Radio History

In 2001 all were under the Radio West banner, with the s39 FMs as Hot FM. There were also a few renegade Red FM outlets in the SWLD such as at Pemberton (97.3) ; Hyden (Wave Rock) also had Red FM (102.1).

Who remembers the New 2ka?

Even as a parra fan I tuned into 2ka static and all on 1476 am to hear the call.

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Yes, I remember that sponsorship on the Chocolate Soldiers playing strips.

I also remember 2WS being either sleeve or shorts sponsor for the Parramatta Eels in the mid 80s too.

Did 2KA convert to FM or is it just one that faded away

Yes it did, first as One FM, then it later became 9inety6ix.1, then The Edge, and it’s now CADA.

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Well there u go. Before my time but interesting to note

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The main AM frequency of 783 kHz has faded away though (and even 1476 is dormant these days, after a stint as Kick/Cool Country AM). 783 was reallocated in the LAP for a community broadcasting service (I think) but hasn’t had any takers.

I’m just old enough to remember One FM (but not 2KA). @Mechsta has the changeover in his personal archive. I was a fan of the brief alt-rock format that 9inety6ix.1 ran in 1997-98 as I have documented previously.

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Yes, it was first proposed as such in the 2013 Sydney LAP Variation:

Interestingly, back when the Sydney LAP was up for consultation back in 1999, 783 was first proposed for a Katoomba translator service for 2LT before it eventually changed to 101.1 MHz. The frequency was also earmarked for a Campbelltown commercial radio service before settling on 91.3 MHz, as well as for a potential new Katoomba commercial radio service.

You can read more about it on the document below.
SydneyGosfordKatoombaLithgow_DSC_Aug1999.pdf (588.1 KB)

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As always, @TV-Expert comes up with the goods! And what would we do without archive dot org and their Herculean effort in caching the labyrinthine pages of the ABA and ACMA!

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I miss 2KA on 783, the signal wasn’t perfect around the mountains & didn’t get around Penrith very well, but I would often listen to it up Newcastle way, & back then in the 70’s/80’s there was no networking every local station was different & 2KA played some great music along the same line as 2SM/2NX, but different as radio was back then, 2 stations could have the same format, but be different.

And yes the 783 frequency was later transferred to a Sydney community licence based at Homebush Bay as it couldn’t be used for a 2LT translator on the mountains because ARN wouldn’t let them turn the old AM mast back into an active AM antenna & the Blue Mountains council won’t allow any development to build a new AM mast anywhere. The Blue Mountains council are strange, I get the heritage & the feel of the Mountains vibe, but they won’t allow any new developments that may however slim detract from that, they won’t even allow McDonald’s or KFC or the likes of a fast food place go there.

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Some other things to note from that LAP discussion paper in 1999:

  • 2RDJ was to move from 88.1 MHz to 100.5 MHz, presumably to make more spectrum available for LPON services in the inner Sydney region. This clearly never happened, I think due to television interference concerns?
  • 2CCC Gosford was to move from 96.3 MHz to 94.1 MHz. Initially only 93.3 and 94.9 MHz were proposed for additional Central Coast community radio services. 94.1 MHz (Today’s Country) must have got proposed at a later date, and 2CCC is still Waiting For Godot.
  • 92.5 MHz, 96.3 MHz and 98.1 MHz- the ‘booby prize’ frequencies that are interference limited- were to be allocated to narrowcasting services on the Central Coast. We ended up with two national services instead, with 2CCC remaining on 96.3.
  • Nowhere are the WS FM repeaters for Camden (88.3) and Richmond (99.1) mentioned. There is a mention of possible additional capacity for ABC services in the Hawkesbury, however.

I haven’t read through all of it yet…

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I can give you the reason this happened, the 2CCC tech at the time found 96.3 wasn’t the best frequency, similar to what I found & am trying to work around, (but I can’t remember if 2JJJ Taree was an issue back then or not), so he proposed a change of frequency, he did a lot of investigations/planning & found at that time, 94.1 was to be the best option, then before it happened there was some sort of internal turmoil, he cracked it & left 2CCC, & with him having done all the change of frequency works, he knew everything that was going on, what was needed & had the planning documents to use/back him up, so partly in spite, went to ACMA or ABA & proposed starting his own community station using 94.1, the ABA approved it & so he took the 94.1 frequency from under 2CCC’s nose & 94.1 Today’s Country was born & 2CCC was left stuck with 96.3.

I’m now trying to repeat that process & get 2CCC (Coast FM) a new frequency, but that’s a lot tougher to achieve these days, so we’re kinda stuck with what we have until I can get a frequency change over the line.

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Now that is a d!ck move if I’ve ever seen one. One petty action by a single volunteer has led to years of disadvantage for 2CCC. It only takes one.

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So… how long before you crack it and start a country station on a new frequency?

2JJJ Taree went to air on Australia Day 1995 as part of the first regional roll out of Triple J.

2CCC was definitely on air before then, and that was my first exposure to the ‘joys’ of co-channelled radio! I still remember the first time I heard that, driving through Merewether Heights in Newcastle and hearing the 2 stations fight each other for supremacy on my car radio.

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Quite some time considering I don’t like country music.

Yes, figured it was part of the regional rollout of JJJ in the mid 90s. I seem to remember tuning in from 1996 or 1997, when travelling up to Sawtell for holidays.

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For some reason, places like Tamworth (94.7), Upper Namoi (99.9) and Grafton/Kempsey (91.5) didn’t get JJJ until mid 1995… not from Australia Day like most other locations did… must have been some issue with getting them on air initially.

How long was Johnny Young on Magic 693 (which was 3XY in a previous life)?

I have an old cassette of him doing a brief “Bob Hope on the Simpsons” style praising Anna Paquin from the time of her win in 1994

I was going through an old hard drive over the weekend and found a few ARIA reports from the 90’s.
Each week, a section was dedicated to radio & TV new music additions that radio stations would submit.
I’ve included two weeks worth - one from 1991 and one from 1995.

A few things stand out:

  • Radio was willing to take risks, be adventurous and play new music before it hit the charts, or play songs well below the Top 40.
  • Radio was also willing to give the heritage acts a go
  • Radio was programmed at a local level, with music for the local market. None of this one size fits all approach we see these days.
  • Interesting to note the amount of new music the regionals played (most were still one station markets before FM supplementary licenses came into being).
  • 2WS seemed to play quite a lot of new music :slight_smile: during the 90’s

Enjoy!




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