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Jul 25 2012

Keymarket turns in two licenses

Tom Taylor on Radio-Info reports this morning that Keymarket Licenses is handing in two licenses locally. They are WASP-AM (1130 Brownsville) and WBGI-AM (1340 Connellsville). No official word as to why the move is being made.

The FCC Daily Digest states the letter for WBGI was written on June 28 while the letter for WASP was written July 16.

7 comments

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  1. John

    When Keymarket bought 94.9…the 2 AMs were the red-haired bastard stepkids of the deal. Keymarket has been hemmoraging money, hence the LMA agreement for 98.3 to K-Love…

  2. Pat Cloonan

    Years ago, I saw a WCVI crew doing a Southmoreland High School football game broadcast. Some time after that I was working in Barnesboro and swapping stories with such stations as WASP and WESA when Kathy Kerestes was down there. AM radio has become a tragic story in the towns between Pittsburgh, Morgantown and Johnstown, with so many of the stations I knew well even 10 years ago now becoming faded memories. I knew WLOA as a crystal radio enthusiast a generation ago. I knew WEDO when it was a player even as a daytimer (and CBS for Pittsburgh!!!) and WMNY when it was WMCK in the old Elks Temple in McKeesport. I was associated at one time or another with such stations as WZUM (as WPLW) and WNCC. And now the company that gave up the old WESA-FM aka WPKV “Duquesne” — and do not get me started on my favorite subject, the public interest, convenience and necessity no longer required of an FCC licensee — also has given up WASP and the remnant of WCVI (I still can’t always remember “WBGI,” sorry to say).
    For each of those stations, to use a phrase often used in Radio-TV Notebook, requiescat in pacem.

  3. Thomas Leturgey

    Pat Cloonan is correct about a lot of things, as is another friend, John Pfab. First we lose broadcast television and now small market radio is quickly becoming the skeletal remains of a dinosaur.

    From my first radio home, WRML in Portage to WEBG in Ebensburg, to WASP and a plethora of like-sized markets in between, radio–AM radio in particular–could be the last respite for radio creativity. Was there ever anything better than fine tuning your radio like a safe-cracker in the middle of the night, trying to find a new, dynamic, station among the clatter of static?

    Places like that still remain, but in far less numbers than even a couple of decades ago.

    WASP…where I was offered a minimum wage job right after receiving my Communications degree from California University of PA. The good old days indeed!

  4. Bill Hearn

    It’s a shame what is happening to AM radio in the area. I worked at both WESA, Charleroi part-time in the early 70’s while going to school and then woud up @ WASP for 3 years full-time from 1976 tom 1979. Bob Logue was my boss (aka Bob Williams) Carl Laughrey is probably turning over in his grave after what he built. I figured it was only a matter of time when they down rated WASP from 5KW to 1KW a while back. Thenm WBGI (old WESA-AM) went off the air earlier this year. Figured there was money problems. Some of these outfits had some big plans buying up all these local stations. Then the move of what was WESA-FM to Duquense/Pittsburgh,tthat would have been OK if it was a 20KW station or better, but a 3KW FM’r just dosen’t cover, the market is just not there. I also worked at WJPA and WMBS in my short broadcast career from 1972 to 1979. I left the broadcast biz after WASP, worked for Motorola for about 6 months them went to work for Allegheny Energy, now FirstEnergy (31+ years). It was a good time while it was happening. Met a lot of good people over the years at all the stations I worked. I would do it again.

    1. Bill Hearn

      Im y last post I said the old WESA-AM was WBGI, my mistake, it was WFGI.

  5. Keith Alan Austin

    I am afraid that the time will come when Thousand Watter AM’s will go away, a victim of big FM purchases where they are thrown in to the mix. Its so hard, if not impossible to launch a new AM, let alone keep an older one going. I was there when the decision came down to pull the plug on WOYL in Oil City. The station wasn’t making any money on one hand, and had massive equipment problems on the other hand. Everything from the ground up needed replaced on top of the fact that it was a 2 stick affair that still needed to power down at night. I didn’t like it, but I would have made the same decision. Its a money pit and the investment would never pay back.
    On the other hand, I am the PD for WFRA in Franklin, WTIV in Titusville, and WMGW in Meadville. We are making money(almost unheard of for AM’s), the equipment is good and our programing is consistent. What is killing these “little guys” is constant change in ownership and format. The audience never knows what they are going to get so they give up on the band.

  6. Ronald Rabatin

    The owner of WMBS tried to buy WCVI when Keystone bought it. Unfortunately, he was out bid. I think the station would be in a much better situation if he bought it.

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