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August 30, 2018 11:01 pm  #1

Friday Flashback: “Sticker” Shock

Last week, we looked at some of the weird radio contests designed to increase time spent listening. They were supposed to give you an outside chance to win something – anything – from your favourite station, even if it was only a pen or a 45. (T-shirts were really where the gold was buried for me, but that’s another story.) 
I’ve never figured out the reason behind one of the most common giveaways that just about every station I worked at or listened to shared – the infamous bumper sticker. Maybe it was because they were so colourful and cheap to make. But did you ever meet anyone who actually put one on their car? Worse yet, did you ever meet anyone who tried to get one off their car?
These things were a menace, especially for listeners who did affix them to their bumper, only to have the station change format and their vehicle became a running ad for something that no longer existed.

But they always turned up every week on "WKRP in Cincinnati," glued to a bulletin board in the back of the studio. I'm told most stations considered it an honour to find themselves represented on the show. 
Here in no particular order is a look at some of the more unusual stick-em-ups.  
WMMS is a long time album classic rock station in Cleveland. The buzzard has been its symbol for decades.

KJLH in L.A. is owned by Stevie Wonder.

The Legendary KCBQ San Diego had no less than three different ones at the same time.

Given how controversial this logo has become, you wonder if you’d want it on your car anywhere outside of the D.C. area.

But sport tie-ins proved pretty popular for those stations that had the rights to major league teams.

KLOS in L.A. came in a number of formats and sizes

I’m assuming Neil Young was performing in L.A. the day this came out.

One of the biggest FM stations in New York in its day was also represented – and they had their sticker sponsored!

WXRK New York used to be known as WKTU, the first all disco format that was a huge hit for a number of years and helped spell the end for WABC-AM’s heritage Top 40.

KOME used to be a popular free form rocker in San Jose, California. It frequently used its call letters for some suggestive purposes, although that might be more of a KOME-on.

KOKE had nothing to do with drugs (even though Willie Nelson did relocate his home for a time to its area of license - Austin, Texas.) The station played something called “progressive country” and it must have done it well. It was once named Billboard’s most innovative station in all of America.

KUAI is no longer with us. That may be because it tried to bring country to Hawaii.

Even some small Canadian stations got in on the act.

Kissin’ is actually CISN, a very popular country station in Edmonton.

College stations printed them, too, like this one from Maryland.

WFTL was just where its call letters lead you to expect it might have been – Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.

WIYY is a highly successful classic rock station in Baltimore.

B96 is actually WBBM-FM in Chicago.

I have no idea where I got this one, since I’ve never been anywhere near Vergennes, Vermont.

WKBR was once a highly rated Top 40 outlet in Manchester, New Hampshire.

KHTC-FM (aka K-Hits) in Phoenix was one of the first stations to try an “all 70s” format.

KATT Wichita, Kansas used – what else? - a cat for its logo.

KFDI still plays Wichita’s favourite country.

And WOXY played modern rock until 2004. Now it’s the only all Spanish FM outlet in Cincinnati.

But it wasn’t just radio that got stuck with the stickers. A few television networks got into the act, too – like Thames TV in London, England.

And U.S. cable networks such ESPN went along for the car ride, too.

Finally, a mystery. It’s a sticker from Z95. But I have no idea what station this is. If anyone does, let me know.

Next week, some weird radio promotables you definitely wouldn’t put on your bumper.


August 31, 2018 12:43 am  #2

Re: Friday Flashback: “Sticker” Shock

Any truth to the rumour that CNE Toronto actually BANNED radio stations on site from giving away bumper stickers? Too much abuse with people just sticking them anywhere and on cars in nearby parking lots whether the car owner wanted the sticker there or not...and so on.

Someone working for Z 103 a good ten years ago (or so) mentioned this to me when I asked what happened to their stickers...


August 31, 2018 1:06 am  #3

Re: Friday Flashback: “Sticker” Shock

Z-95 appears to be Vancouver.


August 31, 2018 8:18 am  #4

Re: Friday Flashback: “Sticker” Shock

Here is one that I have had for a long time plus related and a holder-over from last week - a contest T-shirt that I recived maybe 15-20 years ago.

Last edited by Fitz (August 31, 2018 8:21 am)

Cool Airchecks and More:

August 31, 2018 8:24 am  #5

Re: Friday Flashback: “Sticker” Shock

Barilko05 is indeed correct. Your Z 95.3 sticker is from CKZZ 95.3 Vancouver (circa mid-90's).

The PNE in Vancouver has also had that "no sticker" policy for a number of years now.