KAOK (1400 AM) is a radio station broadcasting a News Talk Information format. Licensed to Lake Charles, Louisiana, USA, the station serves the Lake Charles area. The station is currently owned by Cumulus Media and features programming from ABC Radio and Premiere Radio Networks.
KAOK began as a member of the "OK Group" which included WAOK, WBOK, and others and was known as serving the African-American community. Thomas Austin Gresham (1921-2015), a 1946 graduate of Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge who was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, opened KLOU in Lake Charles and was manager and part owner of KAOK as well. In 1959, he came to Shreveport to manage KRMD and was the executor of the T. B. Lanford estate. Gresham was also a decorated first lieutenant with the 8th Air Force of the United States Army Air Corps in England during World War II. He flew twenty combat missions in B-17 bombers.
Ed J. Prendergast (born 1925) subsequently managed and then purchased the station. He moved to a TOP 40 format, a popular mainstream form of radio entertainment.
During the 1970s, KAOK was a competitive and high profile radio station within the Lake Charles market, featuring remote live broadcasts from many of the station's accounts, as well as seemingly infinite amounts of sock hops and dances hosted by KAOK personalities and mobile dj pioneers Marc Franklin, and Dave The Mouse Petrik, who was also the station's chief engineer. The station also simulcast on one of the local cable channels during this period. One memorable KAOK promotion was the "Boogie Bash," a dance featuring KAOK radio DJ' Dave the Mouse'. During the summer of 1973, a series of these dances, provided some much needed youth night life, melding well with the station's Top 40 appeal. At its peak, 1973-'74, the station featured personalities such as ' Marc Franklin', Dave "The Mouse" Petrik, Steve Golden,Jay Michaels, Weird Michael and Bill Conway, as well as long time local personalitiesTerry Broussard , Bubba Lutcher and the Fondel Funeral Home shows, airing on Sunday mornings. Marc Franklin and Conway eventually went on to major market positions with Franklin further transitioning into an on-air Television career as an anchor and meteorologist. Golden and Michaels went to large radio markets upon leaving KAOK. After it's heyday, the station struggled and eventually evolved into a talk format with Prendergast as the morning host. Ultimately, the station changed ownership several times, including ownership by Sidney Simien, known as Rockin' Sidney, a Zydeco musician who recorded the hit: '''"Don't Mess with My Toot Toot." '''
A fire destroyed the building and all of the facilities, and eventually the frequency was sold to the Cumulus Media who broadcast a conservative talk format. From 9 to 11 a.m. weekdays, KAOK broadcasts The Moon Griffon Show.