Launched in 2004, AM 760, the local Clear Channel branch's foray into progressive talk, has never earned especially robust ratings. But the company has stuck with the format far longer than many radio observers expected, and the station will be around for quite a while more if morning host Jay Marvin's new contract is any indication. He reveals that he's just inked a two-year deal.
According to Marvin, he recently received an offer from an outlet in another major market. However, he ultimately opted to remain in Colorado. "I like working for Kris [Olinger] and Lee [Larsen]," he says, name-checking two Clear Channel-Denver executives. "And I really like Denver." In addition, he's heartened by the decision to hire Los Angeles-based Mario Solis-Marich to host an afternoon show unique to the Denver market. "They've spent a lot of time and attention and effort on the station," he maintains.
As for the current ratings, Marvin notes that "the book hasn't come out yet" -- but he's seen some of the preliminary trend reports, and his show appears to be gaining audience, at least to a modest degree. Likewise, he adds, "I'm getting more and more calls -- and more and more calls from independents and conservatives, which I've never had before. I think there are a lot of people out there who are looking for answers."
Clear Channel is counting on the build-up to the Democratic National Convention to keep these numbers growing, and Marvin promises "full convention coverage" when the big event finally rolls into town. He's been down this road recently. As what he refers to as "the house liberal" at WLS, a talk-signal in Chicago, he worked the 2004 Democratic convention in Boston, "and I met a lot of interesting and really compelling people," he recalls. "I interviewed George McGovern, who I loved when I was younger, and talked to Barack Obama. That wasn't the first time I talked to him, but it was right after his big speech" -- the address that propelled him into the national spotlight. He expects even more such encounters this time around: "I'd be shocked if I weren't doing my show from there every morning, live."
In the meantime, Marvin is pleased to know he'll be sticking around Denver even after the Dems leave town. "I'm extremely happy," he declares, and for a personality who's had his share of battles with depression over the years, that's saying something. -- Michael Roberts
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