You know, words and tributes can only convey so much about a radio station.  Sometimes it's better just to hear it for yourself.

These audio files are all in MP3 format.  If your browser has an audio plug-in, the file should load and play within your browser.  If not, you'll need to right click and select "save (link or target) as" -- or CTRL-"Apple" for one-button Mac mousekateers -- and then save it to your hard drive to play.  Windows Media Player will play these ... but I prefer Winamp (free).  Smaller, less bloated and uses less computer resources.

NOTE: Downloading these files indicates your agreement to abide by all copyright and fair use laws.  These are strictly for the entertainment and enjoyment of the end user.  Selling these or otherwise exploiting these for your own personal gain is a big no-no.  Play fair, and everything will be okay.

OKAY, RUSSELL, WHY DON'T I HEAR THE MUSIC??!!   Easy: that would run me afoul of copyright laws.  To put entire songs on here, in the eyes of ASCAP, BMI and RIAA, would amount to my file-sharing the music (yes, even if the source recording was a cheap cassette!), making me a sitting duck for all sorts of legal niceties.  The RIAA has already gone after 12-year-olds, so they wouldn't hesitate to swoop down on this bumpkin.  A solution?  Pay a license fee to all the music organizations to allow that.  And said fees aren't cheap.  No thanks, I don't want to start charging people to enjoy BIRMINGHAM REWOUND.

At least in 'telescoped' form, you'll still get a general feel of what K-99 sounded like, and that's the whole idea anyway.

Okay then, as the battered cliche goes: "Listen and remember"   --Russell


That's how they're known in the radio business.  FCC rules require a station to identify itself by call letters and "city of license" at or close to the top of every hour.  This, of course, explains why listeners heard the "K-99 is..." sweeper every 60 minutes.  "K-99" was a catchy nickname for the listener's (and especially Arbitron diary holder's!) benefit.  But the FCC recognized only its callsign.

K-99 used a couple of different versions of these legal IDs during the WVOK-FM era (1976-79).  Here's one:

K-99 legal ID from January 1978.  (Those of us born in the '60s and raised on Sesame Street and Electric Company will immediately recognize the synth opening)

After the WVOK-AM's spinoff and the change to WRKK, a new ID was put into use, and is the one I fondly remember:

K-99 "So Fine" legal ID used 1979 to 1981.  The music bed used here is the middle bridge from the Electric Light Orchestra song "So Fine" (from A New World Record)

K-99 "Tom Sawyer" legal ID used 1981-82.  The music heard is the opening to the 1981 Rush song "Tom Sawyer" (from Moving Pictures).  Apologies for the music overlap; this is the best example I have.  If I can find a recording of this 'in the clear', I'll add it.


Wondering what K-99 sounded like?  Or do you seek a nice trip down memory dial?  You've come to the right place!  Here for your listening enjoyment and aural edification are some samples from airchecks (radio recordings) I have of K-99:

"News Blimp" module from early 1978 -- The News Blimp was a syndicated feature short (or "module") offered to FM rock stations like K-99.  Here's an episode dealing with an amusing way some Colorado fans dealt with negative Monday Night Football coverage (and Cosell!).  You'll just love Howard Cosell's reaction to the brick-throwing fest -- what a thin skin.  And Don Keith mentions that it's dedicated "with love, to Herb Winches."

K-99 break from January 1978 -- From the "I don't smoke it, I just read the articles" department, here's a segment which includes a commercial for the latest issue of ... High Times Magazine!!  Listen, but don't inhale.

K-99 break from June 1978 -- A recent find, and one of my favorite K-99 airchecks.  Don Keith comes out of the morning Avondale Park set.  Another of the early legal IDs can be heard here ("where your FM ... ROCKS!").  The quality is a bit poor, though, as I'm told it was originally recorded on one of those 3-for-$1.00 cheapo blank cassettes.

K-99 break from May 1979 -- K-99 was already WRKK, and "Paul" promos the Jazz Night album (Tim Weisberg), and goes into a STEREO WAREHOUSE commercial (remember their "Sweet sound of music / Stereo Warehouse turns it on!" jingle?).  Ironically, the second commercial is for the Ramada Inn Airport "Yesterdays" Lounge DISCO.  Yeah, most K-99 listeners loved to put on platform shoes, half-open silk shirt and hit the dance floor.  Sure.


From a 90-minute recording I have of K-99 dated September 4, 1980, here are all the breaks heard during that stretch.  This was when K-99 was riding high in the wake of their Rolling Stone magazine nod.  I've broken it up into three parts for easier digestion:

September 4, 1980: PART 1
September 4, 1980: PART 2 -- includes an entire Earth News Radio module.  Like News Blimp, it was a short feature designed for FM stations.  The sponsor here is "Agree" Shampoo, and the commercial will make you howl.  You DO remember "the greasies" ... don't you?
September 4, 1980: PART 3

ENJOY!  If you have any recordings of K-99 you'd like to share, please let me know!


Page created 11/30/2006 -- 312 AM EST