, "K-TAOS 101.9") is a radio station
licensed to serve Taos, New Mexico
. The station is owned by Taos Communications Corporation. It airs an Album Adult Alternative
music format. The station's transmitter is powered by an array of 140 photovoltaic panels.
The station was assigned the KTAO call letters by the Federal Communications Commission on October 6, 1986.
KTAO’s transmitter was in the town of Taos prior to 1991, but following FCC approval to increase to 1,200 watts, a new transmitter site was needed. The best location for a new transmitter was 10,800-foot Picuris Peak, which didn't have, and still doesn't have, grid power. According to owner Brad Hockmeyer, solar power was the only option. The high-altitude location of its transmitter gives KTAO broadcast coverage from as far south as Albuquerque, New Mexico, and north into southern Colorado. This broadcast area is the largest of any solar-powered station in the world.
KTAO’s music format is Adult Album Alternative (AAA). The reggae show Roots and Wires
and Sonido del Sol
, which plays Latin dance music, are some of the popular locally-produced specialty music shows. KTAO also airs syndicated programming such as Little Steven’s Underground Garage
, the Putumayo World Music Hour
, and the House of Blues Hour
. Weekday mornings, Nancy Stapp hosts the news and community affairs show, Breakfast With Nancy
2008 New Mexico Broadcasters Association Awards
Nancy Stapp won the NMBA Best Newscaster award and her show Breakfast With Nancy
won the NMBA award for Best Talk Show.
Solar Center Music Venue
The KTAO studio offices are located five miles north of the town of Taos. Outside the studio and offices is a festival-style performance venue, that includes a large, heated tent that allows KTAO to host events year-round. Angelique Kidjo, Little Feat, Billy Bob Thornton, the Subdudes and many others performed at the Solar Center in 2007.