I think it is only fair to begin this recant when I personally moved to Seattle. That date was November 1, 1997. Growing up in Spokane, I had spent lots of time in Seattle but it still seemed overwhelming to me. I chose to move to Portland first in 1993 and loved it every day, but I professional had a hard time growing in the radio industry there. When I arrived, radio group consolidation was picking up and niche formats were starting to disappear.
1n 1993, KEZX became a Smooth Jazz outlet later changing its call letters to KWJZ in 1995. The owner was Park Broadcasting, one of the largest radio companies at the time. In 1996, 98.9 FM and AM 1150 were both sold to Sandusky Radio who owned 92.5 KLSY.
In 1998, Sandusky Radio moved its stations together in a brand new studio in Factoria. KLSY was repositioning itself and 98.9 Smooth Jazz KWJZ was hitting its stride. Over on 103.7 KMTT, you had the quintessential Seattle radio station The Mountain which went on the air on April 10, 1991. KISS 106.1, KUBE 93.3, and Star 101.5 were battling over the Top 40 audience.
The next big change was on November 30, 2005, when Entercom flipped 100.7 The Buzz, a hot talk format, to KKWF The Wolf. 94.1 KMPS had the juggernaut country station in Seattle for many years. in 2007, Bonneville acquired part of the Entercom radio group including KIRO AM, FM, and KBSG.
On August 30, 2013, at 1:50 p.m., after playing “If You Leave” by OMD, KMTT began playing a loop of “It’s The End of the World As We Know It ” by R.E.M. until 3:00 p.m. when the station flipped to “Hot 103.7.” The first song on “Hot” was “Blurred Lines” by Robin Thicke featuring T.I. and Pharrell. The Mountain’s AAA format was moved onto the station’s HD2 subchannel.
November 1, 2017, iHeart announced it would be doing a strategic station exchange with Entercom. This was a byproduct of Entercom merging with CBS radio. This made for one of the biggest ownership shake-ups in Seattle radio history. Before this Entercom was made up of 99.9 KISW, 104.7 KMTT, 107.7 KNDD, and 100.7 KKWF.
Before the Entercom / CBS deal, CBS radio in Seattle was made up of KZOK, KMPS, and KJAQ. Those stations all went to iHeart Radio Seatle with the exception of 94.1 KMPS which went to Entercom (now Audacy). That signaled the eventual demise of one of Seattle’s most long-standing and popular country stations. 94.1 KMPS became KSWD The Sound. Hubbard Radio (formerly Sandusky) decided to go head-to-head with Entercom’s The Bull. It took 98.8 FM and flipped it to country on December 4, 2017 with the moniker 98.9 The Bull.