|Broadcast area||Greater Montreal|
|Branding||959 Virgin Radio|
|Slogan||Montreal's #1 Hit Music Station|
|First air date||October 1, 1962|
|HAAT||297.4 meters (976 ft)|
Bell Media |
(Bell Media Radio G.P.)
|Sister stations||CFCF-DT, CHOM, CITE-FM, CJAD, CKGM, CKMF-FM|
|Website||95.9 Virgin Radio|
CJFM-FM (95.9 MHz) is a commercial English language radio station located in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Owned and operated by Bell Media, it airs a Top 40 (CHR) radio format, calling itself "96 Virgin Radio."
CJFM-FM broadcasts with an effective radiated power of 41,200 watts (Class C1) using an omnidirectional antenna located atop Mount Royal, at 297.4 metres in height above average terrain. Its studios are located at the Bell Media building at 1717 Rene-Levesque Boulevard East in Montreal.
The station first signed on the air on October 1, 1962. Owner CJAD, Ltd. initially intended to use the call sign CJAD-FM, to pair it with AM 800 CJAD. But some FM stations, attempting to stake out a separate identity from their AM sister stations, chose call signs ending in "FM," or in French "MF," as the last two letters. (In Toronto, CFRB's FM station is "CKFM" and in Montreal, CJMS's FM station eventually became "CKMF.") CJFM was one of four FM stations which came on the air in the 1960s using common transmitting facilities on the new Mount Royal tower. The other stations were 92.5 CFCF-FM, 94.3 CJMS-FM and 97.7 CKGM-FM.
"CJFM 96" or "FM 96" had several formats through the 1960s, 70s and 80s, including easy listening, album-oriented rock and adult contemporary music. By 1992, CJFM-FM changed monikers to Mix 96, and altered its format to a more Top 40-leaning hot AC format. In that era, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) did not want FM stations airing a repetitive Top 40 format, so FM stations like CJFM went as far as they could with Hot AC, featuring a broader playlist than AM Top 40 stations.
On December 4, 2008, Astral announced that CJFM, as with sister stations CKQB-FM in Ottawa and CKZZ-FM in Vancouver, would be rebranded as a Virgin Radio station, effective January 12, 2009. This is in addition to an existing Virgin Radio station, CKFM-FM in Toronto.
On January 12, at 4 PM, the station changed monikers to "Virgin Radio 96." The final song played on Mix 96 was "It's the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine)" by Great Big Sea, while the first song played on "Virgin" was Madonna's "Like a Virgin". CJFM kept the same hot AC format and most of its on-air staff from its Mix 96 days, albeit with several programming changes. By July 2016, CJFM made the transition to Top 40/CHR, putting it in line with the "Virgin Radio" branding that Bell Media has been expanding in Canada.
Previously, when CIDC-FM in Toronto moved from dance hits to mainstream top 40, CJFM-FM was the only radio station in Canada playing dance top 40 music every day. From Sunday to Thursday, the all-dance hours were midnight to 3a.m., and Fridays and Saturdays from 7p.m. to 5a.m.
"Shave To Save" was a fundraiser conceived in 2001 by the station. Every October, Virgin Radio DJs visit offices and schools, where they shave heads for a minimum $2,000 donation. The proceeds go to the Quebec Breast Cancer Foundation.
Virgin Festival is held every summer in Montreal.
The Top 96 songs of the year are played every year, on New Year's Day.
History of #1s
These songs hit #1 on Virgin Radio's Top 96 Songs:
- 2004: Hoobastank - "The Reason"
- 2005: Green Day - "Boulevard of Broken Dreams"
- 2006: Shakira - "Hips Don't Lie"
- 2007: Fergie - "Big Girls Don't Cry"
- 2008: Leona Lewis - "Bleeding Love"
- 2009: Black Eyed Peas - "I Gotta Feeling"
- 2010: Eminem feat. Rihanna - "Love the Way You Lie"
- 2011: Pitbull feat. Ne-Yo & Nayer - "Give Me Everything"
- 2012: Carly Rae Jepsen - "Call Me Maybe"
- 2013: Robin Thicke - "Blurred Lines"
- 2014: Pharrell Williams - "Happy"
- 2015: Mark Ronson feat. Bruno Mars - "Uptown Funk"
- 2016: Rihanna feat. Drake - "Work"