Potential launch songs for a new radio station are a relatively small pile. Goodbye songs for a Classic Hits station are much easier. 4KQ Brisbane, Australia was still more than two hours away from its final sign-off, before being sold to all-sports network SEN, and they were already in wall-to-wall farewell songs. Just a few: Glass Tiger’s “Don’t Forget Me (When I’m Gone),” Gloria Gaynor’s “Never Can Say Goodbye,” Boz Scaggs’ “It’s Over,” and Australian band Mental As Anything’s “If You Leave Me, Can I Come Too?”
The last hour of 4KQ, hosted by market veteran Murray Shoring, was more somber musically. It was interspersed with vintage jingles, including a previous gold-based AC incarnation, and drops from imaging voice Bill Weaver who announced that he was “going back to my booth in the cloud.”
If you’re reading a Final Listen to 4KQ, chances are that you know it already through our coverage of the sometimes market-leading, sometimes 10-share station that was the highest-rated music AM in the world. What I didn’t hear in the final hours was any word on next 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 4BH, which has already segued from Soft Oldies to Classic Hits.  
Because of the time lag, 4KQ’s two-hour sign-off special aired at 4 a.m. Eastern time. Fortunately, a scoped version is available here.

Here’s the final hour of 4KQ:

  • Andrew Gold, “Thank You for Being a Friend”
  • Crosby Stills & Nash, “Just A Song Before I Go”
  • Paul Simon, “Slip Sliding Away”
  • Laurel Edwards, “It’s All Over Now, 4KQ”—the morning team did its final show last week on the final day of June ratings. Her reworking of Bob Dylan’s “It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue” was interspersed with station audio
  • Paul McCartney & Wings, “Band on the Run”
  • Stars, “Look After Yourself”
  • Little River Band, “It’s A Long Way There”—the nearly nine-minute long version of LRB’s first American hit. Hearing it now, it sounds a lot like “Hotel California,” but six months earlier
  • Traveling Wilburys, “End of the Line”
  • Led Zeppelin, “Stairway to Heaven”
  • Starship, “We Built This City”
  • Kevin Johnson, “Rock and Roll (I Gave You the Best Years of My Life)”—the Australian hit that lost a three-way American cover battle to Mac Davis (whose version was the sign-off of KHJ Los Angeles)
  • Don McLean, “American Pie”—preceded by Shoring’s final goodbyes
  • Beatles, “The End”—only the coda, not the entire medley, followed by cricket noises, followed by SEN launching its local station with Survivor, “Eye of the Tiger” and Smash Mouth’s “All-Star.”

I had wondered what rival 4BH, the market’s new Classic Hits AM might play at Midnight. That turned out to be top-of-the-hour news and sports, but the first song out of the newscast was AC/DC’s “It’s a Long Way to the Top.”

Sean Ross, RadioInsight (2022-07-06)