Steve West, WMBZ 94-1 The Buzz Memphis | February 2001

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From the ashes of Country station WOGY ‘Froggy 94’ arose this Modern AC station called “The Buzz”. This one jock who started a classic radio website poured his heart and soul into the 7-12 night show, back before live evenings became a thing of satellite feeds and pre-recorded voice tracks.

It’s early on in the year 2000, the Buzz is only two months old and as far as I can tell, this is the only known aircheck of WMBZ. Looking back, this format had serious potential, however, Entercom brass wanted to take the format in a different direction – eventually backing off on the Rock and watering down what now sounds like a Rock-Based top 40. We’ll talk about what happened to this station, which as of this writing is known as Classic Hits 94-1 KQK.

On a personal note, while some who remember me from my days at Entercom Memphis might disagree, I had more fun on the air here than at any station in my long radio career. Listen to the energy level… You really can’t do this anywhere in radio these days, as it’s discouraged by corporate just about everywhere. That I got away with it for six months as the lone holdover from the old Country format simply amazes me. And, even that isn’t totally true, my friend Paul Hankins (Hoppy Gilmore on Froggy and Greg Powers on The Buzz) got to stay for a few weeks into the new format, and my friend Tripp was promoted from part time to full, as my replacement on the 7 to midnight shift.

Here’s proof that radio was and still can be more fun than a human being can have, and get paid for it.


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2 thoughts on “Steve West, WMBZ 94-1 The Buzz Memphis | February 2001


  1. Random Google search led me here. Listening to that aircheck brought back some memories 🙂

    This is Wes, aka Woody, of The Buzz jock staff after your departure, Steve. You let me in the studio for my tryout late night a couple of times before I was hired


    1. I did? Well, I vaguely remember training a couple of people for ‘part time’. In the back of my mind, I knew I was training my replacement. The Buzz was a fun format that I really enjoyed even though I was a Country jock at the time. Glad you got a shot at the big chair. You know that 94.1 went back to country after all this time, what was it, a year ago now?

      About this website you found. I launched Airchexx after I went over to Kix 106. It started out as an innocent question to the guy who originally hosted airchexx. I asked him if he knew of a ‘free’ server where I could post a few of my airchecks online. At the time, the idea was for me to just put up a couple of 3-5 minute long demo airchecks that I could send out to program directors as part of my ‘package’. Thought I’d be on the cutting edge, you know. Well, he said, “I’d be honored if you’d do your site on my server”. Seriously, thats how it happened. I made a post on one of the radio boards I was a moderator on and all of a sudden I started gettting tapes from people. So I launched airchexx.com. Figured I’d purchase a URL just so I’d have my own. Woody, I had no idea at all that this site would grow exponentially, far past my wildest dreams. Through this website, I have gotten to know so many of the influential people in the radio industry. If I wanted to get back in the rat race, so to speak, and go move around the country, I probably could do it based upon what I’ve built here, and my 39 years of on air radio experience now. But, no. I’m staying put. I will not subject my family to moves and all the insecurity that radio provides. Besides, I can do it all from here. I have a full radio studio with all the tools I need.

      I know this is a lot in one reply, but I thought, since you took the time to reach out, remembering me from The Buzz, that I’d take a few moments to tell you what’s been going on. God has been SO GOOD to me in allowing me to do what I love from my home and without the baggage of working for egotistical PDs and having to move, etc.. I sincerely hope that you got to enjoy some nice moments ‘in the sun’ on Memphis radio. I know The Buzz didn’t last too long but perhaps you got to do radio somewhere else. Glad you got to do it. I hope and pray that you have a fun career somewhere in radio. If not and you’re out of it, well… maybe you’re the smart one! You should get back to me and tell me how radio in Memphis is these days. I’ve been gone from Memphis since mid-2007. These days I live in Connecticut, with my wife of 11 years and my stepdaughter and her one year old. My family means everything to me.

      Feel free to contact me. I’m on facebook, my profile is here: //www.facebook.com/Airchexx. Send me a friend request and send a pm. Or, email me [email protected] or [email protected].

      Thanks for reaching out! I so appreciate it when people find airchexx and contact us/me. It means a lot.

      – West

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