WPUL-AM 1590 

South Daytona

Original Call Letters: WDAT

Originally Licensed: June 13, 1957
Original City of License: South Daytona
Original Frequency: 1590
Origin of Call Letters:
Original Power: 1,000 watts day time/32 watts night time
Original Location:
Original Format: Gospel


Network Affiliation(s):


American Urban
Sheridan
Air America
CBS

Owner(s):

1957
-Thomas Carr

1957-Daytona Broadcasting Company

1959-Quality Broadcasting of Daytona, Inc.

1963-Seven Cities Broadcasting Corp.

1967-J. Shea Peeples

1972-WELE Radio, Inc.

1972-WELE Radio, Inc. (New Ownership)
1988-Tama Broadcasting Inc.
  1989-Psi Communications, Inc. ($250,000)
2015-The Julia Cherry Living Revocable Trust
2016-Glenn Cherry

History Of Call Letters and Formats:

WDAT-1957-Country Western
WELE-1959-Country Western
WELE-1963-Negro
WELE-1967-Country
WZIP-1981-Oldies
WZIP-1986-Country
WPUL-1988-Black Gospel/R&B Oldies  "Victory Radio"
WPUL-1991-Black
WPUL-1991-Jazz/Oldies
WPUL-1996-Urban Contemporary
WPUL-2004-Gospel  "AM 1590 Victory Radio"
WPUL-2007-Gospel/Talk
WPUL-2014-Licensed/Silent
WPUL-2016-TBD


WPUL History
WPUL is co-located with the family-owned African-American newspapers, The Daytona Times and The Florida Courier. Charles Cherry founded the Daytona Times newspaper that has grown into a media company that covers Florida, Georgia and South Carolina with two newspapers and 11 radio stations, including WPUL. Cherry moved to Daytona in 1952 and embarked on a multi-faceted career in business and public service. He taught business administration for 25 years at Bethune-Cookman College, while working in other jobs which included real estate and the restaurant business. Charles Cherry was a civil rights leader, businessman, city commissioner and family man. In the 1960s, Cherry participated in sit-ins and other actions to bring about integration. He became president of the Volusia County-Daytona Beach Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, as well as president of the state branch and a member of the national board of directors. Charles two sons often accompanied their father to St. Petersburg on business trips. They enjoyed the trips because they got to listen to WTMP, that played black music. The sons often talked about the lack of a black radio station in Central Florida. The Cherry brothers bought WPUL in 1988. They purchased WPUL for $85,000. At the time the station was playing country. The Cherry's changed the format, to black oriented music. Their initial inventory was comprised of their personal albums. The station took off and others soon realized there was a market in Daytona for black music. Then the FM stations came in, with competition from WJHM-FM 101.9 owned then by Infinity Broadcasting, and WCFB-FM 94.5, owned by Cox Radio Inc. The two FMs are located in the Orlando, but are licensed to Daytona Beach. The small AM wasn't strong enough to compete and soon the station fell in the ratings. They also lost the "Tom Joyner Morning Show" to "Star 94.5". The competition from the FMs forced a change in format to black gospel. Son, Glenn W. Cherry, gave up a successful practice as a veterinarian to become president and chief executive officer of Tama Broadcasting Inc. His brother, Charles W. "Chuck" Cherry II, quit his law practice in Fort Lauderdale  so he could manage WPUL. Chuck Cherry majored in mass communications at Morehouse College in Atlanta and went on to law school at the University of Florida. 


WPUL-AM 1590 Goes Silent     5-8-14

Technical problems cause shutdown

Daytona Times 
From Staff Reports

After 25 years, five months, 18 days, 21 hours, three minutes and 21 seconds of continuous radio broadcasting, WPUL-AM 1590, Volusia County’s only Black-owned radio station, signed off for the foreseeable future on Monday morning, Feb. 17, at 3:03 a.m. The reason for the shutdown: Technical problems.


Covered for 20 years
For almost 20 years, WPUL-AM covered Ormond Beach to the north to New Smyrna to the southeast. But since 2008, the station has operated at reduced power after its longtime landlord refused to renew the lease of its broadcast tower off Nova Road in South Daytona. The station searched for other broadcast sites, but other local radio station owners couldn’t – or wouldn’t – allow WPUL-AM to “share’’ broadcast sites. Because of its reduced broadcasting area, WPUL began to lose local listeners – though it had more than 50,000 online listeners at the time it was shut down. 


New group
Last year, the broadcast license was assigned to a new Black ownership group, Psi Communications LLC. The new group decided to shut WPUL down temporarily to find another broadcast tower site and improve the station’s signal before placing it back on the air. Under Federal Communications Commission rules, a radio station can “go dark” – be off the air – for a total of 364 consecutive days before the license to broadcast is permanently forfeited.


Since 1988
WPUL’s first day on local airwaves was Sept. 1, 1988. It was then known as WZIP-AM and was a country-western music station. A group of investors, including Daytona Times founder Charles W. Cherry, Sr., put up the initial capital to purchase the station from D&H Radio in 1988. All of the investors were graduates of Morehouse College and members of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity. “When we bought the station, we originally wanted to play groups like Earth, Wind and Fire and Kool and the Gang all day, every day,” explained current General Manager Charles W. Cherry II. “But when we changed the format, all the previous advertisers dropped us. That taught us that we should think about things before making a big move in the radio business.” For almost 20 years, local gospel DJ and concert promoter Mattie Howard was the backbone of the station. From WPUL-AM’s first day on the air in 1988, she played gospel music every weekday morning starting at 6 a.m., until leaving for health reasons in 2003. “Ms. Howard was dedicated to God, the community, and the station,” Cherry said. “She never wanted to miss a day on the air, no matter how tough it was for her to show up at the studio.”


Only Black music station
For years, WPUL-AM was the only full-time Black music radio station in Central Florida. The station tried to stay on the technological cutting edge to stay competitive. It was one of the first local stations to air broadcasts via satellite, and aired the “Tom Joyner Morning Show’’ in the early 1990s. The “Joyner’’ show then moved from WPUL-AM to WCFB-FM 94.5 (Star 94.5) in Orlando, where it has remained. The station also has broadcast a number of formats, including urban adult contemporary music, gospel music, and progressive talk. Various programs have aired over the years, including jazz, health and medical, a show selling discount items, and local talk, Christian ministry, politics, and sports. Radio station technology evolved at WPUL-AM from eight-track cartridge machines, reel-to-reel tape and vinyl records to cassettes, then to mini-disks and CDs, then to computer files. Programs were tracked first by handwritten records, then by computer. The station went from broadcasting over a transmitter with vacuum tubes literally held together by duct tape and chicken wire to its current transmitter that has run 24-7 for years with minor maintenance and without a major hiccup.


Moved to MLK
In 1999, WPUL-AM established a secondary studio at the Daytona Times building on South Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd. in Daytona Beach to reduce costs and move closer to the center of the Black community. “Daddy (Charles W. Cherry, Sr.) didn’t think we could have the transmitter at Nova Road and a studio at MLK,” Cherry II remembers. “We told him it was no problem. When we got it done, he proudly showed the studio off to everyone who came by his MLK office. It made it a lot easier on him to walk downstairs from his office and get on the air whenever he believed it was necessary to speak to the community.” The last songs played on the air: “The Star-Spangled Banner” by Whitney Houston; “God Bless Africa” by Ladysmith Black Mambazo; and “Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing,” by the Morehouse College Glee Club. The station will remain silent until another tower site is located. Operations of Daytona Times and the Florida Courier will remain unaffected.


WPUL Ownership Changes Hands   5-1-15
Psi Communications, LLC has sold WPUL-AM 1590 to The Julia Cherry Living Revocable Trust. The contract is the cancellation of debt

WPUL Returning To Daytona Beach    11-30-16    
Glenn Cherry is about to revive the licensed and silent WPUL-AM 1590. Dr. Cherry is paying $25,000 for the license held by the Julia T. Cherry Revocable Living Trust. Psi Communications, LLC had sold the station to the trust in 2015. Cherry had a 45% interest in Psi Communications, Inc.
  which was sold to the trust to resolve debt. 

Names In WPUL History


Charles Cherry, Sr.-1988-President-Tama Communications/1989-General Manager-PSI Communications
Mattie Howard-1988-2007-Tama Communications/-PSI Communications


Charles Cherry II-1989-President/Program Director-PSI Communications
Mike Thomas-1989-Program Director-PSI Communications 
Tamela Powell-1989-National Sales Manager/Program Manager/Chief Engineer-PSI Communications
Kondo Dale-1989-News Director-PSI Communications
Chuck Washington-1989-Program Director-PSI Communications


"Captain" Chris Hill-1989-1991-PSI Communications  Biography
Ronnie Rogers-1992-Music Director-PSI Communications
Stacey Reynolds-1992-News Director-PSI Communications
Cloe Sears-1993-Program Director/Music Director-PSI Communications
Steven King-1995-Program Director/News Director-PSI Communications


Bobbie Thomas-1997-Co-host of "Straight Talk'' with Kevin Young-PSI Communications
Kevin Young-1997-Co-host of "Straight Talk'' with Bobbie Thomas-PSI Communications
Patricia Hyacinth-1998-Program Director-PSI Communications
Christopher Baker-1998-1999-Afternoon show Co-host-PSI Communications
Vince Robinson-1999-Chief Engineer-PSI Communications


Larry Steele-2007-2014-Station Manager/Sports Director-PSI Communications
Phinesse Demps-2009-Program Director/Host of "Express Yourself"-PSI Communications
Marc Dixon-2009-Production Intern/Manager-PSI Communications


Glenn Cherry-2016-


Dwayne Taylor-Host of "On The Agenda"
Walter James-Music Director-PSI Communications


George "Harold" Utter-Engineer In Memory
Terry Abdo-co-host of the "Terry and Jerry Show"
Jerry Kenney-co-host of the "Terry and Jerry Show"


Rick Brady  Biography
Phyllis Hartmann  In Memory


Jarvis Smith-
Psi Communications, Inc.  In Memory
Larry Lee Love


Other Programs In WPUL History

Stephanie Miller Show
Bill Press
Al Sharpton Program
Miami Hurricanes Football  


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