|City||Des Plaines, Illinois|
|Broadcast area||Chicago, Illinois|
|First air date||1971 (as WYEN)|
|HAAT||129 meters (423 ft)|
Univision Radio |
(Univision Radio Illinois, Inc.)
WOJO, WRTO, WVIV-FM|
Also part of the Univision Cluster: TV Stations WXFT-TV and WGBO-TV
Due to WPPN's 50,000-watt transmitter and Northern Suburb location, it can be heard through much of the Rockford and Southern Wisconsin area.
The Des Plaines-licensed 106.7 signed on as locally owned WYEN in 1971. Initially, the station aired a Beautiful music format, before becoming "Request Radio" in late 1972, playing music requested by listeners. WYEN's format evolved to an Adult Contemporary format and was branded Y-107. In September 1986, the station took on the syndicated Z-Rock format and the call letters WZRC. In 1987, the station took on a smooth jazz format as WTWV, "The Wave", until it was sold to Salem Media, an ancestor of today's Salem Communications, in 1989.
Upon acquiring the station, Salem flipped the station to a Christian Contemporary Music format, using the WYLL call letters. However, the format was short lived, as Salem began selling half of the day to Christian ministries in 1990. By 1991, music was heard only in afternoons, and in 1992 the remaining music was eliminated entirely, other than a short block on Saturday afternoons.
In 1993, local Christian talk shows was added during middays and afternoons. By this point, the format had entirely become what the radio industry would consider "Christian Talk and Teaching". They also ran 3-4 hour blocks of satellite Contemporary Christian music overnights.
The religious talk format continued on WYLL until February 2001. In 2000, Salem acquired WXRT/1160, a powerful signal formerly known as WJJD, which had been used by former owner Infinity to simulcast 93.1 WXRT following the move of WSCR to 670 AM. In February 2001, Salem moved the Christian talk programming of WYLL to 1160, which soon received the WYLL call letters, which remain to this day.
With the move of WYLL to 1160, the 106.7 frequency became a clean slate for a new format. Salem utilized the frequency to bring Christian Contemporary Music back to Chicago. On February 21, 2001, the new station known as WZFS, "106.7 The Fish", launched with "40 Days and 40 Nights" of commercial free music. "The Fish" branding, which Salem used for new Christian Contemporary stations, was also used in such markets as Atlanta, on WFSH-FM 104.7, and Los Angeles, on 95.9 KFSH-FM.
However, "The Fish" was never a huge success in Chicago. There are many possible reasons for the failure of WZFS, which could include the presence of numerous non-commercial CCM stations, including K-Love affiliate 94.3 WJKL, which was also located in the northwest suburbs, and the weakness of the 106.7 signal in Chicago's southern suburbs.
By 2004, Salem had set most of its expansion hopes on a network of secular conservative talk stations. Affiliates in typically liberal markets, such as 1150 WTTT in Boston, saw little or no ratings progress, but enabled Salem to charge more for national advertisements. At the same time, Univision Radio wanted Salem's 106.7 signal in Chicago. Univision offered to trade KOBT 100.7 in Houston (now KKHT-FM), KHCK 1480 in Dallas (now KBXD), KOSL-FM 94.3 in Sacramento (now KGRB), and 560 WIND in Chicago, in exchange for WZFS and KSFB 100.7 (now KVVZ) in San Francisco. Salem agreed.
So, at Midnight on November 1, 2004, Salem took control of 560 WIND, where the conservative talk format was launched. At the same time, Univision took control of WZFS. After a few minutes of fumbling around on air, a new Spanish-language Adult Contemporary format debuted on the frequency, as WPPN, "Pasion 106.7".
"Pasion" took fire in the ratings, and pulled far better ratings initially than WZFS, beating some of Chicago's full-signalled stations. However, by summer 2005, the station was beginning to lose steam in the ratings, although the ratings were still better than those of WZFS.
As the one-year anniversary of WPPN approached, Univision tweaked the music blend of WPPN, but let the name and the personalities of Pasion in place. The station aired a unique blend of Spanish oldies music, although the format mirrors that of an English-language Jack FM station due to the idea of variety in the music.
On January 28, 2009 at midnight, sister station WVIV-FM changed its format to Spanish oldies. WPPN then followed suit by changing formats to Spanish CHR as "La Kalle."
WPPN also transmits in HD Radio. Spanish Rock music is broadcast on the HD2 station under the name "Planeta Rock - Solamente Rock en Espanol" (Planet Rock - Only Rock in Spanish).
- WYEN – Des Plaines, IL Archived May 25, 2013, at the Wayback Machine. Chicago FM Radio History. Accessed October 22, 2012
- Chicago Radio Rock Wars: G-Force 1330 Accessed January 1, 2014
- Chicago Media Headlines - February DJHeadlines.com. February 5, 2001. Accessed December 27, 2013
- WPPN Turns its Pasion to Amor
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-10-09. Retrieved 2015-12-12.
- WPPN Website
- Query the FCC's FM station database for WPPN
- Radio-Locator information on WPPN
- Query Nielsen Audio's FM station database for WPPN