CFRQ-FM, Q104, Halifax/Dartmouth

Stingray Group Inc.

CFRQ-FM2018104.3100,000Stingray Group Inc.
CFRQ-FM1987104.3100,000NewCap Inc
CFRQ-FM1983104.350,000C. A. Patterson


Dartmouth Broadcasting Ltd. applied for an FM station, operating on a frequency of 104.3 MHz with effective radiated power of 100,000 watts. The application was denied.


On February 10, Patterson Broadcasters Ltd. was awarded a licence for a new FM station at Halifax-Dartmouth. It would operate 24 hours a day with a progressive rock format and broadcast on a frequency of 104.3 MHz with effective radiated power of 100,000 watts. Patterson proposed to transmit from the CBC tower used by CBH-FM in Halifax. A competing application by Halder Media Ltd. was denied. Patterson Broadcasting was owned by C. A. Patterson, owner of CFDR-AM in Dartmouth. On November 23, CFRQ was granted a decrease in power from 100,000 to 50,000 watts. CFRQ was unable to utilize the authorized 100,000 watts because of antenna power handling limitations. The original plan to share the CBC FM antenna was no longer feasible as CKO-FM was implementing its previously approved authority to do so. CFRQ-FM 104.3 signed on the air on November 28.


Newfoundland Capital Corp. Ltd. agreed to purchase CFDR and CFRQ-FM from Patterson Broadcasters Ltd. Newfoundland Capital had only recently purchased the Halifax Daily News.


On June 10, the sale of CFDR and CFRQ-FM to Newfoundland Capital Corp. Ltd. by Patterson Broadcasters Ltd. was approved by the CRTC. Former owner C.A. (Arnie) Patterson would continue as a commentator and advisor for the stations. The new owner would increase the budget for news, and make other programming improvements. Also approved – changes in CFRQ’s programming which would allow reductions in news and Canadian content. Pat Kiely, former general manager of CKTB and CHTZ-FM in St. Catharines, was named manager of CFDR and CFRQ-FM.


Steve Feswick left CFRQ/CFDR to head up the Halifax office of Paul Mulvihill Ltd.


Bruce Morel became vice president of programming for Rock 104 and CFDR-AM. He had been with CHOZ-FM in St. John’s.


William I. (Bill) Patterson died January 1 at the age of 65. A native of Dartmouth, he was senior vice-president of CFDR and Q104 until his retirement in 1987. In renewing the licenses for CFRQ and CFDR, the CRTC denied increased use of hits on FM and expressed concern that programming proposals indicated an erosion of the programming commitments given in 1987 when NewCap purchased the two stations.


NewCap Broadcasting bought 40% of CJMO-FM in Moncton, NB. NewCap executive vice president Jim Macleod said the partnership would open new opportunities for staff and a program exchange between CJMO and CFRQ, both of which had album rock (AOR) formats.


On June 14, CFRQ-FM was granted a power increase – from 50,000 watts to 100,000 watts. The station would share the new CBC tower at Geizer Hill. CFRQ-FM was authorized to increase the use of hits from 40% to 49.5%. The requirement to broadcast hits in the current/recent/past ratio of 30/40/30 was amended to a ratio of 20/20/60 for all music broadcast. Jack Hutchison retired as chief engineer from Q-104 / CFDR. He had been with the company since 1961. Ken Conden returned to Halifax from CJYQ/CKIX-FM St. John’s to take over as chief engineer of Q-104 / CFDR.


CFDR and CFRQ-FM (NewCap) and CIEZ-FM (Sun Radio) entered into a local marketing agreement (joint administration and some operational crossover). The NewCap stations moved into the CIEZ facility in Bedford.


In February, NewCap, CHUM Ltd. and Sun Radio agreed to enter an LMA. It became effective in June. Under the arrangement, NewCap managed all stations in the group (CHUM’s CJCH-AM and CIOO-FM, NewCap’s CFDR-AM and CFRQ-FM and Sun’s CIEZ-FM). B.J. Wilson left Q104 to become morning host at Mix 96 (CKRA) Edmonton. Tom Bedell joined Q104 for PM drive. He had been music director at Magic 97 in Kentville. Bedell succeeded J.C. Douglas, who left to co-host ATV/ASN’s Breakfast Television.


James Patterson was filling in on the morning show while general manager Bill Bodnarchuck searched for a permanent host for that shift.


On December 17, the purchase of CIEZ-FM by CHUM (50%) and NewCap (50%) from Sun Radio Ltd. (Arthur J. Hustin, Jr.) was approved. The new ownwers took over on December 31 and the LMA between CHUM and NewCap ended. NewCap operated CIEZ on behalf of 50% owner, CHUM. Scott Bodnarchuck became head of Metro Radio Group (CJCH/CIOO-FM/CIEZ-FM/CFDR/CFRQ-FM). He had been general sales manager at CHUM’s CFST/Q94-FM in Winnipeg. Scott succeeded his brother, Bill, who moved to CHUM-AM-FM, Toronto.


On December 21, CFRQ-FM was given permission to relocate the transmitter site and decrease antenna height.


Newcap acquired CTV’s interest in CKUL-FM. Newcap now held 100% of the station.


Jessica Rankin joined the Q104 morning show November 16, succeeding Lisa Blackburn, a 15-year Q veteran. Blackburn was to begin co-hosting Lite 92.9 Halifax mornings with her husband, Jamie Paterson. Rankin had been in the broadcast business for seven years, most recently at Moose FM North Bay.


Dwayne Sawchyn was promoted to Regional Sales Manager, Newcap Maritimes (six markets with 10 stations in NS, NB and PEI), and was based in Halifax. He had been Retail Sales Supervisor at CFRQ-FM/CKUL-FM Darmouth/Halifax. Ken Geddes, the former General Manager at K-Rock (CIJK-FM) Kentville, was now General Sales Manager at the two Newcap Halifax/Dartmouth stations. BJ Wilson, who moved from Q104 Halifax 12 years ago to become Program Director/morning show host at XL 103 fm Calgary, moved back to Nova Scotia. Wilson returned to his old Q104 post as morning show co-host. Trevor Wallworth, Director of Production for Newcap Radio Halifax and a 20-year employee, was promoted to Program Director for KOOL 96.5. After five years at Newcap Halifax and Fredericton, Jason “JD” Desrosiers joined the Evanov Radio Group in Halifax. He succeeded Angela Kelly as Promotions and Marketing Director and then became Assistant Program Director at ERG’s second Halifax station, expected to launch in the fall.


C.A. “Arnie” Patterson passed away March 8 at the age of 83. He founded CFDR-AM (now CFLT-FM) in 1962 and later added CFRQ-FM. Patterson would later serve as a press secretary for Prime Minister Trudeau. Newcap Halifax general manager Ted Hyland, after 14 years with the company, retired June 17. He was promoted from his sales rep position in 2000 to general sales manager and in 2005 to GM. Succeeding him was Ron Ryan, vice president of operations for Atlantic Canada. Stephanie Wall left Newcap Halifax (CFRQ-CKUL) as promotions assistant. She moved to Lite 92.9 Halifax as promotions director. On August 31, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence for CFRQ-FM until March 31, 2012.


On March 20, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence for CFRQ-FM to August 31, 2012. Steve Lunn, director of engineering at Newcap Halifax, retired. He spent the last 12 years with the company. On August 28, the CRTC administratively renewed CFRQ-FM’s licence until December 31, 2012. On December 21, the licence was renewed to August 31, 2019.


Ken Geddes was promoted to General Manager at Q104 and Radio 965 FM. He retained his role as General Sales Manager. Ken Geddes was promoted to director of Newcap Maritime operations while continuing as General Manager of Radio 965 FM/Q104.


Harv Stewart died at the age of 60. He was a part of the Q104 morning show from 1990 to 2006. He was also host of a television call-in show called Harv’s Sportsland, broadcast in Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island.

Jeff Cogswell (Thomas Jeffery Harding Cogswell) passed away at age 43 in July. He spent most of his career in the Halifax market, with Q104 and Z103.


Mark Tanner announced he would retire December 28, after 22 years with Newcap Radio Halifax. Tanner joined the sales team in 1996 and for the past five years was retail sales manager for Q104 and Mix 96.5.

On October 23, the CRTC approved an application by Newfoundland Capital Corporation Limited, on behalf of Newcap Inc. and its licensed broadcasting subsidiaries, for authorization to effect a change in the ownership and effective control of various radio and television broadcasting undertakings in British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador, so that effective control of the undertakings would be exercised by Eric Boyko (Stingray Digital Group Inc.). Stingray took ownership of the stations just a few days later.

The story continues elsewhere…
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