CKOC is a Canadian radio station, broadcasting at 1150 AM in Hamilton, Ontario. The station airs a Sports Radio format branded as TSN Radio and is owned by Bell Media. CKOC is a 50,000 watt, Class B station operating on a Regional (not clear-channel) broadcast frequency, with transmitters located near Empire Corners in Haldimand County, about 25 kilometers (15 miles) south of Hamilton. A six-tower directional antenna is used at all times. CKOC's studios are located on Upper Wentworth Street (next to Lime Ridge Mall) in Hamilton.
|Branding||TSN 1150 Hamilton|
|Slogan||Hamilton's Destination for Sports|
|Frequency||1150 kHz (AM)|
|First air date||May 1, 1922|
|Former callsigns||CKMO (1992–1993)|
|Former frequencies||410 metres (1922–1925)|
880 kHz (1925–1930)
1120 kHz (1930–1931)
630 kHz (1931–1933)
1120 kHz (1933–1941)
|Owner||Bell Media |
(Bell Media Radio G.P)
|Sister stations||CHAM, CKLH-FM|
|Website||TSN 1150 Hamilton|
CKOC has the distinction of being the oldest continuously-operating radio station in Canada, on the air since May 1, 1922. (Station CHAB, in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, began broadcasting a week earlier, on April 23, 1922, and is still on the air today, but was shut down for a period of time in 1933 before re-opening. And CFCF, later CINW, Montreal, had traced its sign on to 1919 but ceased operations in 2010.)
Originally, CKOC's station was based in the Lower City at the corner of King William and John Streets and was an offshoot of the Wentworth Radio and Supply Company owned by Herb Slack. He figured he could sell more radios if he also owned a radio station and in the spring of 1922 the station became only the third radio station in all of Canada. Other broadcast locations over the years for CKOC include, the 11th floor of the Royal Connaught Hotel in the downtown core, the Lister Block building on James & King Williams Streets and the a studio on Garfield Avenue near King & Sherman Avenue North. During its early years, the station broadcast on a number of frequencies, including 880, 630 and 1120 kHz; the station moved to its current frequency of 1150 in 1941.
Later History: CHR and Oldies formatsEdit
On February 17, 1992, after a countdown of the Top 500 hits of all time (a long-running annual tradition at the station), CKOC debuted "Oldies 1150" with the new calls CKMO ("More Oldies"). However, on April 2, 1993, the station reverted to the heritage CKOC calls, admitting that dropping the calls in the first place had been a mistake and that the station's listeners wanted the original calls back. The station mentioned its Top 40 heritage on the air as part of the current oldies format, with liners such as, "The station that played 'em then... plays 'em again." The "Good Times, Great Oldies" branding started sometime in late 2006.
From 1928 to 1955, the call letters CKMO were used at a pioneer radio station in Vancouver. From 1993 to 2012, the CKMO call sign was again used at a radio station in Victoria, British Columbia. In 2014, the CKMO call letters moved to a radio station in Orangeville as CKMO-FM.
CKOC has suffered from much co-channel interference from CJRC in Gatineau, Quebec at night, particularly in Southwestern Ontario and north of Toronto which received a relatively clear signal for CKOC during the day. In these areas, CKOC was almost impossible to pick up on some nights due to CJRC. This interference was remedied in Spring 2007, when CJRC moved to the FM dial and closed the AM signal.
On October 28, 2007, CKOC was purchased by Astral Media as part of its purchase of Standard Broadcasting.
In mid-June 2013, after Vinyl 95.3 switched formats from Classic Hits to hot AC, CKOC added more 1970s' and 1980s' music to its playlist. It was the first time since February 1992, when the station changed its format, that any music later than the 1970s has been played on the station, a trend mirroring most other oldies outlets in North America, which have moved away from the oldies positioning and have adopted classic hits approaches. The station dropped the "Great Oldies" reference and referred to itself as "Classic Hits 1150 CKOC".
On June 27, 2013, Astral Media was absorbed by Bell Media, making CKOC a Bell owned-and-operated station.
On November 4, 2014, the CRTC approved an application by Bell Media to modify CKOC's facilities from a five-tower day pattern and a ten-tower night pattern with a transmitter power of 50,000 watts to a six-tower operation with a daytime transmitter power of 50,000 watts and a night-time transmitter power of 20,000 watts.
On May 28, 2015, Bell Media announced that CKOC would flip to sports talk later that fall, joining the TSN Radio network as "TSN Radio 1150". As part of a new agreement, the station will be the new home station for the CFL's Hamilton Tiger-Cats, and will be the Hamilton affiliate for the Toronto Raptors and Toronto Maple Leafs; the station also later acquired the rights to McMaster Marauders football. This move will also make the station Hamilton's first-ever all-sports station.  On September 2, CKOC announced they will flip to the format on Labour Day, September 7, in conjunction with the Tiger-Cats vs. Argonauts Labour Day Classic. CKOC ended its classic hits format with "The Last Big 500 Countdown" of the top classic hits during the Labour Day weekend before the launch of the sports format at 10 a.m. on September 7. The #1 song in the countdown, and the last song played on CKOC, was "Satisfaction" by The Rolling Stones.
CKOC is unusual among Canadian radio stations in that its programming is primarily from American networks: Fox Sports Radio fills out most of the broadcast day, with three local shows; Ticats at Noon, Game Day and Tatti & Marsh; on the daily schedule. The use of Fox Sports Radio for programming is despite the ownership of 20% of TSN by Fox Sports' competitor, ESPN.
Initial ratings for TSN Sports radio in Hamilton were extremely poor, as CKOC's market share dropped from 2.9% to 0.3%. With approximately 5,900 listeners a week, CKOC is now the lowest-rated station in the Hamilton market.
In 2016, CKOC acquired rights to Hamilton Bulldogs hockey, giving the station an effective monopoly on Hamilton sports play-by-play.
On April 3, 2018, CKOC began broadcasting Sunday Night's Main Event. The program primarily covers news and events surrounding professional wrestling (such as WWE) and mixed martial arts. It is hosted by Jason Agnew, former host of Live Audio Wrestling.
- Foley, Doug (April 16, 2007). "A Tale of Two Stations (Doug Foley)" (Press release). The Hamilton Spectator.
- CKOC flips from Top 40 to Oldies
- CKOC Oldies 1150-AM – Canada’s Oldest Radio Station Turns 90, The Canadian Business Journal
- Paul Wilson: Canada's oldest radio still rockin', CBC News, May 15, 2012
- Classic Hits CKOC 1150 – CKOC 90th Birthday
- Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2014-565, CKOC Hamilton - Technical change, CRTC, November 4, 2014
- TSN Radio Coming To Hamilton
- CKOC Flips To TSN Radio
- CKOC Goes Out Rockin', Adam Atkinson, CHCH-TV, September 3, 2015