hop Vibe Radioinsight - March 1, 2021
  4. ^ Cumulus Gets Hot in Buffalo

42°49′50″N 78°48′01″W / 42.83056°N 78.80028°W / 42.83056; -78.80028