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This page will attempt to showcase the histories of New Jersey FM Radio stations,
past and present.
Please feel free to e-mail me with any information you would like to contribute to this page and
you will be credited.
Some information provided by:
Bruce Elving's FMedia! newsletters, 1986-present
Dave Hughes' NYRTV website (no longer online)
Do you, or anyone you know, work in NJ radio, either now or in the past?
is looking for you!
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WVLT - 92.1 FM, Vineland
92.1 in Vineland first went on the air in October 1968 as WDVL, later switching to WKQV on August 30, 1979.
WDVL was originally owned by Mort & Vivian Hendrickson; Mort later sold the station in 1970.
92.1 originally simulcast its AM sister station.
In the 1970's, Raymond "Big Ray" McDaniel hosted an hour of spiritual music called, "Sunday Morning."
On August 15, 1986, the calls were changed to WVLT.
They have always featured some form of adult contemporary music, however, in recent years, they have featured some specialty block programming on nights and weekends.
WVLT stands for "Vineland's Lite."
One of the more popular slogans they used in the past was "92 First" and "Mix 92.1"
On May 24, 2002, WVLT switched to a (mostly) satellite-fed Oldies format as "Crusin' 92".
(Thanks to Bryan Vargo for a WVLT logo)
(Thanks to Charlie Mills for an old WDVL business card)
(Thanks to R. Lee Baines & Bob Spain for some of this information)
WLOM-LP - 92.7 FM, Ocean City
WLOM-LP was one of the first LPFM's to be granted a CP in New Jersey on June 26, 2002; it was originally allocated to Ocean City on June 15, 2001.
The station is owned by Calvary Chapel Of Ocean City.
WLOM-LP went on the air in December 2003 with a Contemporary Christian format.
WOBM-FM - 92.7 FM, Toms River
WOBM, went on the air March 1, 1968 - in the middle of a snowstorm!
The first song played on WOBM was Paul Mauriat's, "Love Is Blue".
The original staff in 1968 included Gene Slater (Program Director) and Danny Heileman (General Manager).
One of the owners of the station was Ed Levy (brother of Bob Levy).
In 1970, the lineup was: Dick Gunton (6am-10a), Gary Cubberly (10a-3p), Bob Emmett (3p-8p) & Steve Paul (8p-1a).
The station signed off at 1am for the first couple of years.
One of the original DJ's at WOBM, Bill Schaefer, was featured in just about every time slot during his two years at the station.
He started doing mid-days, then was switched to evenings (8pm to midnight) hosting the "Music For Dreamers" show, then went to afternoon drive, and finally, handled morning drive duties.
Some of the personalities at WOBM in the early 1970's included Dick Allen (7pm-12mid), Bob Marek (afternoons), Dick Gunton (5am-9am), Gary Cubberly (9am-2pm), Rick McDonough (2pm-6pm), Greg Kozier (6pm-10:30pm) and Mike Lennen (10:30pm-5am).
Jay Sorensen was one of the weekenders.
Joe Merry was the news director, assisted by Art Sarnoski, Roger Tees and Phil Hubbard.
Paul Most was the GM.
In the late 60's/early 70's, Ray Norman hosted a Saturday night show, called "Getting Sentimental", which featured music of the 1930's & 1940's.
Ralph Hahn started out as a part-time news anchor/reporter in 1972-1973.
He later re-joined the station in 1980 as a full-time news anchor/reporter, political editor & assignment editor, and then again in 2004-2005 as a morning news anchor.
In 1981, 92.7 gained an AM counterpart.
Ken Pauli (previously at WERA and WRDR) handled news duties for a time in the 1980's.
Another prominent personality was Rick St. James, who also had a few stints at the station.
Rick started in overnights in 1983, eventually moved to mid-days, and later became the PD in the mid-1980's, and the Chief Engineer in the early 1990's.
After leaving WOBM for a time, he came back in 1997 to do the evening shift, before leaving again in 1998 to focus on his engineering career.
WOBM has always featured an adult contemporary format, which was once mixed in with news updates at the top and bottom of the hour, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
However, in 1996, that all changed when Nassau Broadcasting took over operations and drastically cut the news department.
In June 1996, WOBM started using the slogan "Ocean 92.7", later changing it to "Soft Rock 92.7" in September 1997.
One person who has stayed with the station from the beginning is Bob Levy, who has been hosting "Topic A" on Sunday mornings since 1979.
He has also been a DJ and was once GM of WOBM.
Another long-time fixture at WOBM is Sports Director, Kevin Williams.
Kevin and "Steve Paul" Garsh (who also doubled as a Sales Manager for the station) hosted the morning show from the mid/late 1980's to 1996.
The first hour of their show (5am-6am) was titled, "Coffee With Kevin & Steve", basically a talk segment about current and local events.
When Nassau took over in 1996, Kevin & Steve were replaced with Shawn Michaels (who was doing mornings on WADB in Pt. Pleasant) and Lisa Leonard.
Lisa left in 2003 and was replaced with Jen Ursillo (who was on WRAT).
In 2004, Sue Moll replaced Jen.
Lisa later rejoined the station, doing mid-days.
The WOBM calls stand for "Ocean, Burlington, Monmouth."
Some pictures of past and present WOBM personalities can be found here.
In January 2013, WOBM-FM moved their studios to 8 Robbins St. in downtown Toms River (the former Ocean County Observer newspaper building), after spending nearly 45 years at a building on Rt. 9 in Bayville.
(Thanks to Mark Fletcher for digging up an old WOBM logo)
(Thanks to Ray Blunt, Stephen Paul Garsh, Ralph Hahn, Rich Holdsworth, Mike Lennen, Roy Nilsen, Ken Pauli & Bill Schaefer for some of this information)
(Thanks to Steve Biro for an old "FM Stereo" WOBM sticker/logo)
("Ocean 92.7" logo - from my own personal collection)
WPAT - 93.1 FM, Paterson
The origins of this station date all the way back to April 10, 1938, when W2XMN, owned by Major Edwin Armstrong, put out their first test broadcast on 43.7mc with 600 watts.
On July 18, 1939, the station moved over to 42.8mc (after briefly being on 41.6mc) with 35,000 watts.
In 1941, the station moved again to 44.1mc and then to the present FM band on 98.9 and later on 100.9 in 1946.
Two sets of calls were bring used concurrently at this time, WFMN and KE2XCC.
Edwin Armstrong also operated stations W31NY on 43.1mc and W2XMN (experimentaly) on 117.43 in 1942.
In 1948, the station again moved, this time to the present 93.1 FM with calls of W2XEA.
The station went off the air on March 6, 1954 - only to resurface 3 years later on March 29, 1957 as WPAT, which had moved over from 103.5 FM.
The 103.5 operation had started on February 1, 1948 as WNNJ and then later switching to WPAT.
There were so few listeners to FM at the time that when the antenna was blown down in a windstorm, WPAT didn't even bother to get the station back on the air.
Between 1938 and 1954, the 93.1 station was licensed to Alpine NJ, broadcasting from Edwin Armstrong's famous radio tower.
When the station came back on in 1957, it was re-licensed to Paterson.
WPAT was best known for it's easy listening format, using such slogans as "Easy 93" or "Soft And Easy 93.", along with its AM counterpart.
A majority of WPAT-FM's programming (and for a time, the AM) was automated using a machine called the IGM-770.
A picture of the machine, along with an exterior pic of the studio building (circa 1982) can be seen here.
In the late 1980's and early 1990's, WPAT started to increase the amount of contemporary vocals in their programming.
In the Fall of 1991, they added some Soft AC cuts and in 1992, added some Hot AC.
On January 1, 1993, WPAT completely dropped the instrumentals and went with a basic AC format.
In October 1994, they switched to a mainstream AC, with the slogan "Today's 93.1".
Then in January 1996, WPAT was sold to Spanish Broadcasting Systems and flipped the format to Spanish AC on January 20.
They initially called themselves "Suave 93-1", later becoming "Amor".
The first morning DJ in 1996 was Ismael Diaz Tirado, who had been a morning fixture on WADO in the 1960's.
(Some info taken from the WPAT-AM profile in "The Airwaves Of New York" book)
(Thanks to Bryan Vargo for the "Amor 93.1" logo and an old WPAT logo)
(WPAT Lamp, Note and Gaslight logos, courtesy of: http://home.att.net/~carla.sanzone/wpat_faq.htm)
(Thanks to Mark D & Izzy Diaz for providing some of this information)
WEZW - 93.1 FM, Wildwood Crest
93.1 was originally allocated to Wildwood Crest on April 21, 1988, was granted the WDOX calls on May 17, 1990 (at the time, standing for original CP holder David Oxenford) and then went on the air on August 15, 1993 with an easy listening format, using the slogan "The Docks."
This ultimately lasted for only 6 months and then in May 1994 became an alternative rock station.
Then, on March 1, 1999, calls were changed to WBNJ (taken from 105.5 in Cape May Ct. House) and 93.1 began to simulcast the Urban AC format of WTTH, 96.1 in Margate City.
In July 2001, the WDOX calls and format resurfaced on 106.7 in North Cape May.
93.1 changed calls to WDTH on October 16, 2003.
On September 15, 2006, 93.1 changed calls to WEZW.
On October 30, 2009, WEZW broke away from the WTTH simulcast and started broadcasting Christmas music.
On December 28, 2009, WEZW became "Easy 93.1", playing "soft & easy favorites".
WDHN - 93.5 FM, New Brunswick
This station signed on in May 1948 and was owned by the Daily Home News.
It was a 1000 watt Class A station that featured classical music.
It went dark around 1952 due to a general lack of advertiser and listener interest in FM radio.
The frequency allocation was deleted in the 1960's, when the FCC increased the power permitted to Class A and B FM stations.
(Thanks to Phil Galasso for this information)
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