WQFX
CityGulfport, Mississippi, US
Broadcast areaGulfport-Biloxi metropolitan area
Frequency1130 kHz
BrandingMy Power Gospel
Programming
FormatGospel music
Ownership
OwnerWalking by Faith Ministries, Inc.
History
First air date
May 7, 1975 (1975-05-07)
Former call signs
WGUF (1976–1985)
WAIZ (1985–1986)
Call sign meaning
From former "Foxy 96" name of the formerly co-owned FM
Technical information
Facility ID61306
ClassD
Power1,000 watts (daytime only)
Transmitter coordinates
30°23′21″N 89°06′23″W / 30.38917°N 89.10639°W / 30.38917; -89.10639Coordinates: 30°23′21″N 89°06′23″W / 30.38917°N 89.10639°W / 30.38917; -89.10639
Translator(s)W254DJ (98.7 MHz) Gulfport
Links
Websitewww.mypowergospel.com

WQFX (1130 AM) is a radio station in Gulfport, Mississippi, United States, broadcasting a gospel music format. It is owned by Walking by Faith Ministries, Inc., and operates from studios in nearby Biloxi and a transmitter in Gulfport. 1130 kHz is a clear-channel frequency shared by three North American stations (CKWX, KWKH, and WBBR), requiring WQFX to operate on a daytime-only basis on the AM band. The station also broadcasts on an FM translator, W254DJ (98.7 FM), which allows it to broadcast around-the-clock, including when the AM facility cannot be active.

Established as a commercial station in 1975, by 1986, it became a simulcast of its sister FM station, WQFX-FM 96.7. In 1992, the simulcast was broken and the station leased—and later bought—by its present owner to broadcast the current gospel format.

History

On May 8, 1974, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) awarded a construction permit to Robert Barber, Jr., George Sliman, and F. M. Smith, doing business as the Gulf Broadcasting Company, for a new 500-watt daytime-only radio station on 1130 kHz at Gulfport.[1] It had been a long wait for the trio to get the permit, having filed their application in 1969 but having to wait through a comparative hearing process to get the frequency.[1] WGUF went on the air May 7, 1975, with a country music format.[2] Two years later, the same group launched WGUF-FM 96.7; Holton Turnbough bought full ownership of both stations in 1979.[1] The country format was jettisoned in 1983 in favor of all-news, utilizing the programming of CNN Radio with local reporters and inserts.[3]

WGUF, Inc., Turnbough's company, filed to sell the AM and FM stations to Joyner Communications in August 1984,[4] but the Joyner transaction fell through, leading to a second and successful sale to Caravelle Broadcast Group of Mississippi that October.[5] Even after the sale, however, Turnbough and Broadcast Music, Inc., a performing rights organization, maintained a legal feud over back royalty payments owed for music played on the WGUF stations. Turnbough had a policy of purposely being behind on royalty payments, telling a Sun Herald reporter, "I always paid my bills late on purpose. I just don't like copyright fees. I don't think they give all the money to the people they're supposed to give it to."[6]

On January 1, 1985, the two stations relaunched with new programming and separate call letters: the FM became WQFX "Foxy 96", an urban contemporary station, while the AM changed to WAIZ "Big WAIZ Country".[7] The country station proved a poor ratings performer in a market with a glut of similar stations and changed to an oldies format at the start of 1986, using the same WQFX call sign as the FM.[8]

Steere Broadcasting of Kalamazoo, Michigan, acquired WQFX-AM-FM for $1.25 million in 1986.[9] The AM then began to simulcast the FM.[10]

After a proposed $47,500 sale of the AM in May 1991 never materialized, Steere tried to sell the WQFX stations to Urban Media Group in December 1991 for $500,000; the sale price consisted solely of promissory notes to Caravelle and Turnbough's estate.[11] However, this sale also did not close. As Steere steered toward bankruptcy, in 1992, Faith Tabernacle of Praise in Biloxi began operating the station as a gospel music outlet, part of a larger mission to start new Black-owned businesses in the area; the station's studios moved from Gulfport to a former church office in Biloxi.[12] The church would not own the station for several more years. In 1993, a bankruptcy trustee sold WQFX-AM-FM to Southern Horizons Broadcasting Corporation;[13] the FM station, which had continued under Steere operation, was described as "in turmoil" by its new owner.[14] Walking by Faith Ministries purchased WQFX, after four years of managing it, for $34,000 in 1996.[15] By 2004, the station featured recorded and live church services from around 50 churches.[16]

References

  1. ^ a b c FCC History Cards for WQFX
  2. ^ "WGUF(AM)" (PDF). Broadcasting Yearbook. 1977. p. C-116. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2020-09-06. Retrieved 2021-12-24.
  3. ^ Cauchon, Dennis (September 15, 1983). "Broadcaster betting news will be good". The Sun. Biloxi, Mississippi. p. A12. Retrieved December 24, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  4. ^ "Changing Hands" (PDF). Broadcasting. August 6, 1984. p. 74. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2021-03-08. Retrieved 2021-12-24.
  5. ^ "For the Record" (PDF). Broadcasting. October 8, 1984. p. 107. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2021-11-08. Retrieved 2021-12-24.
  6. ^ Cassreino, Terry R. (January 3, 1986). "BMI considers dropping suit". Sun Herald. Biloxi, Mississippi. p. C2. Retrieved December 24, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  7. ^ Creel, Vincent (December 29, 1984). "Two new stations debut on Jan. 1". The Sun. Biloxi, Mississippi. p. Marquee 2. Retrieved December 24, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  8. ^ "Radio: A look at some of the changes". Sun Herald. Biloxi, Mississippi. April 5, 1986. p. Marquee 16. Retrieved December 24, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  9. ^ "For the Record" (PDF). Broadcasting. June 2, 1986. p. 86. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2021-11-08. Retrieved 2021-12-24.
  10. ^ Creel, Vincent (January 21, 1987). "Black-oriented WTAM goes country". Sun Herald. Biloxi, Mississippi. p. D-2. Retrieved December 24, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  11. ^ "Transactions" (PDF). Radio & Records. December 20, 1991. p. 6. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2021-10-01. Retrieved 2021-12-24.
  12. ^ Peterson, Patrick (August 15, 1992). "Message to the Masses". Sun Herald. Biloxi, Mississippi. p. B-1. Archived from the original on December 24, 2021. Retrieved December 24, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  13. ^ "Transactions" (PDF). Radio & Records. February 19, 1993. p. 9. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2021-10-01. Retrieved 2021-12-24.
  14. ^ Lacy, Mike (March 31, 1993). "Southern Horizons gets final OK to buy WQFX". Sun Herald. Biloxi, Mississippi. p. B-8. Archived from the original on December 24, 2021. Retrieved December 24, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  15. ^ "Transactions" (PDF). Radio & Records. March 15, 1996. p. 6. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2021-10-01. Retrieved 2021-12-24.
  16. ^ Bergeron, Kat (August 27, 2004). "WQFX urban gospel". Sun Herald. Biloxi, Mississippi. p. B-6. Archived from the original on December 24, 2021. Retrieved December 24, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.