Page updated January 31, 2017

 

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1300 WBLG

WBLG Trivia: WBLG signed on as WKLX in 1946. WKLX merged with WLEX (1340) by 1952, keeping the 1300 kHz frequency and getting the WLEX calls. Much of the WKLX airstaff (like Claude Sullivan and Artie Kay) went to WVLK.

In 1958 WLEX was sold to Roy B. White and the call letters were changed to WBLG ("Bluegrass").

WBLG Survey (June 1, 1967)
303 KB

Up until 1978 WBLG was 1000 watts non-directional in the daytime, and 1000 watts directional at night. Daytime power was upped to 2500 watts in '78.


PM Drive DJ Randy "Dan" Davidson in the WBLG Control Room (1977)

WBLG became country-formatted WTKC in 1979. In 1986 county music gave way to oldies and the calls were changed to WLXG.

In 1990 WLXG switched to a news-talk format.


WBLG business card for Roy Wasson, who used the air name "Dale King"


WBLG mug from the late 70s

Know anything more about this station? Have any WBLG airchecks, photos or promotional material?
Drop us a line.

John Quincy Remembers WBLG

I worked for WBLG twice. For a couple of months in 1974 I ran their "God Squad" programming Sundays from 7 a.m. until noon, and then manned the board for an hour of NBC's Monitor from noon till 1:00 p.m. At this time the station was in the Blue Cross/Blue Shield building on East Main Street. My full-time gig at the time was working for General Telephone. I worked every other Sunday afternoon and evening at the phone company, so those Sundays where I did the getting-up-early thing for WBLG were brutal. So I decided to give up the glory of putting church services on the air in exchange for a good night's sleep on Saturdays.

By the time I rejoined WBLG in 1977, the station had moved to the old WKYT-TV building behind a drive-in theatre on New Circle Road. They were then owned by North Carolina-based Village Communications, who also owned Lexington's WKQQ-FM and WCHL in Chapel Hill, NC.

In the mid-70s WBLG had transitioned formats from MOR to Adult Contemporary format. Former WKLO jock Jim Rivers was the Program Director. He hired me away from country-formatted WKDJ in Winchester to do 7 p.m. to midnight. It sure was nice to be playing something besides country music -- although much of my shift during the spring and summer months was spent running Cincinnati Reds games.

When I arrived in 1977, WBLG had a decent airstaff with folks like Rivers, Tom Agar, Jill Chandler, and Dan Davidson. Warren Levinson -- who went on to spend many years with UPI and later AP Radio -- was the News Director. Village Communications tried to do a good job competing against WVLK and WLAP, modeling WBLG after WCHL (which imitated Charlotte's WBT). We even had an airborne traffic reporter ("Cher In The Air") just like WVLK.

Several months after I joined the station, I got a chance to work with my first JAM jingle package, a composite package consisting mostly of cuts from "You've Got It". Top-of-the-hour newscasts came from NBC.


One of the control room boards WBLG used in the 1970s

WBLG's control room had a Gates President console along with a pair of ITC triple-decker machines. There was a mono 1960s-era Ampex reel-to-reel in the rack. WBLG was the first station I worked at that played music from carts instead of directly from records.

The studio of sister station WKQQ was just down the hall. One of the best jocks on that AOR-formatted station was a tall skinny kid named Terry Meiners, who ended up doing quite well for himself about 90 miles down the road. 

Jim Rivers eventually left WBLG (and commercial radio) to go to work for the University of Kentucky where he finished his Masters degree. Gary Dickson became the WBLG PD, and I took on the music director's job. Eventually Gary moved over to be the PD of WKQQ and I got the PD slot.

Village put a lot of money and effort into WBLG. However, in early '79, the company announced the sale of WBLG to Ohio's Wendell Triplett. (Village held onto WKQQ for many years afterward.)

Triplett changed the calls to WTKC and took the station country using a live-assist TM format. The studios moved to a converted house on West Main Street. Nearly all of the airstaff made the move to WTKC, but I could see I wasn't going to be one of them since, with the TM programming, a real PD and MD wouldn't be needed -- plus I was only doing a two-hour airshift at the time. I left WBLG in the summer of 1979 to take a full-time gig doing afternoons at WPKE in Pikeville.

Paul J. Hughes Remembers WBLG

I first worked part-time at WBLG-TV (Channel 62) as a projectionist while finishing a degree at UK in Communications.

I then went to WEKY for a year before being hired by Village Communications to be their new midday host on WBLG. The new line-up when they officially took over WBLG (WKQQ -- the former WLEX-FM -- simultaneously) on January 1, 1975, was Jack Pattie mornings, me middays and Skip Olson afternoons. (Skip Olson later became my business partner in Innovation Advertising which later became Hughes Media.)

At midnight New Years Eve (1974-75), my wife and I popped open a champagne bottle with several other new employees live on the air. The WKQQ studio was a tiny room opposite the WBLG studio on the corner of Main and Park Avenue. At that time, the FM was considered the step-child as management from NC thought 'BLG would be the big dog of the two stations. There was even a five-year plan to acquire the UK Football and Basketball rights!

Meanwhile, WKQQ took-off like lightning. I worked with the legendary Lee Abrams who was hired as the consultant for both stations. 'KQQ was totally automated and as part of my duties after the station moved to the old 'KYT building, I had to record a show consisting strictly of liners that ran every break from 8pm to midnight.

The move to the "new" building was eventful as Jim Heavener, President of Village, arranged for a police motorcade escort for employees to go to a party luncheon at the old 'KYT site. That was at the height of employee discord and seeing the building interior with poison ivy, junked cars and snakes only added fuel to the morale. Employees were then told they would be the contractors for the building renovation. I laid the floor tile in the bathrooms.

At the chance to jump, I went to WVLK.

I have some airchecks somewhere. One of interest is the "Pattie-Hurst" show on 'BLG. (See the WBLG Airchecks section below.) My friend Ron Hurst came to visit me from WRKO in Boston. Jack Pattie did an hour of his show with Ron talking about radio. This was within the first year that Village had taken over. No jingles, a strange music rotation and poor processing before the station moved.

I am now at WNSR-AM (560) in Nashville where I have a small piece of the station and produce all of the local spots, liners and promos. I am also a professional photographer and marketing consultant.

(More on Paul J. Hughes on the WVLK Page and here.)

WBLG Airchecks
Jack Pattie, Ron Hurst and J. Paul Hughes on WBLG (June 5, 1975)
23:37 - 11,071 MB
John Quincy on WBLG #1
10:35 - 3726 KB
John Quincy on WBLG #2
8:52 - 3122 KB
John Quincy on WBLG #3
3:06 - 1090 KB
JQ says, "Listen to my airchecks above at your own risk. Luckily I got a whole lot better in the '80s."  
All audio is in downloadable MP3 format.

 

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