Final Listen: 4KQ Brisbane – RadioInsight


Potential launch songs for a new radio station are a relatively small pile. Farewell songs for a Classic Hits station are much easier. 4KQ Brisbane, Australia was still over two hours away from its final signing, before being sold to all-sports network SEN, and they were already into wall-to-wall goodbye songs. Just a few: “Don’t Forget Me (When I’m Gone)” by Glass Tiger, “Never Can Say Goodbye” by Gloria Gaynor, “It’s Over” by Boz Scaggs and “If You Leave Me, Can I come too?”

4KQ’s final hour, hosted by market veteran Murray Shoring, was musically darker. It was interspersed with vintage jingles, including a previous gold-based AC incarnation, and drops of imagery vocals Bill Weaver who announced he was “returning to my booth in the cloud”.

If you’re reading a final listen to 4KQ, chances are you already know that from our coverage of the sometimes market-leading, sometimes 10-share station that was the highest-rated AM music in the world. What I haven’t heard in the past few hours is a word on upcoming stops for morning hosts Laurel, Gary & Mark, the station’s Nick Michaels, or MD Brent James. There was also no attempt to work in concert with rival AM 4BHwhich has already moved from Soft Oldies to Classic Hits.

Due to the time difference, 4KQ’s signature two-hour special aired at 4 a.m. Eastern Time. Fortunately, an extended version is available here.

Here is the last hour of 4KQ:

  • Andre Gold, “Thank you for being a friend”
  • Crosby Stills & Nash, “Just a song before I go”
  • Paul Simon, “Sliding by Sliding”
  • Laura Edwards, “It’s over now, 4KQ” – the morning crew put on their last show last week on the last day of the June rankings. His reworking of Bob Dylan’s “It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue” was intercut with audio from the station
  • Paul McCartney & Wings, “Group on the Run”
  • Stars, “Take care of yourself”
  • little river strip, “It’s A Long Way There” – the nearly nine-minute long version of LRB’s first US hit. Hearing it now sounds a lot like “Hotel California”, but six months earlier
  • Traveling Wilburys, “End of the Line”
  • Led Zeppelin, “Stairway to Heaven”
  • Spatialship, “We built this city”
  • Kevin Johnson, “Rock and Roll (I Gave You the Best Years of My Life)” – the Aussie hit that lost a three-way US cover battle to Mac Davis (whose version was KHJ Los Angeles signature)
  • Don McLean, “American Pie” – preceded by Shoring’s final farewell
  • Beatles, “The End” – just the coda, not the whole medley, followed by cricket sounds, followed by SEN kicking off their local station with Survivor, “Tiger’s Eye” and Smash Mouth’s “All Star”.

I had wondered which rival 4BH, the new Classic Hits AM on the market, could play at Midnight. It turned out to be top news and sports, but the first song on the news was “It’s a long way to the top” of AC/DC.

UPDATE: The day after the signing, 4BH announced that 4KQ P/T “Barbecue Bob” Gallagher (also the station’s former PD) would be their new breakfast host. On Monday, Laurel, Gary & Mark announced they would be doing breakfasts at N/T 4BC. Also, on July 3 and 4, I was woken up by Siri alerts suggesting I was listening to 4KQ, proving that AI still has some limitations.


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