107.3 FM Columbus
WGBA > WHYD > WCGQ
Bare "Bear" O'Brian
Sanders Hickey (1976)
WCGQ airstaff (Clockwise from top left) Al Haynes, Scott Miiller, Randy Reeves, Sanders Hickey (Mid 70s)
Grandin Eakle next to the WCGQ sponsored race car
At WCGQ-- MCA Record's Lorraine Mendel, Chuck Bear, Olivia Newton-John, Joe Cook, and Randy Reeves
WCGQ Audio (1970s)
WCGQ Columbus - 1973 - Composite
WCGQ 1978 Composite(Courtesy of Joe Cook)
WCGQ Joe Cook Late Fall 77
WCGQ Randy Reeves Aircheck
Edited from Wikipedia
WGBA-FM and WHYD-FM
WGBA-FM signed on in 1964. The station was owned by WGBA, Inc. It was relaunched as WHYD-FM "Hydee" in 1971; it aired an automated country music format.
At 6 a.m. on December 26, 1973, WHYD-FM became WCGQ and flipped from country to Top 40.
The first on-the-air announcement on WCGQ was made by WCGQ start-up consulting Program Director, David Tate: "This is WCGQ, Columbus, Georgia, 'The New 107-Q', where the Rock revolution starts NOW". Then, Tate played “Revolution” by The Beatles.
WCGQ trounced its direct competitor, WDAK, in only 4 months. In the April/May, 1974 Arbitron ratings Radio Market Report for Columbus, GA, WCGQ became the leading FM popular music radio station.
107-Q's earliest musical style was marked by a decidedly eclectic playlists with artists like David Essex, Ian Thomas, Bachman-Turner Overdrive (which was called, "underground" music at the time) and Jimi Hendrix. Also, WCGQ played songs by a number of Southern rock bands including The Allman Brothers' Band, Black Oak Arkansas, Wet Willie and others.
This "left-field" strategy was apparently designed to give WCGQ the initial veneer an "underground" FM station. But the presentation-style of WCGQ was purely in the "Top 40" mold, with a handful of Top 40 "shotgun" jingles and high-energy radio announcers.
Kris Earl Phillips was the 6pm-10pm on-air host during the earliest days of WCGQ, and in April 1974, took over and actually guided 107-Q through its first ratings period.
Later, WCGQ was programmed directly by William B. Parris, of Bill Parris Programming of Washington, D.C. and the station took on a decidedly more "Urban" tenor. By 1975, under the direction of Parris, WCGQ became the overall number one radio station in the Columbus, GA radio listening market.
In the late 1970s, WCGQ increased its power to 100,000 watts in order to more effectively serve the growing Columbus metropolitan area. In the late 1990s, WCGQ changed from "107-Q" to its current identifier, "Q107.3".
Notable Industry Accomplishments
WCGQ claims the distinction of broadcasting the "Top 40" radio format longer than any other American commercial radio station: almost 40 years and still going.
Acquisitions and Mergers
On July 31, 2008, local investment group PMB Broadcasting LLC (headed up by Jim Martin) purchased the CHR-formatted station (along with Columbus-area sister stations WRLD-FM, WRCG, WCGQ, and WKCN) from Archway Broadcasting Group LLC for a reported sale price of $7.2 million.
Notable former on-air personalities include Kris Earl Phillips, The Smoker (Scott Howitt), Bill Lenky (Bill Lee), O'Henry Allen, P.J. Walker, Merlin Jones, Jefferson Keyes, Al Haynes, Randy Reeves, Chuck Bear, Joe Cook, Scott Miller, Lulu, Spikey Mike, Bob Raleigh, Rick Casey (Ralph Carroll), Shelby Guest, Lee "Lee Baby" McCard, Bob McGee, Brian Waters, Dave Kelly, James Steele (James Gilmore), Mark "Mark in the Dark" Ross, Dave Arwood, Bear O'Bryan, Jeff Tate, Robert Cunningham, Jeff Michaels, Leo Davis, Mark Gunn, Andy Woods, and Stella (Joe Mclure).