WGWD Tallahassee Sold; To Go Talk

Talk Radio 93.3 WGWD Derrell Day Burnie Thompson Classic Country Monte Bitner Don McCoyUpdate 4/16: WGWD flipped to Talk as expected this morning.

Update 4/9: Magic has confirmed that WGWD will soon flip to Talk with a lineup similar to that of sister 101.1 WYOO Panama City.

Talk Radio 93.3” will simulcast WYOO’s Derrell Day from 7 to 10am and regionally syndicated Burnie Thompson from 12 to 3pm. The remainder of the lineup will feature syndicated content: America’s Morning News 6-7am, Laura Ingraham from 10am to 12pm, Neal Boortz from 3 to 6pm, Michael Savage 6-9pm, Rusty Humphries 9pm to 1am, and Overnight America with Jon Grayson from 1 to 5am.

Original Report 2/18: In late December Magic Broadcasting II acquired Classic Country 93.3 WGWD Gretna/Tallahassee, FL for $1.2 Million.

In a report on the sale in the Tallahassee Democrat yesterday, the following was said about Magic’s plans for the station:

What will 93.3 sound like in a month or so?

McCoy said he hadn’t decided yet. He will do some research, some updating. But he did make one promise: “It will not be run like Cumulus or Clear Channel. It will be community-run and have community values.”

Yet on Thursday, Magic registered TalkRadio933.com for use with the station. Magic operates a similarly branded “Talk Radio 101.1” WYOO in Panama City, FL.

Magic also owns CHR “Island 106” WILN, Hot AC “V100” WVVE, Rock “97X” WYYX, and Reggae “TropRock 1290” WPCF/92.9 W225AG in Panama City. The company recently sold off its stations in Dothan, AL and is waiting for its sale of 93.5 KDAY Redondo Beach/Los Angeles and KDEY Ontario, CA to SoCal935 to close.

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  1. Alan McCall says

    As a longtime resident and frequent listener to WGWD, it is rather sad to see such a “hometown” station get changed to yet another talk outlet. WGWD was programmed in house.

    As classic country goes, they played some gems and they played some stiffs, but it has been classic country for probably close to 20 years.

    I myself am a former terrestrial radio DJ, station manager and ops manager. My nonprofit, Delta Star Radio of Florida, Inc., is seeking an LPFM in the (hopefully) forthcoming filing window. Our programming includes a great deal of what was carried on WGWD, although it wouldn’t be a “replica.” Delta Star is looking at bringing classic country and southern gospel to the area, neither of which is locally on the air.

  2. TJ McKay says

    I agree with you Allen WGWD was one of a kind with Monte in The morning i know Delta Star and TCS the country shoebox Quincy will never be WGWD But i’m so glad to hear we have not heard the last from Monte at least with him he alway’s told it like it is and never dance around with answer’s Monte Your Fan’s friend’s and co worker’s will be looking to and will be supporting you on the internet

  3. michael says

    This change sucks. The article in the Tallahassee Democrat portrayed the new owners as Mom and Pops type folks. A brief search indicates they might be small, but mighty. Many of their stations were sold, with recent sales over $!00 million!!. Monte is a great guy, and serves a market that is lost with the format change. Jacksonville has a classic country station, but is moslty top 40 older county, without personality. I am sure it is just run off a hard drive or ipod set to random. I am sorry to hear of the change for the worse.

  4. michael says

    After looking at the 101 lineup, it seems like this would just be a remote for the Panama City station. Same stuff, wider audience, as I would guess some of the area would overlap, to basically make one big station, with 2 locations.

  5. Alan McCall says

    I’m still pursuing over-the-air possibilities. Here’s the press release.

    TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Alan McCall of Tallahassee has had almost
    > lifelong loves of two interests – country music and radio.
    > Now 54, McCall has been legally blind since birth from cataracts.
    > Several childhood surgeries improved his sight somewhat, but it
    > remains 20/400 to the present day. He was supposed to end up at the
    > Florida School for the Deaf and Blind – but he never spent a single
    > day there.
    > “This boy has really surprised us,” remarked the late Dr. Harold
    > Ward, one of the surgeons. “He has a fierce determination that I can’t
    > quite explain.”
    > At age 12, he won a prize (an Elvis Presley 45-rpm record called
    > “When You Talk in Your Sleep”) from the then-country WMEN radio
    > station. He was fascinated with the station’s control room, which he
    > was able to observe while picking up the prize (which he still has,
    > incidentally.)
    > His love of country music grew, and McCall remembers listening
    > almost exclusively to country radio while he was in high school. At
    > the time, he often listened to small town AM country stations during
    > family vacations.
    > He began collecting country music in 1971, and has never stopped.
    > “My wife, Marianne, could have her own sewing and craft room if
    > there weren’t so many records and CDs stored in our house,” he laughs.
    > McCall studied journalism and English and worked for Tallahassee
    > Community College’s student newspaper, The Talon, from 1977 to 1979.
    > He broke into the radio business during the fall of 1979, after
    > relentlessly applying for jobs, sometimes multiple times. It took him
    > six attempts before being hired at WTAL in Tallahassee, a soft AC and
    > oldies station, working overnights at first, and later evenings and
    > long Sunday shifts.
    > He went on to attend Florida State University, where he
    > graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in communications in 1984.
    > He also landed another radio job, at Christian-formatted
    > WCVC-AM. He began as a weekend announcer, but later worked stints
    > there in programming, sales and promotions, and one as a local station
    > manager. Interestingly enough, WCVC was the once-country WMEN
    > mentioned earlier.
    > That job ended in 2004, and McCall found himself “on the
    > beach” – radio jargon for “out of work.”
    > He spent the next several years devoted primarily to his
    > family – homeschooling two young step-grandsons, Benjamin and Daniel,
    > now ages eight and seven. The boys are now homeschooled by their
    > mother, Rose, McCall’s stepdaughter.
    > After having the boys full-time for four years, McCall found
    > himself feeling lost.
    > “Suddenly, I felt as if I had no real purpose in like,” he
    > says. “I began taking a course in grant writing, and am planning to do
    > that on a part-time basis. But I had two other passions – radio and
    > country music.”
    > In 2010, he began the transition of turning what once was a
    > hobby – his Internet station on * Live365.com *
    > – into
    > something more. He tweaked the format, which had been a hybrid of
    > country and oldies, into a solid country station. The music includes a
    > healthy dose of classic country, along with the current Top 40 country
    > singles.
    > His station, now branded as “Big D Country,” is attempting
    > what few webcasters have – live and local Internet radio. Big D
    > Country is targeted specifically to Tallahassee and the North Florida
    > and South Georgia area. McCall hosts a weekday mid-day show complete
    > with weather, community calendar events, and other elements you might
    > expect to hear on an over-the-air station.
    > All of Big D Country’s programming is done by McCall. He is
    > constantly on the lookout for country music.
    > “I have a lot of music, but invariably I’ll get a request for
    > something we don’t have,” he says. He would still like to buy the TM
    > Century Traditional Country library, but says it’s a bit too expensive
    > for the station to afford right now. The station is owned by Delta
    > Star Radio of Florida, Inc., which McCall founded in 2001. His wife
    > and parents are the other directors of the corporation, which is a
    > registered Florida non-profit, but is not a 501(c)3.
    > Delta Star Radio has recently purchased an office trailer, so
    > Marianne McCall may get her craft and sewing room after all. The
    > company has also purchased some updated equipment, including a new
    > control board and CD burner for production.
    > “I absolutely love the full service country format,” McCall
    > says. “I’m putting a lot of thought and time into developing it.”
    > With the possibility of low power FM (LPFM) radio stations
    > being made available later this year, McCall is hoping to raise enough
    > support to win one of the LPFM licenses. LPFM stations are restricted
    > in the coverage area they can legally cover. His family owns property at
    Buckhorn and Sopchoppy, and his brother lives near the city park. He says he’d
    love the opportunity to move to Wakulla to operate the station in the Sopchppy area.
    Translators could be used as a possibility of increasing the station’s coverage area.
    > The only full power FM near the market with a classic country
    > format was recently sold and the format switched to talk.
    > “Being able to operate a local country radio station is my
    > lifelong dream,” says McCall. “I am saying a lot of extra prayers and
    > sharing the dream with people all around the US.” He hopes to be able
    > to build the station for under $10k. His only income is Social
    > Security, less than $700 per month.
    > He also hopes to one day be able to visit Nashville – the
    > only place he says he hasn’t seen but would really like to.
    > “Mostly, I’m not too keen on traveling,” says McCall. “I’m a
    > homebody for the most part.”
    > While he hopes the station can ultimately provide an income,
    > he realizes it will be a difficult and slow path.
    > His wife, Marianne McCall, works for Leon County Schools, but
    > has had her hours cut and benefits slashed.
    > “We’re having a hard time making it,” she sighs. “Our roof
    > leaks despite numerous attempts of repairing it and now the kitchen
    > floor is starting to cave in, in places.”
    > She really would like to be able to work along with her
    > husband with the radio station, she says. But for now, “we have to
    > eat,” so she continues working with the schools. She has been looking
    > for better paying positions recently.
    > McCall does feel the strain and is preparing a media kit to
    > aid with sales. They will offer low-cost packages to area businesses,
    > and time availabilities for churches on Sunday. Southern Gospel is
    > also a part of Sunday programming.
    > Despite their current situation, McCall is hopeful that
    > pursuing the country radio station will ultimately pay off for them.
    > “If we can just pay our bills and get out of debt, I’ll
    > consider this venture successful,” he says.
    > # # #
    > The station’s website is * http://www.bigdcountry.com *

  6. Alan says

    WDXD-LP 101.9 will launch in late spring/early summer in Tallahassee with a classic country format. The construction permit with program test authority has been granted by the FCC.

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