History of the Acoustic Storm

The Acoustic Storm first hit the airwaves on October 25, 1998 at 7:00am on KSLX (100.7 FM) in Phoenix.

A burst of thunder was followed by two hours of acoustic-rock, which began with “Here Comes the Sun” by the Beatles. 17 years earlier, The Acoustic Storm’s predecessor, The Storm also started broadcasting with a Beatles song, “Tomorrow Never Knows.”


The Storm was a progressive rock station broadcasting with 3,000 watts from Apache Junction, Arizona on KSTM, 107.1 FM. As Program Director, Music Director and on-air personality, Jeff Parets guided The Storm through its entire existence. Initially, Parets hosted a weekend music show, “East Valley Nights” on KSTM during the summer of 1981. The success of “East Valley Nights” led to a 24/7 format, which kicked off on August 5, 1981 at 1:07 pm as The Storm at 107.1 FM.

The Storm developed a loyal and sizable audience during its six-year run. The station made a mark playing a wide variety of artists from The Allman Brothers to Frank Zappa. The Storm broke many artists in the Phoenix market, as the first station to play R.E.M., Stevie Ray Vaughan, and Eurythmics, among others.


The Storm was also the only Phoenix-area station to regularly feature blues, reggae, and new age in addition to its quality rock. The Storm produced several original specialty music programs such as “Stormstage,” “Choice Cuts,” “The 11th Hour LP” and “The All-Request Nooner.”

Beside Jeff Parets, The Storm was on-air home to some of the Phoenix area’s finest radio personalities, including Mary McCann, Dennis McBroom, Wendy Weston, Andy Olson, Michele Robins, Frank Bennett, Johnny D, Lee Powell, Joe Cohn, Marcus Wright and Terry Ward.

The Storm was a force in Phoenix radio and continues to be a source of musical inspiration for The Acoustic Storm.

The Storm developed a loyal and sizable audience during its six-year run. The station made a mark playing a wide variety of artists from The Allman Brothers to Frank Zappa. The Storm broke many artists in the Phoenix market, as the first station to play R.E.M., Stevie Ray Vaughan, and Eurythmics, among others.

The Acoustic Storm to Continue With Audrey Parets

Hosting Beginning The Weekend of February 2-3, 2019
Program’s Original Host and Creator, Jeff Parets, Passed in November 2018

Show Recently Celebrated 20th Anniversary (October 25th)

New York, NY – January 3, 2019 – United Stations Radio Networks, Inc., (USRN) an independent leader in the creation and marketing of network radio programming, is pleased to announce that the weekend show, The Acoustic Storm, will be continuing to be produced and broadcast into its 21st year on the air despite the untimely death of its creator, Jeff Parets. Jeff’s wife, Audrey, will be taking over the hosting and producing duties that Jeff so meticulously carried on for 20 years since introducing the show locally in the Phoenix market in 1998. Audrey Parets will take over beginning with the first broadcast week of February 2nd and 3rd. This announcement comes jointly from Audrey Parets and Andy Denemark, USRN’s EVP/Programming. The continuation of the program fullfills one of Jeff’s final wishes.

As its title implies, each week The Acoustic Storm delivers acoustic and unplugged versions of well-known songs to Classic Rock and Classic Hits radio stations. The music is often planned around a specific theme, and the concept was created and hosted by Jeff Parets. The Acoustic Storm first signed onto the airwaves on Sunday morning, October 25th, 1998, as a local show on KSLX-FM in Phoenix. The program promised to deliver the best variety of acoustic-rock in concentrated blocks, and in 20 years on the air, it never wavered from that promise. Jeff Parets, who was inspired by his time as Program Director of the Phoenix-area station KSTM in the 1980’s, also known as “The Storm,” created the concept for The Acoustic Storm as a weekly program that would help refresh and support the classic-rock format. In addition to block, thematic programming, Parets also spotlighted one artist each week in the “Eye of the Storm” segment which features music, bio information and audio clips. The Acoustic Storm went into national syndication in 2003 and began a marketing partnership with United Staions in 2007. Audrey Parets is an experienced on air host and voice-over artist who has been working closely with her husband, Jeff, on the weekly broadcasts for many years. Using the on-air anme Zoe Moore, she also hosted her own nationally distributed show from 2009 until 2013, a Hot AC companion to The Acoustic Storm known as Organic Tracks.

Acoustic Storm Creator, Jeff Parets Bio

Jeff Parets grew up in the New York suburb of Tenafly, New Jersey. Naturally, the rich radio landscape of the Big Apple was a big influence. Jeff graduated from absorbing the Top 40 of WABC-AM and Cousin Brucie to delving deeper into the progressive rock of WNEW-FM with Allyson Steele and Rosko.

Jeff’s college radio experience followed a similar path. At the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, he started out at the Top 40 WUVA-AM. As a sophomore, he got the opportunity to host a radio show on the University’s free-form WTJU-FM, where he was able to play his own choice of album tracks. Jeff spent his junior year in France, studying at the Sorbonne in Paris, listening to Radio Luxembourg and hitch-hiking around Europe.

After getting his B.A. from U.Va., Jeff made his way out to Phoenix and landed his first professional radio job with KTAR-AM as the overnight sports and weather guy. Soon after, he moved next door to KBBC-FM, and began to produce a weekly new-album review hour, “LP Corner.” In 1979, Jeff became Music Director at KIOG-FM/KQXE-AM (K-104, “The Alternative”). Just one year later, new owners dropped the progressive format, and despite thousands of letters and petitions protesting the change, K-104 was no more.

In 1981, Jeff discovered the next home of progressive radio in Phoenix. At the time, KSTM was an obscure 3000-watt station licensed to Apache Junction, Arizona playing automated adult contemporary music. Jeff approached the station’s owners about trying a weekend progressive-rock program, to attract new listeners and sponsors. At midnight on June 7, 1981, Phoenix-area listeners were able to hear the song “Wing and a Prayer” by the British band Camel and progressive radio was back in Phoenix.

On August 5, 1981 The Storm at 107 was born. Jeff Parets was named Program Director, Music Director and night-time host on KSTM. The station slowly built a following, and by 1985, The Storm had become the number one station in the Phoenix market for Men 25-34. Sadly,The Storm abruptly ended on June 14, 1987 when ownership decided to change the station to a Hispanic format.

That summer, Jeff joined KEYX-FM (100.3) and hosted a free-form afternoon rock show until KGRX-FM replaced rock with new age. Ever the adventurous sort, Jeff expanded his musical knowledge into that realm, becoming Music Director and starting a weekly new age show, “Atmospheres.” But once again, the fickle world of commercial radio brought an end to the station’s live new age programming, and Jeff Parets was, once again, looking for new horizons.

In 1989, Jeff was hired as Music Director at KDKB (93.3 FM) and host of the album alternative show “Sunday Night Spectrum.” Two years later, he moved over to KJZZ (91.5 FM) to host a daily contemporary jazz show and the new age program “Night Moods.”

When K-Jazz shifted to a news-talk format in the mid-90’s, Jeff took on reporting duties and became the mid-day news anchor and Features Producer for the NPR affiliate. Jeff won eight broadcast journalism awards in just three years, including the only national first place award in KJZZ’s history for his radio feature on One Foot in the Grave, a senior citizen punk-rock group.

Jeff created the concept for The Acoustic Storm in the late 90’s, using the original Storm as a blueprint: a radio program that plays a wide variety of quality acoustic-rock. On October 25, 1998, The Acoustic Storm swept into the Phoenix area on KSLX (100.7 FM) and continues to be the finest source of acoustic-rock.

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