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WBFX
WBFX-FM.jpg
City of license Grand Rapids, Michigan
Branding 101.3 The Fox
Slogan The Fox Rocks
Frequency 101.3 MHz
First air date 1965
Format Rock
ERP 50,000 watts
HAAT 128 meters
Class B
Facility ID 51727
Callsign meaning The Fox
Former callsigns WCUZ-FM (7/9/80-9/27/00)
WFFX (?-7/9/80)
WMLW (?-?)
WYON (?-?)
Owner Clear Channel Communications
Sister stations WBCT, WMAX-FM, WOOD, WOOD-FM, WSNX-FM, WTKG
Webcast Listen Live
Website www.101thefoxrocks.com

WBFX (101.3 FM, "The Fox") is a radio station broadcasting a mainstream rock format, serving the Grand Rapids, Michigan market.

History

The station first began broadcasting in the early 1960s as WMAX-FM, then later became WYON as a sister station to WION-AM in Ionia, Michigan around 1965. In the late 1970s, the station was purchased by the owners of WCUZ-AM 1230 and became WMLW "Mellow 101," a soft rock/adult contemporary station. WMLW switched to album oriented rock as WFFX "The Fox" in 1978, and then to country music in 1980 as WCUZ ('CUZ-FM 101.3...more of the music you like... on CUZ-FM." For most of the 1980s, country WCUZ was a market leader in Grand Rapids, but the station saw its market share erode after the 1992 debut of "B93," WBCT, on 93.7.

By 1998, WCUZ was co-owned with its rival station, WBCT, under the Clear Channel umbrella, and had moved to a classic country format, identifying as "Country Gold WCUZ." Clear Channel dropped the "Country Gold" format on September 24, 2000, and debuted "The Fox" that afternoon. Meanwhile, WBCT attempted to appease fans of the classic country format by adding more classic country to its playlist along with a Sunday-night oldies show, "The Beehive Archives." It is believed that Clear Channel's motive for changing WCUZ to WBFX was to take listeners away from Citadel Broadcasting-owned competitor WLAV and augment WBCT's audience with former WCUZ listeners, allowing WBCT to become number one 12+ in the market. 1 WLAV, however, is still a top-ten performer in Grand Rapids and has significantly higher ratings than WBFX.

WBFX was Grand Rapids' outlet for the syndicated Bob and Tom morning show. As of September 21, 2009, the show is no longer carried. The reason was that there is no home for music in the morning as every other radio station in town talks and plays spots in the morning. So, with KLQ going away, Radio X going away, and the rest of the changes in the market we felt it was a good time to change the direction of the station. The show has since been picked up by WFGR.

In late June 2009, the station adjusted its format towards mainstream rock, with a mix of harder classic rock songs as well as recent rock music from the 1990s and 2000s. This adjustment was made in response to the local active rock station WKLQ changing formats to sports talk and taking the call letters of WBBL.

Sources

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