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WIQB Rock 103 Ann Arbor

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1027BrianFM
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WIQB Rock 103 Ann Arbor

Post by 1027BrianFM » Mon Mar 06, 2017 2:26 am

Back in High school, which was like 95-99 I used to really dig WIQB when they were doing the AAA format that was pretty similar to 94.5's Brief attempt at in Toledo. In mid 98 or so I was bummed when they shifted to AOR. I remember them running ad's mocking the old format, mostly this one song which I cannot remember the artist, "Kiss the rain".

Then in fall 2000, as predicted on one of the past radio boards WIQB flipped to country resurrecting W4 country. WIQB moved to an AM station in Myrtle beach SC for a time, I think the call are available now. On Facebook typed Rock 103 Wiqb in the search and I saw a poster who said he was the last one out the door before the change took place, playing "you cant kill rock and roll" by Ozzy then the station became W4 country.

Was the station mostly AOR prior to the stint with AAA in the mid 90s? The move to country made sense, at the time it was just one too many rock stations but now a days in extreme SE MI/NW OH its WIOT, WXKR, or WRIF. That's it. Just though I'd share, I was going through some old cassette tapes today.

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Plate Cap
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Re: WIQB Rock 103 Ann Arbor

Post by Plate Cap » Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:10 am

I was involved in a number of technical projects for the station, including the power increase with a new antenna and transmitter. Throughout their rock period, from Ernie Winn to Mediabase with Mike Solon as GM, the programming resulted in probably the best rocker I've heard then or now. It all came down to some very talented, rather young staffers, and Ernie being willing to listen their advice.

Things were rather typical of a single-station fleet at the radio ranch on Brassow Rd.....jocks doing odd things at odd hours, various personalities providing entertainment, etc. The place was not unlike WKRP, minus Les Nessman....but the finished product was truly awesome.

It all went away, rather suddenly. I don't wish to disparage any firms or parties; I'll leave it at that.

Wikipedia has a pretty good history, fairly accurate, under 'WWWW'
The box that many broadcasters won’t look outside of was made in 1969 and hasn’t changed significantly since.

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Re: WIQB Rock 103 Ann Arbor

Post by ChrisKun2K5 » Tue Mar 07, 2017 10:42 pm

I have an aircheck somewhere, donated by a friend who used to work in Ann Arbor radio and now lives in Arizona, of the debut of WIQB in March 1975 on what had been WNRZ. They called it "Quadrock 103" back then. The first song was "You Can't Always Get What You Want" by the Rolling Stones. It's interesting to read the old "Ann Arbor Sun" articles from that era on the AADL "Old News" website and see all the vitriol that was spewed at WIQB by the fans of the old free-form progressive WNRZ format.

Someone correct me if I'm wrong on this but my impression is that the station didn't really become a force in the Ann Arbor market until the early 1980s. I never got to listen to the station in the 1980s as I grew up in Macomb County where 102.7 WLBS/WKSG/etc. blocked reception, but have heard it was something of an AOR/CHR hybrid during that time, and also very highly rated. An Ann Arbor News article from March 1980 describes the format as adult contemporary but I'm not sure if that means they were playing Kenny Rogers and Dionne Warwick or if it means they were a "mellow rock" station a la the CBS O&O FM stations (KNX-FM, WBBM-FM etc.) at the time.

I remember listening to the AAA phase circa 1997 while traveling through the area on a high-school band/choir trip to Chicago, but seem to recall they were already AOR by the time I moved to Saline in June 1998. I also recall their Arbitron ratings with the AOR format as being very poor, as they always lost in their own format to WRIF. I doubt they have ever regretted making the move to country.

FWIW, "Kiss the Rain" was by one-hit wonder Billie Myers.

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Re: WIQB Rock 103 Ann Arbor

Post by Vic Doucette » Wed Mar 08, 2017 10:10 am

I worked for Mediabase for about 5 years, starting about 10 weeks after Monday Morning Replay began publishing in the spring of 1988. Great times!

I remember the guys in the Rock department referring to WIQB and other stations like it (heavily researched, slow to add new music, a place where you'd never hear anything you hadn't heard before) as "condom rockers."
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Re: WIQB Rock 103 Ann Arbor

Post by ChrisKun2K5 » Wed Mar 08, 2017 6:05 pm

"Condom rock" is sort of the impression of the station I got during its late '90s return to AOR. It seemed like they waited to add new rock songs until they had crossed to the CHR stations - if at all! An example is "Take a Picture" by Filter, which had already been playing on WKQI and WDRQ for some time when WIQB started playing it as "brand new music." I have to wonder why they dropped the AAA format for that abomination - 107.1 has proven that the format works in Ann Arbor.

radio stain
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Re: WIQB Rock 103 Ann Arbor

Post by radio stain » Fri Mar 10, 2017 8:36 am

When I listen to 102.9 The Buzz out of Nashville the first thing I think of is that this is what WIQB would likely sound like today if it was still on the air. As in, what the direction WIQB was going right before switching to country.

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MWmetalhead
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Re: WIQB Rock 103 Ann Arbor

Post by MWmetalhead » Mon Mar 13, 2017 1:19 pm

I have to wonder why they dropped the AAA format for that abomination - 107.1 has proven that the format works in Ann Arbor.
One word: Cumulus. They made the incredibly stupid call to replace the AAA format with a mullet rock format designed for inbred white trash. They also put Bob & Tom on the air in the morning.

Not long after Cumulus sold the cluster to Clear Channel (who subsequently sold it back to Cumulus), Clear Channel made the very wise move to flip it to Country. I cannot recall if I predicted such a flip, but I certainly remember advocating for it. It's actually outperformed my expectations.

Was nice to see AAA ultimately return on 107.1. Clear Channel was responsible for that move, too.

WIQB during its last couple years as a Rocker generally drew very poor ratings in Washtenaw County. I remember seeing books as low as a 1.2 share. They were generally around a 2.0 share. As a AAA station, they were usually in the 3.0 to 3.5 range.
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Re: WIQB Rock 103 Ann Arbor

Post by Arthur Mometer » Tue Mar 14, 2017 12:04 am

Somewhere I have a cassette of a DX tape of WNRZ from the early 1970s during a tropospheric event when they were 10 kW from 155 feet HAAT from Brassow Rd. It was in August or September, probably around 1972. I heard it barefoot with the telescoping antenna on a Sony portable about 50-55 miles away. They were playing a track by Ravi Shankar as I recall, and there was the sound of crickets in the studio. The crickets really gave it ambience, but I'm not sure if it was really crickets or a sound effects record. Would the mike be hot enough to hear crickets? Anyone remember crickets in the studio?
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Re: WIQB Rock 103 Ann Arbor

Post by mikemach » Tue Mar 14, 2017 8:35 am

One thing I remember about the flip to country on WIQB was some of the DJ's stayed for a while. I particularly remember John O'Leary who I used to listen to on 88.7 when they were cool alternative in the early 90's. I think he was even at WABX early in his career. It was really weird to hear John O'Leary spinning Garth Brooks and the like.

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MWmetalhead
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Re: WIQB Rock 103 Ann Arbor

Post by MWmetalhead » Fri Mar 17, 2017 7:11 am

It was really weird to hear John O'Leary spinning Garth Brooks and the like.
It was even more weird listening to him spin hard rock. He sucked. Total bore.
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Plate Cap
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Re: WIQB Rock 103 Ann Arbor

Post by Plate Cap » Sat Mar 18, 2017 9:29 pm

Arthur Mometer wrote:
Tue Mar 14, 2017 12:04 am
Anyone remember crickets in the studio?
Art, it could be either.

The building was essentially a ranch home turned into a studio. I think it was built on a slab, but it's just too long ago to remember. I remember the FM air studio was a nasty corner room, with the typical dust, dirty carpet, dusty sound absorbent on the walls, and the general odor of a place that is occupied 24/7/365 and only spot cleaned from time to time.

I walked in on a jock having sex with a listener once late one evening. They didn't miss a beat....I went in, hit something on the remote, and left. Nothing to see here, folks.....move along.

Could have been crickets...could have been SFX.....could have been some other rhythmic activity. :rollin

I can't say enough, though...the music mix was epic. Have not heard better since. Our office was a long way away, kind of in a line with WKSG at 102.7.....I installed a log periodic so I could listen, less for the technology and more for the good tunes.
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audiophile
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Re: WIQB Rock 103 Ann Arbor

Post by audiophile » Sun Mar 19, 2017 10:40 pm

Plate Cap wrote:
Sat Mar 18, 2017 9:29 pm
Arthur Mometer wrote:
Tue Mar 14, 2017 12:04 am
Anyone remember crickets in the studio?
Art, it could be either.

The building was essentially a ranch home turned into a studio. I think it was built on a slab, but it's just too long ago to remember. I remember the FM air studio was a nasty corner room, with the typical dust, dirty carpet, dusty sound absorbent on the walls, and the general odor of a place that is occupied 24/7/365 and only spot cleaned from time to time.

I walked in on a jock having sex with a listener once late one evening. They didn't miss a beat....I went in, hit something on the remote, and left. Nothing to see here, folks.....move along.

Could have been crickets...could have been SFX.....could have been some other rhythmic activity. :rollin

I can't say enough, though...the music mix was epic. Have not heard better since. Our office was a long way away, kind of in a line with WKSG at 102.7.....I installed a log periodic so I could listen, less for the technology and more for the good tunes.
That description fits a certain station I worked at almost to a tee. Fortunately I did not walk in on anyone, but someone else did, and they were cheating on their wife. Sad.
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Re: WIQB Rock 103 Ann Arbor

Post by BFSEsq » Wed Mar 22, 2017 12:22 pm

Radio really WAS different back then. Ha!


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Re: WIQB Rock 103 Ann Arbor

Post by Plate Cap » Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:20 pm

I was digging in a closet yesterday and came across this....thought that it might be nice to add to the thread.....probably no longer fits, but I'll keep it anyway.
2017-03-23 21.47.16 (Medium).jpg
2017-03-23 21.47.16 (Medium).jpg (186.03 KiB) Viewed 1749 times
The box that many broadcasters won’t look outside of was made in 1969 and hasn’t changed significantly since.

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BFSEsq
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Re: WIQB Rock 103 Ann Arbor

Post by BFSEsq » Fri Mar 24, 2017 2:19 pm

Plate Cap wrote:I was digging in a closet yesterday and came across this....thought that it might be nice to add to the thread.....probably no longer fits, but I'll keep it anyway.
2017-03-23 21.47.16 (Medium).jpg
This is so cool!


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