WMMS – Like a Rolling Stone
Here’s a half-page ad that we rushed out for the Plain Dealer, the Cleveland Press, and The Scene thirty years ago this week – right after receiving the official word that we won the Rolling Stone magazine readers poll Best Radio Station of the Year award. During the first few years of the award, Rolling Stone declined to release the exact number of votes that were cast in the poll – and our margin of victory.
It wasn’t until four years later that Rolling Stone released the actual voting numbers – and it was a rude awakening as to how few votes were cast in total. That year, 1983, WMMS won with 476 votes. KLOL/Houston, which did a massive campaign – and had erroneously gone on their air to claim they’d “beaten the Buzzard,” came in second with 345. WNEW-FM/New York was third with 286, KROQ/Los Angeles, which had adopted a tightly rotated “new wave/modern music” format was fourth with 199, and WMMR/Philadelphia was fifth with 182.
Though stunned by the low number of votes in total, we were victorious over stations in markets with populations far larger than Cleveland.