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KSTE (650 kHz) is an AM radio station broadcasting a Talk format. Licensed to Rancho Cordova, California, the station serves the Sacramento Valley. The station is owned by iHeartMedia, Inc. and features shows from Westwood One and Premiere Networks, a subsidiary of iHeartMedia. The station has studios in North Sacramento near the Arden Fair Mall, and its transmitter is southeast of the city in unincorporated Sacramento County.
|City||Rancho Cordova, California|
|Broadcast area||Sacramento, California|
|Branding||Talk 650 KSTE|
|Slogan||Sacramento's Talk Station|
|Frequency||650 kHz (also on HD Radio)|
|First air date||April 19, 1990|
|Power||21,400 watts Day|
920 watts Night
|Former callsigns||KMCE (1987-1991)|
|Owner||iHeartMedia, Inc. |
(AMFM Broadcasting Licenses, LLC)
|Sister stations||KBEB, KFBK, KFBK-FM, KHYL, KYRV, K296GB|
By day, KSTE transmits with a 21,400-watt signal, heard around much of Northern California. But because AM 650 is a clear channel frequency, KSTE must reduce power at night to 920 watts, so it does not interfere with Class A WSM in Nashville. KSTE first signed on in 1990, relatively late in AM broadcasting.
KSTE is programmed as a "second tier" talk station, secondary to its more dominant sister stations, 1530 KFBK and 93.1 KFBK-FM. While most of the KFBK schedule is hosted by local personalities, KSTE features nationally syndicated talk shows. Weekday mornings begin with Armstrong & Getty, a wake-up show based at KSTE and carried on stations around the West Coast and Hawaii. They are followed by Chad Benson, Sean Hannity, Dave Ramsey, Glenn Beck, America Now with Buck Sexton, Joe Pags and Jim Bohannon. Weekends feature shows on money, religion, gardening and cars, as well as some paid brokered programming. The gardening show, "Get Growing with Farmer Fred", hosted by Fred Hoffman, is the longest running show on the station, having debuted when the station signed on the air. KSTE carries some syndicated shows on weekends including Handel on the Law, The Kim Komando Show, The Tech Guy with Leo Laporte and Bill Cunningham, as well as repeats of weekday shows. National news from CBS Radio airs at the beginning of each hour.
Armstrong & GettyEdit
Jack Armstrong and Joe Getty joined KSTE in 1998 and now have one of the highest rated morning radio shows in Northern California. They can also be heard on radio stations in Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, Honolulu and other cities in the West. Armstrong & Getty is the only locally based weekday talk show on KSTE.
For a number of years, KSTE aired hourly CNN Radio newscasts from Westwood One, then known as Dial Global. On March 2, 2012, Dial Global announced it would discontinue distributing newscasts from CNN Radio and instead replace it with NBC News. CNN Radio affiliates would be switched to NBC on April 1, 2012. However, KSTE became an affiliate of the CBS Radio Network prior to the switchover. The station carries CBS News at the beginning of most hours and the CBS News Roundup, a one-hour weekly news review show, on Saturdays. In 2017, KSTE became an affiliate of NBC News Radio.
The station that today is KSTE was first planned in 1987. It was assigned the call letters KMCE as it was being prepared for broadcasting. On April 19, 1990, the station signed on as a Spanish-language outlet, owned by Minority Communications of California, Inc. The following year, it changed call letters to KRDX.
The station was sold to Fuller-Jeffrey Broadcasting in December 1992 for $1 million. The new owners changed the call sign to KSTE and the format switched to talk, carrying ABC News Radio for hourly newscasts. In October 1997, the station changed hands again, this time to Chancellor Broadcasting, a forerunner of iHeartMedia. iHeart has kept the talk format in place, making KSTE a rare radio station that, except for its first two years, has remained with the same format for its entire history.