Though the renovation isn't complete, WOL-AM (1450) has started operating from its new studio in the heart of the H Street NE redevelopment corridor.
"We are 85 percent there," said Cathy Hughes, owner of the black music station, which celebrated its fifth anniversary under minority ownership last month. "We've got to finish the carpeting. And do what they call the 'close-up' details, the final coat of paint and stuff."
At 1 a.m. on Oct. 30, WOL started broadcasting from 400 H St. NE, where a construction crew has been working since mid-August. Total cost for the renovation and move from the Wisconsin Avenue studio where WOL had been for the last 15 years so far has been $179,000, said Hughes. "There has been a radical change of attitude toward us in the new location . The first week there were 100 drug addicts on the corner. They are no longer standing there, but helping me with the flower beds," she said. Later this year Hughes plans to take down the paper that covers the studio windows, which are at street level, so the public can watch the deejays at work.
Other changes at WOL: Bree Taylor, morning announcer for the last year, left to join WDJY-FM (100.3) and is doing the evening shift there. Johnny Dill is now doing the morning shift at WOL. Last month WOL hired J. J., an announcer from Harrisburg, Pa., to host its four-hour afternoon segment targeted at teen audiences. From 3 to 7 p.m. the station is playing go-go, rap and dance music, and has reinstituted the old practice of a "roll call," where students can have their names read on the air. "Sometimes we have had as many as 1,000 requests a day," said Hughes. Double Exposure
Cerphe Colwell, who does the early evening shift at WWDC-FM (101.1), today joins the staff of Channel 5's "Panorama" for a weekly feature on entertainment. Included in the segment will be interviews, news and a Washington area events calendar. Lou Rawls is today's interview. Next week's is Nils Lofgren. "I find it easy to talk to the musicians because of my years in radio and because I know the music," said Colwell.
Colwell, who just celebrated his second anniversary at rocker DC-101, worked for four years at then-soft rock WAVA-FM (105.1) and more than eight years at WHFS-FM (99.1) when it was in Bethesda and at another place on the dial. He appeared with Little Feat on "Waiting for Columbus" and, as the first deejay to play Bruce Springsteen in Washington, got a gold record of "Born to Run." A Few Changes
Eric Chase, whose real name is Eric Page, joined the on-air staff of WRQX-FM (107.3) this week. Chase, who most recently spent five years at WSKZ in Chattanooga, Tenn., has taken on the 2 to 5:30 a.m. shift. His name was changed, according to a station spokeswoman, to avoid confusion with news director David Page . . . Deborah Tecle, the assistant director of promotions for WTOP-AM (1500) and WTKS-FM (102.3), will be temporarily filling in for former promotions director Susan O'Malley, who left for Channel 5 . . . Jack Mitchell, director of two radio stations in Madison, Wis., has been elected chairman of the board of National Public Radio. Ward Chamberlin, general manager of WETA-FM (90.9), becomes vice chairman and Douglas Bennet was reelected president . . . Alan Burns, the former program director at Q-107, has signed on as a consultant for WAVA . . . Karen Campbell, a reporter at WHUR-FM (96.3), has been named news anchor for the morning show, hosted by Jesse Fax. Libby Lawson, the former cohost and news anchor, left the station Nov. 1 when her contract wasn't renewed. Lawson just completed "The Night Shift," a pilot dance and interview show for cable television. The Lineup at WKYS
Melvin Lindsey joins WKYS-FM (93.9) at 7 p.m. Monday with a four-hour show called "Melvin's Melody." The other on-air shifts have been reduced one hour except for Donnie Simpson's morning program, which is 6 to 10 a.m. The schedule will be Simpson; Chuck Davis from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Candy Shannon from 1 to 4 p.m.; Jeff Leonard from 4 to 7 p.m.; and Paul Porter from midnight to 6 a.m. Howard Jones, who did a weekend shift, is now on call as a part-timer. More Royal Madness
Maureen Murray of Alexandria, a 21-year-old collections counselor (a job that used to be called a debt collector), beat out 34 semifinalists to win a Princess Diana look-alike contest sponsored by WAVA earlier this week. And, not to be left out of the excitement, the folks at WXTR-FM (104.1) have dusted off songs by the Beatles, Herman's Hermits, the Seekers, the Who and many others for a "Best of British Rock" weekend starting at 5 tonight. Datebook
WRQX is the major sponsor of the Washington Ski and Travel Show today through Sunday at the D.C. Armory. Tonight Sandy Weaver will be at the Q-107 booth; tomorrow Candy Clark, Vinny Brown and Eric Chase will be there; and Sunday, Chris Jagger.