We’ll be Bach, somewhere

Our old friend Lisa let it be known what she was listening to instead of the Trump Show yesterday:

Automotive radio tuned to KDFC in the San Francisco Bay Area

This banged into my forehead, since once upon a time I had memorized the dial position of just about every commercial classical-music station in the nation, and KDFC, so far as I remembered, was at 102.1. (They’d had a crosstown rival, KKHI, at 95.7, but they died about 20 years ago.)

So what happened here? It didn’t take long to find the truth of the matter:

The KDFC-FM call sign and programming were previously assigned to 102.1 FM, from its inception in 1948 until January 2011, when the format and intellectual property moved to the former KUSF. The University of Southern California also acquired the 89.9 FM frequency in Angwin, California and its two translator signals in Eureka and Lakeport. The KDFC call sign was officially assigned to the Angwin station.

But that’s 89.9. This KDFC must therefore be — another translator! And so it is.

Historically, 104.9 has been the location of a lot of small-town signals that didn’t compete with the Big Boys; originally FM Class A was limited to 3,000 watts ERP at 100 meters, and only Class A stations were assigned to 104.9. This is no longer the case, and current Class A stations are allowed 6,000 watts. But KDFC isn’t the only classical station that got shunted off to 104.9; WCLV in Cleveland, formerly on a 30-kw stick at 95.5, not only moved down the dial but out of town, into the city of Lorain to the northwest. I remember dialing in from south of Cleveland and making a turn eastward to see if the new and unimproved signal could reach Severance Hall, on Cleveland’s east side. (Answer: barely, at least with the equipment I had.)


  1. fillyjonk »

    21 January 2017 · 3:01 pm

    I grew up in Hudson, and WCLV came in pretty clearly on 95.5.

    I wonder if I’d be able to pick it up, in its new location, if I lived there now.
    (Crikey, I wish I could pick up a real, over-the-air classical channel here. WRR is too weak and far away; none of the NPR affiliates that play classical stretch this far.)

  2. ETat »

    21 January 2017 · 3:59 pm

    Is that the same friend that fawned over “she-Obama and her garish duds” ?

    Luckily, her parvenu of a disaster, Oh’Bummer, first-lady-in-name-only was removed from the White House and – I hope – returns to her natural habitat of obnoxious maids.

    Leaving your art-major friend Lisa to heal her wounded spirit with music…why not rrrevloutionary marches or kumbayah chants?

    Leaving us, the basket of deplorables, to enjoy beautiful, tastefully sparse and elegant garments worn by Melania Trump.


  3. CGHill »

    21 January 2017 · 5:19 pm

    North end of Summit County? It would be close.

  4. fillyjonk »

    21 January 2017 · 5:35 pm

    Well, that’s one more reason not to ever consider moving back.

    Then again, the only classical music I get here is through Pandora, or Sirius in my car, or what I can play myself.

  5. CGHill »

    21 January 2017 · 6:38 pm

    There’s KBCW (91.9) in McAlester, but they run only 700 watts and won’t make it to Stringtown.

  6. fillyjonk »

    21 January 2017 · 8:36 pm

    I can sometimes get WRR when I’m in the car in Sherman.

    91.9 from McAlester would be blocked by the signal from the local college channel (Not NPR and heavy on alt-rock and Top 40)

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