I am mourning. No, not the death of a loved one, thankfully. The demise of a radio station. One week ago today, my all-time favorite station, WLOQ 103.1, quit broadcasting its smooth jazz tunes over the FM airwaves after more than three decades in business. It is no exaggeration to say that it was one of my very favorite things about living here in Central Florida and I already miss it.
It was the last independently owned and operated commercial radio station in the Orlando market and won numerous accolades, including jazz station of the year by the National Association of Broadcasters. Fortunately for us long-time listeners the station isn’t disappearing completely, as it continues streaming live online at www.wloq.com.
Even as I listen to it while typing this at my favorite Starbucks I am reminded of when I was introduced to WLOQ in the autumn of 1985 upon first moving here. I’ve moved in and out of the area a couple of times through the years and each time one of the first things I did upon my return was program 103.1 into my radio station rotation.
I also have fond memories of attending various concerts sponsored by the station, including one by Kirk Whalum, pictured in the adjacent photo. Looking forward, I guess one benefit of the station’s migration to the internet is that I can listen to it whenever I am online so for that I am thankful. Thanks for the memories, WLOQ!