A resource for music researchers -
Las Vegas Radio History
by Alex Cosper
also American Radio
Las Vegas has become one of the fastest growing
markets in the 1990s and 2000s. In 1990 Arbitron ranked Las Vegas as the 65th
largest radio market in the country. In 1995 it was number 48 and in 2005 it was
number 38. In 2007 Las Vegas ranks number 32.
Legendary call letters that have stood out in the market over
the years include KLUC (98.5), which has been the leading contemporary hit music
(top 40) station in the market since the eighties. Once owned by Nationwide
Broadcasting, it remained a top three station and was often number one
throughout the nineties. Infinity Broadcasting became the owner at the turn of
the century following its merger with CBS Radio. In 2005 Infinity reverted back
to its former name CBS Radio.
CBS Radio owns several other successful stations in Las Vegas including KXTE (107.5), which has been
one of the highest rated alternative stations in the country of the top 50 major
markets. It was formerly classic rock station KFBI under Americom and then
American Radio Systems, who flipped it to "Extreme Radio" in 1997 and sold it to
CBS Radio that year. It presented a head on challenge to Radiovision's KEDG (The
Edge/103.5), which had also been one of the top rated major market alternative
stations in the country up until that point. But with KXTE coming on strong from
the beginning, it was The Edge that dropped out of the format. KXTE went on to
become a fixture in the market's Arbitron top five for many years, ahead of all
other stations in the market playing some form of rock music.
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