WLLO-FM 92.1 

Original Call Letters: WJRQ 

Originally Licensed: 1983 

Original City of License: Williston

Original Frequency: 92.1 

Origin of Call Letters: 

Original Power: 1,700 watts

Original Location: 

Original Format: Beautiful Music 

Network Affiliation(s):


1983-Jim Johnson Enterprises, Inc.
1984-Arkelian Broadcasting, Inc. ($1.3 million)
1987-Gulf to Bay Broadcasting Corporation 
1992-Bogi Broadcasting
1994-Gainesville Broadcasting of Connecticut, Inc.
2001-Pamal Broadcasting, Ltd. ($4 million)

History of Call Letters and Formats:

WJRQ-1983-Country  "Country 92"
WLLO-1986-Beautiful Music  "Willo 92 Under The Willow Tree"
WFEZ-1987-Easy Listening    "E-Z 92"
WFEZ-1988-Country    "Z-Country 92.1"
WFEZ-1992-Urban Contemporary/Hip Hop
WTMG-1996-Urban Contemporary/Hip Hop

History Of WLLO
Thanks to Marc Tyll for this history of WLLO.
WLLO-FM began operations in 1983 as WJRQ-FM 92.1 which was owned by Jim Johnson who had been a legendary broadcaster and innovator in Tampa Bay radio. In 1986 the station became "Willo 92 Under The Willow Tree". Although the ratings on "Willo" were good, Jim Nieman, Arkelienís Naples group sales manager, who was sent to Gainesville to become general manager, had difficulty selling the demos in Gainesville which had a median age of 26 due to the large student population at the University of Florida. The Easy Listening format was attracting large numbers in the 55+ demographic, a difficult sell since most of the ad agencies wanted the coveted 25 - 54 demographic. Arkelien sold WLLO in 1987 to well known Orlando radio news director, Reagan Smith and his Gulf to Bay Broadcasting Corporation. Smith changed the call letters to WFEZ-FM 92.1 for "EZ 92" and left the format easy listening. However, WFEZ was experiencing the same difficulty as WLLO in that the format was attracting the 55+ demographics which was virtually impossible to sell in Gainesville. In 1984 Smith decided to switch the format back to its original country roots and started calling it "Z-Country 92." Since Smith was operating the station absentee, no one locally at WFEZ was in charge. The station suffered in its ability to attract any meaningful advertising revenues, only billing approximately $2,500 per month with operational expenses exceeding $6,000 monthly with a bare skeleton crew. The monthly power bill alone was over $1,500. Smith decided he needed to do something fast, so Jacksonville radio executive Marc Tyll was hired as the stationís general manager and given the responsibility of turning WFEZ around. Tyll had worked in Ocala and Gainesville years earlier and was most recently the General Sales Manager at Jacksonvilleís WJAX-AM 690 and WAPE-FM 95.1. Tyll ascertained the situation and determined a complete station overhaul was due. It was determined the previous success 92.1 had experienced as a country station was impossible to repeat since the market now had three FM country stations and it didnít make since to compete directly against the big FM stations. Tyll determined there was a void in the market for Churban contemporary, and quickly changed the format to hot adult contemporary during the day and Churban during the night and weekends. Tony Downes, WFEZ mid-day on-air personality, who had a long history with urban contemporary and dance formats, was promoted to Programming Director and Operations Manager and the format overhaul planning and implementation began. After about three weeks into the new format, Downes approached Tyll and asked to go full time Churban, stating early research was showing a strong following for the Churban/dance music instead of the adult contemporary which was played during weekdays. Tyll thought it over and consulted with Smith about the proposed format adjustment and it was decided to go along with Downes proposal, so WFEZ became full-time Churban as "Hot 92.1". The ratings soared and quickly gained listeners from Gainesville in the 18-49 adult demographic. "Hot 92.1" was even taking away listeners from long time CHR legend WYKS-FM "Kiss 105". Former WRUF-FM Gainesville "Studio 104" producer and radio host, Professor Chuck Woods, joined "Hot 92.1" as a programming consultant and host of the "Saturday Hot Mix." As "Hot 92.1" ratings climbed and billing progressed to an all time high, Smith promoted Tyll to Vice-President in addition to being the stationís general manager and general sales manager. In 1990, in an effort to enhance the stationís coverage, Tyll began conducting research to determine how a power increase could be accomplished. Since 92.1 was too close to co-channel 92.1 WJXR-FM, Maclenney, a frequency move was determined to be the best alternative. Plans went onto place to move from 92.1 to 101.3. This allowed a power increase from 1,700 watts to 19,300 watts, greatly enhancing coverage in Gainesville and Ocala. Soon after the frequency move, Smith decided to sell WFEZ to Atlanta broadcaster, Moe Negrin who bought and sold stations through his company Bogi Broadcasting Company. Bogi owned the station for less than a year before selling to Gainesville Broadcasting of Connecticut, Inc., owned by Ken Dawson. Tyll left WFEZ to take over management of News-Talk WTMC-AM 1290  in Ocala, and Dawson hired Eric Jewell as WFEZ's new general manager. Jewell transformed WFEZ from Churban Contemporary to Urban/Hip Hop. The call letters were changed to WTMG and the signature "Hot" phrase was replaced with "Magic." The new "Magic 101.3" became a cult classic in the Gainesville/Ocala market. Dawson sold WTMG "Magic 101.3" to Albany, New York based Pamal Broadcasting in 2001 for just over $4 million cash.

Names in WLLO History

Jim Nieman-1984-1988-General Manager-Arkelien Broadcasting, Inc. 

Gordon Much-1984-1987-Announcer-Arkelian Broadcasting, Inc.  

Art Arkelien-1984-1987-President-Arkelian Broadcasting, Inc.  

Tony Downes-1986-1988-Arkelian Broadcasting, Inc.  Biography

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