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3EE

From Academic Kids

3EE began in 1992 although it was originally the legendary radio station 3XY which began transmission in 1935. 3XY was Melbourne's dominant music radio station during the 1970s and early 1980s with a Top 40 music radio format, but its fortunes declined in the late 1980s with the advent of FM radio in Australia.

After a string of failed program formats and as a result, loss of ratings and consequent dramatic financial losses, the 3XY licence was bought by Sydney based AWA Ltd who also owned 2CH in Sydney. AWA shut down 3XY, broadcasting on 1422 kHz, on 23 September 1991 with plans to revive the station early in 1992 with a new name and frequency. Although it was a relaunch of the 3XY licence that had been in existence since 1935 and not the issuing of a new one, AWA chose to promote the forthcoming 3EE as a "completely new" station.

3EE, broadcasting on 693 kHz, began official transmission at 7.00am Friday 2 July 1992. Promoted as The Breeze, the station had a mix of talk based programming and easy listening music, but fared poorly in the ratings, which led one writer on Melbourne radio to famously comment That Breeze must have smelt a bit!.

AWA sold the 3EE licence to rival broadcaster Wesgo Limited in May 1993 who converted 3EE into simulcast with their other radio station 3MP on 1377 kHz. The two signals promised 3MP a strong signal across all of Melbourne as 1377 was aimed towards the Southern and Eastern suburbs and 693 was broadcasting from the Western suburb of Werribee.

The Australian Broadcasting Authority ordered 3MP cease the simulcast arrangement in 1994 and split the two frequencies into separate formats. In March 1994, 3EE became known as Magic 693 with a 40s, 50s and 60s music format, while 3MP maintained its more mainstream 'easy listening' format on 1377.

Media operator Southern Cross Broadcasting who also owned Melbourne radio stations 3AK and 3AW, bought the 3MP and 3EE licences and in accordance with media ownership laws, chose to keep 3AW and 3EE (Magic 693) and sell off the lower rating 3AK and 3MP licences.

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