AM Technical Profile: WIRB

[ Home | Statewide: AM | FM | LPFM | Translators | TV | LPTV | LDTV ]
[ Metros: Birmingham | Mobile | Montgomery | Huntsville | Columbus, GA | Dothan | Tuscaloosa | The Shoals ]

Adult Contemporary, Talk, Sports
Transmitter Location:
[map] [street view] Between Enterprise and Level Plains, north of US-84, near CR-705.
Power (ERP):
1 kW
1 tower
Other Information:
0.5 mV/m Daytime Groundwave Service Contour from the FCC's Public Files
[Article] Story on the station's flip to Spanish language and variety music programming, from June 2020.
Owned by Fabiola Lev and Arik Lev, G. P.
Licensed to Level Plains, just east of the town of Enterprise.  The WIRB calls were originally on a station licensed to Enterprise on 1230 and later 600 kHz (history on this station). That frequency has been silent since the early 90's!
This incarnation of WIRB dates back to 2003, when a new construction permit was granted to "Virgile Leon Strictland, Individually".  The permit was for 430 watts day and night from the current site listed above.  In March 2006 the station modified the permit to operate with 1 kW day and night.  A license to cover was filed in December 2006, but the station didn't actually seem to get on the air until May 2008, when it debuted with a mix of southern gospel and contemporary religious music. 

The station has struggled to remain on the air for any notable length of time, and has officially listed silent periods: November 2009 to October 2010; October 2011; December 2011 to March 2012; October 2017 to July 2018.

In October 2018, the license was transferred from Virgile Leon Strickland to Fabiola and Arik Lev, for $5,000.  They flipped the format from Southern Gospel to News/Talk as "Talk 1490".  The license transfer grant was rescinded by the FCC in December 2018, for unknown reasons, but then accepted again later that month.  In June 2019, the FCC rescinded the grant to the Levs for a second time.  Arik Lev is an Israeli citizen and thus the transfer needed an extra approval step from the FCC.  It appears an updated filing will show Arik Lev as only having 20% ownership, to fall in line with FCC rules.

The station flipped from News/Talk to Spanish-language programming and a Variety music format in between talk shows, in June 2020.  In October 2020 it was reported the format was a curious mix of Classic Soul/R&B music, with Talk and Sports programming, including NASCAR race coverage.  The station was renamed "The Beast".  It is also being simulcast (likely temporarily) on WALQ Carrville to keep that station's license active.
  Oddly, the station's website (as of December 2020) lists WEBJ Brewton as an affiliate, even though Brewton Broadcasting appears to still own and operate that station.  Their website also lists a station in Hobbs, New Mexico, but it's unclear if it's simulcasting the Alabama stations or programmed separately.

The music was changed to a "top 100 Adult Contemporary" format in March 2021.