|City of license||Vancouver, British Columbia|
|Broadcast area||Metro Vancouver|
|Branding||AM1320 CHMB (English)
|Frequency||1320 kHz (AM)|
|First air date||December 10, 1959|
|Format||Multicultural (12 languages)|
|Power||50,000 watts (Day & Night)|
|Callsign meaning||C H Mainstream Broadcasting|
|Former callsigns||CHQM (1959-1994)|
|Owner||Mainstream Broadcasting Corporation|
CHMB is currently owned and operated by Mainstream Broadcasting Corporation, a British Columbia media company owned and operated by Vancouver businessman James Ho. Mainstream began broadcasting in 1973 as Overseas Chinese Voice (OCV). In 1993, OCV programming was incorporated into the multicultural AM radio station of CHMB AM 1320, serving the needs of Vancouver’s multicultural community.
CHMB was originally an English-language station that was called CHQM. It signed on the air for the first time on December 10, 1959, as an easy listening station under the ownership of Vancouver Broadcast Associates Ltd. with 10 kW of power. CHQM's sister station, CHQM-FM, first aired on August 10, 1960 as a simulcast of the AM station. Originally airing 19 hours a day, CHQM and CHQM-FM went to 24-hour broadcasting on September 1, 1962.
In November 1966, CHQM increased its transmission power to 50 kW. On August 23, 1969, corporate parent Vancouver Broadcast Associates changed its name to Q Broadcasting Ltd. Jack Stark, who originally co-founded the company with Bill Bellman, became the sole owner in 1979. In September 1984, CHQM began airing the "Music of Your Life" format from 6 p.m. to midnight daily while retaining its main easy listening format for the balance of its broadcast day.
On January 1, 1990, CHQM dropped its longtime easy listening format for an adult contemporary format and began using the on-air brand Lite 1320. CHQM and CHQM-FM were purchased by CHUM Limited on October 17 that year, but due to CRTC regulations of the time (which allowed ownership of only one AM and one FM station in the same market), CHUM had to sell either CHQM or its other Vancouver AM outlet, CFUN; CHUM chose to sell CHQM.
On February 20, 1991, CHQM switched formats again to adult standards of the 1930s to the 1960s with the new station brand Q 1320. The station began airing Chinese-language programming on January 23, 1993, from 10:30 p.m. to 6 a.m. daily, then moved the start time for Chinese shows to 9 p.m. three weeks later. On December 14, 1993, the CRTC approved CHUM's sale of CHQM to Mainstream Broadcasting Corporation. On February 9, 1994 (on which the Chinese New Year fell that year), CHQM signed off for the final time at 9 p.m. with Bob Hope's "Thanks for the Memories" as the farewell song, and was replaced moments later by CHMB. Original station co-owner Jack Stark died on October 30, 2001, at age 83.
CHMB's programming is primarily Chinese (Overseas Chinese Voice) (Cantonese & Mandarin), aired from Monday to Friday, with some Brazilian, Danish, Filipino, Greek, Icelandic, Japanese, Norwegian, Swedish, Tamil, Ukrainian and Vietnamese programming on weekends.
- AM1320 CHMB
- CHQM-AM/CHMB history at Canadian Communications Foundation
- Query the REC's Canadian station database for CHMB