Andrew Krystal's Mornings End at The FAN 590

radioWell, that didn't take long.

A mere five months after Andrew Krystal took over the as morning host at The FAN 590, he's out. The experiment has come to an end.

As tame as Landry and Stellick were, Krystal took the opposite approach, seemingly working very hard at being shocking. He was clearly aiming at the kids, and this 36-year old couldn't stomach most of it. He lost me, and I'm guessing he bled out. This is a pretty significant move for a guy who just signed a 3-year contract.

I asked last June if Mike Richards was coming to do mornings at The FAN 590. Apparently, Mike Richards turned down the job last September over pay issues, but is now on his way to the competition.

With Andrew Krystal out, Greg Brady is taking over on an interim basis. Who will get the gig permanently at The FAN 590? Does anyone have an educated guess?

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Is CTV Destroying Hip Hop In Canada, Specifically FLOW 93.5 FM Radio?

radioSomething major went down at FLOW 93.5 yesterday. I knew it was happening because of the commenters who had found my entry from earlier this year in which I openly asked if CTV could change FLOW 93.5's format.

Denise contacted me via Twitter last night, and I asked her to write something for this blog. Here's what Denise sent me via email.

So CTV has done it again! It's recent takeover of "The New Flow 93.5 fm" URBAN radio station in Toronto has RUTHLESSLY FIRED OVER 75% of the DEDICATED FLOW STAFF! Today 36 out of 50 ppl were told they were unemployed as of today!
Are we going to sit by & let this media monopoly happen so we only have 2 points of view in the media -- CTVGLOBEMEDIA/BCE & ROGERS??
Are we going to sit by & let the CRTC get away with systematically deconstructing the hip hop community in Canada by restricting its airwaves to hip hop music from all over the world INCLUDING the much touted "CANADIAN CONTENT"??
Enough of this stranglehold over OUR AIRWAVES - including the Internet & Satellite - it's time to step up and organize to stop this slow, stealth censorship mission!!!
That is exactly what this is!  It looks to be a stealth move by CTV, et al to continue gobbling up Canadian media outlets (to the point where local television stations are in danger) until we, as free thinking Canadians who have bragged about the transparency of our government and objectivity of our media, are reduced to being exposed to only TWO POINTS OF VIEW -- CTV's and ROGERS'!
This is so far beyond the issue of helping to destroy Canada's teetering hip hop industry, although, you must question the timing of such a move by CTV.  They chose the second day of Black History Month to summarily FIRE 36 out of 50 employees at Toronto's #1 "Urban" (meaning hip hop/rap) radio station serving a large black community demographic.
It deeply saddens me, a public relations and government relations consultant retiree, to see today's society as a bunch of sheep needing prodding by its shepherd, for in the 1960s and 1970s, people STOOD UP and DEMONSTRATED in various NON-VIOLENT ways to end such monopolies and fight against censorship. 
It is a crying shame to see today's youth (who the FORMER FLOW 93.5 fm staff serviced HAPPILY EVERY SINGLE DAY OF YEAR), sit by and let this happen.  Where is the passion in today's society that permeated the very air we breathed in the 60s and 70s??
Shame, shame, shame on CTV and shame, shame, shame on anyone who doesn't share this note and boycott THE NEW NEW FLOW 93.5 FM!!!
Citizen Against Censorship & Media Monopolies!!

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CKLN Stripped of Broadcast License by CRTC

radioWhat's happening at CKLN-FM? The Ryerson-based station had its license revoked by our friends at the CRTC. They have to cease broadcasting by February 12, 2011.

Here's an email I just received about the decision.

Hi Mike;

I've been expecting you to get up the lightning bolts and thunder at the CRTC for axing my radio station, CKLN.FM 88.1 Friday. A harsh blow, that came to light during my show, with one of the comissioners actually presenting a lengthy criticism of the decision WITHIN THE REPORT. Rumours and disparagements focus on the unresolved messes left for us at CKLN over a decade of tumult. The sincere efforts of the struggling board and volunteers committed to good radio are being ignored and misrepresented so that a conservative agenda can set precedents for strong-arm tactics in all alternative media. Could you look into this, please?

Beware, Toronto, beware, Canada, beware especially, the next generation.

I just read the decision.

In this decision, the Commission revokes, by majority vote, the broadcasting licence for CKLN-FM Toronto, held by CKLN Radio Incorporated, as of 12 February 2011. In reaching this determination, the Commission considered the serious and continuous nature of the licensee’s non-compliance with numerous regulatory obligations, the station’s inability to institute the measures necessary to ensure ongoing compliance, and the lack of confidence on the part of the Commission that such measures could or would be instituted within a reasonable amount of time. The licensee must cease broadcasting on 12 February 2011, by no later than the end of the broadcast day.

What follows is a pretty lengthy list of non-compliance examples, and all the warnings CKLN got. What's interesting is the opinion of Commissioner Louise Poirier. Here's what Poirier wrote.

Hastily revoking a campus radio station licence in Toronto, Canada’s biggest market, will not send a positive signal to the campus radio community, which consists of organizations comprised mainly of volunteers, who unstintingly contribute time and energy to give their community a voice. This decision is consistent neither with the Commission’s usual practice nor with the spirit of Circular 444. In my opinion, based on the evidence before us, the decision to revoke the licence at this time is premature, disproportionate and inequitable.

Does the CKLN board have any recourse? What happens to the frequency on February 13? What do you Ryerson students think of this decision?

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Do We Suck? The Dean Blundell Show Asks

radioI was just catching up on my email, when I saw an item from The Dean Blundell Show asking "Do We Suck?".

I thought that was a pretty timely question following this ongoing debate.

Here's the email. And no, I haven't taken the survey yet.


Discuss "Do We Suck? The Dean Blundell Show Asks" (29 comments so far)

Of CFNY and Other Stories

radioI get letters. This one is from Chris who had something to get off his chest about CFNY a.k.a. Edge 102.


It's about 3:20am on a Monday night and a case of insomnia, largely fueled by the internet, had me surfing around the net looking up information to confirm what a friend told me, that Jason Barr was no longer with 102.1.

That leads me to your site - and pages and pages of critique on the state of 102.1... and I have to say that it's really refreshing to read something that reminds me I'm not crazy to feel, nor am I the only person out there, who feels totally ripped off by the direction that station has taken.

I'm 34. I've listened to CFNY since I was 12 and first got a stereo system that could pick up a signal from where I lived in the boonies. I know I just caught the last end of the dying gasps of that station and I can't help but feel bad for the young kids growing up today who will get yet another dose of corporate, top-40s music; instead of new, exciting, unheard of artists.

I had been traveling for a few years, and I come back to the death of Martin Streek, the loss of the few funny and interesting radio personalities, rap and hip-hop on 102.1, and the virtual takeover of the station by a bunch of middle-aged frat boys who have nothing more to offer than trite, juvenile, potty-humour.

It's a sad realization indeed to come to the conclusion that a former staple doesn't even warrant being programmed into the radio dial of a new car.

Thanks for taking the time to write about this - and not just write about it but recognizing the importance of the station - or what it used to be - in terms of it's impact on Toronto, and the surrounding area. Thousands people heard something new, got a taste for local musical flavour, and got to know people who truly cared about music. It truly mattered. I can remember vividly where I was when Martin Streek introduced Burning Inside by Ministry on a late night weekend show years and years ago. That was my introduction to industrial. I'm sure hundreds of people have similar memories.

It's too bad that's apparently gone for good.

Looking for the next best station,


By the way, Chris... Jason Barr is half of the new Biggs and Barr team on HTZ 97.7. Has anyone heard the show yet? What did you think?

If anyone wants to do what Chris did and peruse my CFNY / Edge 102 ramblings, they're all waiting for you at

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Mike Richards Coming to Toronto Radio

radioThere's a lot of Toronto sports media movement this week. I've just heard Mike Richards is leaving Calgary for a spot on TSN Radio. Wait... there's a TSN Radio now? How long was I sick?

Here's a nice email about it that I just received from Adam.

As a follow-up to your post from June ( Mike Richards resigned today from CFAC-AM (Sportsnet Radio, Fan 960 – Calgary) and per The Globe is coming to Toronto to host the morning drive for CHUM-AM (TSN Radio, 1050 Toronto).

First reported at

Then confirmed at

And then finally officially confirmed at


P.S. Love the blog man, long time reader, first time writer… 

That CP24 simulcast on 1050 was a complete bust. I'm glad to see it dead.

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Damien Cox Doesn't Quit Toronto Star, Joins Rogers

newspaperI read it in both the Globe and Mail and Toronto Sun, so it had to be true, right? Apparently not. Reports that Damien Cox had quit the Toronto Star for TSN were untrue.

He's staying at the Toronto Star, and according to this Rogers press release, he has signed on with Rogers Sportsnet and Sportsnet Radio.

Sportsnet Radio is what they're calling The Fan 590 these days, and there he'll be a co-host on Prime Time Sports with Bob McCown. It sounds like he'll take the late Jim Kelley's spot in the rotation.

I hate it when facts get in the way of a good story.

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Biggs and Barr New Morning Team at 97.7 HTZ-FM

radioBecause you don't follow me on Twitter, you didn't get the heads up last night. What else of interest could have possibly been taking place last night?

Here's the tweet you missed.


That's right, Jason Barr, recently dismissed from the Dean Blundell Show on 102.1, has joined forces with Chris Biggs, recently dismissed from Virgin 999, to form the new morning show at 97.7 HTZ-FM.

They start January 17.

Discuss "Biggs and Barr New Morning Team at 97.7 HTZ-FM" (36 comments so far)

Can CTV Change FLOW 93.5's Format?

radioCHUM Radio, a division of CTVglobemedia, has acquired CFXJ-FM b.k.a. The New FLOW 93.5. They're wondering at SOWNY whether changes are imminent.

Even though I've never listened to FLOW 93.5, I'm intrigued. FLOW 93.5's license specifically states they play "urban music". Here's one of the conditions from Decision CRTC 2000-203.

The new station will offer an "Urban Music" musical format, targeted to an audience aged 25 to 44. Milestone stated that the format would be a "modern-day reflection of the rich musical traditions of Black musicians and Black-influenced music over at least the past century". The new station will add diversity to the musical genres available to Toronto audiences by exploring rhythm & blues (R&B), hip-hop and all the sub-groups of R&B, plus reggae and calypso, both of which are popular in the Toronto market but not currently heard to a great extent on any local or out-of-market commercial stations.

CTV's acquisition of FLOW 93.5 was just approved December 23rd in Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2010-964. In this decision, the CRTC reiterated that the original conditions still apply.

The Commission approves the application by CTV Limited for authority to acquire, from Milestone Radio Inc. (Milestone), the assets of the English-language commercial radio station CFXJ-FM Toronto and for a new broadcasting licence to continue the operation of the station under the same conditions as those in effect under the current licence.

It seems clear to me that FLOW 93.5, as owned by CTV, still has to offer "a modern-day reflection of the rich musical traditions of Black musicians and Black-influenced music". They can't just go country or modern rock or indie here... they have an enforced mandate, even if that means copping out with rhythmic top 40 a.k.a. lots of Usher, Rihanna and Drake.

What will CTV do with FLOW 93.5?

Discuss "Can CTV Change FLOW 93.5's Format?" (36 comments so far)

Humble and Fred's 2010 Gift of Christmas Podcast

podcastThis past Saturday, I joined Humble and Fred as they recorded their Gift of Christmas Podcast.

Just in time for Christmas, here's the podcast in four easy to digest chunks. Enjoy...

Part 1

Download the MP3

Part 2

Download the MP3

Part 3

Download the MP3

Part 4

Download the MP3

Thanks to Dan Duran, Bingo Bob and Ari Daniel for helping to make this magic happen, ACME Pictures for donating the web space and PROUD FM for donating the studio space.

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