From the late 1970s until the end in 1992, WGAY's programming of beautiful
music was transformed into "The Relaxing Music of Today" wherein much of the
repertoire "necessarily" was updated to include tunes made popular by
artists outside the orchestral domain.  Many of the tunes are quite good and
the orchestral versions could be pleasing.  By and large, however, the
result was mediocre, especially the uninspired and half-hearted, specially
commissioned "custom recording" efforts.  Their one advantage was that the
tunes were listed as former pop hits.  This made them popular with
advertising agencies, as the perception was that the proper, money-spending
demographic would be attracted.

To the end, the format stayed pretty much as it always had been:  news
headlines on the hour, weather at fifteen minutes past the hour, a
five-minute newscast at half-past the hour, sports or business or government
news at fifteen minutes before the top of the hour and music in between.
The production elements of the 1960s (Big Ben sounding for the news, a
quaint 1950s Capitol Q-series production cut for the weather, harps between
tunes) were gone by 1970, never to return.  The AM-FM pair of WQMR/WGAY
became WGAY AM and FM.  Then, in September 1984, the AM station was sold and
NBC's WRC-AM was bought.  The semi-simulcast beautiful music format came to
an end.  The WWRC signal was "The Station of the Stars," broadcasting music
that was supposed to appeal to those who were young during World War II.
WGAY-FM at ninety-nine point five (or ninety-nine five, as it was, for a
time, cavalierly put) continued the beautiful music tradition with favorites
that had been played during the 1960s, repeated well into the 1980s and
early 1990s.  But the format was heavily larded with unappealing work meant
to attract younger listeners.  Around Christmas 1991, the last days arrived
and the format was completely changed to exclusively vocal renditions of
"soft rock favorites."  That format proved attractive to just as many
listeners as did the former beautiful music format except the demographics
were better.  Eventually, even that format was found not to be the
moneymaker every executive wanted it to be, so it was dropped in favor of
"Jammin' Oldies" in April 2001 only to be replaced a year later with "Hot
99.5" (WGAY->WJMO->WIHT).    Yawn.