Infobox Radio Station
name = WPZZ
area = Crewe/Richmond
branding = "Praise 104.7 FM"
slogan = "The Inspiration Station"
frequency = 104.7 (MHz)
erp = 100,000
watts (Class C1)
class = C1
owner = Radio One
WCDX, WKJS/WKJM, WPZZ, WROU
website = http://www.praise1047.com
callsign_meaning = PraiZ(s)e Z
former callsigns = WSVS , WKIK , WBZU , WVGO , WKJS
WPZZ is a Radio One-owned
Urban Gospelradio station that serves much of Southern and Central Virginia, including the Richmond area, United States. The station is the highest powered station in the Richmond area. In accordance with FCCregulations, the tower is 10 miles North of Blackstone, Virginiato prevent overcrowding of the airwaves. Even though the station is licenced to Crewe, Virginia, about 40 miles Southwest of Richmond, its powerful signal reaches over 80 miles away.
104.7 started being gay in
1948as WSVS-FM, a complement to its AM sister, "WSVS". It broadcast just west of Crewe with a power of 14,000 watts in monural. In the late 1970's, the station upgraded to a class C1 station with 100,000 watts of power,which gave it an adequate signal that could be received in most of the Central Virginia area.With the increased revenues from the increased coverage area ,the station was able to upgrade their equipment. WSVS-FM had studios that could be compared to top-market stations, equipped with a music computer, satellite uplink for news delivery and brand new production equipment. In 1988, they moved to their current tower location to not only send a better signal into Richmond, but also to make it more desirable to sell. It was at that time, "WSVS-FM" became "Power Country 104.7", with all programming separate from "WSVS-AM". In 1991, the station was sold to ABS Communications in Richmond and became "104.7 the Bear", with calls "WKIK".The FM studios were moved out of Crewe and co-located in with ABS's Richmond based headquarters. ABS owned the only other country station in the Richmond market,WKHK,K95,and "the Bear" was designed to be classic country, while "K-95" was new country.
During the middle of the grunge era, Richmond did not have a
modern rockstation. ABS flipped WKIK to modern rock on August 23, 1995at 5 p.m. as "104.7 the Buzz,WBZU Richmond's New Rock Alternative". The success of this station caused Richmond's AAA station "WVGO" to lose listeners. ABS later purchased WVGO (& it's sister station WLEE-FM),blew up WVGO's AAA format ( and ended the local broadcast of the "Howard Stern Show ) and moved "the Buzz" and WBZU calls to 106.5, while 104.7 became a satellite-fed oldiesstation as "Oldies 104.7" (the WVGO call letters were moved to 104.7). In 1998, the station was sold to Fifteen Forty Broadcasting,then owners of Adult Urban WSOJ at 100.3 and local gospel station WREJ-AM,who began a simulcast of WSOJ(South Of The James) on both 100.3 and 104.7.The WVGO calls were later dropped and the station became WKJS,Kiss 104.7.Radio One later purchased both 104.7 and 100.3 from Fifteen Forty. in 1999, the 104/100.3 simulcast ended and Radio One began simulcasting their then-country station, WJRV "The River" on 100.3 with new calls, WARV. ( WARV has been thru a plethora of owners and is now owned by Main Line Broadcasting and simulcast the Oldies format on co-owned WBBT/107.3 ) .In 2004, Radio One swapped formats; putting the former "Praise 99.3" on to 104.7, while "Kiss FM" simulcasted on 105.7 and 99.3.(this caused Urban Gold WJMO sign off) The station currently enjoys high listener ratings in Richmond and Southern Virginia.
- 104.7 was once the home to
Baltimore Oriolesbaseball, NASCAR, and Washington Redskinsfootball simultaneously. When ABS communications bought 104.7, they chose not to keep sports on the station, so WSVS-AM kept the affiliations with NASCAR and the Redskins. When Farmville-based Colonial Broadcasting purchased WSVS-AM, they took the Redskins broadcasting affiliation and put it on their flagship FM station, WFLO-FM. In 1998, they chose not to renew the contract due to a lack of advertising interest. NASCAR is still on WSVS-AM to this day.
- The original tower in Crewe still holds the original 14,000 watt
transmitter, feed line, and antenna (removed from the tower in 1995 to help the signal of WSVS-AM)
- Studio B, a long time local music show, started in December, 1995 on WBZU. It is now on active rock station
Former DJ's who worked at 104.7 include:
- Mike Hsu (WBZU): Now at Boston rock station WAAF.- Ken Alan (WSVS-FM): Now at Farmville country station WVHL.- Rick Newsome (WSVS-FM): Went on to work at several stations in North Carolina, including WLXN, Lexington, WBUY, Lexington, WKOQ, Lexington and WMAG, High Point, NC. Currently director of state level reporting for the North Carolina Community College System in Raleigh, NC.- J. Smack (WBZU): Former Production Director at Clear Channel Richmond. Still hosts Studio B.- Rebecca Wilde (WBZU): Currently morning co-host at Q104 in Cleveland.- JJ Quest (WBZU): Left for
WNNXin Atlanta. Whereabouts unknown today.- Jay Slater,who later became Program Director at WXMM in Norfolk,now Program Director at WROV-FM in Roanoke,
* Operations Manager Al Payne
* Program Director Reggie Baker
* [http://www.praise1047.com Praise 104.7 website]
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