The first radio station to adopt an all talk-show format was KMOX, 1120 AM in St. Louis, MO. Legendary station manager Robert Hyland developed the format after he arrived at the station in 1960. At the time, KMOX had seen it's ratings slip to the bottom of the St. Louis market, the result of the popularity of AM "Top 40" music radio stations. Almost immediately, KMOX became the highest rated radio station in St. Louis, a position it has held for forty years.
In the late 1970s, as more and more listeners abandoned AM music formats for the cleaner sound of the FM dial, the Talk Radio format began to catch on in more large cities. Former legendary music stations such as WLW/Cincinnati, WHAS/Louisville, WHAM/Rochester, NY, WLS/Chicago, KFI/Los Angeles. and WABC/New York made the switch to all-talk as their ratings slumped from the listener migration.
In the 1990s in the United States it grew to heretofore unseen popularity, primarily due to the popularity of programs by controversial political conservatives such as Rush Limbaugh, G. Gordon Liddy, and Michael Reagan, and libertarians such as Neal Boortz, Gary Nolan, and "shock jock" Howard Stern. There have been many other subjects of discussion in talk radio, including advice about morality (for example, from Dr. Joy or Dr. Laura), automobiles (for example, Car Talk), and finance (for example, Bob Brinker's Money Talk).