Local radio came to Tampa Bay on May 31, 1922, when WDAE signed-on. The station was owned by three-time Tampa mayor and publisher of the Tampa Daily Times newspaper, D.B. McKay.
The station broadcast from the sixth floor of the Citrus Exchange Building at the corner of Zack and Tampa Street. The building would later become the downton location of the Maas Brothers department store.
From that day, many predicted radio's success would succumb to advances from new technologies. In 1927, the challenge came from talking movies. In the 1940s, the predators were 13-inch TV sets. In the 1970s, it was 8-track and cassette tapes. In the past 20 years, there was a multi-flank attack from iPods, Zunes, YouTube, Sirius, XM, Pandora, Spotify,
So far, all of these challengers have failed. Not even a pandemic has been able to remove radio as a vital force in the life of Tampa Bay consumers.
Every week, according to Nielsen, more adults tune-in to Tampa radio than watch TV or cable. Use social media platforms like Facebook or Instagram. Read newspapers. Or, stream music from Pandora or Spotify.