KROY (defunct)

KROY (defunct)

KROY (1240 AM) was a popular radio station in Sacramento, California best known for its "music power" pop/rock format.

Early years

KROY was initiated in 1937 by station owner Royal Miller (for whom the station's call letters were named after) and originally operated at 1210 kHz. In its early years, it programmed the music and programs of its time.

In 1941, KROY moved to 1240 kHz where it stayed for the remainder of the station's history. As the decades passed, KROY would develop itself as the homing ground for many disc jockeys who would eventually find fame nationwide.

The music power years

In the 1960s, with the rise of the rock-and-roll format, KROY developed its own style of programming called "music power", featuring DJs who would use their unique, energetic talents to carry its programming through the next two decades. Supplemented by occasional (and sometimes outlandish) promotions for concerts, clothing, movies, and Cal Expo 4th of July fireworks shows, KROY would become the number one radio station in the Sacramento area for years.

DJ Martin "Wonder Rabbit" Ashley had a memorable jingle set to Woody Woodpecker's theme for his show. It went "Eat a banana, eat a banana- It's the Wonder Wonder Rabbit Show."

In 1975, an FM companion station at 96.9 on the dial, KROI, signed on the air to complement KROY's programming. KROY continued to have high ratings and it's status as Sacramento's number one contemporary station with deejays like Uncle Byron and T.N. Tanaka, Jeff "Mother" Robbins, Terry Nelson, Dancing Danny Wright, Russ Martin with Barry Fyffe, Chuck Hale, Tony Cox and many others. By 1980 new ownership had changed the FM's call letters to match the AM as KROY as well. Unfortunately the new owners weren't that successful at running the operation and found their audience shrinking with increased competition from stations like KZAP and K108/KXOA-FM. In 1981 KROY-AM finally changed its popular Top 40 format and went to album rock. The switch didn't work as ratings declined further. So one year later, in 1982, the call letters were dropped, albeit temporarily.

Later years

In 1985, KROY returned as an Adult Contemporary/Top 40 FM station at 96.9 on the FM dial. By the fall of 1986, the station became known as 97-KROY and was Sacramento's first Rhythmic Top 40 station breaking artists like The Beastie Boys, Run DMC and others. In the Spring of 1987, KROY beat KSFM in the Arbitron ratings for the first time. KROY had an incredible radio team running things during this time. The General Manager was former KHJ/Los Angeles Program Director Ted Atkins(Mr. Showbiz), The PD was Bob West, Harley Davidson did afternoons and was Music Director, and "Good Time" Eric Scott(now Cadillac Jack in Philadelphia)ruled nights. But competition from other stations finally caused KROY to leave the air permanently on November 12, 1990. The 96.9 frequency became KSEG ("The Eagle"), a classic rock station.

On April 1, 1996, in an April Fools' Day stunt, KROY returned to the airwaves one last time (on what was now KSEG) as many of KROY's DJs (including Dave Williams, Johnny Hyde, and Martin "Wonder Rabbit" Ashley) reunited for an historic twelve-hour broadcast recreating a typical KROY broadcast day.

The original station is now home to 1240 KRJY

External links

* [ Official 96.9 The Eagle homepage]
* [ Official 1240 KROY Tribute Site]
* [ KROY Reunion exhibit]
* [ Martin "Wonder Rabbit" Ashely page]

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