UWindsor Campus Radio Station Boosting Signal

Wednesday September 10th, 2014

Posted at 10:00am

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Workers install a new antenna for CJAM in this 2009 file photo

UWindsor campus radio station CJAM 99.1 FM will officially boost its maximum power by more than four times, reaching “Higher Ground”  this Friday with a special two-hour broadcast from 6pm to 7pm.

After receiving approval from the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission, CJAM 99.1 FM is increasing its power from 496 watts to 2,084 watts. As CJAM is an earnest music station, the first song at the new-and-improved power is of significance and will be local as much as it will be international.

CJAM will now have a radius of roughly 15 to 20 km, depending on the quality of the FM receiver being used and periodic interference. CJAM has strengthened its reach into Detroit, Michigan to the north and northeast, including Gross Pointe. The signal improves to Belle River, Ontario to the east. But Belle River, being about 32 km from CJAM, is outside the official coverage area and the signal there will be subject to interference. Additionally, CJAM is a much easier station to pick up on its current terrestrial real estate in Windsor and Detroit.

“The first song will be a Stevie Wonder cover by a large group of international musicians called Playing For Change,” says Station Manager Vernon Smith. “’Higher Ground’ is a bit of a double entendre in our case. It speaks to the concept we’re moving to as an organization. It’s about having more power to broadcast to more people, yes, but as much as it’s about the power, it’s also a matter of what we do with the added power.

“We’re not only broadcasting to literal higher ground in Windsor-Detroit. We’re doing it with programming that is of higher quality with higher standards. And we’re doing it with programming that speaks to the concept of making the world a better place. Even if it’s providing a simple community service, we are always moving to higher ground.”

In addition, on Friday during the special broadcast, the campus-community station based out of the University of Windsor will host a small in-house party to celebrate with its volunteers and stakeholders, while also airing a special two-hour broadcast to mark the occasion.

The broadcast will feature an interview with CJAM’s broadcast engineer, Ed Bogdanowicz, on where CJAM was and where the station is now.

Additionally, CJAM Program Director Brady Holek will feature an interview with Andrew Nelis on what the boost means for CJAM’s community of broadcasters, their listeners, and free speech in Windsor-Detroit. Music Director Murad Erzinclioglu will speak to local musician and long-time CJAMer Jim Meloche on how the power increase will affect not just Windsor musicians, but their fans, as well as CJAM’s ability to play a more influential role in terms of sending Windsor-Detroit to the world. CJAM’s News Director Zoran Kljajic will have a piece on what the new power means journalistically. And listeners will also hear from long-time CJAMer Tom Fleming on where we have been and where we are going.

CJAM offers diverse slates of programming with music of all genres and languages, and is already the best stage in Windsor-Detroit for local musicians to audition a new song. The spoken-word voices on CJAM are largely underrepresented in the mainstream media — all of which translates into more choices for more listeners.

“More people have a choice now,” says Smith. “This is a radio for the people, by the people, and those people have a bigger stage as of 6 pm Friday. This is what we mean when we say we’re reaching higher ground.”

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