Ladies and gentlemen, here's . . . Jax!
The new evening personality at WUSN FM 99.5 introduced himself Monday to listeners of the CBS Radio country music station simply as Jax.
Although his real name is Joel Lisinski — and he was known on his last radio job in Milwaukee as Joel Sheridan — Jax has been christened as his nom de air from 7 p.m. to midnight Monday through Friday.
When Lisinski's hiring was announced last month, US99.5 program director Jeff Kapugi solicited suggestions from the staff for a new name.
Some readers of this blog, including Chicago Tribune columnist Eric Zorn, were critical of the station for not going with his real name. "The nation has moved on," Zorn wrote. "Much of commercial radio is stuck in some benighted era when everyone had to have some anodyne, ethnically ambiguous name."
"Jax was his choice," Kapugi told me Tuesday.
It’s a homecoming for the Evanston native and Loyola Academy graduate who previously worked for north suburban WXLC FM 102.3. He majored in media arts/radio at Emerson College in Boston and earned a law degree from Marquette University Law School.
By all accounts his first show Monday went off without a hitch. "Finally made it to @US995!" he tweeted. "Station hasn't crashed yet... lol #newguy"