Jim McInnes photo via Facebook
"I have just found out that, after 12 years, I have 'retired' from Jazz 88.3," says longtime local DJ Jim McInnes. "Whether I like it or not...no more hosting Every Shade of Blue on Saturday nights. Janine Harty will take over. Ah, radio. Sic transit Gloria."
As revealed today in a Facebook post by McInnes, who also plays guitar with Shenanigans, he found out about his "retirement" via Facebook when Harty announced her new gig on her own timeline around 4pm on Wednesday, August 8. McInnes may have been taken by surprise, but his same post includes a ringing endorsement of his replacement. "She has the credibility. Perfect choice in my opinion."
According to Janine Harty, "The show was offered to me last week. I had no idea that my post would come as a surprise to Jim. For those of you who want to take out your hard feelings on me, I will point out that I am not in management and did not ask for the change." Every Shade of Blue airs Saturdays from 9pm until midnight PT on Jazz 88.3 FM KSDS San Diego and jazz88.org. Harty, who has been a DJ at KSDS since 1988, will take her first shift at the helm on August 11, with guest Michael Kinsman of the San Diego Blues Festival.
McInnes acknowledges that his ouster from the public radio station (licensed to San Diego City College) didn't exactly come without warning. "I was replaced as blues host because I refused to do the show live. That simple...I told them I had no desire to spend my Saturday nights doing the show in person. I had been recording it during my tenure."
As for finding out via Facebook, "I don't think it was intentional," he says. "No big whoop."
Fellow local radio vet Michael Halloran knows how McInnes feels. "Years ago, I read that my contract was terminated by reading it the Detroit News. It seems my boss at the time never felt the need to call my lawyer or me."
When McInnes was fired by Clear Channel/101.5 KGB FM in 2002, after 28 years on the radio, he had spent most of disc jockey career ("And over half my life!") at KGB, where he became known as JM in the PM on the FM.
At KGB, McInnes hosted local-centric Homegrown Nights around town, where area bands would play live for an audience and be recorded on an eight-track recorder, with the full show being aired that weekend over the radio. There was also a series of Homegrown vinyl records, the first of which was released in 1973 and sported liner notes by future famous former neighbor Cameron Crowe. McInnes and KGB promotions director at Scott Chatfield co-produced the final album in the series in 1984 (Chatfield also hosted the Homegrown radio show while McInnes took a two year break).
After McInnes was relieved of his job at KGB, he went on to become a PM drive jock at KPLN 103.7 the Planet, then an afternoon drive-time traffic reporter at Jack FM, and then a 3-to-9pm weekday news anchor for KFMB 760AM, a conservative talk radio station where he also voiced commercials and promos. He began working at KSDS around 12 years ago, first in a Saturday morning slot and then, as of 2016, hosting Every Shade of Blue.
Despite his "retirement" from Jazz 88.3, he can still be heard weekends on KGB doing a show he's hosted for just over two years now. His return to KGB's airwaves has been championed on the website for the same station that sent him packing in 2002.
As McInnes once told the Reader, "There's a saying in broadcasting; 'If you haven't been fired, you haven't worked in radio.'"
Wished on Facebook to have a "happy retirement," McInnes replied "When I retire, I will!"