WZEE
Broadcast areaSouth Central Wisconsin
Frequency104.1 MHz (HD Radio)
BrandingZ104
Programming
FormatTop 40 (CHR)
SubchannelsHD2: IHeartRadio's The Standard (Adult standards/golden oldies)
HD3: Air1 (Contemporary worship music)
AffiliationsPremiere Networks
Ownership
Owner
WIBA (AM), WIBA-FM, WMAD, WTSO, WXXM
History
First air date
1949 (1949)
Former call signs
WKOW-FM (1949-early 1950s)
WMFM (early 1950s-1975)
Call sign meaning
The phonetic sound of the letter Z, for its WHTZ-inspired branding
Technical information
Facility ID41980
ClassB
ERP12,000 watts
HAAT306 meters (1,004 ft)
Translator(s)HD3: 103.3 W277AE (Madison)
Links
WebcastListen Live
Listen Live (HD2)
Listen Live (HD3)
Websitez104fm.iheart.com
air1.com (HD3)

WZEE (104.1 FM) is a radio station licensed to Madison, Wisconsin and serving South Central Wisconsin. Known on-air as "Z104," the station is owned and operated by iHeartMedia (formerly Clear Channel Communications until 2014) and broadcasts a Top 40 (CHR) music format.

Station history

former logo

The station originally launched in 1948 as WKOW-FM, sharing ownership with WKOW-AM (the current WTSO). New ownership in the early 1950s re-called the station to WMFM. In the mid-1970s, the station converted from classical music to its current Top 40 format, adopting the WZEE call sign and "Z104" on-air brand as well. During its early years, "Z104" ran an automated Top 40 (CHR) format XT40 from Drake-Chenault programming, but live-and-local content would be added to the station over the years.

In June 1987, Z104 was one of several Top 40 stations in the United States to ban George Michael's top-charting song I Want Your Sex entirely by the station's music director Matt Hudson. Hudson replied to The Capital Times that the station's huge teenage audience made the recording too hot to handle, and he doesn't want to be responsible for putting out the message that is okay to say the title of the song, especially for the 12-year-olds who listen to Z104.

Z104 was original home to the popular morning drive-time pairing of "Connie and Fish" during the 2000s; the pair would move to Clear Channel's Milwaukee classic rock sister station WQBW in 2008, with the show remaining on WZEE in a simulcast. When WQBW became Top 40 station WRNW in 2010, "Connie & Fish" became "Connie & Curtis" after "Fish" Calloway left Clear Channel to work for the competitor 931 Jamz (WJQM). On September 4, 2012, "Connie & Curtis" (who had left for WLHT in West Michigan, ironically a competitor of WZEE sister WSNX) would be replaced on both WZEE and WRNW by the nationally syndicated Elvis Duran and the Morning Show. "Z104" schedule features voicetracked or syndicated programming (including Elvis Duran and fellow Premiere Networks show On Air with Ryan Seacrest).

HD Radio

WZEE broadcasts a HD radio signal, with its HD2 subchannel originally carrying an urban contemporary/hip-hop format to complement the main "Z104" format; that format was replaced in Fall 2013 by a simulcast of "Classical Highlights," a classical music channel that is heard on iHeartMedia's IHeartRadio platform. By December 2022, Classical Highlights would be replaced with "The Standard," iHeartRadio's channel devoted to music and artists of the adult standards and golden oldies genres.

WZEE briefly aired a simulcast of sister sports station WTSO on its HD3 subchannel in 2012.[1] The HD3 signal would be restarted by July 2021, carrying the contemporary worship music network Air1 and serving as the originating signal of low-power simulcast W277AE, which is owned by Air1 parent Educational Media Foundation.[2][3]

References

  1. ^ http://hdradio.com/station_guides/widget.php?id=95 HD Radio Guide for Madison, Wisconsin
  2. ^ “'K-Love' Owner Gets Madison Signal in Station Swap,” from Northpine.com, 11/13/2020 (accessed 12/12/2022)
  3. ^ "FCC Monitor: New FM’s Sign On at Tip of Minnesota’s Arrowhead," from Northpine.com, 7/25/2021 (accessed 12/12/2022)

43°03′04″N 89°29′13″W / 43.051°N 89.487°W / 43.051; -89.487