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A brief history on Jamaican radio stations
[Jump to the Click Here for the List of stations]

Radio broadcasting began here in 1939. The first station, VP5PZ, was made possible through the use of the equipment of a local 'ham' operator named John Grinan.

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John Grinan, who, in compliance with wartime regulations, handed his equipment over to the Government. He succeeded in convincing the Government to use his equipment to operate a public broadcasting station; and the amateur equipment was adapted to the demands of broadcasting, and regular scheduled broadcasts began on November 17, 1939, using Mr. Grinads call-sign, VP5PZ.

Initially, there was one broadcast per week, lasting one hour from Mr. Grinan's home at 2 Seaview Avenue, St Andrew; but after May 1, 1940, a small staff was employed and daily broadcasts began on June 3, 1940.

Under the weight of public criticism at the high cost of running the station, decision was taken by the Government to issue a license to a private company to provide broadcasting services. A license was granted in 1949 to the Jamaica Broadcasting Company, a subsidiary of the Re-diffusion Group, London.

This license gave the company the right to operate regular broadcasting and rediffusion services, and the Jamaica Broadcasting Company took over the operations of ZQI on May 1,

1950. Commercial broadcasting began on July 9, 1950, using the callsign,"Radio Jamaica and the Re-diffusion Network", and the well-known RJR was born!

Since then RJR has undergone significant changes while making some strategic acquisitions, including television broadcasting.

Today, Jamaica boasts a host of local radio stations, most of which are now streaming online!

RJR still remains one of the best and most trusted for news, but now we have self made categories, eg. Sports Radio, Reggae Radio,Music Radio,The Family Station, The Party Station, The Energy Station, etc.

Here now is the list of what I consider the top Jamaican Radio Stations:

(not necessarily in this order)

  1. Mello FM
  2. Music 99 FM
  3. Power 106 FM
  4. NewsTalk 93
  5. KLAS FM
  6. RJR 94 FM
  7. Kool 97 FM
  8. Hitz 92 FM
  9. Hot 102 FM
  10. Irie FM
  11. Fame FM
  12. Love 101 FM
  13. Linkz 96 FM
  14. NCU FM
  15. Zip FM

Just click on each and check them out. Most of them are actually free to listen to online so enjoy!

Note: The pages will load in a new window.

References:

The Jamaica Amateur Radio Association
Radio Station World
The Jamaica Information Service

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