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free103point9 Newsroom has moved to http://free103point9.wordpress.com/as of March 18, 2010 A blog for radio artists with transmission art news, open calls, microradio news, and discussion of issues about radio art, creative use of radio, and radio technologies. free103point9 announcements are also included here.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Call letter origins

From Michael Leddy in Orange Crate Art:
You may listen to a radio station daily, but do you know what its call letters really mean? If not, try Call Letter Origins. Charming and no doubt occasionally fanciful bits of lore abound therein.

Some of my favorites:
CFLC: "Canada's Finest Little Community" (Brockville, Ontario).
KAND: Wolf Brand Canned Chili (Corsicana, Texas).
WLBB: "We Love Butter Beans" (Carrollton, Georgia). A Judge Tisinger, the station's first owner, liked his beans.
WMBD: "World's Most Beautiful Drive" (Peoria, Illinois). That drive would be Peoria's Grandview Drive.
WPLJ: "White Port and Lemon Juice" (New York, New York). I know that one from the Mothers of Invention recording of "WPLJ."

I'm surprised to learn that New York's WMCA (home of the Good Guys of my musical youth) is named for the Hotel McAplin, the station's first home. And New York's WOR? "World of Radio." These stations all survive (CFLC as CFJR), most of them programming the syndicated stuff one can hear up and down the dial. (What dial?)

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