SAN JOSE (CBS SF) — San Jose-based KRTY-FM, one of the last remaining country radio stations serving the Bay Area, has reportedly been sold and is expected to drop its format later this year.
According to a filing with the Federal Communications Commission, the radio station at 95.3 FM is being sold to the Educational Media Foundation (EMF).
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EMF, which operates Christian radio stations, is expected to air a religious format on the frequency. The group broadcasts the K-Love and Air 1 radio networks on multiple stations in the Bay Area and across the country.
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The station, which is also one of the last independent broadcasters in the market, was owned for many years by Bob Kieve, a former speechwriter to President Dwight Eisenhower. Kieve died in 2020 at the age of 98.
Nate Deaton, vice president/general manager of the station said in a press release“It’s the end of a magical era. Bob would be sorry to see the end of Country Radio in San Jose, but we know he’d be proud to see how station employees have honored his legacy since they lost Bob two years ago.
KRTY signed in 1989, at a time when there were several country radio stations in the Bay Area. In recent years, as the market has changed and other stations have dropped the format, KRTY has become the only country radio station audible in much of the region.
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According to the FCC filing, the deal is expected to close on June 1 or 10 business days after the agency approves the deal, whichever is later. The station’s current owners will retain KRTY’s intellectual property.