Laguna Beach to get second radio station

Ed Steinfeld, who worked at KX FM radio station in Laguna Beach, is starting his own station.
For the last five years, Ed Steinfeld worked at KX FM radio station in Laguna Beach, but now he’s starting his own station.
(David Hansen)

In the end, local radio host Ed Steinfeld just wanted more responsibility, so he’s starting his own radio station.

Since 2018, he’s had the marquee morning show at KX FM in Laguna Beach, but Tuesday was his last day, announcing on air that he’s ready to aim higher.

“I’ve always wanted to own my own radio station,” he said after the show. “I’ve been doing radio since the mid-’80s. This is my opportunity, man.”


Steinfeld’s new station, Voice of Laguna, will launch online on Monday and is still awaiting FCC approval for a transmitter and call letters, but the process is in the works. Unlike KX, it will be a commercial venture.

“I’m not competing with them,” he said. “They’re a nonprofit, they’re membership driven, grant funded, and I’m going in the opposite direction. I’m going commercial, and I’m not depending on the community to send me money or anything. I just want them to listen.”

The music will be eclectic and an important anchor for the new station.

“My music format is quite literally, every song, ever. So it will be from Stevie Ray Vaughn to Billie Holiday to Billie Eilish, from Duke Ellington to the Rolling Stones.”

Steinfeld had a “Mornings with Ed” show on KX, and he will evolve it. The new morning show will run from 7 a.m. to noon, with the first half devoted to news and discussion.

“The most important thing is it’s going to be relevant,” he said. “I will continue to interview newsmakers and people of interest from all walks of life that have a story to tell. I will be community focused but with a bigger footprint.”

Steinfeld admitted that he wanted more things from KX but for a variety of reasons, he was never given additional responsibility.

“I feel really good about the decision I’ve made. I’m sad at the same time because I love that radio station. I would have done anything for it. I would have stayed and made nothing had I been granted the ability to do more.”

During his last broadcast, Steinfeld, who sports a KX tattoo on his arm, tried to focus on the positive but did allude to some disagreements with the station.

“A little over a year ago I just started seeing some missed opportunities that I had hoped I’d be tasked to help repair,” he said on the air. “I have been invested in this station, personally, financially, invested in this station. I was willing to do it for free. But ownership and the board, they chose a different path, and there is no blame to place, there’s no grudge to hold. I’m choosing to look forward and not back.

Ultimately, it’s not my radio station, it’s theirs, and I have to respect that. That’s why after several months of agonizing, I’ve decided to start my own radio station, called Voice of Laguna.”

KX founder Tyler Russell McCusker did not want to get into the specifics of Steinfeld’s departure but said in an official statement that the station appreciated his role over the years.

“KX FM would like to thank Ed for his contributions to the station and our community over the past five years. We wish him luck in his future endeavors,” he said.

Steinfeld now is leaning into his many immediate tasks, including finding a broadcasting location downtown. He’s eyeing a couple of sites, such as the old newsstand on Ocean Avenue, and hopes to finalize something soon.

In the meantime, he’s hopeful that people will tune in and engage.

“I’ve always wanted to do this. I’m good at it and I think I have a shot.”

DAVID HANSEN is editor of Under Laguna in Laguna Beach. He can be reached at