WKBW was founded in 1926 as a religious station. The call letters stood for "Well Known Bible Witness". The station later broadcast a wide variety of ethnic, country and western and religious programming, including pioneer rock and roll and rhythm and blues shows by disk jockey George "Hounddog" Lorenz.
In 1958, WKBW was converted into a Top 40 music radio station, which it remained for 30 years. It was one of the first stations to present traffic reports in cooperation with police and state and local authorities. Disk jockeys included Dick Biondi, Danny Neverath and Jackson Armstrong. In 1986, with the sale of the station by ABC, which chose to keep the calls WKBW for its TV station WKBW-TV (Channel 7), the call letters were changed to WWKB-AM (in order to keep the long-standing "KB" slogan) and in 1988, the station became a talk radio station and had a variety of business, news, and talk programming until 2003, when it returned to broadcasting music.