Lazer 103

WHQG

WHQG ("102.9 The Hog") is a hard rock FM radio station licensed to and serving the Milwaukee, Wisconsin, area. The station is owned by Saga Communications. The "Hog" moniker and call letters are references to the fans and riders of Harley-Davidson motorcycles, which has its headquarters in Milwaukee.

Station History

For many years, this station was WLZR, aka "Lazer 103". WLZR went on the air with a hard rock format in 1987. Lazer 103 dominated the highly-rated album-oriented rock station of the day, WQFM, so much that WQFM switched to smooth jazz in 1996. Their longtime morning show of Bob and Brian has been a dominant force in Milwaukee radio since debuting in the late 1980s.

Even with the show's success, during the station's last few years, the aging audience of Bob and Brian's show did not listen to the station's younger-skewing active rock format the rest of the day. Ratings dropped drastically after 10:00. In 2004, WLTQ suddenly dropped their light adult contemporary format and switched to 80s-oriented classic rock as "97.3 The Brew". The station was an immediate success, and took away many of WLZR's listeners after Bob and Brian signed off for the day. Not to mention that The Brew also took listeners away from WLZR's successful classic rock sister, WKLH. It was decided to rebuild the station around its popular morning show, and aim for an older demographic turned off by Lazer 103's current musical offerings. On August 15, 2005, WLZR started stunting with wide-ranging music and teasers. They even played songs with the word "Jack" in them (in reference to the rapidly growing Jack FM format). The next day, just after 10:00, Bob and Brian signed off their morning show by signing on a new radio station -- "102.9 The Hog". The station reimaged itself, dropped much of the younger-skewing rock music from bands like Slipknot, Mudvayne and Linkin Park, added more rock from the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s and widely expanded the playlist. The new slogan was "Everything That Rocks", and serves as a harder rocking counterpart to its classic rock sister, WKLH. Another slogan used to help change the station's image and to steal listeners from other stations included "Not just the 80's, everything that rocks". The results of the image and playlist changes were immediate. "The Hog" took WQBW's spot as the top-rated station in the market, stealing back listeners as "The Brew" had not really updated its playlist much in the previous year.

The 102.9 frequency started out as WRIT-FM, eventually simulcasting its sister station's Top 40 format. Then, when the FCC mandated splitting up AM-FM simulcasts, they became WFWO (For Women Only), and played light adult contemporary music. Finally, they were country music-formatted WBCS for many years before becoming WLZR.

The Hog's mascot hog was named "Dr. Squealgood" in a contest which is takeoff of a popular Mötley Crüe song: "Dr. Feelgood".

References

External links

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