QuickCheck: Richard D., WHND 560 Monroe (Detroit) MI | 1983

560 Detroit WHND

Here’s a Detroit area station that’s been gone for over 25 years. Our Contributor (“Paul”) writes…

(This) came from a long ago defunct radio station…. that was once in it’s heyday as a GREAT (FM) oldies station (WHNE) from 1973 – 1976 until it finally ended up as a has-been AM station until it’s demise around 1990.

The demise Paul is describing is the end of the Oldies format on 560. While there is a separate history for the FM side, we’ll concentrate for a moment on the AM signal.

Our research indicates that since 1990, there have been three different sets of call letters for 560 in Monroe, Michigan. WHND, WLLZ and WRDT. It’s current license expires on 10.01.2020. As many might expect in this day of greatly diminished revenues for AM properties, this is an Evangelical Christian preaching station. It is still broadcasting as of this writing.


  1. Thanks for posting that (WHND) aircheck I sent you.
    The original HONEYRADIO (WHNE FM 95) from 1973 thru 1976 was my favorite and I miss that alot……nobody in this Detroit market plays oldies like they did.

    • Howard Dean

      Interesting, this was a little before my time. 560am became a relgious station around the mid 90’s. The signal kinda fades down near Toledo. Sounded like an interesting station though.

      • FYI………………….

        560 AM started out as WQTE in the 60s as an adult contemporary HIT PARADE format.

        WHND AM 560 was a spin-off from WHNE FM 95 in Sept 1974 when they began broadcasting the OLDIES format simultanously…..WHNE started the format in March 1973.
        Then in March 1976, WHNE FM 95 went off the air leaving WHND to broadcast until soon after 1990.
        After that WHND became a sort of religious station.

        • Thomas Soncrant

          WHND 560 AM began as WMON then WMIC. They began and ended broadcasting from a tiny “studio” just south of Monroe, Michigan. The new AM station began sometime in the 1950’s. Because its signal interfered with night-time stations, I remember at one time, it had to stop broadcasting after sunset.

          • Rob Turak

            Yeah….. I had forgotten all about that, but you are right – Honey radio had to stop broadcasting when the sun went down.

  2. Jim

    Actually, both WHNE and WHND were great, but I recall WHNE (early on) as having no live DJs, at least at one point. In the late 70s and very early 80s, you could hear great R&B, garage-punk, psychedelia, etc. on WHND, and occasionally some very well-informed background on the music. They (WHND) also sponsored several fabulous live concert-parties, some with classic performers featured on the station. Definitely missed.

    • Marty

      I remember Honey radio having free events which always included oldies bands. I miss those. i don’t recall ever hearing honey ever not having DJs. Also, because I was such an avid listner, before completly going off, they turned into a mix of country and oldies. That’s when I stopped listening.

  3. Paul Ford

    Thanks for bringing that up Jim.

    I thought WHND was OK but WHNE sounded better on FM.
    I should note that WHFI(FM 95) had live DJs until early 1972, then it went no DJ (I forget the proper term for that).
    It started going all oldies in late ’72 or early ’73, then changed the call letters to WHNE in Sept ’73 until March 1976 (I wish I had the sign-off on cassette)

    ……correction to my April 9 comments
    (WHNE did not start in March ’73)

    • I believe the proper term would be… JOCKLESS. Not to be confused with today’s corporate owners, who would be called BRAINLESS. 🙂

  4. Paul Ford

    Good one Steve…that’s the easy way to put it (but I heard it was called something else). I just can’t remember it.
    It sounded automated….they play music, give the time, and the station ID.

    p.s…….I agree with the reference to corporate owners (of most radio stations) today.
    I stopped listening to land based music radio stations in 1993 here in Detroit.
    Thank God for internet radio !!!!

  5. Mack

    Funny — I found this page while looking for info about WQTE. The search was triggered by a discussion about “Yellow Polka Dot Bikini”.

    I remember (or I think I do — age will tell) when they changed to rock in 1961 and spent a weekend playing that song on endless repeat as a promo. It was a great gag, something you couldn’t do today.

  6. Paul Ford

    That was an interesting note you made about 560 AM WQTE Mack.
    When I first discovered it in ’67 on my transistor radio, they were indeed playing the adult (I’m talking over 40) contemporary hit parade….but who knows what they did before that.

  7. WQTE’s first life as an “adult contemporary” station was in 1959-1960. Ross Mulholland, formerly of WJR, owned the station then and wanted to showcase a popular music format that featured no hard rock. Ed McKenzie, best known as “Jack the Bellboy” on WJBK in the late 1940s/early ’50s, was another one of the DJs.

    In 1960 management flipped WQTE’s format to Top 40. Despite the fact that Detroit already had WJBK and WXYZ playing Top 40 full time and CKLW and WKMH (predecessor of Keener 13) sort of dabbling in it, and despite the fact that everything below 760 on the AM dial was sort of invisible at that time (to an extent, I guess it still is) to most Detroiters, the station did fairly well. Tom Clay was a “Cutie Radio” DJ at this time as was Dave Hull “The Hullaballooer” later at WONE Dayton.

    Management flipped WQTE’s format again to the MOR/album standards format in the late spring of 1961, because they felt they weren’t making enough money with a teen-oriented format. And that’s how it was until Greater Media took over the station along with WHFI-FM, flipped WHFI which was already running the syndicated “Olde Golde” oldies package to Honey Radio with Drake-Chenault’s “Classic Gold” package, and later turned AM 560 into a simulcast (or shadowcast if you will) of 94.7.

    The reason there were no live DJs in the early years of Honey Radio was that they were using a syndicated package. WJR-FM 96.3 ran Drake-Chenault’s “Solid Gold” (an early Hot AC-type format) for a time in the early ’70s. I don’t think anyone in Detroit had their “Hit Parade” MOR/AC format, but WSPD-FM 101.5 in Toledo did before it became WLQR.

    • Marty

      WJRs FM station format was called “California Radio.” The whole days programing was recorded froma studio in California and the huge tape reels were shipped to WJR. The only thing that was live was the news. I know this because my aunt worked at WJR and she took me into the office one day and I remember seeing that huge tape running. I completly forgot about that until you mentioned it.

      • Paul Ford

        Marty…you are correct in bringing up that “California Radio” format on WJR-FM….I have a full page promo ad from the Detroit News dated 1971 or 72 in my newspaper archives…..wish I had some air checks on cassette

  8. My mistake… WONE is where Dave Hull was BEFORE WQTE. Moderator, please post my correction or edit the WONE reference out of my above comment if you deem it worthy of posting. Thank you.

  9. gerard rhodie

    I loved WHND Honey radio, I left Detroit for Scotland in 1983 and miss the music and competitions that the station was famous fo

  10. Jim Hampton

    Actually for many years it was WQTE in Monroe. Tom Clay worked there after he was fired from WJBK during payola scandal. Other notables were there also. Some other station now has the call letters.

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