El Patron 105.3 becomes Latin Hits Z105.3

Originally posted Thursday, November 8, 2018 by RODNEY HO/rho@ajc.com on his AJC Radio & TV Talk blog

IHeartMedia today changed the format of its 105.3 signal from regional Mexican to Latin hits, reflecting a change in the Hispanic population in metro Atlanta.

Dubbed El Patron since 2004, the station became Z105.3 as of 5 p.m.

The station sent out a note to advertising clients noting the shifting Latino population, which was 70 percent Mexican in 2013 vs. 53 percent today. “The majority of the growth of the Latino population in Atlanta is coming from inside the U.S.,” the note said, “not from immigrants.” The median age remains super young: just 26.

Management also explained that many artists from the top 40 Latin format have crossed over to mainstream pop and hip hop. Last year, Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee’s “Despacito”became one of the biggest Hot 100 hits in history. The number of Latin hits on the chart has exploded this year including Cardi B’s “I Like It” and J. Balvin’s “Mi Gente.”

In fact, “Mi Gente” was the first song the station played when it changed format at 5 p.m.

As a regional Mexican station, El Patron’s core artists included Intocable, Pesado and Banda El Recodo. Now as Z105.3, it’s Daddy Yankee, Ricky Martin and Shakira. 

Here was the first hour, according to Mediabase 24/7:

5:02 p.m. “Mi Gente” J. Balvin/Willy William

5:06 p.m. “Sin Pijama” Becky G & Natti Natasha

5:09 p.m. “La Rompe Corazones” Daddy Yankee

5:19 p.m. “Bonita” Jowell Y Randy

5:24 p.m. “Te Bote” Nio Garcia

5:28 p.m. “Ponle” Rvssian, Farruko & J. Balvin

5:31 p.m. “Felices Los 4” Maluma

5:35 p.m. “Me Niego” Reik

5:38 p.m. “Propuesta Indecente” Romeo Santos

5:47 p.m. “Dura” Daddy Yankee

5:50 p.m. “Oye Mujer” Raymix

5:54 p.m. “Perro Fiel” Shakira

5:58 p.m. “El Farsante” Ozuna

Latin hits was a format that was on IHeartMedia’s 105.7 as Viva from 2003 to 2009. That station went dance for awhile, then alternative and is now Alt 105.7. For a brief time, 87.7 also had this format but is now R&B. 

Z105.3 will have a new on-air staff: Karla Rodriguez in mornings, program director Orlando Rosa in middays, Luis Trevino in afternoons, and Jessi Dee in evenings.

All is not lost for regional Mexican music fans. 102.3/La Raza recently expanded its regional Mexican footprint in metro Atlanta by adding the 107.1 signal

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About the Author

Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.