The original callsign was WTHA when the construction permit was issued at the beginning of October 1996. This was in anticipation of "Hot 97.5" (WHTA-FM, now WPZE FM) simulcasting north of Atlanta as "Hot 107.5". (Banners had in fact already been printed with both numbers.) In early February 1998, around the time it went on the air, it instead became WAMJ FM, R&B "Majic 107.5". In late June 2001, that format and the WAMJ callsign were sent to also-new 102.5, and 107.5 then became WJZZ-FM "Smooth Jazz 107.5". WHTA instead then moved entirely to "Hot 107.9" a couple of months later.
This new station is the result of FCC docket 80-90, as is 102.5. Originally won and built as a class A by Dogwood Licenses, it is now a class C3 owned outright by Radio One, via subsidiary ROA Licenses, LLC (Radio One Atlanta). The transmitter site is in the Perimeter Center area near Perimeter Mall, between Sandy Springs and Dunwoody.
W298AA, a broadcast translator for WMBW in Chattanooga, also had the same frequency, city of license, and general transmitter location as this station from 1980 (permit) or 1981 (license), until being forced off the air by this new station.
The on-air jingles heard on WJZZ are similar to those heard on Clear Channel-owned Smooth Jazz stations, such as WSMJ, WNUA, KKSF, and the former WJJZ (which was shortly revived by Greater Media, and also used the same jingles; this station is now WNUW). Interestingly enough, the WJZZ jingles use the opposite arrangement of their Clear Channel counterparts, which means that the frequency precedes the call sign, instead of the other way around. As a result, the words "SMOOTH JAZZ 107 POINT 5 WJZZ" are sung to the tune, again reversing the Clear Channel practice.
The Smooth Jazz format has enjoyed a surprisingly long run of success in the Atlanta market, which is better known for its R&B/hip-hop, pop/rock, and country heritage. From 1994 to 2000, the format was used on WJZF (now the Urban AC-formatted "Kiss 104.1").
The call letters WJZZ originally belonged to an FM station in Bridgeport, Connecticut (this station is now WEZN "Star 99.9"). The Connecticut WJZZ began as an all-jazz station in 1960 with John Metts of Weston, CT. as GM. WJZZ was one of the pioneers of the "All-Jazz" format. From 1956 - 1965 Mr. Metts was the Vice President of an existing news station in Bridgeport, CT, call letters:WICC WICC "Wicc600" He achieved his vision of an all jazz format radio station with the purchase of WJZZ and by hiring his neighbor, jazz composer Dave Brubeck as program director. In 1964 it switched to broadcasting the "Top 60" classical performances then, when it switched to stereo broadcasting, it became the "Top 100" — the 100 most popular classical performances according to a list compiled by, among others, composer Leonard Bernstein.
The WJZZ call letters were then transferred to Detroit station WCHB-FM, sister station to legendary R&B outlet WCHB-AM and also one of the pioneers of the"all-jazz" format. One of the first U.S. stations ever to use the Smooth Jazz format, Detroit's WJZZ was flipped to an Urban Contemporary format in 1996, and it is now WDMK. The current Smooth Jazz station in Detroit is WVMV (better known as "Smooth Jazz V98.7").