, "98-7 FM") is a commercial modern rock radio station
in Los Angeles, California, covering the Los Angeles
, Orange County
, and Inland Empire
areas on 98.7 FM and 98.7 HD1 and 98.7 HD2 on their digital HD Radio
subchannels. KYSR is also simulcasted on KSRY
103.1 FM in Tehachapi, California
The station currently known as KYSR signed on in 1948 using the KMGM call letters
. The KCBH call letters followed.
The station became KJOI, airing a beautiful music format from the late 1960s well through the 1980s. Over the years the station was owned by Viacom.
In 1989, KJOI became KXEZ, increasing the number of vocalists from four per hour to half and half. The older traditional vocalists were replaced with more adult contemporary artists. The instrumentals were dropped altogether in 1991, leading to an evolution to a soft adult contemporary music format.
Viacom purchased KQLZ in 1992 and moved the KXEZ call letters and soft adult contemporary music format to 100.3 FM. The new and current KYSR call letters were granted by the FCC to complement the new and current "Star 98.7" branding. In the beginning, KYSR aired an adult contemporary music format which evolved into a hot adult contemporary music format by 1993
In 1995, most of the rhythmic Top 40 and soft rock tunes were dropped from the playlist and replaced with a lighter modern rock sound, minus the harder approach embraced by KROQ-FM.
Viacom sold the station to Chancellor Media in 1997. AMFM Inc. was formed after Chancellor Media merged with Capstar in 1999. And in 2000, AMFM Inc. merged with current owner, Clear Channel Communications.
In 2002, KYSR began to experience a decreased market share noted in its declining ratings. This is likely contributed by a decreased amount of hit music product in the modern adult contemporary genre at the time. The debut of KCBS-FM in 2005 may also be a factor as KCBS-FM airs an adult hits music format that shared a large proportion of music on the KYSR playlist.
KYSR adjusted their playlist in September 2005 to focus on 1980s and 1990s hot adult contemporary music. The playlist adjustment was directed by KHHT program director, Mike Marino. By April 2006, KYSR readopted the modern adult contemporary music format with the tag line of "Today's Music Alternative" playing more alternative rock hits at the time and Marino relinquished his duties at KYSR to solely focus on KHHT.
All on air personalities including the notable morning show - Jamie, Jack, and Stench - were temporarily pulled off the station. Fans of the Jamie, Jack, and Stench show protested this move which included a public protest at the studio. Shortly afterwards, a poll was established on the website asking if they wanted Jamie, Jack and Stench to return. Ninety-seven percent said yes and a week later they returned. However not soon after the return JJ&S got replaced by the morning team of "Valentine and Lisa Foxx" in 2007.
On September 20, 2007 KYSR repositioned itself as '98-7.' The Star name was deemphasised as the station moved in a male friendly direction. While the format claimed itself as Modern AC, its musical lean favored Modern Rock/Alternative hits with an updated library of alternative hits from the 80's, 90's and early 2000's such as Nirvana, Green Day, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Pearl Jam, Third Eye Blind and R.E.M. and played more new modern rock hits from bands such as The Killers, Foo Fighters, Incubus and Linkin Park. This repositioning came three days after sister station KBIG added more recent adult hits and dropped the dance/disco hits and became known as "104.3 MyFM." Effective September 24, 2007, Valentine took over the KBIG morning show, replacing Charlie Tuna, whose last show was September 17.
The station recently changed its look to be a more rock friendly station. On the station's loyalty club website "98-7 Rockaholics" it claims that the station is "powerless over rock and their lives are managed by rock music." While the format still officially sticks as Modern AC, many are commenting that the station's playlist is now resemblant of cross town "rival" alternative rock station KROQ
. The station's new logo consists of the numerals 98 and 7 in Gothic typeface
with a metallic star between the numerals.
In 2008, both R&R/Nielsen BDS and Mediabase added KYSR as an alternative (modern rock) reporter, in part due to its conversion to a modern rock direction. With this conversion to the format full-time, KYSR adds to a three-way Alternative radio war in Los Angeles that in addition to KROQ, they also compete with KDLD, whose signal is limited in the area.
- Adventure Club- Josh spins the best indie rock from the U.S. and the U.K. Sunday Nights. The show was originally on KDGE in Dallas, Texas. However, when Josh moved to 98-7 from KDGE, the show was also moved to Los Angeles.
- The Bad Ass Eight At Ocho- Listeners vote their favorite songs of the day at 987fm.com and the top 8 picked are played at 8:00 p.m w/Kade.
- The Rewind At Noon- Listeners call in or text their requests from the 90's and 80's. Hosted by Marco Collins.
- OzoLocal- The Los Angeles based band Ozomatli hosts local and new music on Saturday nights.
- 4 From The Night Before- Josh hosts the top 4 songs from the night before's Bad Ass Eight at Ocho w/Kade.
98.7 special features
- 98.7 Rockaholics- The station's loyalty club. Rockaholics collect points and win prizes. They are also entitled to win more prizes on air as well.
On The Air
- Afterwork Orgy- On weekdays at about 5:15pm, Josh hosts a mash-up of a soundbite from a certain movie and three songs. If listeners can get the name of the movie and the three songs. He/she wins a prize.
- Rockaholic of the Day- On four times each weekday, submit the name of the Rockaholic of the Day and win points on 98.7 Rockaholics.
The weekday programming on this station includes Ozomatti in The Morning
, Marco Collins on mid-days, Josh on afternoon drive, and Kade on nights. Weekend hosts include D Rose, Lisa Foxx, Fat Daniel, and Nikki Imbornone.
- Ryan Seacrest from American Idol was the afternoon DJ from 1995 to 2003.
- MTV VJ Mark Goodman, was a DJ from 1990-1997. No official reason for his departure were given, but his father died shortly before his departure.
- Morning personality, Jamie White, was formerly part of the morning team of "Jamie, Frosty & Frank", until September 15, 1999 when Jamie White was paired with Danny Bonaduce.
- Afternoon drive personality Jason Pullman leaves the station in 2004.
- Nighttime personality Skip Kelly (2002-2004)exits in May 2004.
- Brian Douglas was a swing jock there for five years from 1997 to 2002 before leaving to take the night position over at the now defunct Country 93.9 KZLA.
- Bradley Wright was a deejay at the station for almost a decade until he got fired by the station at the rise of the "Today's Music Alternative" format in 2006.
- Jason Griffin was the host of the "Saturday Night Mix Up" and was a weekend/swing deejay from 1998-2005.
- On July 1, 2005, Danny Bonaduce departed. The vacancy was filled by board-op Jack Heine and producer Mike "Stench" Roberts.
- Lara Scott departed in April 2006 upon expiration of her contract. A renewal was offered and *turned down. Lara Scott is currently on KFSH-FM middays.
- Richard Blade (ex. KROQ deejay) is hired by Star in 2003 but is later fired and replaced by Summer James.
- On January 3, 2007, the "Jamie, Jack and Stench" morning show was pulled and replaced on January 16, 2007 with Sean Valentine and Lisa Foxx. Valentine worked for 10 years at KIIS-FM in Los Angeles, and upon leaving to join KYSR he was rated the most listened to personality in Los Angeles with well over 1 million listeners. (credit: Arbitron 12+ cume FA 2006)
- In 2007, Frosty, Frank, and Bonaduce, who are now employed at talk radio KLSX devoted an entire show devoted to uncovering the behind the scenes drama at KYSR, accusing Jamie White of being extremely difficult to work with and scheming behind their backs to get them fired.
- On December 27, 2007, Afternoon drive personality Tom Mitchell exits.
- On December 27, 2007, Nighttime personality Summer James exits.
- On June 1, 2008, Justin Kade is announced as the new night jock for the new Alternative KYSR.
- On August 12, 2008, rock band OzoMatli is announced as the new morning line-up.
airs a commercial free eRockster
format on their secondary HD Radio
The station is also available for streaming at the 98.7 website.