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History of Philadelphia radio station 104.5 WRFF (Clear Channel)

  • As WRCP-FM

    104.5 signed on in 1965 as WRCP-FM,the sister station to WRCP-AM, owned by Rust Craft, a greeting card company. 104.5 simulcasted the MOR format of the AM station and continued to simulcast when the station switched to a country format in 1967. In 1971, the station commenced stereo operation and simulcasted WRCP AM during the day and separately programmed country music at night.

    1989 Sunny 104.5 Logo

    As WSNI (the first time)

    In 1977, WRCP became WSNI and began completely original programming with a unique "beautiful country" format, while the AM continued with traditional country. Beautiful country was a mix of original soft country hits and specially customized instrumental covers. By 1979, the country music was phased out for traditional beautiful music via the syndicated FM 100 Plan. In 1980, the station switched to an adult contemporary format, interspersed with occasional pop standards, using the "Sunny 104" name for the first time. By 1982, WSNI evolved into a more gold-based AC featuring Hy Lit and using the new slogan "Sunny 104 and a half - it's the half that makes the difference." In 1983, Hy Lit moved to the AM operation and was replaced by Don Cannon in the morning. Cannon and sidekick Dennis Malloy hosted the long- running "Cannon and Malloy" morning show. Other WSNI announcers in the early 1980s included Chris Guetta, Tony Mann, Viv Roundtree, Andre Gardner, Joe Simone and Vernon McKay. By the late 1980s, the station changed its name to "Sunny 104.5," retaining the adult contemporary format, but increasing the amount of current songs while severely limiting the oldies. By 1990, Cannon, Lit and Malloy had left. In April, the station dropped the softer '60s and '70s music from its playlist to concentrate on '80s artists. The "Sunny" name was also dropped.

    As WYXR

    On December 10, 1990 the call letters were changed to WYXR in an attempt to distance the station further from the "Sunny" image and softer music. The station was now known as Hot AC "Star 104.5" In 1996, the station leaned CHR (contemporary hit radio) still retaining the Star name but was back to Hot AC by 1997.



    Alice 104.5 logo

    As WLCE

    On November 18, 1999, the station became known as "Alice 104.5" with new call letters WLCE. The new format was described as "Rockin' Hits" of the '70s, '80s and '90s in an attempt to challenge classic rock WMGK. By 2001, more current hits were added to the mix, and the station leaned more towards a rock/hot AC sound. Also in 2001, after a series of earlier mergers, the station came under the ownership of Clear Channel Communications.

    As WSNI - again

    On July 31, 2002, after stunting with a 24 hour loop of The Beatles' "Here Comes the Sun," 104.5 flipped back to soft AC, reinstating the "Sunny 104.5" name (and eventually the WSNI calls) abandoned 12 years earlier. This incarnation of Sunny was an AC oldies format focusing on the '60s, '70s, and '80s. Barry Manilow voiced a liner for the station stating that "now Philadelphians can finally hear my music on the radio again." The new Sunny lasted just over four years. On August 10, 2006, Sunny's sister station WJJZ 106.1 flipped from smooth jazz to a rhythmic AC format. The Sunny format was dumped and 104.5 began a simulcast of this new station. (Since 104.5 was delayed by several seconds from 106.1, this simulcast has been referred to as a "shadowcast.")

    As WUBA, WRFF

    After 13 days of shadowcasting 106.1, 104.5 flipped to a Spanish language station known as "Rhuma 104.5" with call letters WUBA. This was the first Spanish language station on FM in Philadelphia. Due to low ratings, the format and calls were moved to 1480 AM on May 16, 2007. At that point, 104.5 became known as "Radio 104.5" with a rock format centered on modern rock from the 1990s, along with some '70s, '80s, and current product. New calls WRFF ("Radio one o Four Five") were assigned on May 23, 2007.

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  • Discuss 104.5 WRFF Philadelphia

    Comments? Corrections? Worked there? Please let us know!

    1. Posted at 12:53 PM on 12/20/2010 by Ron Bond:
    Looking for information on George Lyle, Sports Director for WJMJ in the 50's or 60's. He also annnoounced Eagles Games in the late 60's

    2. Posted at 8:46 PM on 7/27/2011 by Tom Kaufman:
    Wonder if there any airchecks of WRCP from late 1967/early 1968 floating around? I remember how that ole station sounded much like a "top-40" station; they could have been a "countryfied WFIL, only they played country music!

    3. Posted at 4:03 AM on 8/7/2011 by CDH:
    I too am looking for more info about George Lyle.

    4. Posted at 3:55 PM on 3/30/2012 by Tom Kaufman:
    Still looking to find some airchecks of when WRCP first went country in 1967/early 1968.

    5. Posted at 7:18 AM on 6/19/2014 by cyber:
    To everyone who worked at WSNI in the 70's and 80's I have this sad news to pass along. Chris Guetta passed away this week.

    6. Posted at 11:51 AM on 11/24/2014 by sue hitchcock:
    Hi, I worked at WSNI/WRCP with Chris Guetta in the l153 '70's, but we lost touch. Recently I heard from another former colleague that Chris had passed. (sometime arund May 2014). I reunited with Chris as late at 2014 and we were trying to meet up. Can you please give me any info. on Chris Guetta in these later years--I even checked obits and wasn't able to get anywhere! She was a vibrant, talented young woman when we worked together and helped me in my future endeavors. This info will be greatly appreciated! S.Hitchcock

    7. Posted at 4:59 PM on 12/2/2014 by cyber:
    Sue: Chris passed away in June about a month before her birthday. She was living in an apartment in Jenkintown. Her sister held a memorial gathering at the Moshulu at Penn's Landing. If i could get in touch with you via e-mail I could fill you in with greater detail. I don't know how to do that on a public forum because it wouldn't be a good idea to publish our e-mail addresses. I don't have a Facebook page or any other social media. Any ideas let me know.

    8. Posted at 5:39 PM on 4/11/2015 by Lindsey:
    I'm not sure what WRFF originally played, but it's definitely not focused on 90s with some 70s and 80s. I'd say it's focused on current charting alternative songs with a heavy 90s/2000s influence.

    9. Posted at 6:30 PM on 10/19/2015 by Sydney '4363':
    The call letters come from (the capitals are the call letters) "We're Radio one o Four Five" not "Radio one o Four Five". Unlike other stations, it makes use of the W for the east. Smart.

    10. Posted at 6:59 AM on 9/14/2016 by Bob Lewe Jr.:
    Grew up in Philly. Enjoyed WSNI. Where is Joe Simone?

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