Fearless Fred in the Morning on 102.1 the Edge

radioWhen the Dean Blundell Show was suspended by Corus last month, I listed five possible outcomes. Number two on that list, after keeping Dean Blundell, was handing Fearless Fred the keys without missing a beat. With Fearless Fred taking over mornings on 102.1 starting Monday, it seems we're one step closer to that reality.

Fearless Fred seems like a nice enough guy and I wish him well, even though he really, really hates me. As you'll hear below, that's on him. I never hated Fearless Fred. Not even a little bit.

Congrats again, Fred.

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I would hate you too if you kept posting a video about me.... Let it go already Mike!

January 8, 2014 @ 11:31 PM


I'd have to agree that the constant reminders that Fred hates you are getting a little ... excessive. If he really hates you that much he probably still remembers.

That being said, it's been fun following this stuff and you may have nailed it over the head in predicting the FF takeover.

January 9, 2014 @ 12:00 AM


Kicking Bookie out of the afternoon spot for Fearless Fred was the last straw for me. I took 102.1 off the preset and never looked back. I'm not really diggin' the indie88 morning show, so I may check it out and give it a chance. I don't like doucheJocks, is he one of those?

January 9, 2014 @ 3:06 AM


That 88.1 morning show is a reminder why CFNY has always been fairly successful with a morning show that does not pretend to care about which bands are playing on Queen Street or who is putting out a new album next month. That kind of talk puts people to sleep... even the ones who are interested in those topics don't care at 7:30am.

January 9, 2014 @ 6:42 AM

mourning loss

I gave up on DBS and switched to Craig Venn on 94-9 The Rock a year or so ago

January 9, 2014 @ 6:59 AM


I think he'll do a great job. Seriously. It was a shame about Bookie, but won't miss that old morning host.

Fred's funny, smart and interesting. Might have me tuning back in to the Edge. Hopefully they tone down on the constant Red Hot Chilli Peppers though . . . the playlist is like classic alt rock now instead of new music.

January 9, 2014 @ 8:25 AM


My advice to FF:
Offend the usual non-complaining groups but stay the hell away from the whiny big 4. If you do that, you won't be fired despite high ratings.

January 9, 2014 @ 8:27 AM


First, I hope its something that Fred is interested in and not placed there by management. Second, I hope that he is allowed to continue what he does in the afternoon and not 'change up' his personality/schtick to adhere to the 'new format of more music in the morning' that the press release (re: DBS cancellation) described.

Because if he has to change up his prep/show, then it's not the Fearless Fred show...its the Edge morning show and there has to be a difference/distinction.

January 9, 2014 @ 8:36 AM

Loyal Listener


That's a great point. What DBS did well for 12.5 years (screw you Billie) is talking about the funny things in the news etc. that you can talk to your coworker about. Youre stuck in traffic? You want to laugh, you want to be entertained. I always wished DBS would be all talk from 6-10 with exception of NEW music.

What I fear is that 88.1 will spawn a bunch of music elitists that, as you said, not that many care about hearing the best music on Queen West. We want good music, in addition to longer, talk segments that are entertaining and funny. Corus failed because if I heard Foo, RHCP, Pearl Jam, or goddamned Hollerado song one more time I wanted to barf.

I hope Fred doesn't turn the morning show into a big teletoon commercial, talking about superheroes and Comic Con for four hours.

PS - yes, please, Toronto Mike, please stop talking about how much Fred hates you. Its tiring, and its like youre trying to make yourself relevant by talking about something that happened a long time ago that clearly no one else remembers, except you.

January 9, 2014 @ 8:39 AM


@ Argie - Once more with feeling. DBS had been offending the big 4 for years...it was the fact that he had a jury foreman cracking jokes about the case he was involved in...that is a conflict of interest my friend.

Please stop being offended on behalf of middle aged white guys....especially when there's nothing to be offended over.

January 9, 2014 @ 9:01 AM


@ Loyal Listener et al - Do you not see the other links Mike provided at the top of the page linking to past posts that are relevant to this one. Mike does this often on his posts in general so people can see the story as it unfolds. Mike's beef with FF is a part of the story as far as it goes on this blog.

January 9, 2014 @ 9:05 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

I find it very, very difficult to show restraint when writing about Fearless Fred and not mention how much he hates me. I just enjoy that clip so very much.

And he was taking shots at me well before that interview I posted. This goes back to August 2009: http://www.torontomike.com/2009/08/fearless_fred_talks_about_toro.html

January 9, 2014 @ 9:08 AM


I'm not offended. I just wish everyone had a thicker skin. That's all.

January 9, 2014 @ 9:15 AM


Anyone who is afraid that Indie88 is going to create a group of music snobs has nothing to worry about. They play basically 90 percent the same music as edge and with the same frequency. If anything they are moving towards a more mainstream playlist with the recent additions of Pearl Jam, Smashing Pumpkins, Amy Winehouse, Adele, the most recent American Idol winner, No Doubt, Gotye. Other than that they play the same 'indie' chart songs ad nauseum plus a few 90s one-hit modern rock wonders like Cake, Flys, New Radicals. It is a heavily programmed and predictably formatted station. it is hardly a return to any kind of exciting radio.

January 9, 2014 @ 9:45 AM


JJ nails it. I can guarantee that there are about a dozen stations in the US that sound just like Indie. Every station follows an established format, even when they say they're different.

January 9, 2014 @ 9:50 AM


@ Argie - I hear you, and for the most part you're right, people do need a thicker skin. However, when it comes to conflict of interest in a criminal case....I think it's more than a case of thick skin.

January 9, 2014 @ 10:07 AM


We've debated this already - there was NO conflict. The judge threw out the argument from the defense lawyer.

I agree it was a stupid move on the sidekick's part but certainly not illegal.

January 9, 2014 @ 10:10 AM


@ Argie - Okay, if the judge threw it out, then no law was broken. However, I'd still say that crossed a line and I'd consider it a terminable offence. If I'm the guy making that decision, I'm saying to myself "okay..so we dodged a legal bullet THIS TIME"

I agree people are too sensitive...but I still don't think this is a case where that applies.

January 9, 2014 @ 10:41 AM

Mark H.

I have no hate for Fred, but I also do not find him all that funny or overly interesting. His recorded calls are kind of bland. He works fine in an afternoon slot where there's more music and less talking, but I think he'll struggle in a morning role.

How he plays is going to depend on who they put around him and how well he plays off others.

January 9, 2014 @ 10:48 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

With the new focus on music, Fred won't talk nearly as much as Dean Blundell and the gang did.

He just has to introduce tunes and chat it up for 30-45 seconds. He'll be fine at that...

Now who will get Fred's old spot on the sked?

January 9, 2014 @ 10:50 AM


@ Mike - My Money's on Adam or Melanie....unless the bring someone entirely new in.

January 9, 2014 @ 11:12 AM

Mark H

@ Mike - If that's what they're doing then I think they've miss the whole point of morning radio. I do not think I'm alone in preferring a bit of news and entertainment in with my music in that time slot.

January 9, 2014 @ 11:17 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@Mark H

That's what the GM wrote:

"With the start of the new year, Corus Radio will be taking 102.1 the Edge in a new direction in 2014. The station will return to a more music-based format showcasing the best in modern rock. As a result, The Dean Blundell Show has been cancelled, effective January 6, 2014."

January 9, 2014 @ 11:21 AM


Greg will probably take over, He's been in Fred's slot a lot lately. Now the question is who will get Greg's old spot.. Bring back Bookie!

January 9, 2014 @ 11:28 AM


In your original article you referred to his hiring a potential final nail in 102.1's coffin. I could understand why he has an issue with you.

You do have some responsibility in regards to why he is hostile with you.

January 9, 2014 @ 11:30 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


All art is subjective. All artists know this. An artist, be it a singer, writer or broadcaster, should be able to handle a little criticism.

And if you actually listen to what he said, he seemed primarily upset with people going after his family. I've never mentioned his family once.

January 9, 2014 @ 11:35 AM

Bry Dot

FF i find annoying It appears that everying is pre taped with his show. is he ever on the air live???
Melanie has the worst radio voice and unsure how she is on the air. Bring back Barry taylor he was great. Where is he now??

January 9, 2014 @ 11:39 AM


@ Bry Dot - I believe he is on 107.9 (ironically owned by corus who fired him from the edge.)

January 9, 2014 @ 11:42 AM

519 Rob

@Bry Dot
Last I saw, Barry Taylor was at Y108 in the Hammer.

I was a huge fan of his, and would love him back in a more permanent role on the radio (I think he mostly does fill-in at the Y).
However, he did burn bridges a bit at 102 on his way out (what he said did appear to be honest...but perhaps too honest). That door may not be open to him anymore.

January 9, 2014 @ 11:45 AM


I'm so glad that my initial assessment of 88.1 continues to prove me right.

January 9, 2014 @ 12:01 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

Am I the only one who actually enjoys 88.1?

January 9, 2014 @ 12:06 PM



I understand that. I met Fearless Fred think he is a great person, he wrote a good comic but I am personally not crazy about his radio "show".

But you wrote an article with no real constructive criticisms of the guy outside of a creative way of calling him terrible. I don't recall the comments in that thread but like most 102.1 posts here, I assume most people were trash talking him without ever hearing him.

Should he be able to handle criticism? Of course. But at the same your sort of an "unofficial" media source when it comes to Toronto radio. You put yourself out there and the same rules apply to you. So he threw some criticism your way over displeasure from a weak criticism from you which was followed by the usual negative 102.1 comments this site generates. Don't get me wrong I think 102.1 is on the decline but the negative comments towards him were unfounded at that time (how many people heard him once in Edmonton before commenting?).

All I am saying is if I were some celebrity that post you made would be like a 16 year old saying I sucked on twitter. Difference is your someone with a little more meat to their comment in regards to Toronto radio.

I mean no disrespect towards you, that is just the way I see this particular situation.

January 9, 2014 @ 12:06 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


Before moving to Toronto, Fearless Fred had a website (now offline) called Fearless Fred University. He offered Fearless Fred diplomas, and the humour was pretty low brow frat boy stuff and not very funny. I based my initial review of him on that.

FearlessFredUniversity.com really was awful...

And I felt Barry Taylor and him were essentially the same slacker guy persona, so why fire Barry to hire Fred from Edmonton?

As harsh as my "how many final nails in the coffin does one station get" comment was, I sincerely doubt it caused Fearless Fred to hate me.

January 9, 2014 @ 12:12 PM


Fred is an insecure guy and does not handle criticism well. He's not terribly confident on the radio hence all the pre-recorded stuff.

January 9, 2014 @ 12:35 PM



What seems to have set him off was the entire thread. You sort the master of ceremonies saying "Another nail in 102.1 Edge coffin".

I am not saying I agree or disagree. Simply it seems you feel you didn't do anything to warrant Fred to have displeasure with you. You did. If you think he is handling immaturely or not is another story.

January 9, 2014 @ 12:52 PM


Mike, you keep bringing up that Fearless Fred clip every time you get the chance.

Keep picking at that scab, and it'll never heal.

Anyway, I liked occasionally listening to Fearless Fred. Too bad I won't get to anymore. (Not a morning person.) :/

January 9, 2014 @ 12:57 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

The next time I write about Fearless Fred I promise to show greater restraint and not mention the fact he hates me.

January 9, 2014 @ 1:00 PM

Bry dot

I like Indie88 for the most part. But if i want to listen Pearl Jam and Nirvana i would Dust off my CD collection or tune into 102.1

January 9, 2014 @ 1:02 PM

Bry Dot

I forgot to mention that Brian Matt and Candice in the morning are awful. Can't stand her fake awkward laugh.

January 9, 2014 @ 1:09 PM


It could be my imagination but Indie 88.1 seems to have better music on weekends.

I listened again today, similar to the Edge with some unique tunes sneaked in. I did hear some Joel Plaskett and Jake Bugg whom I don't think the Edge has ever played.

January 9, 2014 @ 1:15 PM

Ryan G

@TO Mike.

Largely, I too like 88.1 but i'm also quite active giving my feedback via their surveys and live chat on their live streaming thingy.

*Morning show repeats too many bits (today i heard them bring up some batman guy in brampton on 3 different breaks - once will suffice)

*Reduce repetition of "hits" - eg tame impala.man i hate that band and i just discovered them on indie a few months back.

*Deeper cuts and wider assortment of classic alt.music (i've only heard new order's bizarre love triangle - so many better songs from that band)

*Must Raina use a "clever" segue on every effing break? i can feel her segue's coming now.

*As mentioned above, leave RHCP, Foo's and Pearl Jam to the Edge. Carve out your own unique sound.

*Audio levels - they vary depending on the track. Often older songs are lower. Whatever box they use to equalize the audio levels needs a fixin'.

January 9, 2014 @ 1:18 PM


Indie 88 is ok but it's nothing special...definitely not as independent as their name would suggest. I never was expecting a “the spirit of the radio” part II.

They need to do a better job at the announcer position, however..

January 9, 2014 @ 1:32 PM


@ryan G -- do you have a consistent name on the Indie chat thing? Are you usually on during the day? I actually find the chat unbearable. It's the same small clique of people who dominate and have the most inane conversations.

January 9, 2014 @ 1:56 PM

Ryan G

@JJ - no i don't have a consistent name.i chime in once in a while but i don't have f.book so it gives me a different silly moniker each time.

But yea i do see familiar names, many of whom I'm guessing are very lonely people.

These people seem to make it part of their daily routine and a nerdy Indie online community seems to be forming. Nonetheless it's an interesting experiment on Indie's part to set this up. The dj's seem to monitor it during their shifts and often will chime in with, but I got crickets the other day when I jokingly mentioned to dj Raina that there was an opening on the edge morning show she should apply for.

January 9, 2014 @ 2:24 PM


Indie 88 is basically The Edge 2.0. Repetitive programming. Nothing ground breaking at all. Same songs and artists repeated over and over.

Andrew was right.

January 9, 2014 @ 3:22 PM


@Mike -

I wasn't going to bother commenting on this thread because I don't care who does the mornings at the Edge. - I won't be listening regardless. I had to jump in when I read your comment calling broadcasters "artists". I hope you were being sarcastic.

January 9, 2014 @ 3:44 PM


If strippers can be called "dancers" broadcasters can be called "artists." OK???

January 9, 2014 @ 4:27 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


Sometimes an artist paints The Starry Night, sometimes an artist hosts a radio show.

January 9, 2014 @ 4:35 PM


@Mike -

No. The Starry Night has endured for 100 years as a work of art. Nothing Fearless Fred has done today will be remembered next month. Dean Blundell is not making art, and neither is Joanne Wilder or Andy Frost. Recycling old bits, making poo poo jokes or reading some trivia about the next track coming up is not art. Don't be silly.

January 9, 2014 @ 5:16 PM


I like 88.1 a little better than The Edge basically because I get to here a few more classic alternative tunes than I would on the edge and I find they do play some newer stuff that The Edge won't touch. Also they tend to avoid some of the more awful stuff like "3 Days Grace" and "Staind" which goes a long way for me. You can't beat Bookie and Alan Cross as personalities, so that's also a plus. However there a couple of things that disappoint me about the station.

I was hoping for a much higher level of banter from the hosts. I expected them to be more personal and less glossy, maybe even a bit more cerebral. But aside from Bookie and Alan Cross we have a bunch of DJs that rely on inane Buzzfeed type chatter. "Hey did you hear what this celebrity said yesterday... what do you think?" "Hey did you hear this crazy story about some crazy thing that happened somewhere, that's so crazy! We posted the video on Twitter!". It's mind numbing.

I'm also disappointed in the song repetition. It's one of the chief things that annoyed me about The Edge, and they're doing the same thing here. Why are stations afraid of lengthening their playlist?

That said, it's still early for them and for now, they're my go-to station.

January 9, 2014 @ 5:50 PM

Mike from Lowville

Sounds like Fearless Fred is afraid of you Mike! Me thinks he should drop that Fearless crap then.

January 9, 2014 @ 6:22 PM


88.1 isn't perfect. They have to make money. So you can't expect them to play nothing but obscure music if they wish to have more than 137 listeners.

I must say that the current McDonalds commercial touting the caloric value of the Egg McMuffin is very annoying. Enough to make you outtune.

January 9, 2014 @ 7:00 PM


Man,…. I gotta get into the radio consulting business. I think I could make some money ;)

Thank you @Ryan G for the Tame Impala hatred. I 100% agree with you.

I honestly haven't turned in to listen since the day I recorded my guest appearance on Toronto Mic'd and from what I can tell from reading comments here, nothing's changed.


January 9, 2014 @ 7:07 PM

New York

I had my heart set on edge giving the morning show to Jessie and Jean. I woulda listened to that

January 9, 2014 @ 11:06 PM


I'm sorry to hear all the negative comments re. Indie88. I fell they are a breath of fresh air in a stale market with loads of potential. I have been thinking about applying or volunteering at Indie, however I doubt they would have me.

January 10, 2014 @ 2:49 AM


@ Mike - I gotta go with Corey on this one....a DJ is not an artist. A DJ play music created by artists.

It's like calling the tour guide at an art gallery and artist cause they're presenting the art....

January 10, 2014 @ 8:28 AM


88.1 morning show sounds like slackjawed small townies trying to talk to the big city.

Alan Cross was like that, too, except he figured out an angle that fit with the format and era. Yet his bad judgement is coming through in the programming choices.

These three are a human snooze bar.

January 10, 2014 @ 8:54 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


Telling fart jokes is art. Not all art is graceful and classy.

The act of playing a song is not art, but that's not all radio talent does today. Simply telling a story between songs or making a joke is art.

Love him or not, Benny Hill was an artist.

January 10, 2014 @ 9:13 AM


I'm excited to hear Fred in the morning. I would even give a listen to Fred and Adam together in the morning. I eventually staggered over to 88.1 this week, but jumped back to 102 once I saw that Fearless was on (it was only Adam).

Looking forward to the next Fred article that doesn't include this worn out grudge. I'm surprised the audio quality hasn't deteriorated yet.

January 10, 2014 @ 9:22 AM


@Cackler -- that's my chief complaint about the Indie 'personalities' as well. They sound like small-town hicks all wide-eyed and trying to fit in in the big city. The constant 'top 5 Toronto X' and the "perfect day on Queen Street West' bits are cringe-worthy.

January 10, 2014 @ 9:39 AM

moses gaye

Rumour is that Dean will be doing a weekly radio Internet Show on his website (he may expand to more then one show a week if enough people listen) Word has it that Derek will produce as well as supply Recorded content and Occasionally co-host. The big news however is that Deans main co-host will be The one and only todd shapiro. Looks like there was never any bad blood between the two and they are raring to go

January 11, 2014 @ 3:42 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

This moses gaye doesn't have a clue what he's talking about. That's not happening.

January 11, 2014 @ 4:53 PM

bomb i belive

Mike, you keep saying you have the inside scoop but you've yet to reveal any tidbit at all. If you inside knowledge just to get hits on the website and are you ever going to give us the details? A lot of us feel that your Todd interview is a bullshit claim that either will never happen or If it does take place it'll be a fluff piece about Todd's new endeavors and little of what went down at the edge (you've already back peddled on the "tell-all" aspect of the supposed interview, now it's just an interview done after todd's been on humble and fred?????)

I don't say this to troll I just see you pop up and deny rumours that get posted here... well, How can we accept your denials unless you give us the real information? just seems like these fake posts would stop if you came clean. After all isn't that the purpose of your site, To give readers the truth about stuff?

January 11, 2014 @ 5:51 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@bomb i belive

Some things are told to me in confidence, not to be published.

If I started sharing the inside scoop it would violate the trust people like Todd have shown in me and nobody would tell me anything again. I'm not about to do that. Sorry.

Todd has told me he wants to be a guest on my podcast. This is actually happening. It will be up to him how revealing he wants to be.

January 11, 2014 @ 6:01 PM

bomb i belive

Ok fair enough Mike. Can you at least tell us is todd and Dean are still friends. I'm hearing rumours that they are still planning on working together in the future

January 11, 2014 @ 6:23 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@bomb i belive

Todd and Dean are no longer friends. They're not planning on working together in the future.

January 11, 2014 @ 6:26 PM

bomb i belive

Thanks for the info, That sucks that they aren't friends. Maybe one day someone will offer them millions to reunite. I know i'm young but i'd imagine this is what the kids in the 60's felt like when the beatles broke up. This whole Firing thing is probably bigger then the beatles breaking up or at least close to it.

January 11, 2014 @ 6:30 PM

30 years of firsts

Holy fuck is Fred awful this morning, his bits sound prerecorded there's no depth to them. Listeners want chatter in the morning we want to know what's going on in the world. Fred should stick to cartoons because his radio skills are lacking

January 13, 2014 @ 9:43 AM

Mike Derookie

So I was doing a little "investigating". Perhaps someone has some insight into this. After Dean came out with his statement on deanblundell.com, I did a Whois search...Registered to a "Casbah" bar in Collingwood. Perhaps Dean has bigger ventures in restaurant management? I know the Casbah had the Wakestock after parties etc.... who knows.

January 13, 2014 @ 11:22 AM


I like Indie88

I recognize that they are getting kind of repetitive in the morning, but they seem less repetitive in the evening and on the weekends...

I also noticed that they play a wider mix of songs (heard the Rolling Stones and The Kinks - never would have heard that on The Edge) but they can get a little repetitive with that too. I think they would do well playing the popular new stuff and mixing in more older stuff that supports their "music aficionado" image (what I mean is, I love Lola by the Kinks, but do I need to hear it twice one weekend and then have it banished from the air months?) I have no problem with them cherry-picking tracks from certain bands - I certainly don't need to hear every Rolling Stones single at some point, so if they stick to the early stuff that's fine with me... just rotate them more, I guess.

All that said, they are a business. I took their "Indie" name to mean that they were not part of an entertainment conglomerate like Corus... so I accept that the morning show is a bit repetitive as a cost of doing business sort of thing. I'm sure there are lots of stations elsewhere that play the same mix of songs and that this is nothing all that new, but why would that be bad? The DB show wasn't doing anything new either.

Also, I like the morning people. They seem to be doing better in terms of filling in their talking time with banter and, maybe my age and my gender are showing, but I really like that they are not mean. I expect that as they mature in this role that they will get better since they seem a lot more comfortable now than they did when they started.

The Edge can claim to switch to more music in the morning, but that wouldn't mean much. I remember listing to the DB show one morning while getting ready and realizing that I had not heard one song for the whole 45 minutes - just them talking and laughing at their own stupid jokes. I think that's when I stopped listening for good. So basically, they could do news, weather and traffic every 10 minutes, play only a song or two in between and still be playing way more music than the DB show played each hour.

January 13, 2014 @ 11:22 AM


Firstly, I gave up on terrestrial radio long ago. Maybe I'm a dreamer, but to me, it's always been about the music; and yeah, the pragmatist in me gets it too. Businesses (which radio is) need to make money to survive. The constant repetition of the same twenty songs gets tiresome. 'NY lost me when they became IQof7 lite. (More rock, but no zeppelin or stones). CFNY to me was dead when I heard Metallica on it for the first time. Just didn't seem right.

Many moons ago, I used to work , albeit briefly, with Allan. And had a friendship with Andy Frost, which I messed up due to my immaturity. I regret that one. But, as DJ's, these guys were artists in their own right.

I found not many radio "personalities" had any, and whatever they did have, was contrived. But Allan (and Andy) were indeed artists. Not every talking face is an artist (in the broadcast sense) but some DO transcend into that rarified air. Cross and Frost were two of them. Their stories were entertaining, educational, and to me, wound up adding some meat behind the music with their insights.

Blundell was not. Stern was. Blundell just tried to cookie cut his format, and I'm sure he wasn't the only one who did. Blundell is just a douchetool. Had he actually ben funny, maybe we talk differently. He won't be missed.

January 13, 2014 @ 11:57 AM


Hard to believe Fred is still on the air but Brian was let go from Indie88, he was fucking hilarious on that show despite his brutal co-hosts

May 9, 2016 @ 7:00 PM

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