I don't listen to CFRB 1010. I recently visited CFRB and sat in on Jim Richards' show, a guy I actually find to be quite funny, but I can't say I ever listen to the Astral station.
Today, Astral let go 12 people at CFRB. Among those let go are on air personalities, including Paul and Carol Mott, Michael Coren and Jacqui Delaney, news staffers, including newscaster Kris McCusker, and producers.
Paul and Carol Mott, a husband and wife radio team known as The Motts, are the only personalities on that list I had ever listened to. Many years ago I used to listen to them on CFRB. It seems like they've been there forever.
CFRB is in the market for new personalities. Know any willing to work in radio?
I first heard of Fearless Fred when I broke the firing from CFNY / Edge 102 of Martin Streek and Barry Taylor. I was informed by my trustworthy tipster that Fearless Fred had been hired from Edmonton and would debut sometime in August.
About ten days ago, I wrote that Fearless Fred was on his way, and confirmed that Bookie was being bumped so Fearless Fred could take over the drive home slot. I understand that he premiered yesterday.
I just learned from a commenter that Fearless Fred spoke about this site and our discussions about Streek's dismissal and the recruitment of FF. It's an interview with Fred Kennedy on a comedy blog entitled From the Back of the Room.
Fred Kennedy is not Martin Streek – nor will he try to be – a fact that’s a sore point among Toronto radio devotees who view him as the poster boy for the literal and figurative death of quality radio.
“There’s some radio site called Toronto Mike or Mike in Toronto or something. It’s a prototypical website that’s full of people who’ve either been fired or are just starting out and are already jaded. Basically no matter what happens in the radio business they’re the people who will always say it’s for the worst. Joe Blow gets fired and it’s the worst thing that has ever happened in radio EVER! Even though when he was on air the week before they trashed him without remorse. All that typical nonsense.”
Fred, this isn't a radio site, but I do write about radio when it interests me. It's full of something, but not radio rejects. Hell, I'm the only author, and I've never worked in radio. I wasn't happy that Streek got fired, I sincerely was a long-time fan, but there was no trashing of Streek the week prior.
As puzzling as your description of this site is, it's your final statement in the interview that has me most puzzled.
“Let these people run their mouths. I work at the fucking Edge,” he says, “the best rock station in the country.”
I believe what you mean by that statement is that you work at the only non-classic rock station in Canada's largest city. At one time, it was the best, but that was a long, long time ago.
In the Globe's Ballad of Martin Streek, Program Director Ross Winters claimed CFNY's limit for song repetition was now 7 times in 24 hours. I actually believe that limit to be much higher. In January, during one 12-hour random spot check, a song had already been played 6 times.
CFNY used to be known for its wide playlist and rarely playing the same track in the same day. In fact, I've got the old station promos to prove it.
Here's their "Catch Us If You Can" contest that promises $102 to anyone who catches CFNY playing the same song twice in one day.
Here's a promo for CFNY's No-Repeat Workday. Dan Duran will tell you that you could win $5000 if you catch them playing any song twice between 9 and 5.
Things are rather different at 102.1 these days. I repeat, things are rather different at 102.1 these days.
Last night, I wrote about George Stroumboulopoulos' "new, independent FM". Earlier today, I had a direct message from Strombo on Twitter. He wanted a phone number he could reach me at.
I gave him my Blackberry number and went about my afternoon, which primarily consisted of picking up my son and taking him to his soccer match. On my way home, I heard Tom Cheek ordering Joe Carter to "touch 'em all". I had a phone call.
"Mike, it's George Stroumboulopoulos."
George had called to discuss his independent FM, but we ended up talking about a great deal more. We chatted about our mutual admiration for Humble and Fred, what CFNY meant to him, his love of radio, Martin Streek, and other things I won't write about here. He came across as a genuinely sweet guy and the convo was effortless.
With regards to The Strombo Show, he told me he pulled it from the Corus lineup. He said his schedule was too hectic so he pulled the plug.
As for independent FM, he emphasized that it's just a kernel of an idea at this point, and it's not yet a podcast, satellite or terrestrial radio show. Strombo is passionate about radio and definitely wants to continue his show, but he's not yet sure about the format or where it will happen. It is important to him, however, that he's able to play what he wants.
There's clearly a spirit to George's independent FM that sounds familiar. He promised to let me know when it's more than just an idea and I promised to promote it best I can.
I dig it when personalities I know from radio and/or television actually turn out to be good people. Thanks for the call, George.
David Haydu a.k.a. Geets Romo and Pete Griffin were the Pete and Geets morning show on CFNY from 1982-1987. I must confess, I was a little young for Pete and Geets, preferring to listen to Tom Rivers and the Rivers Air Force on CFTR, but I've heard great things about Pete and Geets.
Because I now have the Spirit Reunion CD, I have a tonne of great audio to share with fans of the old CFNY. Let's start with a clip from the Pete and Geets show.
It's a great bit about the old CFNY "One of the world's two great radio stations" promo. Have a listen.
George Stroumboulopoulos is talking about "a new, independent FM". That's the change coming this fall, referenced in his Facebook message on The Strombo Show page.
Hi, Hope your summer is going well... The Strombo Show will be on vacation for the remainder of the summer, with some changes in the works for the fall. But, don't go too far because some really cool things are coming down the pipe. I'll update you as soon as I can :) Thanks, as always. George
Does anyone have a guess as to what this new, independent FM will be? Is it web streaming? A new satellite radio show? A CBC radio show? A podcast?
Back in May, when CFNY / Edge 102 showed Martin Streek and Barry Taylor the door, I reported that Fearless Fred from The Bear in Edmonton had been hired as a replacement.
The Twittersphere has exploded the past 24 hours with news Fearless Fred has aired his last show on The Bear and is now on his way to the centre of the universe.
I kid, of course. About the explosion of Fearless Fred chatter in the Twittersphere, not about him leaving his Edmonton gig for a spot at CFNY / Edge 102. Three tweets does not a trending topic make.
There's still no official announcement from CFNY / Edge 102 that Fearless Fred is on his way or where he'll appear in the lineup. My hunch is they'll move Bookie and put Fearless Fred in the afternoon drive spot. Fearless Fred is far more Dean Blundell Show-ish than Bookie and more in line with the kind of radio Program Director Ross Winters seems to crave for this Corus-owned station.
How many final nails in the coffin does one station get?
Steve Macaulay was nice enough to send me a Spirit Reunion 2003 souvenir CD. This thing is awesome. It's 46 stellar clips from CFNY 102.1 that aired between 1977 and 1989. I promise to share some very soon.
In the words of Don Berns:
The audio tracks on this CD are meant as a time capsule of the Spirit of Radio as it was heard during the period of 1977 - '89. I have attempted to give full representation of that era and the special nature of CFNY. However, reducing thousands of hours of entertaining radio to a fleeting few minutes has been a difficult task. Many of my choices of program segments are included because the air talents are talking about signposts from that era: classic radio station promotions, artists, events and of course the music that defined our lives. I only wish we could have included all the magnificent radio performances that defined the Spirit. The personalities who are not represented on this CD are omitted simply because I wasn't able to obtain tapes of their programs. Many of the shows that are represented can be heard extensively at www.spiritofradio.ca, without whose co-operation and enthusiasm this CD would not be possible.
And, in David Marsden's own words:
1977 - '89 seemed like a wonderful radio roller coaster ride. During those eleven years we put together one of the greatest radio teams in history. While those on the air are most often the names so often repeated, we all must celebrate those who worked behind the scenes. The team it took to put it all together was large and every person contributed a particular discipline to the entertainment that came out of your radio. Too numerous to mention in this small space, each name deserves a standing ovation.
Here's the cover. I will share some of this awesome audio over the coming weeks.
Following his death, Martin Streek's official site, MartinStreek.com, was chillingly frozen in time. It alluded to his current DJ gig of 25 years, a gig he lost two months before his death. It was a painful visit.
MartinStreek.com has finally been updated and is actually hosting the 3-hour tribute to Streek that aired on CFNY / Edge 102.1. That's the tribute that led to this collection of thoughts. Download the three MP3s below and throw them on the iPod.
Remember, you can still download all five hours of David Marsden's tribute to Martin Streek that aired on 94.9 The Rock.
Thanks to whomever cracked the code and finally updated MartinStreek.com.
As seen on Canadian Thinker, former Humble and Fred producer and all around good guy Dan Duran is returning to Toronto radio as a swing announcer starting later this month. Dan Duran will be heard Wednesday, Thursday and Friday evenings from seven till midnight, then again from noon till six on the weekend.
I'm happy for Dan, not just as a fan of the Humble and Fred show and not just because my son and his son are good buds, but because when I was camping that rainy weekend in May it was Dan who ensured I awoke to fresh coffee brewing. He also makes a mean bonfire. He's just generally handy to have around, and the neighbourhood has been suffering since he left at the end of June. Seriously, there's literally been a foul stench in the air all summer as a result of his absence.
We've now got Humble at EZ Rock and Dan Duran at CHFI. Is there another local chick station for Freddie?
Here's a pic of Dan and I and a few other vagrants we fed that day. Dan's the tall guy in the back. If you want to hear Humble and Fred podcasts we released into the wild, get on over to https://www.torontomike.com/humbleandfred/.
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