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KNEW (910 AM, "910am") is a radio station in San Franciscomarker, Oaklandmarker, and San Josemarker, CAmarker, USAmarker. KNEW is the newest of the Bay Areamarker's conservative talk radio stations. 910am is owned by Clear Channel. Prior to the format change, the station operated as CNET Radio, offering business and technology news 24 hours a day. Under that format, the station simulcasted nationally on XM Satellite Radio channel 130.

The KNEW callsign is a legacy of former owner Metropolitan Radio (Metromedia) which once owned legendary station WNEWmarker in New York and modeled KNEW after that station as a personality-driven news and music station. When that format failed, KNEW switched to an oldies format led by program director John Hawkins, designed to bring back nostaligia for 910's earlier days as Top 40 rocker KEWBmarker.

Prior to the KNEW and KEWB incarnations, the station was owned for 3 decades by Joseph R. Knowland, owner and publisher of the Oakland Tribune as KLX. Its transmitter is located in the Point Isabel area of the Richmond Annex neighborhood in Richmond, Californiamarker on San Francisco Baymarker.

History

KLX

KLX became KEWB on June 8, 1959, after 37 years of ownership by the Oakland Tribune. The station debuted, as KLX, on May 3, 1922, with 250 watts of power, from studios in the Tribune Tower at Thirteenth and Franklin streets. Power was increased over the years, eventually reaching 5,000 watts. In late 1956, KLX moved to the Bermuda Building on Franklin Street. In 1959 (in part to pay off campaign debts related to U.S. Senator William Knowland's unsuccessful 1958 California gubernatorial campaign), the Knowland family sold KLX to the former publishers of Collier's magazine (which had ceased publication in December 1956).

KEWB

KEWB was operated by Crowell Collier Broadcasting (the former publishers ofCollier's Weekly magazine) from 1959 to 1966. As memorable as its Los Angelesmarker sister station KFWBmarker, "Color Radio-Channel 91" is considered the launching pad for the radio careers of Casey Kasem, Gary Owens, "The Real" Don Steele, and Robert W. Morgan. Other notable personalities included Don McKinnon, Buck Herring, "Honest" John Trotter, Art Nelson, Bobby Dale, and Perry Roberts.

Casey Kasem, who went by the moniker "Casey at the Mike," after the famous baseball poem Casey at the Bat, had been doing celebrity impersonations and cartoon character voices between records. The KEWB program director told him to stop doing that, and left without a schtick as a radio DJ, he looked around the station for inspiration. Finding a bunch of Billboard magazines in a waste basket, he conceived of the idea of relating rock trivia to the audience between the songs, which led to the development of the successful format upon which he built his later career.

Morgan went by his last name while working the morning drive at KEWB. Steele worked the 3 - 7:00PM shift. Both had short stays, being swayed a few months later to joining Bill Drake's new "Boss Radio" at KHJ, Los Angeles. Drake's conversion of San Francisco's KFRC to the same format would bring an end to Top 40 radio and eventually the call letters KEWB.

KNEW

In 1966, the station was purchased by Metromedia Broadcasting and changed the station's call letters to KNEW. Metromedia flipped the format to talk radio. By the end of the decade, the station found it couldn't compete against KGOmarker and switched to an oldies format, following a script and jingles reminiscent of KEWB. In 1972, the station added a 9 - 12:Noon "Sex Talk" show hosted by Don Chamberlain. By July of 1974, the station's format changed again, this time to a 24-hour country station. In the 1990s, the format became classic country. In September 1997, the station changed from local DJ's to Real Country using a national satellite feed. In August 1998, the station dropped country for simulcast with KIOI, an adult contemporary station. In 1999, the station began a satellite feed with CNET Radio.

Programming

910am's slogan is "More Stimulating Talk" (similar to Los Angelesmarker sister station KFI-AMmarker), and offers mostly syndicated programs. However, KNEW's mostly syndicated lineup is much different from the standard Clear Channel lineup, because rights to shows such as The Rush Limbaugh Show, Coast to Coast AM and The Sean Hannity Show are held by Citadel-owned KSFOmarker. KNEW tried to gain the rights to Limbaugh several years ago, and in fact the entire talk format on KNEW was designed to lure him, but Limbaugh instead decided to stay on KSFO.

Programming heard on KNEW includes Armstrong & Getty, Rob Black, Glenn Beck Program (the only program from the standard lineup in KNEW's schedule), John and Ken, Roger Hedgecock, The Schnitt Show and Doug Stephan. Though Black is the only local host, Armstrong & Getty, John and Ken and Hedgecock's syndicated programs are all based in (and devote significant time to issues dealing with) the state of Californiamarker.

910am was, until September 10, 2009, the flagship station for Michael Savage's radio show The Savage Nation.

References

  1. USGS, Information System, access date August 10, 2008
  2. KEWB Channel 91 - Oakland - Airchecks and Jingles


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