I’ve been collecting data & artifacts to do a future series on “Phantom Radio Stations” These I define as stations that once existed for a period of time & shut down entirely, vacating frequencies that would be applied for & occupied by different owners at a future date. I had considered Renton’s first radio station – 1220 KXRN to be one of these. Curious to find it’s permanent sign-off date, I browsed through my collection of “Radio Annuals” only to discover this station was not a ‘phantom’ at all, but has a long & varied timeline. The station, in fact, exists this very day on our AM dial! Here is a timeline history of KXRN > KIXI taken from these listings:
KXRN began life on 1220 as a daytimer. This frequency would go silent & eventually be occupied by KASY Auburn.
By 1950, KXRN was operating a full daytime broadcast schedule after moving to 1230 on the dial. This frequency would later be home to Wally Nelskog’s KQTY Everett, eventually becoming today’s KWYZ. This is KXRN‘s logo/letterhead from 1952.
By 1953, the calls had changed to KLAN
In 1957, KLAN moved to 910 on the dial. A power increase of 1 kW was also initiated.
Long-time Seattle DJ Wally Nelskog acquired the station & changed the calls to KQDE in 1959.
For some odd reason, Nelskog again changed the calls to KUDY, but retained the “Cutie” imaging ID.
In 1962, Wally dropped top 40 from AM 910 & switched to easy-listening/beautiful music with a call change to KIXI. City-of-license also changed from Renton to Seattle. Shortly, he would purchase 95.7 KGMJ from Rogan Jones’ IGM and compliment the AM with an FM companion. Today’s KIXI resides on 880 with 50 kW and city-of-license is Mercer Island/Seattle.
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