On Friday, March 17, 1989 at 5:00 am, KIQQ
was replaced by Pirate Radio, KQLZ. Scott
Shannon and Shadow Steele launched the
station with none other than Guns N' Roses,
"Welcome to the Jungle". During that first
hour, they played The Rolling Stones "Start
Me Up", Roxette "She's Got The Look", Def
Leppard "Pour Some Sugar On Me", Poison,
Lita Ford "Close Your Eyes", Midnight Oil
"Beds Are Burning", Bon Jovi, The Fixx "One
Thing Leads To Another", Madonna "Respect
Yourself", Van Halen "When It's Love", and
wrapped it up with "When Children Cry".
During the 1989-1991 years, Pirate Radio
was a "Hair Band" station. The great music
of the time filled the air waves. Guns N'
Roses, Def Leppard, Skid Row, Cinderella,
The Scorpions, Motley Crue, Van Halen and
Bon Jovi were staples of the playlist.
Mixed in between were the more Top 40 and
New Wave oriented bands of the time, Tom
Petty, The Bangles, Fine Young Cannibals,
It was a widely appealing mix that worked!
We tuned in to Scott Shannon's morning show
about 7:30 am on Day 5 (March 22, 1989). He
mentioned they'd gone out and bought a
weather station and did their first weather
forecast. But to hear traffic and news, he
told listeners to go elsewhere. The music?
He played Guns N' Roses "Lies", Billy Joel,
Def Leppard, Roxette's "You Got The Look",
Aerosmith, and another GNR, "Sweet Child O'
Listening in on May, 1989, Scott was
playing music by Tom Petty, Van Halen,
Poison, George Michael, Cinderella, Roxette,
Journey, INXS, U2, and Guns N' Roses, and
still NO commercials!
Tuning in to the Pirate in May, 1990, you
would hear Fast Bobby playing L.A. Guns,
Lita Ford, AC/DC, Kiss, the Talking Heads,
Def Leppard, The Cult, Belinda Carlisle,
Autograph, Motley Crue, and best of all,
still, hardly any commercials!
We tuned in to Tawn Mastrey in the spring
of 1992. Tawn was cranking the monsters out
with tunes from Aerosmith, Judas Priest, Van
Halen, and yes, Nirvana. And check out this
list from another aircheck of Tawn that
year: Kiss "Take It Off", Iron Maiden "Be
Quick or Be Dead", Ugly Kid Joe "(I Hate)
Everything About You", Kiss "Crazy", a Pearl
Jam tune, Metallica "Where Ever I May Roam",
Motley Crue "Wild Side", Van Halen "Man On A
Mission", Soundgarden "Outshined", Kiss "I
Just Wanna", Aerosmith "Toys In The Attic",
a Megadeth tune, Queen "Tie Your Mother
Down", Slaughter "Spend My Life", Ratt "Back
For More", in 1992), AC/DC "Whole Lotta
Rosie" and Black Sabbath "Time Machine".
By late 1992, the station was migrating to
alternative, a format that was changing the
face of rock radio. The hair band era was
ending, and the heavy metal movement was
just beginning to slow down. Alternative
wasn't really called alternative yet, but
the format was coming, grunge bands, clothes
and all. The Pirate knew it, and began to
evolve with the movement.
Our friend "Trip" from Los Angeles (she
swears that's her real name!) has put
together a list of songs known to have been
played on The Pirate. She focuses on the
first three years, 1989-1992. Trip has
graciously made her play list available to
The Pirate Radio Tribute Site.
for the music played on Pirate Radio!