|Broadcast area||Greater Los Angeles|
|Branding||Zona MX 101.9|
|Frequency||101.9 MHz (HD Radio)|
|Repeater(s)||101.9 MHz KSCA-FM1 (Santa Clarita)|
|First air date||March 22, 1952|
HD2: Spanish Oldies
|HAAT||863.0 meters (2,831.4 ft)|
|Callsign meaning||Southern CAlifornia|
|Affiliations||Uforia Audio Network|
Los Angeles Kings (NHL)
|Owner||Univision Communications |
(Univision Radio Illinois, Inc.)
|Sister stations||KLVE, KRCD/KRCV, KTNQ, KFTR-DT, KMEX-DT|
KSCA (101.9 MHz "Zona MX 101.9") is a commercial FM radio station licensed to Glendale, California and broadcasting to the Greater Los Angeles area. KSCA is owned by Univision Communications, and it airs a Regional Mexican radio format. The station has studios and offices on Center Drive (near Interstate 405) in West Los Angeles. KSCA's transmitter is on Mount Wilson.
KSCA broadcasts in the HD Radio format. The main KSCA programming is heard on the primary channel with "Recuerdo," a Spanish-language oldies format, heard on the HD-2 channel. KSCA is also broadcast on a 90-watt booster station in Santa Clarita, California, KSCA-FM1 at 101.9.
The station first signed on the air on March 22, 1952 as KUTE, originally programming a "good music" format from studios in downtown Los Angeles and transmitter atop Flint Peak, just west of the Rose Bowl in Pasadena. It was owned by Robert P. Adams, who served as its president and general manager.
In 1972, KUTE was sold to the Progress Radio Network (which changed its name to Tracy Broadcasting one year later) and changed hands again in 1979 to Inner City Broadcasting Corporation, a black-owned radio company based in New York City. It was during this tenure that KUTE shifted to a Disco format under Inner City's first year of ownership.
Urban Contemporary and The Quiet Storm
Under Inner City's ownership, KUTE became one of the original stations in the United States to launch a format that would later be called urban contemporary (after shifting away from Disco in 1980), playing the latest R&B, funk and soul music, featuring local DJs such as "Humble Harve", Brian Roberts and "Lucky Pierre." KUTE was also the starting point for many successful radio careers, including veteran PD Rick Thomas, who was hired in 1982 to do weekends on air by then PD Lucky Pierre. During this time, mornings were hosted by Brian Roberts, afternoon drive by Charlie Fox and evenings with Joe Greene. Weekends also featured Ed Mann, Buster Jones, Scott Lockwood and Strawberry Jan Marie.
At 2:00 a.m. on Sunday mornings, KUTE 102 would host an hour of disco/dance mixes, usually pre-mixed vinyl albums specially created for DJs. KUTE 102 was one of the first radio stations to air a "mega-mix" when the "Michael Jackson Mega-Mix" debuted in the summer of 1983, capitalizing on the success of Jackson's Thriller album earlier in the year. DJ Mario Flores later hosted a disco dance DJ 12" specialty show Sunday mornings from 2:00 am to 3:00 am featuring 15-minute disco mixes, mixed by well known DJs around the U.S.
KUTE was quite successful in this format. In late 1983, KUTE became a template for Urban Adult Contemporary stations today, changing its format to a sound known as "The Quiet Storm." In August 1985, Gene Autry's Golden West Broadcasters, which owned AM 710 KMPC (now KSPN), for between $10 and $16 million.
Full Spectrum Rock
Golden West initially maintained the Quiet Storm format, but its ratings plummeted by 50% in 1987, prompting the station to fire its airstaff and prepare for a new direction. On October 4, 1987, KUTE changed its call sign to KMPC-FM with a format dubbed "Full Spectrum Rock", a mixture of classic rock, adult album alternative and progressive rock. Many of the DJs who were let go from the defunct KMET that same year could be heard again on this radio station, including Paraquat Kelley, Cynthia Foxx and Jim Ladd. J.J. Jackson, veteran of KLOS throughout the 1970s, and one of the original MTV VJs in the early 1980s, was program director at this time. In March 1989, KMPC-FM became "The Edge", changing its call letters to KEDG and continuing the rock format until May 12, 1989, when the station became "K-Lite", KLIT, and adopted a soft adult contemporary format.
LA's Finest Rock
On July 1, 1994, at 5 p.m., KLIT switched to an adult album alternative ("AAA") format as "FM 101.9," featuring the Dr. Demento show in afternoons. The call sign switched to KSCA on September 1, 1994 upon FCC approval. It was known as "Southern California's Album Alternative" and later morphed into "LA's Finest Rock".
Mike Morrison joined as Program Director from WXPN, Philadelphia. Nicole Sandler, formerly with LA rock station KLOS and The Mark & Brian Show, joined for middays. The station later hired Chuck Moshontz, also from KLOS and paired him with Nicole to do mornings. After the first year, Nicole Sandler was promoted to Music Director. Others on the staff included Mimi Chen, Rich Guzman, Terry Gladstone, Anita Gevinson and Merilee Kelly. The "KSCA Music Hall" (the hallway outside the deejay booth) hosted live performances by dozens of artists, some of whom had their debuts there before going on to superstardom, including the Dave Matthews Band. This format lasted until Midnight on February 5, 1997, when Golden West Broadcasting sold off its last radio property. The last song on FM 101.9 was "Her Majesty" by The Beatles, which was preceded by a brief monologue from general manager of KSCA, Bill Ward.
Switch to Spanish-language programming
KSCA was bought by the Heftel Broadcasting Corporation in February 1997 for $112.5 million. At 12:01 a.m. on February 5th, the station signed off the air for about six hours; around 6:15 that evening, following a 12-hour loop of a laugh track, KSCA became "La Nueva 101.9," switching to a Spanish-language Ranchera music format, aimed at Los Angeles' growing Mexican-American population. At the time, Southern California only had a couple of full power FM stations broadcasting in Spanish, 107.5 KLVE, airing a Latin Soft AC format, and 97.9 KLAX-FM, which was also broadcasting Regional Mexican music.
KSCA's morning host, Eddie "Piolín" Sotelo, co-sponsored a large immigration rally in Los Angeles on March 25, 2006, along with other local radio personalities including KLAX's "El Cucuy" Renán Almendaríz. An estimated half-million protesters marched through Downtown LA. The morning show is now called "El Bueno, La Mala y El Feo" (The Good, The Bad and The Ugly).
On September 16, 2011, KSCA rebranded from "La Nueva 101.9" to "LA 101.9". On March 1, 2016, the station rebranded again, to "Zona MX 101.9".
In March 2019, KSCA joined the Uforia Audio Network, one of two networks owned by Univision.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2017-01-28. Retrieved 2015-09-15.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) HD Radio Guide for Los Angeles
- Broadcasting Yearbook 1953 page 83
- McDougal, Dennis (1985-08-15). "Autry Changes Tune, Buys FM Station KUTE". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2019-05-31.
- Lieberman, Jane (September 18, 1987). "'Storm' Blowing Over at KUTE-FM". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved May 31, 2019.
- Barnes, Ken, ed. (September 11, 1987). "Transtar Gets KUTE As 'Niche-29' Flagship" (PDF). Radio & Records (703). Los Angeles, California: Bob Wilson. p. 1 – via American Radio History.
- Mitchell, Gail, ed. (May 12, 1989). "L.A. Loses Its Edge" (PDF). Radio & Records (788). Los Angeles, California: Bob Wilson. p. 3 – via American Radio History.
- "Call Sign History". FCC Media Bureau CDBS Public Access Database.
- Wharton, David (14 July 1995). "Live Connections". Valley Life. The Los Angeles Times (Washington ed.). Times Mirror Company. p. 6 – via Newspapers.com.
- "101.9 KSCA Becomes La Nueva". formatchange.com. Retrieved June 14, 2017.
- Rivera, John (2 March 1999). "New voice dominates L.A. radio". The Sun. 163 (61). Baltimore, Maryland. p. 2A – via Newspapers.com.
- Broadcasting Yearbook 2000 page D-45
- Venta, Lance (September 15, 2011). "KSCA Los Angeles Rebrands". RadioInsight. Retrieved June 14, 2017.
- LA 101.9 official website
- Query the FCC's FM station database for KSCA
- Radio-Locator information on KSCA
- Query Nielsen Audio's FM station database for KSCA
- Gene Autry's KMPC-FM at SoCalRadioHistory.com