5/22/88-Magic and KIXI sold to California radio-station chain

VICTOR STREDICKE May 22, 1988 – Two Seattle radio stations, KMGI(FM) and KIXI-AM, have been sold for $16 million. Noble Broadcast Group, an aggressive chain based in San Diego, is the new owner, taking control from Sunbelt Communications.
The sale is subject to approval from the Federal Communications Commission.

In 1985 Sunbelt introduced the adult-contemporary KMGI, promoted as “Magic 108,” on the 107.7 spot previously held by KRAB.

The operating board of KRAB had sold the commercial frequency, expecting to find an alternate dial setting in the noncommercial part of the FM band. Purchase price for the FM station, with little more than a tower site, was $4 million. It took a year to get KMGI on the air.

Sunbelt acquired KIXI in October for $4.8 million. Both KIXI, with a nostalgia format, and KMGI are consistently in the top dozen radio stations in Seattle.

Noble Broadcast Group is a new chain that, with this purchase, becomes the largest radio-only owner in the country with 17 stations.

In the past month alone, Noble has acquired five radio stations and a Muzak franchise. The next largest broadcast chain owns 15 radio stations. Noble’s stations are in such cities as San Diego, Boston, New Haven, Denver, Kansas City and Houston.

John Lynch, a founder of the group, expects to expand to the full complement of 24 stations, with future cities of license including San Francisco and Los Angeles.

Festival broadcast

Segments from the Folklife Festival will be broadcast each afternoon of the festival, on KUOW, 94.9 mHz.

Other radio stations sponsor some musical and stage events on the fairgrounds.

He’s up there

Bob B. Scott, afternoon disc jockey, plans to broadcast today from the top of Mount Rainier to listeners on KRPM-AM-FM, 770 and 106.1. Scott said he climbed the mountain last August as a personal challenge. This time he’s just like the big climbers – he has a sponsor, a sporting goods store – and in May expects to encounter more snow.

He is carrying a two-way radio, which the station will intercept. He was to be at Camp Muir level Saturday and the summit at noon Sunday.

Twisting the dial

— Another Sunday-morning mostly instrumental “environmental sound” program airs from 8-10 a.m. on KSEA, 100.7 mHz. Called “Over Easy,” it includes a modest amount of new-age music with the lighter jazz sounds already heard on the station.

— Famous names in Northwest rock will be on the KVI, 570 kHz, morning show beginning Monday. It’s part of a promotion culminating in “The History of Northwest Rock,” a marathon history lesson to be broadcast starting at 10 a.m. Memorial Day. “The History of Northwest Rock,” produced by Mike Webb and Peter Blecha, originally aired in 1987. Dick Curtis’ Monday program features Nancy Claire, singer with the Viceroys, Little Bill of the Bluenotes, and Jim Valley, who was Harpo with Paul Revere and the Raiders.

— A somewhat-public private-label ale was introduced this month, “Z Original Ale.” It is brewed by Hale’s Ale in Kirkland for Seattle’s KPLZ – “the Z.” The brew will be available only through the month at only a dozen outlets, including the Latona Tavern and FX McRory’s.

— KOMO is scouting sites for a series of remote broadcasts from the Wimbledon tennis tournament in London in June.

— Joe Abel, executive vice president and general manager of KIRO Newsradio 71, has added the duty of supervising Kansas City sister stations KMBZ and KMBR.

— “Sounds of Sinatra,” a two-hour weekly syndication program with Sid Mark, is now heard at 5 p.m. Sundays on KSEA. The series was heard only briefly in this area but has been presented in Philadelphia for 25 years or so. This Sunday’s program includes Columbia recordings from 1947 to 1953.

— “Music Weekends” begin running from Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day weekend on KLSY-AM-FM, 1540 and 92.5. The hours after 10 a.m. on Saturdays and Sundays offer “highlights” (at least a song an hour) by different music groups.

— Susan Glass, formerly with KLTX, is the new weekend announcer at KLSY-AM-FM, 1540 and 92.5.

Author: Victor Stredicke

Former radio columnist for the Seattle Times (1964-1989). --- View other articles by Victor Stredicke

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