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February 16, 2020 7:14 pm  #31


Re: 1220

Radiowiz wrote:

RadioActive wrote:

 
Q: Will the music mix be the same as what’s being played during testing?
 
A: My understanding of the music mix is 70's 80's and 90's. (Note that it leaves out the 60s. More of a Boom-like orientation.)
 

Absolutely not. More like the Zoomer radio of Niagara.  It wouldn't surprise me one bit if Zoomer ends up buying the station down the road... I don't see why not.

Boom's own web page advertises itself as "70s, 80s & 90s." The guy from CFAJ said that station will be playing tunes from the "70s, 80s and 90s." Where, exactly, is the difference? 

As far as leaving out the 60s is concerned, this makes no sense to me at all. The station is playing music on AM. If anyone's going to listen to that, it's likely to be The Boomers, a generation that grew up with mono music on that band. Who else is going to tune this in when there's so much other choice?

And I very much doubt Moses would buy a station in St. Catharines. I agree with kman on this. Why would he want to essentially compete against himself? AM 740 comes in like a local there. Why does he need CFAJ and its similarly targeted demo with a vastly inferior signal?

Not only that, I can't see how the 1220 newcomer expects to make any money. The one thing I know about Znaimer is he doesn't do anything if there's no profit in it. (A friend of mine who worked for City TV when Moses owned the place was introduced to him once. Moses looked at the guy, didn't say a word to him, but instead turned to the guy's boss and asked, "Does he work cheap?" It was the only thing he said before turning and walking away,) 

 

February 16, 2020 11:27 pm  #32


Re: 1220

Listeners will not go to AM radio for '70s, '80s and '90s music. They will go to FM for that, and there are many choices as well know. I still believe a '60s-'70s station with a deeper than normal playlist might be quite successful, demographics notwithstanding.

Last edited by Dale Patterson (February 16, 2020 11:32 pm)


"Life without echo is really no life at all." - Dan Ingram
 

February 17, 2020 7:27 am  #33


Re: 1220

Sounds like whoever answered the questions didn't really know much. Anyone who starts off an answer with "my understanding is.." would not be a good source for information on the format. Since they have hired the engineering staff, it could have been one the engineers who responded back. What is taking so long to get this station up and going?  Must have some $$ problems.

I agree Moses would not compete with himself and St. Kitts, line of sight across the lake is not far from Toronto. AM 740 will be the main competition for CFAJ, so they better have good local news and some local content for St. Catherines and area.   Dale is correct 60-70's format is best or 50's-70's format, and they would get a break on cancon, so that is a plus.

I haven't been following the history and threads of this station. Were they planning a talk show at all?

 

February 17, 2020 8:26 am  #34


Re: 1220

I think that was only going by the promise of performance to the CRTC. The applicants vowed to do "2 hours of news, weather and sports" out of 126 hours of locally produced programming. Two hours of news, weather and sports does not sound like a lot and the 126 of "local" programing could arguably be just a disc jockey doing a live show. 

It gets a little more tricky with "community-focused programming... and talk shows promoting local events,,,for a total of 10 hours and 25 minutes each week." Again, not really a huge commitment in the grand scheme of things, but what form that takes is really the question. Does that just mean a lot of PSAs or something more long form? 

Guess we won't know until the place officially signs on and as yet we don't know when that will be. But given they have no studios or anybody beyond the engineers hired, that could be a while. 

As for who answered the questions, my friend didn't know. But I think you're right - if they've only hired engineers, it would seem likely one of them may be behind the answers. I can't even find out who still owns the station - it seems to me I read a while ago (they got the nod from the CRTC in April 2016 so it's been a while) that the place had been sold before even getting on air. Can't confirm it, but whoever it is, other than the FB page, they seem to have no web presence at all.

 

February 17, 2020 9:08 am  #35


Re: 1220

Regardless of what's happening with the station kudos to whoever is choosing the music. They do have some of the corp rock turns offs of the classic hits format but they played the Music Machine's Talk Talk today. The proto punk/garage classic and the last time I heard that on AM radio in the area was maybe around 1980/81 when I was in a car with AM radio only. I think Mike Holland played it as CHUM was adding some punk/new wave to their playlist. Remember Making Plans for Nigel by XTC was on the CHUM chart. I also heard the Clash on the station just now. A track that is still played on FM but cool to hear the Clash on AM..







 

Last edited by Fitz (February 17, 2020 9:08 am)


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February 17, 2020 9:11 am  #36


Re: 1220

Will the CRTC be as patient with 1220 as they have been with Montreal 600 and 940, which have been more or less in test mode for a couple of years? They went off-air last fall and have yet to return, with the only reason I've heard being storm damage to transmitters. I have not been able to even hear the 600 when they were on-air, and the 940 was all music despite being laid out as a talk station.

     Thread Starter
 

February 17, 2020 12:50 pm  #37


Re: 1220

It sounds like the music is similar to what CJOY in Guelph is doing. They are 70's-90's and don't seem to be afraid to include groups like the Ramones, XTC, Elvis Costello (Pump it Up), Rough Trade and other new wave borderline punk cuts in the regular mix. They still play the odd '60's song but often something heavier.  Mind you, they do play ABBA!  But the music overall is pretty heavy for an AM station and I do hear songs that only 1050 chum playlisted back late 1979 to about 1984. CJOY will play the odd live version of songs that aren't heard on radio either, like Phil Collins In the Air Tonight.   Mike Devine hosts the morning show.

 

February 17, 2020 3:19 pm  #38


Re: 1220

I can receive 1220 CFAJ in Hamilton (mountain area), although quiet (understanding it's testing on one tower with 1000 watts). At night, the 1220 Christian station in the USA totally overpowers any local coverage.

 

February 17, 2020 3:39 pm  #39


Re: 1220

Talk about location being a factor. I was in the car at Keele & Hwy. 7 on Monday and it came in very well. Travelled down the road near Sheppard & Bayview and it was completely gone. That's not that big a distance in the grand scheme of things, but the signal just couldn't make it from one location to the other. Hope when they're up and running at full power it blankets the GTA. With 10K, it should. Night time is another matter altogther..

 

February 17, 2020 5:27 pm  #40


Re: 1220

Actually, you were correct in your offline email - I meant Bayview and Sheppard. Must have been a brain cramp. I seem to be having way too many of those these days! I've corrected it in my past post.

Anyway, it wasn't electrical noise on 1220 I heard there. It was - well, nothing. Static. There was no signal at all, which surprised me because I wasn't all that far away from where it had come in perfectly. I'm sure by the time they're up and running at full 10K power, it won't be a problem. At least during the day.   

 

February 18, 2020 8:34 pm  #41


Re: 1220

No luck receiving the signal in the Grand Bend / London area. I'll try again after sunset. Are they testing 24 / 7 or is it limited hours?

 

February 19, 2020 6:28 am  #42


Re: 1220

The more I listen to CFAJ the more I wish they'd stay in permanent test mode. They really do sound great and whoever's programming the music certainly knows their stuff. Lots of tunes I haven't heard on the radio in years. They played "Houston" by Dean Martin yesterday. I couldn't believe it. Hopefully when they launch they'll play a few lost gems like they're doing now.


"Life without echo is really no life at all." - Dan Ingram
 

February 19, 2020 8:16 am  #43


Re: 1220

Dale Patterson wrote:

The more I listen to CFAJ the more I wish they'd stay in permanent test mode. They really do sound great and whoever's programming the music certainly knows their stuff. Lots of tunes I haven't heard on the radio in years. They played "Houston" by Dean Martin yesterday. I couldn't believe it. Hopefully when they launch they'll play a few lost gems like they're doing now.

Okay I'll ask again. The music you currently hear - is 35-40% Can Con present? 
When the station officially signs on that will be a requirement.  
It's one thing to put something amazing together to get people's attention...another to deal with CRTC demands.

 

 

February 19, 2020 9:00 am  #44


Re: 1220

Radiowiz wrote:

Dale Patterson wrote:

The more I listen to CFAJ the more I wish they'd stay in permanent test mode. They really do sound great and whoever's programming the music certainly knows their stuff. Lots of tunes I haven't heard on the radio in years. They played "Houston" by Dean Martin yesterday. I couldn't believe it. Hopefully when they launch they'll play a few lost gems like they're doing now.

Okay I'll ask again. The music you currently hear - is 35-40% Can Con present? 
When the station officially signs on that will be a requirement.  
It's one thing to put something amazing together to get people's attention...another to deal with CRTC demands.

 

They are not following 35 % cancon but their diversity does not seem to be based on that. They could easily and may play off the beaten track CanCon from The Ugly Ducklings,Kensington Market, Martha and the Muffins, Teenage Head or Drastic Measures to name a few. Not all of the music they are playing is off the beaten track but they are mixing some interesting tracks with the hits and they could easily do that with CanCon.
 

Last edited by Fitz (February 19, 2020 9:05 am)


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February 19, 2020 9:27 am  #45


Re: 1220

Fitz is right, there is a ton of good cancon that never gets played anymore.  All songs that were charted and played on the radio that the audience will remember. And it sounds like they are already doing this with all of their test music, playing a lot of B songs and selections that were at the bottom of the top 40 or 50 that rarely get any airplay anymore. 

 

February 19, 2020 9:33 am  #46


Re: 1220

I thought Roger Ashby handled the CanCon requirements pretty well on his Oldies Show that debuted last week. If it can be done there, it can be done elsewhere. (Although CFAJ isn't likely to attract that kind of veteran talent.)

 

February 19, 2020 1:22 pm  #47


Re: 1220

Radiowiz wrote:

Dale Patterson wrote:

The more I listen to CFAJ the more I wish they'd stay in permanent test mode. They really do sound great and whoever's programming the music certainly knows their stuff. Lots of tunes I haven't heard on the radio in years. They played "Houston" by Dean Martin yesterday. I couldn't believe it. Hopefully when they launch they'll play a few lost gems like they're doing now.

Okay I'll ask again. The music you currently hear - is 35-40% Can Con present? 
When the station officially signs on that will be a requirement.  
It's one thing to put something amazing together to get people's attention...another to deal with CRTC demands.

 

There's no Can-Con, which is probably why I like it so much. https://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons3/cheerful.png
 I'm not against Can-Con, I just think the levels are too high. Instead of 30-40 per cent, they should be 20-25 per cent IMHO. But I'm going to enjoy CFAJ in test mode while it lasts.
 


"Life without echo is really no life at all." - Dan Ingram
 

February 19, 2020 3:51 pm  #48


Re: 1220

Dale Patterson wrote:

Radiowiz wrote:

Dale Patterson wrote:

The more I listen to CFAJ the more I wish they'd stay in permanent test mode. They really do sound great and whoever's programming the music certainly knows their stuff. Lots of tunes I haven't heard on the radio in years. They played "Houston" by Dean Martin yesterday. I couldn't believe it. Hopefully when they launch they'll play a few lost gems like they're doing now.

Okay I'll ask again. The music you currently hear - is 35-40% Can Con present? 
When the station officially signs on that will be a requirement.  
It's one thing to put something amazing together to get people's attention...another to deal with CRTC demands.

 

There's no Can-Con, which is probably why I like it so much. https://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons3/cheerful.png
 I'm not against Can-Con, I just think the levels are too high. Instead of 30-40 per cent, they should be 20-25 per cent IMHO. But I'm going to enjoy CFAJ in test mode while it lasts.
 

If CFAJ were to become an oldies station playing 50's-70's music they would get a break on cancon with 30% and could likely even make a case for 25%. All of their music would be prior to 1981. It has been a long time since their license was issued and we really don't know what they are planning now. They are still months away from signing on.  

I have a hunch that the cancon regs for radio are going to be relaxed somewhat and updated later this year or early next year when the broadcast review is complete. 

Certainly hope CFAJ is planning some local content, news and possibly a talk show. Music alone won't necessarily carry the day for a small station like this with so many strong out of town stations to contend with. 

 

February 20, 2020 10:08 pm  #49


Re: 1220

Another round of recording from this station over the last wk. Caught more tracks not heard much or at all on classic hits or even classic rock stations. Quality is not great and was exacerbated by the fact that I kept playing with the AM stereo button  ( the station is not in stereo but the light kept coming on)  . Also parts were recorded near sunset.

You will hear brief segments from the following:

1. The Mojo Men - their baroque tinged cover of  Buffalo Springfield's Sit  Down I Think I Love You
2. Don't Bring Me Down- The Pretty Things. Never really played on the radio around these parts at all but they later evolved and got psychedelic and had the first rock opera with SF Sorrow
3. People with their 1968 hit cover of the Zombies I Love You a 
4. Lovin Spoonful - With post John Sebastian hit that Pat Boone performed on Beverly Hillbillies
5. Surfaris - Surfer Joe
6.  The Grateful Dead in full CSNY mode with Uncle John's Band 
7. Empty Pages - Traffic with Steve Winwood
8. Delaney and Bonnie- With their hit cover of Soul Shake
9. The Kinks - Rock;n Roll Fantasy ( I had a feeling they would get to this one and they did)
10. The Talking Heads - Psyco Killer
11. Donovan With The Jeff Beck Group- Barabajagal
More St Cath Oldies


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Last edited by Fitz (February 20, 2020 10:10 pm)


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February 28, 2020 5:45 pm  #50


Re: 1220

I was out in Whitby last Sunday. CFAJ had a great daytime signal. At night, it was audible under WHKW. The Cleveland station had a pulsating signal and was not very dominant.

 

March 1, 2020 10:48 pm  #51


Re: 1220

I was in Buffalo last week, and even with WECK right next door on 1230, I could hear CFAJ decently on my car radio over by Transit and Broadway in Lancaster/Cheektowaga during the day. 

I expect that will actually become a harder trick to pull off when/if CFAJ gets the full 9-tower DA back up and running. 

 

March 1, 2020 11:52 pm  #52


Re: 1220

Does anyone know when 1220 is scheduled to launch? (Hopefully not soon, as I continue to enjoy test mode).


"Life without echo is really no life at all." - Dan Ingram
 

March 2, 2020 6:59 am  #53


Re: 1220

fybush wrote:

I was in Buffalo last week, and even with WECK right next door on 1230, I could hear CFAJ decently on my car radio over by Transit and Broadway in Lancaster/Cheektowaga during the day. 

I expect that will actually become a harder trick to pull off when/if CFAJ gets the full 9-tower DA back up and running. 

Sorry don't understand why it would be harder when they are at or near full power, directionality ?

Last edited by Fitz (March 2, 2020 7:07 am)


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March 6, 2020 1:23 pm  #54


Re: 1220

As so often happens, while searching for something else, I came across an old post on this site. I'd long forgotten that I put it up, since it was from 2016 and stemmed from the time the CRTC was just about to decide if it would award a licence for an oldies station at 1220 AM in St. Catharines. 

Well, we know what happened and, while it took years, the place is finally on and testing. 

What's significant about this old thread is that, in their application to the Commission, the owners posted some samples of a few suggested playlists. And it wasn't very well regarded by many here who replied. Yet some of those same people are excited by what they've been hearing during the test phase. 

So the question remains: which one will the real 1220 be when it finally signs on for good? You can refresh your memory of that original sample playlist here. But prepare to potentially be disappointed! 

 

March 6, 2020 1:30 pm  #55


Re: 1220

RadioActive wrote:

As so often happens, while searching for something else, I came across an old post on this site. I'd long forgotten that I put it up, since it was from 2016 and stemmed from the time the CRTC was just about to decide if it would award a licence for an oldies station at 1220 AM in St. Catharines. 

Well, we know what happened and, while it took years, the place is finally on and testing. 

What's significant about this old thread is that, in their application to the Commission, the owners posted some samples of a few suggested playlists. And it wasn't very well regarded by many here who replied. Yet some of those same people are excited by what they've been hearing during the test phase. 

So the question remains: which one will the real 1220 be when it finally signs on for good? You can refresh your memory of that original sample playlist here. But prepare to potentially be disappointed! 

Interesting to bring this up, but do keep on mind that the application has changed hands since the original date-ie no more Dave Dancy involvement. 
It will be interesting to see what really happens...
 

 

March 6, 2020 3:50 pm  #56


Re: 1220

A lot of people here think reviving oldies on a weak AM is crazy, but apparently the people in charge have something in common with a new station owner near Boston. He's not only bringing oldies back to the non-stereo band, but he's hiring disc jockeys who know the music, will be able to play what they want and will even use vinyl on occasion - which explains the two turntables in the control room. 

Not only that, he's returning some legendary call letters to their original frequency - WMEX at 1510. Those who recall Top 40 radio history will know those four letters very well.

A fascinating experiment and I hope he succeeds. As for making money? The last sentence of the article says it all for this guy, who's taking this chance at the non-entrepreneurial age of 79: "As long as it breaks even, we’re going to have a lot of fun.” 

Ed Perry taps into the past to bring back local radio

 

March 6, 2020 4:36 pm  #57


Re: 1220

Hope this works out for Ed. However this sounds more like a hobby station for him or a community operation more than a commercial enterprise. But as we are now seeing, ratings or numbers are becoming less and less important and certainly won't come into play for WMEX. They will find their audience and those that like the station will likely be loyal and the station probably will break even.  I bet most of the announcers are volunteering or working for next to nothing but are just thrilled to be back doing what they love.

 

March 6, 2020 4:51 pm  #58


Re: 1220

You could be right. But WMEX was a legendary radio station back in the 60s and some of the jocks will be returning. Imagine for a moment if someone relaunched CHUM with a few of the remaining personalities back on the air. (Not that there's all that many left, sadly!)

It didn't work for WKBW in Buffalo and might not work in this case. But DJs who take requests, know the music and the market and get to play what they want - what a concept! And unlike the all-too-short 1520 experiment, this owner doesn't seem that worried about profits. It says in the article that it will be on the web when it launches on March 23rd. I will definitely give it a listen just to hear how well they capture the spirit of the old 'MEX.

But at least it has a launch date. No one knows when 1220 will begin regular programming here. 

 

March 6, 2020 4:54 pm  #59


Re: 1220

RadioActive wrote:

As so often happens, while searching for something else, I came across an old post on this site. I'd long forgotten that I put it up, since it was from 2016 and stemmed from the time the CRTC was just about to decide if it would award a licence for an oldies station at 1220 AM in St. Catharines. 

Well, we know what happened and, while it took years, the place is finally on and testing. 

What's significant about this old thread is that, in their application to the Commission, the owners posted some samples of a few suggested playlists. And it wasn't very well regarded by many here who replied. Yet some of those same people are excited by what they've been hearing during the test phase. 

So the question remains: which one will the real 1220 be when it finally signs on for good? You can refresh your memory of that original sample playlist here. But prepare to potentially be disappointed! 

Interesting reading those old posts but remember the test right now is leaning towards older tracks although music of the type that's on the originally proposed playlist is getting played but over-all an older and much wider selection. Jody said he does not like the 1960's except for Cream and Traffic. How about the one album by Blind Faith that included Ginger Baker, Eric Clapton and Steve Winwood. Also keep in mind that many 1960's acts continued into the 1970's . CCR, Three Dog Night and just about all the biggies.

The Hollies are another one. They were the first major act to cover Springsteen with Sandy before Manfred Mann. In 1975. They even had a lead singer for a while who was not Alan Clarke or Graham Nash and had two lower charting hits with him:








 

Last edited by Fitz (March 6, 2020 4:56 pm)


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March 6, 2020 5:38 pm  #60


Re: 1220

Blind Faith, Traffic, yeah. Suddenly I feel like spinning How Hi the Li on my Rick Grech LP...

     Thread Starter