|City of license
||Today's Best Variety
(also on HD Radio)
96.5-2 WTIC (AM) (News/Talk)
96.5-3 WBZ-FM Boston, Massachusetts (All Sports)
|First air date
February 5, 1940 (on 43.5 MHz as W1XSO, later W53H and WTIC-FM)
April 17, 1948 (on 96.5 MHz as WTIC-FM)
||Hot AC, 80s (Weekends)
||Travelers Insurance Corporation (former owners of AM sister station)
||WRCH, WTIC, WZMX
WTIC-FM is a radio station primarily serving the Hartford, Connecticut market, though its signal can be picked up throughout most of Connecticut and into Springfield, Massachusetts. It currently broadcasts a Hot Adult Contemporary format. It is located on the dial at 96.5 MHz. It is currently operated by CBS Radio.
WTIC-FM was one of the two pre-World War II FM stations in Connecticut, signing on the air originally as W1XSO on February 5, 1940 and using a frequency of 43.5 MHz. In December 1941 it became a commercial operation using the call letters W53H. In 1943 the call letters were changed for the last time to WTIC-FM. On April 17, 1948 the station moved to 96.5 MHz where it has remained. It switched from classical music to CHR/Top 40 on May 12, 1977, the station's classical music library was donated to the University of Hartford radio station WWUH a few months later. The first song played as a Top 40 station was "Feels Like The First Time" by Foreigner.
The station switched to its current Hot AC format on June 15, 1994 to remove controversial rap music from its playlist; the station's sound has become decidedly softer in recent years compared to its past. Since 1977 the station has referred to itself on the air variously as "96 Ticks," "96 TIC-FM," and "The New 96-5 TIC."
The original WTIC-FM Top 40 format in the late 1970s consisted of only current hit songs (no oldies) in a high-energy, jingle-heavy presentation designed by consultant Mike Joseph, and it was an instant success. Joseph would later term this formatic approach "Hot Hits" and put it into use at other stations around the United States, most notably WBBM-FM in Chicago. Clips of the station during its "96 Tics" "Hot Hits" era and afterwards can be heard at www.stevemcvie.com and www.reelradio.com.
Coordinates: 41°46′26″N 72°48′18″W / 41.774°N 72.805°W