KLBJ-FM (93.7 MHz) is a commercial radio station in Austin, Texas. It broadcasts an album-oriented rock radio format billed as "The Rock of Austin." It is owned by Sinclair Telecable Inc. (unrelated to television broadcaster Sinclair Broadcast Group, which owns CBS Network affiliate KEYE). KLBJ-FM is licensed under the name Waterloo Media. The station was once owned by the family of President Lyndon Baines Johnson, and still carries his initials as its call letters.

Broadcast areaAustin metropolitan area
Frequency93.7 MHz (HD Radio)
Branding93.7 KLBJ
FormatAlbum-oriented Rock
SubchannelsHD2: Heavy metal music "NO CONTROL Radio"
AffiliationsCompass Media Networks
  • Sinclair Telecable Inc.
  • (Waterloo Media Group, L.P.)
First air date
1960; 63 years ago (1960) (as KTBC-FM)
Former call signs
KTBC-FM (1960-1973)
Call sign meaning
Lyndon Baines Johnson (The Johnson family are former owners)
Technical information
Facility ID65792
ERP97,000 watts
HAAT320 meters (1,050 ft)
WebcastListen Live
Listen Live (HD2)

KLBJ-FM has studios and offices along Interstate 35 in North Austin.[1] The transmitter and broadcast tower are atop Austin's Mount Larson.[2] KLBJ-FM broadcasts in the HD Radio format. Its HD-2 digital subchannel airs heavy metal music as "No Control Radio."

History edit

The Johnson family edit

The station first signed on the air on in 1960. Its call sign was KTBC-FM, sister station to KTBC 590 AM (now KLBJ). The radio stations were part of the Johnson family's broadcasting holdings.[3] In 1943, the future First Lady, known as Claudia T. "Lady Bird" Johnson, invested an inheritance of $17,000 to purchase KTBC (AM). She improved the station by hiring new on-air talent, found commercial sponsors, kept all the financial accounts, and maintained the facility. Using her formal name, Mrs. Johnson served as manager and then as the first chairwoman of what later came to be known as KLBJ, for some four decades.[4] (In later years, the president and Lady Bird's children ran the radio stations, while she remained chairman.) Because the stations were owned by Claudia Johnson, Lyndon Johnson did not have to consider divesting the media company, even when he was Senator, Vice President or President.

The Johnson family put Austin's first TV station on the air in 1952, KTBC-TV. The co-owned FM station signed on the air in 1960. In 1972, KTBC-FM switched to a freeform rock format, with a progressive rock sound that was emerging on the FM dial in many cities in America.[5] Until then, the only rock commonly heard on the radio were a few songs that crossed over onto the Top 40 charts.

Change in ownership edit

In 1973, the Johnsons sold KTBC-TV to the Times Mirror Company, a newspaper and broadcasting company that published the Los Angeles Times and the Dallas Times Herald. Times Mirror kept the KTBC call sign for the TV station, while the radio stations became KLBJ AM-FM to reflect the initials of President Johnson, who had died earlier that year.[6] (Currently, KTBC-TV is owned by Fox Television Stations.)

In 1997, KLBJ-FM and KLBJ came under the ownership of the LBJS Corporation.[7] The new company was a merger of LBJ Broadcasting, which by this point also owned KAJZ, with Sinclair Telecable's two stations in the market: KROX-FM and KGSR.[8] KLBJ (AM) had already shifted from MOR to a talk radio format, while KLBJ-FM transformed into an album rock format, concentrating on a playlist from the best-selling records.

At the time, Sinclair Telecable Inc. was a minority stakeholder in the stations, with LBJ Holdings Co. as the 51-percent controlling stakeholder. In 2003, the Indianapolis-based Emmis Communications acquired the controlling stake in the stations;[9] the $150 million sale, completed on July 1, marked the Johnson family's exit from broadcasting.[10] Emmis had radio stations in several large markets around the U.S., including New York City and Los Angeles.

In June 2019, Emmis announced that it would sell its controlling stake in the Austin cluster back to Sinclair Telecable for $39.3 million. KLBJ-AM-FM operate under the licensee name "Waterloo Media."[9]

The Dudley & Bob Show edit

From 1993 to 2022, "The Dudley & Bob Show" (Dale Dudley, Bob Fonseca and Matt Bearden), was heard in morning drive time on KLBJ-FM. The show is in the Texas Radio Hall of Fame. In 2007, it won a Marconi Award from the National Association of Broadcasters for "Medium Market Personality of the Year."[11]

When Dale Dudley decided to step down, the morning show was renamed "Mornings with Matt and Bob." Producer Eric "Chuy" Alderete is also featured.

Discography edit

KLBJ-FM has produced a number of albums, focusing mainly on local Austin music. Its "local licks live" series started in 1989 and has showcased dozens of popular Austin musicians.

Year Title Series Label
1990 Local Licks Live 1989 Local Licks Live KLBJ
1991 Local Licks Live 1990 Local Licks Live KLBJ
1992 Local Licks Live 1991 Local Licks Live KLBJ
1993 Local Licks Live 1992 Local Licks Live KLBJ
1994 Local Licks Live 1993 Local Licks Live KLBJ
1995 Local Licks Live '94 Local Licks Live KLBJ
1995 Public Enema #1 Dudley and Bob with Debra calls, bits and sketches KLBJ
1996 Local Licks Live '95 Local Licks Live KLBJ
1996 We're Back and We're Highly Pissed Dudley and Bob with Debra calls, bits and sketches KLBJ
1997 Local Licks Live '96 Local Licks Live KLBJ
1997 Eugene! Don't Hit 'Em in the Head Dudley and Bob with Debra calls, bits and sketches KLBJ
1998 Local Licks Live '97 Local Licks Live KLBJ
1998 Prince Albert...Your Refrigerator Is Running Dudley and Bob with Debra calls, bits and sketches KLBJ
1999 Local Licks Live '98 Local Licks Live KLBJ
1999 Local Licks: Yule Rock! Holiday KLBJ
2000 Local Licks Live 1999 Local Licks Live KLBJ
2001 Local Licks Live XII Local Licks Live KLBJ
2001 Damn It's Early Music from The Dudley & Bob Show KLBJ
2002 Local Licks Live 13 Local Licks Live KLBJ
2003 Damn It's 2 Early Music from The Dudley & Bob Show KLBJ

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ NewsradioKLBJ.com/contact-us
  2. ^ Radio-Locator.com/KLBJ-FM
  3. ^ Enright, J. Scott (March 31, 2005). "Application for Renewal of Broadcast Station License." Consolidated DataBase System, FCC.
  4. ^ Broadcasting Yearbook 1944, page 154
  5. ^ KLBJfm.com/station/history
  6. ^ "Lady Bird Johnson Biography :: National First Ladies' Library".
  7. ^ Broadcasting & Cable Yearbook 1999, page D-422
  8. ^ Bertin, Michael. "Two Schools of Thought". The Austin Chronicle. Retrieved July 9, 2023.
  9. ^ a b "Emmis Exits Austin Market With Sale To Sinclair Telecable". Insideradio.com. June 10, 2019. Retrieved November 26, 2022.
  10. ^ "LBJ completes $105M sale of radio stations". Austin Business Journal. July 2, 2003. Retrieved July 9, 2023.
  11. ^ KLBJfm.com/DMBshow

External links edit

30°18′37″N 97°47′34″W / 30.3102°N 97.7928°W / 30.3102; -97.7928