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Jim Quinn moving to new, all-talk WJJJ-FM

Wednesday, December 03, 2003

By Adrian McCoy, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Morning radio host Jim Quinn will be switching stations next year.

Starting Jan. 1, he'll move from classic rock WRRK-FM (96.9) to WJJJ-FM (104.7) to host the morning show on the station's soon-to-be-unveiled new talk format. The Clear Channel-owned WJJJ is currently a "Jammin' Hits" urban contemporary format.

Quinn will be the marquee talent on the new talk format, said Clear Channel regional vice president John Rohm.

Often pegged as "hot talk" in other markets, the format features sometimes controversial and irreverent hosts and is aimed at a younger audience.

For the past decade, Quinn has been hosting an often controversial, right-leaning political talk show on WRRK.

Unlike many mainstream conservative talk shows, the program mixes rock music with opinion, interviews and listener calls.

"Quinn in the Morning" co-host Rose Tennent will also move to the new show, which will be virtually the same as the one heard on WRRK.

Rohm said Quinn was the ideal candidate for the format's morning host. Quinn's show has shown steady growth in morning drive, and in the past year has become one of the top-rated morning shows among the target 25- to 54-year-old audience. It was No. 3 among this age group in the summer Arbitron ratings; in spring it was No. 2, knocking syndicated Howard Stern on WXDX-FM out of second place.

Rohm describes the format change as "a new generation of talk for Pittsburgh. We felt that if we would place Jim in a total talk environment, there's a lot more he can do."

Because the program addresses national and international issues, it's an ideal candidate for distribution to other Clear Channel stations, a plan that is in the works.

Rohm said Quinn's longtime presence in the Pittsburgh radio market and loyal following were also factors.

Quinn's history here dates back to the late '60s, when he was a Top 40 host on KQV-AM. After working at stations in Philadelphia and New York, he returned to Pittsburgh in 1977.

Deals have not been finalized with hosts for the lineup for the rest of the day, Rohm said, although he said they're looking at a mix of local and national candidates. The station expects to announce the full schedule in a week or so.

St. Jude radiothon

The ninth annual Country Cares for St. Jude Kids Radiothon will run Friday and Saturday on radio station Y108 (WDSY-FM). Among the scheduled events to drum up funds for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital is an online auction, which begins Friday at (Rosa Colucci)

Adrian McCoy can be reached .

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