|City of license||Homewood, Alabama|
|Broadcast area||Birmingham, Alabama|
|Branding||106.9 The Eagle|
|Slogan||"Birmingham's Home for Classic Hits"|
|First air date||1950s (as WTNB-FM)|
|Callsign meaning||Birmingham's PoinT
|Former callsigns||1992-2001: WODL
(Cox Radio, Inc.)
|Sister stations||WAGG, WBHJ, WBHK, WENN, WZNN, WZZK|
WBPT (106.9 FM, "106-9 The Eagle") is a classic hits music-formatted radio station licensed to Homewood, Alabama, that serves the Birmingham and central Alabama area. The station was assigned the WBPT call letters by the Federal Communications Commission on October 17, 2001. Since October 2005, it has used the branding "106.9 the Eagle". The station is owned by Summitmedia, LLC, along with six other stations in the cluster. Its transmitter is located atop Red Mountain in Birmingham.
The 106.9 frequency has been the home of several formats and callsigns throughout its history. It began in the 1950s as WTNB-FM then switched to WBRC-FM and was co-owned with WBRC-TV Channel 6 and WBRC/960. Throughout the 1960s, the FM station simulcasted the AM station, a typical practice for its day. By 1971, WBRC-FM was playing Top 40 music, but it was not successful in competing against the AM Top 40 powerhouses WSGN or WVOK. In 1972, both the AM and FM radio stations were sold by Taft Broadcasting to Mooney Broadcasting; as a result, the callsigns of the radio stations were changed to WERC AM and -FM, respectively. The AM station dropped "middle of the road" music (a precursor to today's adult contemporary format) in favor of Top 40. The FM station repeated the AM station's daytime programming, while at night it featured separate album-oriented rock shows.
In 1977, the broadcast facilities of WERC-FM were upgraded, and the callsign was changed to WKXX. In August of that year, WKXX became the only Top 40 station on the FM dial in Birmingham, with the branding "Kicks 106". By the next year, "Kicks 106" had become the top-rated radio station in Birmingham, dethroning the longstanding ratings leader, WSGN "the Big 610" (now WAGG). The success of "Kicks 106" eventually forced both WSGN and WKXX's own AM sister station, branded "96-ERC", to abandon their Top 40 formats.
Throughout the late 1970s and early 1980s, WKXX was the dominant FM Top 40 station in Birmingham. As late as 1984, Kicks 106 held the top spot in ratings among Birmingham stations. This success continued until 1985, when WAPI-FM (branded "I-95") became the second station in the market to employ the format. In addition, Top 40 stations from Tuscaloosa and Gadsden could be picked up in most of the Birmingham area. By 1987, Kicks 106 modified its format, playing a hybrid of Top 40 and urban crossover music, positioning itself somewhat between I-95 and urban station WENN. Initially, the altered format was successful. However, in 1989, the station returned to a straight Top 40 format, with a new branding, "X-106". The X-106 format and nickname were not well-received, however, and in 1990, the station changed its on-air name to "The Power Cow, Kicks 106", returning to the Top 40/urban hybrid.
In June 1991, WKXX finally abandoned its Top 40 format and became "Real Country 106.9", WBMH. Some six months later, the callsign was changed to WIKX and the Kicks 106 name reappeared (in fact, many of the old Top 40-era Kicks jingles were used), but the station retained its country format. The station was less successful playing country music than they had been in their last days as a Top 40 station.
In October 1992, 106.9 took on its next callsign and format, becoming WODL, "Oldies 106.9". The station continued in this format until October 2001, when the oldies format moved from 106.9 to 97.3, which was (and still is) co-owned by Cox Radio. At this time, WBPT debuted on 106.9, calling itself "106-9 the Point", playing an all-1980s music format. The Point was usually ranked low in the Birmingham Arbitron ratings. In October 2005, the station added a broader rotation of rock classic hits and adopted new branding as "106-9 the Eagle". The station plays hits of the 1970s through the 1990s from artists such as Phil Collins, Styx, Boston, the Doobie Brothers, Fleetwood Mac and Red Hot Chili Peppers.
- 106.9 The Eagle WBPT official website
- Query the FCC's FM station database for WBPT
- Radio-Locator information on WBPT
- Query Arbitron's FM station database for WBPT