THR.fm

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THR FM
(THR Raaga & THR Gegar)
THR FM.png
Broadcast area West Malaysia
Slogan Aahaa....Sirantha Isai (Raaga)
Permata Pantai Timur (Gegar)
Frequency THR Raaga
99.3 MHz (Klang Valley and Pahang)
101.5 MHz (Negeri Sembilan and Bera)
103.7 MHz (South Johor and Singapore)
99.7 MHz (Malacca, North Johor and Southwest Pahang)
97.9 MHz (Ipoh, Cameron Highlands and parts of Southwest Kelantan)
102.1 MHz (Taiping and North Perak)
102.4 MHz (Kedah and Perlis)
99.3 MHz (Penang)
101.9 MHz (Langkawi)

THR Gegar
88.8 MHz (Kuantan)
106.8 MHz (Kuala Terengganu)
88.1 MHz (Kota Bharu)
First air date THR Raaga (2005)
THR Gegar (2008)
Format Contemporary hit radio
Owner Astro Radio
Webcast THR Gegar eAAC+
THR Raaga eAAC+
Website www.thr.fm

THR (formerly TIME Highway Radio) is the name of Malaysia's first private commercial radio station, based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Taken over by Astro Radio in 2005 (to broadcast Tamil and Malay (East Coast) programming), the station was originally the initiative and for some time the flagship station of the TIME Engineering conglomerate, and as the name suggests the station was targeted at road/highway users with traffic reports and entertainment. It heralded a new era in the Malaysian broadcasting scene as it was the first station to provide an alternative to government-owned Radio Televisyen Malaysia radio stations and it marked the beginning of a stiff competition for the Malaysian English speaking audience.

Background[edit]

THR began its test transmission on the night of August 31, 1994 (37th National Day) on FM 99.3 MHz from the Gunung Ulu Kali transmitter site covering the state of Selangor, Kuala Lumpur, and western Pahang. It operated out of a studio rented from Radio Televisyen Malaysia at the Angkasapuri building in Kuala Lumpur. On September 9, at precisely 3:00 pm local time, symbolically in line with its '99.3' frequency THR officially came into being, operating in both Malay and English for 24 hours a day on the 80:20 formula - 80% broadcast time was in English, 20% in Malay; it was the second station in Malaysia to go round-the-clock after Klasik Nasional FM (then known as Radio 1) in 1971, and did so right out on the first day of its transmission.

THR featured some of the best deejays in the local broadcasting industry such as Gina, Andy Hakim, Suzana, Isma Halil Hamzah, Deanna Nassem Rahman, Nasa, Rezz, Albert Ng, Sheela Haran, Kassandra Kassim, Kudsia Kahar, Simon D' Cruz, most of which would later continue with other stations shaping a legacy in Malaysian English radio broadcasting.

A year later in 1995 THR expanded its broadcast coverage area to Negeri Sembilan, Melaka and Johor; its broadcast could also be heard in Singapore; at one point THR proved so popular in Singapore stations there felt threatened by the alarming rate at which listeners changed to the station. Best 104 also began to feel the heat and decided to 'counterattack' by expanding its broadcast into Kuala Lumpur; between 1995 and 1998 competition for the English speaking audience was stiff between these two stations and Radio Televisyen Malaysia's English station Traxx FM, then known as Radio 4.

In 1996 THR moved into its own studio on Level 10 of Wisma TIME (building now owned by Johor Corporation as of November 2011) in Jalan Tun Razak, right in the heart of Kuala Lumpur city center. The same year saw extension of broadcast coverage to the Northern states of Perak, Penang, Kedah and Perlis.

Stiff competition and decline[edit]

The extension of Best 104's broadcast into THR's Klang Valley listener hinterland in 1996 presented a challenge of sorts to THR, with at least one deejay 'leaping' from THR to Best 104. However, it was the start of AMP Radio Network's HITZ FM broadcast in January 1997 that really hurt the popularity of THR, as it did Best 104.

Introduction of further English stations by AMP Radio Networks eroded the English listenership of both stations (THR and Best 104), upon which advertising revenues of both were largely dependent. AMP's stations provided the Malaysian radio audience with specialised genre playlist - with each station concentrating on one of the following - top hits, adult contemporary, and easy listening. Best 104 and THR themes were based on a combination of these genres, and the introduction of specialised station for each genre swayed listenership of the two stations away. Best 104 gradually decreased the time slot for English broadcast, from 10 hours a day to two, before finally ceasing the broadcasts in 2001. Following the number of Singaporeans who listens English broadcasts everyday, the English broadcasts revived at the end of 2001 with the launch of a separate broadcast between 5:00 PM to 6:00 PM thus making it one hour.

THR briefly went from bilingual to trilingual, introducing Chinese time slots. It then dropped both the English and Chinese broadcast slots, retaining Malay slots (THR Gegar) and introducing Tamil broadcast (THR Raaga).

Current[edit]

THR was taken over by AMP Radio Networks (now Astro Radio) in 2005 and currently features Tamil and Malay programming. THR Raaga is the leading Tamil station in Malaysia, operating on the West Coast, whereas THR Gegar is the No. 1 Malay radio station in the East Coast.[1]

Shows line-up[edit]

THR Raaga (Indian)[edit]

  • 0600-1000 hours: Kalakkal Kaalai with Aanantha and Uthaya (Mon-Fri)
  • 1000-1200 hours: Mid Morning with Suresh (Mon-Fri)
  • 1200-1500 hours: Raagavil 15 with Suresh (Mon-Fri)
  • 1500-1900 hours: Hyper Maalai Ram and Revathy (Mon-Fri)
  • 1900-0000 hours: Love@Raaga/Inimai@Raaga with Maaran (Mon-Fri)
  • 0000-0200 hours: Hindi Power (daily)
  • 0200-0600 hours: THR Raaga (Daily; Only available via online and Astro DVR Channel 859)
  • 0200-0600 hours: THR Gegar (Daily; only broadcasts Malay programme (THR Gegar) from East Coast on THR Raaga frequencies)
  • 0600-1000 hours: Raagavil Raagalai with Suresh and Ahila (Saturday)
  • 2200-0000 hours: Raaga Club Mix with DJ Jolly, DJ Indran & DJ Lil G (Saturday)

THR Gegar (Malay)[edit]

  • 0600-1000 hours: Ceria Pagi with Nasa dan Suzana (Sun-Thur)
  • 1000-1500 hours: Gegar 10-3 with Rezz (Sun-Thur)
  • 1500-1900 hours: Gegar Petang with Zura dan Shah (Sun-Thur)
  • 1900-0000 hours: Gegar Malam with DJ Nazz (Sun-Thur)
  • 0000-0200 hours: Hindi Power (daily)[I]
  • 0200-0600 hours: Lagu-lagu Pilihan Tanpa Henti (Daily; also available on THR Raaga frequency)
  • 0600-1000 hours: Ceria Pagi Hujung Minggu with Ewan (Fri-Sat)
  • 1000-1500 hours: Pilihan Pantai Timur (Fri-Sat)
  • 2000-2200 hours: Pilihan Malam Minggu (Fri-Sat)

^ I The THR Gegar Hindi Power segment was discontinued in January 2010.

Frequencies[edit]

THR Raaga (Indian)[edit]

  • 101.9 FM from Gunung Raya covers Langkawi
  • 99.3 FM from Bukit Penara covers Penang
  • 102.1 FM from Bukit Larut covers Taiping, North Perak and Gerik
  • Astro Channel 859

THR Gegar (Malay)[edit]

  • Astro Channel 863
  • THR Raaga's FM frequencies above, overnight simulcast from 2:00am - 6:00am daily.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Nielsen Media Radio Audiences Measurement, Survey 2, 2008.

External links[edit]