|City||Los Angeles, California|
|Broadcast area||Greater Los Angeles|
|First air date||1952|
50,000 watts (day)|
37,000 watts (night)
McMillan Petroleum Company|
(former owner of the original KMPC, now KSPN)
|Owner||P&Y Broadcasting Corporation|
KMPC (1540 AM, "Radio Korea", ) is a radio station based in Los Angeles, California and is owned by P&Y Broadcasting Corporation. Radio Korea is a division of the Radio Korea Media Group. The station airs Korean-language programming. It broadcasts news, information, and entertainment for the largest Korean-American community in the United States, and the largest Korean community outside Korea.
The history of AM 1540 goes back to its days as KPOL, when it was clustered with KPOL-FM and KPOL-TV. It aired a wide variety of formats until the early 1980s. KPOL also advertised on the 1959 television series Home Run Derby.
Throughout the 1980s and much of the 1990s, this frequency broadcast in Spanish, first as KXEZ then as KXMG "Mega 1540." In 1997, One on One Sports Inc. of Northbrook, Illinois purchased the station and converted it to sports radio. It was part of the sale to Paul Allen's Vulcan Ventures in 2001.
The station covered San Diego Chargers football (one of two flagship stations for the Chargers Radio Network, the other being KIOZ in San Diego), and selected Westwood One sports programming not carried by CBS Radio's KFWB and KLSX. Among the broadcasts that KMPC carried from Westwood One: NCAA basketball, PGA Tour golf tournament updates (mostly those covered by CBS Sports television), the Masters Tournament, NFL football (including Monday Night Football on occasion), and more.
In 2006, KMPC lost the broadcast rights to USC basketball and football to rival KSPN, and the station then acquired the local broadcast rights of the University of Notre Dame's football games from Westwood One. The station also stopped covering NASCAR races after having done so for several years.
The station's regular talk-show hosts included Tony Bruno, who began his morning show in April 2005 following the departure of Roger Lodge; long-time local sports talk host Dave Smith (whose show became part of Sporting News Radio in June 2006), and a late-afternoon show hosted by former USC football player Petros Papadakis.
Former Los Angeles Dodgers broadcaster Ross Porter filled in for Roggin on an early-June 2005 broadcast.
In June 2006, former afternoon host and current KNBC-TV sports director Fred Roggin left KMPC and a new program, the Atlanta-based 2 Live Stews, took his place. Roggin's departure, a result of his increased commitments to KNBC and NBC Sports, triggered a shift in the station's daily programming lineup. Smith and Papadakis switched dayparts, accommodating the Los Angeles debut of the 2 Live Stews.
On September 5, 2006, KMPC's parent company, Sporting News Radio, was sold to American City Business Journals for an undisclosed price, The Sporting News magazine. KMPC, and WSNR in New York and WWZN in Boston, were briefly operated by Paul Allen's Vulcan Inc. until the three stations were sold off separately.
In 2007, before the station's sale to Radio Korea, there were no local shows on the station. Bob Keisser of the Long Beach Press-Telegram said that KMPC is "on life support." (Page B2, December 29, 2006 issue).
On March 30, 2007, AllAccess.com, an online news service covering the radio and music industries, reported that Vulcan had decided to sell the station to P&Y Broadcasting, doing business as Radio Korea Media Group. Again, the price was not revealed.
Radio Korea took over the frequency on May 1, 2007.
Prior to November 21, 1997 the call letters KMPC were assigned to AM 710, and it was at one time one of the top AM radio stations in Southern California. In the 1960s and 70s, it used the moniker "The Station of the Stars" and featured a number of notable DJs, including Dick Whittinghill, Robert W. Morgan, Bob Arbogast, Geoff Edwards, Ira Cook, Roger Carroll, Johnny Grant, Wink Martindale, Jim Lange, Bill Leyden, Gary Owens, Johnny Magnus, Kathy Gori, Sonny Melendrez, Dave Hull and Vance Graham.
A powerhouse in local sports reporting, KMPC-710 broadcast Los Angeles Rams, California Angels, and UCLA football games. Some of the notable sports announcers were Bob Kelley, Fred Hessler, Don Wells, Bob Starr, Jim Healy, Kent Derdivanis, Dave Niehaus, Dick Enberg, Joe Torre and Ted Sobel.
KMPC-710 was also noted for its extensive use of field reporters and news/traffic aircraft. It was also the first station to issue Sigalert traffic alerts, named after one of the station's chief engineers, Loyd C. Sigmon. News personalities included Tom Weyman, Clete Roberts, Bob Steinbrink, Scott Shurian, Mike Botula, Dick Provenson, Steve Arvin, and Marv Howard.
At one time, KMPC was owned by the famous singing cowboy Gene Autry, part of his "Golden West Broadcasters" chain.