In November 2000 the Global Television Network received a licence for a new speciality channel to be called The Jazz Channel. CanWestGlobal Chairman Izzy Asper was known to be a jazz enthusiast himself, and was a better-than-average piano player. By the time the channel launched on September 4th 2003, it had been renamed COOL-TV – and, sadly, while Asper lived to see his new channel begin broadcasting, he died only a few weeks later. CBC jazz broadcaster Ross Porter was hired away from the Corporation to run the new venture from Global’s Winnipeg headquarters, as well as its companion radio station COOL.FM, (though he was to leave later to return to Toronto as President of JAZZ.FM radio). Cool TV offered a mix of Canadian and international jazz performances on film and tape, as well as a selected of jazz and pop music themed films, and the fact that Canada had a large pool of highly talented Canadian jazz musicians made it easy for the channel to meet its Canadian content obligations.
On July 21, 2008, CanWest announced that CoolTV was ceasing operations due to the economic downturn that had rendered the channel unprofitable, with noapparent prospect of a turnaround.
Written by Pip Wedge - August, 2011