Tony Davis, FIRST DAY Eagle 106 WEGX Philadelphia | March 1987

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In the 1980’s, Philadelphia’s 106.1 FM seemed cursed. No matter what Cox Radio put on the frequency, nothing seemed to work. In 1981, it was WWSH Stereo 106, playing a mix of Beautiful Music & Soft Adult Contemporary. It had an audience, but that audience was older than station management wanted. 1982, The format was modified to Adult Contemporary as Wish 106, but it failed to attract an audience. In 1983, radio vet, Bobby Rich was hired to fix the station. He took the station in a Top 40 direction, and named it WWSH The Top FM 106. It failed to put a dent in CHR leader, WCAU-FM. 1984 saw another change, as the station became WZGO Z106, and brought in a popular morning show from Hawaii, Randal & Cooke. Nothing. A new morning show was hired, Ross Brittain from Z100 New York. The station still struggled. In 1986, Cox hired radio consultant, Mike Joseph. Five years earlier, Joseph had put the successful Hot Hits format on competing WCAU-FM. He came up with a Hot Hits clone called Electric 106, with Ross Brittain holding down mornings. The new Electric format was not as strong as Hot Hits, & failed to impress the audience. Cox Radio was done, and decided to sell the station. Malrite Communications, owner of Z100, just up the road in New York, bought the station, and immediately blew up Electric 106, and launched Eagle 106 WEGX. The station debuted as an AC, playing everything from the Beatles, 70s & 80s hits, as well as currents. The station quickly evolved into CHR & started to get traction. Across town, CBS noticed WEGX would rival WCAU-FM. CBS was not in the mood to get into a real CHR battle with WEGX, so CBS brass decided they would rather flip to oldies, and grab that pile of money. WEGX was a successful CHR from 1987 to 1993, when the station flipped to Jazz. This air check is from the first 24 hours of Eagle 106, with Tony Davis, a hold out from Electric 106 on the air.

 

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