Winona’s KAGE was one of several 95.3 stations that I could hear simply by turning my antenna. KNOF/St. Paul was the local occupant of that frequency. But since they were over 20 miles away and only 3,000 watts (as were all 95.3 facilities at that time), it was fairly easy to null them out with my directional yagi and hear other co-channel stations. Also, KNOF signed off at 10PM. This made easy reception of KAGE, KCPI/Albert Lea, and KLFD/Litchfield.
KAGE was fully automated. It was your standard “cart Carousel and reel” system which many stations used. Kind of ironic how in those days, the AM station was usually live and the FM was automated. A few years later, it flipped around: the FM was live and the AM was automated or on satellite. The first two aircheck clips are from November, 1982. The third is from February, 1983, recorded during a reception-enhancing ice storm. Ironically, the 11/82 recordings are completely clean while the 2/83 clip has some white noise. This is because the band enhancement caused slight interference from other 95.3 stations beyond Winona. Because 95.3 was a Class A frequency assigned to several stations, reception of KAGE was always best with “normal” FM band conditions.
This was captured using a Pioneer SX-3900 receiver, Winegard 10 element FM yagi antenna, Alliance U-100 Tenna Rotor, Belden ultra low loss RG59 coaxial cable, and Technics stereo cassette deck. Scotch Dynarange tape was used on the 11/82 clips. TDK SA90 tape was used on the 2/83 clip.