Chicago CHR Wars – WBBM-FM (B-96) vs. WYTZ (Z-95) | March, 1991

890 Chicago 94.7 Chicago WLS Chuck Brittain Larry Lujack Fred Winston Tommy Edwards John Records Landecker Dick Biondi Jeff Davis

96.3 Chicago, WBBM-FM

From the Robyn Watts Collection, (I’m sure this time LOL), it’s back to Chicago where the on air WAR between Z-95 and B-96 was as heated as anyone’s ever heard.

View the B96 aircheck from our official “Airchexx Classic Radio” YouTube Channel (below)

Over on the ‘Killer B’, morning guys Eddie and JoBo are having a BALL! It’s ‘Confessions Wednesday’ and you’ll hear one caller who says she’s in the mob and almost got caught (real or made up? You decide). There’s a GREAT contest where B-96 gives away a CD player worth $300 bucks – listen to what they made this poor woman go through to win it! Talk about great contesting!

View the Z95 aircheck from our official Airchexx Classic Radio YouTube Channel (below)

Later, in the Z-95 portion of this aircheck, you’ll hear TONS of produced bits making fun of B-96, to the point of overkill. True to their claims, according to what we hear on this ‘check, Z-95 really IS much more music in the morning with very little of what you’d expect from a typical morning show. It’s mostly dance music and hip-hop at this point, not the rock oriented format on the former WLS-FM, and still a couple of years before this station returned as WLS-FM TALK RADIO.

This is a very interesting and exciting time in Chicago radio – Click our links and LISTEN!

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  1. Robyn Watts

    The Z-95 portion of this aircheck was the beginning of Randy Michaels (of WFLZ/Tampa fame) ill-fated stint as the station’s consultant when Z-95 decided to shift from Mainstream CHR to Dance and take B-96 head-on in late January, 1991. The station kept the Z-95 handle for about 2 weeks before becoming “Hell 94.7”, which caused quite a stir in both radio and religious circles in Chicago and was meant to give the station some publicity. After two weeks of “Hell”, the station changed its handle once again to “Hot 94.7” and kept it for the next 9 months.

    While at WYTZ, Randy Michaels had tried to employed some of the same tricks that he had used at The Power Pig in their battle against Q-105. But B-96’s then-PD, Dave Shakes, had carefully studied Randy’s “playbook” and was able to counter-program against him. A prime example of this was when Z-95 would claim that B-96 wasn’t playing any commercials and would encourage their audience to “check them out, while they wait”. When the audience flipped over to B-96, they would stop their commercial break at that moment and play music, making it seam that Z-95 was lying to them.

  2. Robyn Watts

    (Clicked “submit” too soon, oh well!)

    Anyway, WYTZ stayed Dance until the Summer of 1991 when they shifted back to Mainstream CHR. The ratings (which at that point were much worse than they were before Randy Michaels came to town) started to slowly creep back up and in the last trend as a CHR (August-October, 1991), they had actually beaten B-96 in several key demos.

    Unfortunately, it was too little-too late as Capital Cities/ABC decided to change over to a full-time simulcast of WLS’s News/Talk format.

    On this site, there is an aircheck of Brett Miller doing middays in the station’s final days as a CHR outlet.


  3. Magic

    i remember this well! thanks for the trip back down memory lane.

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