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For other uses, see KFI (disambiguation).
Radio station in Los Angeles, California
|City||Los Angeles, California|
|Broadcast area||Southern California|
|Affiliations||ABC News Radio|
(iHM Licenses, LLC)
|KBIG, KRRL, KIIS-FM, KLAC, KOST, KEIB, KYSR|
First air date
|April16, ; 99 years ago()|
|Class||A (Clear channel)|
|33°52′47″N°0′47″W / °N °W / ; (main antenna)|
33°52′47″N°0′55″W / °N °W / ; (auxiliary antenna)
KFI ( AM) is a radio station in Los Angeles, California, owned and operated by iHeartMedia, Inc. It began operations in and became one of the first high-powered, clear-channelClass A stations. It was the first U.S. station west of Chicago to broadcast at 50, watts. It airs a talk radioformat, with mostly local hosts and frequent news and traffic updates. One nationally syndicated show is heard overnight, "Coast to Coast AM with George Noory." KFI also supplies some weekend shows for national syndication.
The radio studios and offices are in Burbank between the Warner Bros. Studios and The Burbank Studios. The transmitter site is in La Mirada near the Artesia Boulevard exit of Interstate 5, the Santa Ana Freeway. By day, its signal can be heard throughout all of Southern California and at night, it can be picked up throughout the western segment of North America.
KFI is licensed by the U.S. Federal Communications Commission to broadcast in the HD (hybrid) format. But as of August 12, , Los Angeles media reports say KFI turned off its HD signal.
Earle C. Anthony
In , Earle C. Anthony was the founder and owner of what eventually became KFI, a radio station he controlled until his death in From to , he also owned KECA, now KABC. The E.C.A. in KECA stood for Earle C. Anthony. He was an early president of the National Association of Broadcasters and, during his term, oversaw the establishment of the organization's first paid staff. He was also a founder of one of the earliest television stations in Los Angeles, KFI-TV (now KCAL-TV). He also put KFI-FM on the air. Both of which were disposed of in
KFI initially used a watt transmitter made from a crank telephone. Early on, Anthony operated the station from his garage, and later from atop his Packard automobile dealership. In its early days, it was typically on the air for only four and a half hours a day.
In July , KFI increased its output from 5,watts to 50, watts, becoming the first U.S. station west of Chicago to broadcast at that high power. To celebrate the event, a special 4-hour program was aired, featuring congratulatory speeches by the National Broadcasting Company (NBC) West Coast vice president and others, joined by entertainers from New York and Chicago on a coast-to-coast live hookup. Los Angeles mayor John Clinton Porter was comically effusive in his praise, said Variety in its July 21, , review.
From the time of its inception in , NBC operated two networks, the Red Network and the Blue Network. The Red Network carried sponsored commercial programs, while the Blue Network carried the sustaining ones where the network sold individual commercials within the shows. The red and blue designations came from the colors of the lines drawn on network maps. In , NBC reorganized its West Coast operations, creating Orange and Blue networks for that area to replace its previous Pacific Coast network. KFI was part of the Orange group, along with KGO, Oakland; KGW, Portland, KOMO, Seattle, and KHQ, Spokane.
KFI, kHz, was an affiliate of the NBC Red Network and KECA, kHz, carried programming from the Blue Network. In , KECA moved to kHz, the frequency of the former KEHE. Anthony sold KECA in and it moved to kHz and became KABC.
KFI helped to keep the calm during the dark days of World War II by airing President Franklin D. Roosevelt's "Fireside Chats." Later, it carried "Monitor," the network's very successful weekend radio service.
As a side note to KFI's participation in World War II, there is a bullet hole in the ceiling of the transmitter building, located in La Mirada, California, where a National Guardsman accidentally discharged his rifle on December 10, , three days following the Attack on Pearl Harbor. The bullet hole is still there to this day, preserved as a monument to KFI's wartime service.
KFI's call letters were assigned sequentially but many people assumed that the "FI" stood for "Farmers Information." Every winter evening between and , KFI would deliver a frost report at 8pm that would tell citrus farmers whether to turn on wind machines or light "smudge pots" to keep their orange and lemon groves from freezing. The frost warnings moved to 7pm until the late s when they were removed from the schedule.
TV and FM
On November 29, , KFI officials broke ground on Mount Wilson for construction of a new FM and TV transmitting facility. The ceremony was broadcast live over KFI (AM) from Mount Wilson from noon to pm that afternoon. KFI-FM went on the air from that site at megacycles (Megahertz today) in July with its first test program, though some later sources say the station went on the air in The station only lasted until when the owner, Earle C. Anthony, decided to turn off the FM station and returned the license to the FCC. This was common at the time, when few people owned FM receivers and owners saw little future in FM. While FM audio quality was much better than AM, AM-FM combination radios were expensive and stereo broadcasting on FM didn't exist until
KFI-FM was the first Los Angeles FM station to have its transmitter on Mt. Wilson. KFI-FM used a General Electric 3kW Phasotron transmitter, operating with a 2-bay antenna, giving the station an effective radiated power (ERP) of 10, watts. Later, the Broadcasting Yearbook listed KFI-FM's power as 16, watts.
Through and , KFI-FM broadcast its own music programs, separate from KFI (AM). A sample from the Los Angeles Times radio page for December from 3 to 9pm shows KFI-FM offering those with FM receivers programs with titles such as Afternoon Melodies, Classics, Music For You, Symphony Moods and World of Music. By , KFI-FM was simulcasting the same programs as KFI Five other FM stations were also simulcasting the programs from their AM stations, while at least three other area FM stations had their own programs, according to a Los Angeles Times radio log. Most of the FMs were only on the air from mid-afternoon to about 9pm, while some like KFI-FM were on the air from 6am to midnight, the same as their AM stations.
Along with KHJ-FM (the area's first FM station which signed on in ) other early day FM stations in the Los Angeles region that went on the air in were the non-commercial KUSC/ and KCRW/ KFI-FM and KMPC-FM were broadcasting by By and , other early FM stations on the band around L.A. included KNX-FM at ; KWIK-FM in Burbank at ; KFMV-Hollywood at ; KECA-FM ; KRKD-FM ; KVOE-FM in Santa Ana at ; KKLA (owned by KFSG/) at ; KAGH-FM in Pasadena at ; KMGM (owned by the movie studio) at ; KMPC-FM at ; KNOB in Long Beach at (moved to by ); KFAC-FM at (moved to by ); KCLI/ and KFI-FM on (KCLI was owned by the founders of KIEV/ in Glendale.)
By , KCLI was gone along with KMPC-FM. KFI-FM was listed in the Broadcasting Yearbook, but was gone from newspaper radio logs by mid and gone from the Broadcasting Yearbook. KKLA also went off the air for good in
So, while KFI-FM made history as the first Los Angeles FM to transmit from Mt. Wilson, its short history lasted only about five years on The station was not sold. The owner, Earle C. Anthony, simply shut the station down and returned the license to the FCC. A new license for in Los Angeles was issued in with the call letters KBMS (Better Music Station). This FM station's original city of license was Glendale. The new station license had no ties to the defunct KFI-FM and is currently KPWR.
During its early days, KFI carried such sporting events as the World Series and the Rose Bowl. From to , the station was the flagship station of the Los Angeles Dodgers radio network. KFI aired all the games as well as feeding the play-by-play broadcasts to other stations in the Southwest.
KFI served as the flagship station of the Los Angeles Chargers, carrying all of the team’s gameday broadcasts from the team's move to the Los Angeles market in until when games were moved to co-owned KYSR. KFI was ironically the Chargers flagship station during the team's inaugural year in the American Football League in in which the team was based in Los Angeles before spending the next 5 decades in San Diego.
Full Service Radio
KFI programming transitioned during this period from block programming, often featuring minute programs, to a full servicemiddle of the road format. Popular disk jockeys played records and chatted about local events, interspersed with aggressive local news and sports coverage.
In April , KFI celebrated its 50th birthday. Festivities included a hour special, featuring interviews and commentaries from many former NBC Radio personalities of the past.
Cox Broadcasting Ownership
In , Cox Broadcasting, headquartered in Atlanta, purchased KFI for $15million.l At the time, it was the highest amount ever paid for a radio station. James Wesley, Cox's General Manager at WIOD AM in Miami and the station's Operations Manager, Elliott "Biggie" Nevins, were dispatched to Los Angeles to manage KFI.
Cox instructed Wesley to find an FM facility in the Los Angeles market for purchase. A deal was reached with Dallas broadcaster Gordon McLendon, to purchase his KOST FM for $million. Wesley also decided against renewing the long term agreement for carrying Dodger baseball, positioning KABC to become the new Dodger radio station in Los Angeles.
Starting in the mids, KFI switched to Top 40 music. Cox Broadcasting hired John Rook as program director. Rook was considered the force behind the success of WLS in Chicago.
One of Rook's first hires was Dave Sebastian (Williams) as Music Director and Air Personality. Sebastian had recently left KHJ, Los Angeles. Rook's first air staff included "The Lohman and Barkley Show" with Al Lohman and Roger Barkley (top-rated in the morning), Mark Taylor (midday), Bob Shannon (afternoon drive time) and Music Director Dave Sebastian (evenings). Within the first year Dave left abruptly for crosstown Top 40 competitor KTNQ AM (Ten-Q). John Rook then moved in Eric Chase (midday), Charlie Fox (early evening) and Dave Diamond (late night).
By the late s the staff was revised to Lohman & Barkley mornings, Tim & Ev Kelly in middays, Jack Armstrong afternoons, Big Ron O'Brien evenings and Charlie Fox at night.
Rook and several of the on air personalities left in the early s. At that point, KFI began softening its playlist to Adult Top 40 (in between Top 40 and Adult Contemporary). By the mids the station was more news and personality driven than music intensive with a Full Service format.
In the s and '80s, the station featured a hybrid format combining adult contemporary music with comedian hosts. In addition to Lohman and Barkley, other hosts included Hudson & Landry, Charlie and Mitzi (Charlie Brill and Mitzi McCall of Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In), and Gary Owens. In the earlys, KFI began broadcasting in AM stereo, with the C-QUAM system. Stereo broadcasts continued until January 
Transition to Talk
By the mids ratings began to slip, as music listening switched to the FM dial. In the spring of , KFI was ranked 28th in the Los Angeles Arbitron ratings, ahead of only KHJ among AM music stations in the market. KFI moved the music to more of a Soft Gold-based AC and began to play less and less of it. The talk shows moved from a blend of entertainment, comedy, and lifestyle to more political issues.
Writer/Producer John Thomas was assigned to Lohman & Barkley in and helped raise their ratings for the morning show to a tie for #1 in the demographic in Fall Shortly after Thomas left KFI for WLS in Chicago the morning show fell apart. Barkley split off from the morning show to go to KABC.
The music was dropped in as KFI evolved to an issues-oriented talk format. The first hosts were psychologist Dr. Toni Grant, TV game show host Geoff Edwards and Tom Leykis hosted a politically oriented "combat radio" program. Competitor KABC, which had been doing talk radio for some time, sued KFI in U.S. District Court to have KFI cease and desist using the term "Talk Radio" with the call letters. Therefore, the slogan More Stimulating Talk Radio was created.Rush Limbaugh's nationally sydnicatedconservative talk show replaced Edwards in after Edwards refused to play promotional spots for the controversial Leykis show.
In , Chancellor Media traded 13 stations to Cox to acquire KFI and KOST FM. Cox opted to exit the Los Angeles market and focus on medium radio markets and its TV stations.
Chancellor merged with Capstar in and became known as AMFM Inc. In , AMFM merged with Clear Channel Communications making KFI Clear Channel's top AM radio station in Los Angeles. In , Clear Channel changed its corporate name to iHeartMedia to identify its radio stations with its iHeartRadio internet streaming platform.
Like other stations owned by iHeartMedia, KFI uses iHeartRadio to stream its webcast. The station license continues to be held by a subsidiary of Capstar. 
KFI and Audacy's KNX () serve as the primary entry points for the Southern CaliforniaEmergency Alert System, which are responsible for activation of the EAS when hazardous weather alerts, Disaster area declarations, and child abductions are issued.
When KFI went on the air April 16, , the station was mostly an experiment to determine if anyone could hear radio voice transmissions. "Can you hear me?" Earle C. Anthony would yell into a carbon microphone from his garage transmitter location. "Yes, I can hear you," a family member would reply from a nearby house, listening to Anthony's transmission on an early, very primitive radio receiver. The station's operating frequency was not on kHz in those days, but any frequency where Anthony could get the transmitter to operate.
Later, the Federal Radio Commission (prior to the Communications Act of ) mandated that all stations would operate on a wavelength of meters (approximately kHz). One station would operate on this frequency for a period of time. Then, it would go off the air so another one could use the same frequency.
The first station would invariably make the decision to continue to stay on the air after the second one had come on, causing massive interference. Later, after the establishment of the Communications Act of , stations were assigned specific operating frequencies. KFI was assigned its present call letters and ended up with its kHz operating frequency.
In addition, being the first station on kHz, KFI would not be required to erect a directional antenna system to protect other stations. Those that came on the air on kHz following KFI would, instead, have to protect it. With its low operating frequency, its 50, watts of power, and its non-directional, foot, single tower, antenna system, KFI's night-time signal could be heard over vast sections of the United States and various parts of the world.
From to , early programming consisted of such things as reading news from a newspaper and local gossip. Broadcasting hours were very short, since Anthony was involved in many other activities, and programming sources were very limited. In other words, it was a hobby.
In November , NBC was incorporated. When NBC's network facilities were finally extended to the west coast of the United States, KFI immediately became one of its affiliates. In joining this network, KFI had the advantage of NBC's vast entertainment and news resources. One of the first NBC programs to originate on the West Coast, and KFI, was the broadcast of the Rose Bowl Game from Pasadena, California, with announcer Graham McNamee.
As the years progressed into the s and s, NBC's, and KFI's, programming improved. The network was owned by its parent company, the Radio Corporation of America (RCA), which also owned the Keith–Albee–Orpheum vaudeville circuit, later renamed Radio–Keith–Orpheum (RKO). RKO handled many vaudeville comedians and singers that were ideally suited for radio. Some of them were Jack Benny, Burns and Allen, Fred Allen, Eddie Cantor, and Rudy Vallee, among others.
During the Great Depression of the s, many people could not even afford the admission price of a movie ticket, but they could afford to purchase a radio where they could listen to free entertainment, interspersed with commercial announcements.
During the dark days of World War II, KFI was there to provide air raid and blackout warnings. It was believed that an attack on the west coast of the United States was imminent, so people were warned to turn off their lights, and drape black cloths over their windows, so the expected bombers would see nothing but blackness. Periodically, KFI, and the other Los Angeles radio stations would go off of the air so the bombers could not use the signals to pinpoint their bomb dropping locations, as they did at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.
An actual incident occurred on February 25, , known as the Battle of Los Angeles, where U.S. Army anti-aircraft artillery emplacements fired 1, shells at something they thought were enemy aircraft. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, in his "Fireside Chats" broadcasting from the White House, used NBC and KFI to reassure the public that everything was safe and under control. People were glued to their radio receivers and KFI during this time to get news, any news, no matter how small, concerning the outcome of the war, the safety of themselves, their families, and their country.
In , under the provisions of the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, NBC was required to divest itself of its Blue Network, which later became the Blue Network Incorporated, and subsequently the American Broadcasting Company.
As a result of this divestiture and a booming economy, more money was available to NBC to develop better, higher-quality programming. In the s, NBC was known as the network of the radio comedians, which gave it the distinction of being the network with the largest listener base. KFI, being an NBC Radio Network affiliate, also shared in this wide listening audience. If one wanted to hear the great radio comedians in the Los Angeles area, and in the western United States, one listened to KFI.
As the years continued into the s, television began to cut inroads into radio advertising revenues and sponsors began the gradual migration from radio to television. As a result, less money was available to support quality radio network entertainment programming.
Gradually, NBC and the other radio networks began dropping large-budget entertainment shows in favor of news and information programming. "NBC News on the Hour" and "Emphasis" became the network staples as entertainment programs were slowly phased out.
NBC radio affiliates, including KFI, had the tough decision to eventually reduce, or completely eliminate, their network connections in order to maintain their profit structures. At that time, KFI became a disc jockey station, that is, live hosts playing phonograph records on the air. Between and circa KFI's programming alternated between streamlined MOR and full-service programming, dropping most long-form NBC programming.
Later, when music licensing fees became too difficult to maintain and as FM had replaced AM radio as the primary source for contemporary music, KFI became a news and information outlet.
KFI was named the Radio & Records News & Talk Radio Station of the Year in
Two Los Angeles TV stations do live segments with cameras in KFI's studios: KTTV (Bill Handel) and KTLA (John and Ken).
KFI began as an experimental radio station in Earle C. Anthony's garage. As the programming improved and more money became available, the station was moved to his Packard automobile dealership building, formerly located at Tenth and Hope Streets in Los Angeles, with a "T" antenna mounted on its roof between two short towers. This site was retained as an emergency transmitter for many years, but powered by a 5, watt transmitter.
The main transmitter was eventually relocated from Anthony's business establishment to its present location in La Mirada, California, where a "T" antenna was erected between two medium height towers, and the KFI studios, and the studios of its sister station KECA, were moved to South Ardmore Avenue. The South Ardmore Avenue building is now gone, replaced by a parking lot. In , the "T" antenna was replaced by a foot vertical tower and a foot emergency vertical tower, as long before vertical antennas had been determined to be superior to "T" antennas for high-powered stations, although degrees (which would be feet on kHz) would have been optimum. Competitor KNX employs just such a degree tower, as do many other U.S. Class A non-directional stations, and even some Class B non-directional stations.
Today, KFI broadcasts from its Burbank, California studios on kHz on a 50,watt non-directional AM transmitter which is located in nearby La Mirada at 33° 52' 47" N, ° 00' 47" W. As a class A signal, KFI's daytime signal can be heard throughout Southern California, with city-grade coverage as far as San Diego and Santa Barbara. It provides secondary coverage as far as Bakersfield and northwestern Mexico (with Tijuana getting city-grade coverage). Under the right conditions, it can be heard some distance into Nevada and Arizona. At night, it can be heard across much of the western half of North America with a good radio, and reaches some parts of Hawaii. According to a May 1, broadcast by Art Bell, this station can even be heard by sensitive receivers in parts of the eastern United States, if there are no nearby stations operating on kHz. Some Canadians in British Columbia while others in Alaska were able to pick up KFI signals in the winter months, and even as far away as Japan, Philippines, Guam, American Samoa, New Zealand, Australia, and parts of Central America down to Panama on the proper receivers when conditions are right.
In summer , KFI became the most listened to talk radio station in the United States, beating New York City's WABC in cumulative audience during the rating period.
On August 10, , KFI began a simulcast on KOST FM's HD 2 signal.
In recent years, especially since the recall of the Governor of California, afternoon drive hosts John and Ken have become actively involved in several political causes, most notably that of illegal immigration. In the months leading up to the election, the hosts instigated several political rallies advocating the defeat of CongressmenDavid Dreier (a Republican) and Joe Baca (a Democrat), both of whom they felt were wrongly supportive of illegal immigration. As a result, the John and Ken show was the subject of a Federal Election Commission complaint filed by the Republican National Committee, alleging that John and Ken engaged in an illegal campaign against Congressman Dreier. The "Political Human Sacrifice" campaign, as they dubbed it, was not successful, since both Dreier and Baca were re-elected, albeit Dreier by a substantially smaller percentage than in past terms. On March 16, , the complaint was dismissed.
On Sunday, December 19, at am Pacific Standard Time, Jim and Mary Ghosoph were killed when their rented Cessna P single engine airplane, travelling from the El Monte Airport to Fullerton Municipal Airport, struck KFI's transmission tower, located in the City of La Mirada.
They had taken off from the El Monte Airport with a planned stop at the Fullerton Airport to pick up two passengers. From there, the plan was to fly to the island of Catalina to spend the day, after which they would make the return route to Fullerton and then to El Monte.
The solid steel truss, originally built in , collapsed upon itself, mostly landing in a parking lot to the north of the site (KFI was relatively late to convert from a horizontal to a vertical antenna—same-market Class A KNX converted to a vertical in , and same-state Class As KGO and KPO (now KNBR) converted to verticals in and , respectively). KFI's signal was knocked off the air for approximately one hour.
Pilots had complained for years to KFI management that it needed to put strobe lights on the tower and highly reflective balls on the guy wire. KFI and Clear Channel Communications management responded by saying the tower was in compliance with Federal Communications Commission and Federal Aviation Administration regulations and that it did not need to make any changes. Until a replacement was successfully erected, the station transmitted from a foot auxiliary tower at a power of 25, watts, but provisions had been made to transmit from the disused KRKD (KIIS) AM site just north of downtown Los Angeles, whenever the RF field towards the tower erection crew would exceed safety limits.
Work was conducted at the site on November 19, , temporarily interrupting a broadcast of Leo Laporte's talk show KFI Tech Guy at a.m.
Replacement tower collapse
On Tuesday, March 18, at pm Pacific Standard Time the replacement tower collapsed while under construction. The tower was about feet tall (the final height was to be feet) when a guy wire support failed, causing the tower to tip over the opposite direction. There were no major injuries, and only limited collateral damage. The reason for the failure is assumed to be a combination of factors, including the much higher per unit weight of the new 84" cross-section tower, compared to the tower which had a 42" cross-section, and the inadequacy of the pier and guy wire terminations, one of which had previously been modified to a cantilever design to facilitate the passage of vehicles under that termination (and, it was the cantilever termination which catastrophically failed during this erection attempt). All of these structural components were replaced or strengthened in preparation for erection of the third tower, which is identical in design to the (failed) replacement tower.
Third tower completed
A new tower began construction at the end of July and was completed on August 14, by Eli the Construction Guy (structural engineer). The station returned to full power (50, Watts) on September 25, at PT. The new tower has a foot-wide (15m) top-loading "capacitance hat", which electrically extends the tower's height another seventy-five feet, effectively, without actually needing more tower sections (the local regulation authorities in apparent defiance of electrical engineering principles, and communications law, demanded "a 10 percent reduction in overall height", otherwise the necessary permits would be refused, not withstanding the federal government's primary authority over radio communications, and KFI's strategic role as an Emergency Alert System station for the western U.S. region). The new tower is also equipped with high intensity strobe lights due to its proximity to the Fullerton Municipal Airport, and additional safety upgrades because of the previous plane crash. The new tower has torque arms which limit the twisting of the tower in high winds. The tower has been dedicated to the memory of John Paoli, KFI Chief Engineer from to , who died suddenly from a previously unknown genetic heart condition soon after overseeing the construction of the new tower. A plaque bearing the words "John A. Paoli, , Memorial Tower. Dedicated on this day, November 18, to our friend and colleague whose passion and talent brought KFI AM to millions of listeners." and his likeness now graces the wall around the tower's base.
Former hosts and on-air alumni
- Jack Angel - the former KMPC overnight man and cartoon voiceover hosted primarily afternoon shows
- Jerry Bishop - announcer for the Judge Judy program and worked for the Disney Channel. Afternoon drive in
- Tammy Bruce - hosted weekend talk show from to Bruce was fired for making unflattering comments about Bill Cosby and his wife Camille, who had recently lost their son Ennis in a murder. Bruce is now syndicated on stations including KABC in Los Angeles.
- Bill Carroll – Monday–Friday 10am–1pm; also hosts an edition of his show from Los Angeles for Toronto radio station CFMJ
- Michael Castner - news reporter, now hosts The Daily Wrap from the Wall Street Journal. The syndicated show is heard in Los Angeles on KEIB.
- Chuck Cecil - hosted "The Swingin' Years", focusing on big-band music, from until the early s. Program was nationally syndicated more than 25 years. Show moved to KKJZ Long Beach until February 8,
- Joe Crummey - hosted evening talk show from to
- Mark Denis - worked the KFI Traffic Center from until his death in April ; was the imaging voice of "KFI, More Stimulating Talk Radio"
- Matt Drudge - syndicated Internet news personality who ran on KFI Sunday nights pm to pm the end of September
- Dale Dye - During the Iraq War, Dye was hired as a military commentator by KFI and given a two-hour radio show.
- Scott Ellsworth - creator and on-air host of the popular radio program, "Scott's Place" that aired on KFI-AM in Los Angeles from through It was on from midnight until AM and featured jazz and big band music, interspersed with live interviews with musicians.
- Terri-Rae Elmer - former news anchor from Hosted TNT in the Morning with Tracey Miller from Spent her last 18 years with the station as the in studio news anchor during the John and Ken Show. Now on morning drive at KABC with Doug McIntyre
- Ken Gallacher — former news anchor for the Bill Handel Show
- Daryl Gates—the former Los Angeles Police Department chief replaced Tom Leykis as part of the station's shift toward conservative politics. Died in
- Phil Hendrie - hosted an evening issue-oriented talk show from to (sometimes alternating with Joe Crummey), and his syndicated comedy show The Phil Hendrie Show from to
- Mikel Hunter Herrington - worked as a disc jockey at KFI in
- Dave Hull - s, s. The "Hullaballooer" was heard primarily 9pmam weekday evenings. Spent more than 15 years at KWXY(FM) Cathedral City-Palm Springs. Began a syndicated weekend talk show in
- Geoff Edwards - first heard as a KFI music host in Hosted early drive (?) to Resigned as a protest to Tom Leykis crushing of listener donated Cat Stevens/Yusuf Islam records, following Stevens call for fatwa on Salman Rushdie.
- Tom Leykis - hosted a talk show from until , which was more political issue-oriented than his later syndicated show would be.
- Hudson And Landry - the radio and vinyl comedy team hosted afternoon drive
- Rabbi Mentz - hosted a show from to From 10 to midnight, and filled in often for Bill Handel on morning drive. From politics to family life, sports to matchmaking, the show provided an entertaining perspective. Guests such as Governor Davis, Laura Bush, Paula Abdul, Bill O'Reilly, were just some of the names that dropped by the show.
- Tracey Miller - co-hosted TNT in the Morning with KFI News' Terri-Rae Elmer from to The show was the first morning-drive show in a major market to feature two women in the lead roles. Miller died in
- Kevin Mitnick - infamous computer hacker who co-hosted a two-hour show early Sunday mornings titled 'The Dark Side of the Internet' with Alex Kasper from to
- Karel & Andrew - "Karel and Andrew", Karel Bouley and Andrew Howard were the first openly gay radio talk-show hosts on a U.S. major-market radio station in  Hired for the afternoon drive slot at Los Angeles' KFI, the duo replaced KFI mainstays John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou. "I'm sure there are a million gay [radio] hosts, but not many of them are open, and no one had ever appeared on the air as a gay couple," said Ron Rodrigues, editor-in-chief of Radio & Records magazine. " The backbone of their on-air banter was their contrasting world views. Bouley, who dominated the conversation, could be stopped in his tracks with one, well-placed word from Howard". Al Peterson, an editor at Radio & Records magazine said, "They didn't feel like it was their job to be the poster boys for the gay community or to effect social change, just because they were the first openly gay hosts who were partners off the air.
- Mr. KFI - Marc Germain hosted a question-and-answer talk show from to He was fired from KFI in and then hired by competitor KABC. Germain hosted a similar show as Mr. KABC for ten years before leaving KABC for KTLK (AM ), then created, hosts and produces for online network talkradioone.com.
- Scott and Casey - a live call-in talk show, hosted by Scott Hasick and Casey Bartholomew, aired from to , and again from to Scott Hasick was involved in The Stephanie Miller Show during her time on KFI, performing many of the character voices heard on the broadcasts, as well as serving as production guy, and board operator. Casey Bartholomew was involved in the John and Ken Show as their board operator, as well as writing and performing many popular "updates", and imaging for KFI. The pair exited KFI in , for weekday afternoons on New Jersey After leaving New Jersey, Scott and Casey served stints in Detroit, St. Louis and San Francisco. Casey spent some time on the airwaves in Charleston before the duo re-united in St. Louis. Scott recently resurfaced at Bonneville's WMVN/WARH in St. Louis. Casey recently resurfaced at New Jersey as the afternoon replacement for Craig Carton. Carton and Boomer Esiason replaced Don Imus on WFAN in New York.
- The Tim & Neil Show - Tim Kelly and Neil Saavedra hosted a weekend show, then replaced Tammy Bruce on weeknights. From to , Tim and Neil hosted various shifts and often filled in for Bill Handel. Tim Kelly was a longtime contributor to the Bill Handel Program, penning and recording the bits and parodies that the show featured under the moniker "Dick Cabeza." Neil Saavedra is currently still with KFI as Marketing Director and on air with the Jesus Christ Show on Sundays.
- Mike Nolan - Known as KFI in the Sky and also employed by sister station KOST to do airborne traffic reports in the morning and evening drive times was let go after 20 years with the station due to a restructuring on November 30, As of January 14, he was back on air with KFI and KOST as a ground-based traffic reporter with an occasional KFI in the Sky from his own plane. He also serves as a subject matter expert for aviation related topics and news stories.
- Ted Rall - Saturday evenings on KFI briefly; can still be heard on the Bill Handel Show occasionally.
- Deborah Rich - hosted a weekend, topic-driven show on Saturday evenings.
- Hilly Rose - from to , Rose hosted an early morning show on KFI (midnight to 6 am) titled The Hilly Rose Night Owl Show where he, and his listeners, conversed on the air about various subjects. As a child actor, Rose appeared on such radio programs as "Ma Perkins," and "The First Nighter Program." Hilly Rose Los Angeles broadcast history: KABC, –72; KFI, –79; KMPC, –82; KABC, Hilly is now hosting a program on the Sirius Satellite Radio SciFi Channel.
- Turi Ryder - hosted a weekend show for KFI in the late s.
- Laura Schlessinger - hosted the Dr. Laura Show from to Moved to KFWB on September 8,
- Bob Shannon - afternoon drive personality who survived the format change to top forty in and later went on to having a successful film/television acting career as well as a well known film acting coach in Los Angeles.
- Paul T Wall - former board operator for the Bill Handel show and on-air contributor to Handel on the News. Wall left KFI in February
- April Winchell - hosted a variety talk show from until
- Bruce Wayne (Bruce F. Talford) - "KFI in the Sky" traffic reporter. He was killed on June 4, in a crash just after take-off from Fullerton Airport in a KFI airplane.
- John Ziegler - hosted a political talk show from (pm PST to am PST) From until And from (pm PST to pm PST) from until November 13, The show ended each time with a remembrance of the September 11 attacks.
- Tim Kelly - hosted mid-days with his wife Evelyn during the top forty format, he would move to KIIS-fm and be founder of Premiere Radio, the nation's largest radio syndication company.
- Big Ron O'Brien hosted nights on KFI during its top forty format period of the late s. He would move on to top ratings at KIIS-fm and WOGL-fm in Philadelphia. O'Brien died April 27, at age 56 of complications of pneumonia.
- Charlie Fox hosted late nights on KFI's top forty format in the late s.
- Dave Diamond hosted over nights on KFI's top format in the late s. Diamond died May 5,
The syndicated Rush Limbaugh Show was heard on KFI from July 4, to January 20, , when it moved to sister station KEIB.
Coast to Coast AM with George Noory is on from 10pm-5am. Wake Up Call with Jennifer Jones Lee is on from am. Bill Handel is on from am. Gary Hoffmann and Shannon Farren host from 10am-2pm. John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou host from pm. Tim Conway Jr is on from pm.
- ^ ab"KFI 50,Watt Program". Variety: July 21, via Internet Archive.
- ^"Station Search Details - KFI". licensing.fcc.gov. Retrieved August 27,
- ^"Is KFI switch a sign AM radio is really dead?". dailynews.com. August 12, Retrieved August 27,
- ^"Archived copy". Archived from the original on January 28, Retrieved September 15, CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) HD Radio Guide for Los Angeles
- ^"Two Pacific Coast Networks Are Formed By the NBC After Buying Four Stations"(PDF). Broadcasting. November 1, Retrieved September 30,
- ^Blackstock, Joe. "Pomona radio legend was citrus ranchers' savior - On frosty nights, Jack Benny lost ratings to Floyd Young". Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, December 8,
- ^The Story of Mt. Wilson, California Part Broadcasters Invade
- ^KFI To Serve As Flagship For Los Angeles Chargers RadioInsight April 26,
- ^"Rosen, Craig. RADIO NEWS & NOTES -COMPETITION HEATS UP ON AM DIAL". Los Angeles Daily News, July 18, Page L20
- ^"KFI GRANTED CONDITIONAL OK TO LABEL ITSELF 'TALK RADIO'." Los Angeles Daily News, May 6,
- ^FCC Local Area Plan for the Emergency Alert System (Microsoft Word Document) - Los Angeles County
- ^"Archived copy"(PDF). Archived from the original(PDF) on June 27, Retrieved August 7, CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- ^National Transportation Safety Board preliminary report on the plane crash December 19,
- ^National Transportation Safety Board factual report on the plane crash December 19,
- ^11pm newscast on KFI about the plane crash and destruction of KFI's transmitter tower in La Mirada. (Retrieved from SoundCloud)
- ^The Tech Guy Show Notes, Note #
- ^KFI Tower TopplesArchived March 20, , at the Wayback Machine
- ^Construction of the new tower in Aug.
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