by John Steinberger | June 2, 2019 2:52 pm
WTMA (AM-1250) reached a milestone Saturday, marking 30 years as a talk radio station. Rush Limbaugh joined the WTMA lineup, soon after making talk radio a prominent media source when his show premiered in 1988. Less than two months later, local talk anchor Dan Moon and his news staff gave the Charleston community a lifeline by providing coverage of the aftermath of Hurricane Hugo. Listeners turned to WTMA to find out what roads were opening, where to ice for their coolers and what grocery stores were open for business. Many people were without electricity weeks after the hurricane, and battery-operated radios provided the only source of news.
Talk radio provided the local community with its first opportunity for real-time feedback on the news and events of the day. Callers can discuss issues with the hosts or ask questions to public officials. While hosts, callers and listeners on talk radio tend to be conservative, liberals have a chance to call in and share their views. Legendary left-leaning callers “Malcolm” and “Jerome” have been frequent callers on WTMA and often have clashes with the hosts, while getting a chance to present their points of view.
In addition to Moon, some of the notable local WTMA hosts have included Richard Todd, Nancy Wolf, Rocky D, Tara Servatius, and current host Charlie James. Limbaugh’s program is now carried on another Charleston talk station (the market once had three until WQSC changed format). Other past national hosts on the station have included Gordon Liddy, Neal Boortz, and Herman Cain. Among the current national hosts on the station are Chris Plante, Michael Savage and Mark Levin.
After 30 years of news, commentary and caller feedback, WTMA continues to inform the public and help shape the political debate in the Charleston area. Many who have left the area monitor the Charleston scene by live-streaming on wtma.com.
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