Rock band R.E.M. asked “What’s the Frequency, Kenneth?” in a hit song in 1994. Now the same question might be asked about Laguna Beach’s only FM radio station.
KX announced it will switch frequencies Monday to 104.7 FM after more than seven years at 93.5. A statement by the station said it has endured years of signal interference from hip-hop radio station KDAY, which serves the greater Los Angeles area on the same channel.
KX is already live on 104.7 and will continue to be available on 93.5 until Monday.
The station said the new frequency will allow for better coverage across Laguna Beach and is expected to enable KX to reach the fringes of other south Orange County communities such as Dana Point, Corona del Mar, Laguna Niguel and Aliso Viejo.
In coming months, the station will implement a sub-channel with different content for listeners with access to HD radio. HD offers a clearer signal and more-reliable song information on car monitors.
The station, which also is rebranding as KX FM instead of KX 93.5, plans to revise its programming to feature more “classical alternative” music and provide a greater focus on the Laguna Beach community as the city’s only licensed radio station, according to station founder and General Manager Tyler Russell.
“This is obviously a big change for us, but it’s been a long time coming for our audience,” Russell said in a statement.
“From day one in 2012, we heard complaints from listeners in [the Laguna Beach neighborhoods of] Top of the World, Arch Beach Heights, South Laguna and Laguna Canyon Road that they couldn’t hear us,” Russell said. “It’s always been a problem ... that people want to hear the station in more places, and we’re happy to have finally found a remedy.”
When the station first launched in October 2012, there were no other frequencies available, Russell said in an email Tuesday.
“We checked last year and 104.7 was the only one determined to be available to us, which is decided by a set of criteria through the FCC [Federal Communications Commission]. We tested it, found that it was better and decided to go for it,” he said.