Survey of the Week

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This week, we head north of the “dotted line” to Vancouver’s 1130 CKWX which was that city’s first full-time top 40 station beginning in the mid-50’s.  Known as “the 50 kilowatt jukebox” ‘WX was also one of a handful of Canadian stations affiliated with the Mutual network & carried Mutual News on the 1/2 hour in addition to their own newscasts.  The station had the teen market to itself until 1960 when upstart 1410 C-FUN flipped to full time top 40.  One of the irritants to Vancouver teens about CKWX was it’s heavy schedule of play-by-play sports which often interrupted music programming much to the displeasure of it’s young listeners who could now tune out 1130 & switch to 1410 C-FUN.  With C-FUN providing serious competition, suddenly CKWX sounded pretty dated with it’s teen “Malt Shop” approach to programming & music playlist, along with it’s aging staff of DJs.  Comparatively, youthful C-FUN was rockin’ much more & had a great line-up of DJ’s more appealing to the teen demographic .  CKWX threw in the towel in 1962 & quietly & gradually morphed into a full service MOR station that included introduction of one of Canada’s first open-line phone-in talk shows.  In the 70’s 7 80’s, ‘WX was a highly popular country station. Today, CKWX “News 1130” is a  successful all-news operation that still does well in Vancouver’s ratings & has a high degree of credibility with listeners.

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Mike Cherry

Author: Mike Cherry

retired broadcaster: on-air, MD, PD, asst PD, Prod Mgr, IT, station technician/engineer, pioneer Internet webcaster, station installation/maintenance; 12 years in commercial radio, 17 years volunteer in campus/community radio in B.C., Alberta & Wash. Amateur radio operator & "DXer" specializing in AM night-time DX, short-wave DX/listening & remote SDR DXing/listening

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