KHOP FM automated system (Athena) in 1978

KHOP Format History

KHOP was originally  KTRB-FM 104.1 MHz which came on the air in late 1949. Programming was simulcast of KTRB-AM. Power was 16,000 watts with their antenna side mounted at the top of the KTRB AM center tower on Norwegian Ave. The owner was Bill Bates.

In 1973 Big Valley Broadcasting (Pete and Mike Pappas included) purchased KTRB AM and FM from the Bill Bates estate. Four years later in December of 1977 KTRB-FM was upgraded in power with a new transmitting site and new call letters of KHOP-FM.  Power was increased  to 50,000 watts and a new transmitting building and  380 foot tower built on Black Butte mountain near the intersection of Corral Hollow Rd. and I-580 just west of Tracy, CA.

Initially the station programming  included a lot of religious programming and the call letters were referred to as K-HOPE. In addition to religion they ran a variety of  Spanish, Assyrian, Greek, opera and jazz with the  Mel Williams Jazz show at night.

Around March of 1978 switched to a automation system programming exclusively Album Oriented Rock.  Sometime either 1980 or 1981, KHOP went live, continued to be album rock, but not so much of the album cut influence.

KHOP changed its format to Top 40/CHR around 1981 or 1982. They changed its name from ROCK 104 to STEREO 104. It was mostly Pop type music plus they carried the syndicated American Top  40 WITH Casey Kasem on Sunday Mornings as well as a local 50's/60's Oldies Show on Sunday Nights hosted by Blas Vallejo.

David Allyn Kraham was the Program Director at Stereo 104 and did mid days. Dave Bowling was the morning DJ and Carol Benson did the news..Dave Nelson followed  Kraham at when the station changed from Stereo 104 to FM 104.1.    Bessie Pappas, widow of Pete Pappas sold KHOP to Fuller Jeffrey Broadcasting out of Sacramento.

On November 2, 1992, KHOP changed its format back from Top 40/CHR to AOR and became known as "The All New 104.1 Playing Great Rock and Roll. The following year,1993, Fuller Jeffrey FULLER JEFFREY sold  KHOP (as well as translator KHOV-103.9) to CITADEL BROADCASTING and its name became ROCK 104.1.

By 1994, it was simply ROCK 104 without the POINT ONE. In 1995, The format was tweaked from AOR to ACTIVE ROCK and in 1996, CITADEL  moved KHOP to its newly purchased 95.1 and 104.1 became KROW-ARROW 104.1 ALL ROCK AND ROLL OLDIES with a CLASSIC HITS format (A blend of 60's/70's Rock and Pop Hits). Later that year (August), They changed from ARROW 104.1 to 104.1 THE HAWK. They remained CLASSIC HITS but known as ALL ROCK AND ROLL HITS. In 2000, When KHOP-95.1 drop ACTIVE ROCK in favor of 80's Hits (as PLANET 95), KHKK 104.1 THE HAWK tweaked their format from CLASSIC HITS to CLASSIC ROCK. (No Pop and with a Heavier Edge).

(Thanks to Floyd Perry of Stockton who contributed the majority of this information. Additional information and photos courtesy of Tammy Drew, Bill Slayter and Ken Tinkle.)

Called the "Blue Room" , KHOP-FM automation equipment between 1978 and 1981. The operator is David Allyn Kraham. 
A Bumper Sticker of KHOP from the 90's when they were on 104.1 with a AOR format before switching to "The Hawk" .

Courtesy of Floyd Perry, Stockton, CA.
This is a picture of the very first promotion on KHOP Rock 104 when the station went "Live" in August of 1979.  A contest was held on the front lawn of the studio's on the Norwegian Ave. to debut the fact that the station was now live.  We had t-shirts to advertise the fact and held a "Miss Rock 104" T-shirt contest.

Having been on the air for only a month, we thought that the lawn would be big enough for the contest not knowing that we would draw such a huge crowd.  We failed to notify the Modesto Police for traffic control that Sunday afternoon. Needless to say, we blocked traffic on Norwegian from Orangeburg to McHenry bringing traffic to a dead stop.  On the positive note...we made news in the paper and on TV...thus launching the station.

In the picture above is Miss Rock 104 and in the background with the black hair with the beard is the Program Director and Morning Drive personality Richard Cano. The station's original crew consisted of  Mornings 6-10 Richard Cano,  Middays 10-2 Casey Hays,  Afternoons 3-7 Dan Gerard,  Nights 7-Midnight Jim Kirk and the overnight's were manned by Athena (the name for our automation system) with the automation voice-tracked by my wife.

(Photo and story courtesy of Richard Cano)