Originally known as WIZO-FM, WRLT-FM has been broadcasting to Middle Tennessee on 100.1 MHz since November 16, 1961. Licensed to Franklin, Tenn., WIZO-FM was the FM counterpart of WIZO (AM) 1380. After a number of ownership, format, and name changes, it became Rebel 100 in 1987 as WWRB-FM and was one of the country’s first alternative rock stations.
In the fall of 1988, it changed owners, switched call letters to WRLT-FM, and changed formats to “Nashville`s Lite 100.” As Lite 100 faltered in the ratings, it was obvious that a major overhaul was necessary to make the station appeal to more than just the aviary creatures inhabiting our transmitting tower.
On March 5, 1990, “Radio Lightning” debuted and changed the face of Nashville radio as we know it. WRLT is a true name in a crowded radio environment.
When WRLT first switched formats to Radio Lightning, our studios were located in a rather mundane Brentwood office park. In March of 1991, our studios moved downtown to the hip and cool Second Avenue. We watched Second Avenue grow to become a tourist mecca.
In January 1995, we moved to a perch on top of the Life and Casualty (L & C) Tower at Fourth Ave. North and Church St.
Then, in 2005 we took up residence among the artists` lofts and Yazoo Brewers at Marathon Village.
In 2006, WRLT launched the syndicated talk radio show, Music Business Radio, hosted by music marketing expert, consultant, and author David Hooper, and features interviews with various industry professionals giving the listener their insight and expertise into the business.
WRLT is also home to community outreach and special events through Team Lightning (rebranded from Team Green Adventures in late 2017), an outdoor adventure group with a mission to increase awareness about the environment, health, and community through adventure, and Live on the Green Music Festival, a free music festival on the plaza at Metro Nashville Courthouse from August through September, highlighting local artists and businesses.
Lightning 100 History Highlights
2000 – 2001 – 2002 – 2003 – 2004 – 2005 – 2006
2007 – 2008 – 2009 – 2010 – 2011 – 2012 – 2013
2014 – 2015 – 2016 – 2017 – 2018 – 2019 – 2020