Crenshaw’s WAOQ 100.3 FM station undergoes name and location change
Published 12:22 pm Tuesday, January 17, 2017
In September 2016, a change came to one of Luverne’s favorite country stations, WAOQ 100.3 FM. After much deliberation, it was decided that an update to the music was needed, and with that update came a change in location as well.
“We’d done the same old thing for 17 years, and when you play oldies it’s the same music. We just kind of felt like we were stuck in a rut, and we didn’t want to drag our listeners down in that rut with us,” said Chris Johnson with J&W Communications, LLC.
“We’re still playing all of the country classics we used to play. We just added in all the rock-and-roll super hits. It’s truly all the music you grew up with. We just put a little variety in it.”
In 1995, Johnson and Robert Williams, owners of Alatron Corporation, Inc., who at that time had been broadcast engineers for many years, discovered the availability for an FM radio station on the frequency 100.3 in the community of Brantley, Alabama. Johnson and Williams filed the application with the Federal Communications Commission for 100.3 FM and were granted a license and began operation on June 4, 1999.
The original plans were for the station to be an oldies pop station. However, two other new radio stations appeared on the air just prior to the sign-on of 100.3.
Therefore, Johnson and Williams decided to do country oldies. At that time, only a few radio stations in the country did that format. The success of the country oldies format and the new WAOQ 100.3 FM called “Your Kind of Country” would be a hit in Crenshaw, Pike and surrounding counties for the next 17 years.
In January 2015, J&W Communications, LLC purchased WAOQ FM from Alatron Corporation, Inc. and continued to operate the oldies country format.
In May of 2016, J&W Communications, LLC was granted authority from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to construct a new transmitter site near Troy, Alabama, and changed the city of license from Brantley to Goshen, Alabama.
On September 10, 2016 the station signed on from its new tower site and began broadcasting with a new format of a supermix of the old country that had been playing for 17 years, plus all the rock-and-roll oldies from the 60’s and 70’s with a call sign change to WSMX-FM and the new station slogan of Supermix 100.3.
“It’s a good format to listen to at work, because it’s one of those stations that everybody can agree on,” Johnson said.
With this new format, 100.3 FM is once again a pioneer on the radio dial with a format that very few stations in the country are using.
Moving the transmitting tower approximately 13 miles northeast of the old site provided the strongest FM radio signal in the city of Troy.
“We anticipate this move to enable us to better serve all the communities in Pike and Crenshaw Counties as well as a large portion of the surrounding counties with community information, weather and the best entertainment on the radio dial,” Johnson said.
“Our goal is to be involved with the communities in our coverage area and we want them to feel that they are a part of the WSMX-FM family. We want to hear from the community about all community events and concerns, and we wish to assist the local community organizations by providing information to our listeners about events and other happenings in the area.”
The current music library for WSMX-FM boasts a total of 4,249 songs for the enjoyment of the listeners, and also includes approximately 3,000 songs in the Southern gospel library that can be heard on their Family Gospel Time every night from 8-10 p.m.
Sunday mornings beginning at 6 a.m., a mix of Southern gospel and contemporary Christian music can be heard on the station as well.
WSMX-FM is always open to comments and suggestions from listeners. The telephone numbers are (334) 670-WSMX (9769) in Pike County, (334) 335-2877 in Crenshaw County or toll free from anywhere at (866) 421-1003. Their email address is firstname.lastname@example.org .
The staff of WSMX has over 200 years combined broadcasting experience and pledges to use that experience to give the best possible service to the listeners and advertisers in the new WSMX-FM 100.3 coverage area.
“We have had wonderful feedback since we’ve changed. Of course we knew we were going to get some negative feedback from our die hard country listeners,” Johnson said.
“Since that time, we’ve gotten a lot more positive feedback from people who love it.”