Calgary: Longtime Radio Co-hosts Sign Off As a Trio After Quarter Century|Buzz Bishop To Join Mornings

Louis B. Hobson Calgary Hearald

Buzz Bishop to join morning show with The Coach.

After 25 years as Calgary’s ruling radio triumvirate, Don Stevens, Joanne Johnson and Jamie (the Coach) Herbison are parting ways.

On Dec. 8 at 9 a.m. on their popular XL103 show, Don and Joanne will hang up their headphones and say goodbye, not only to their countless fans but to Coach, who will stay on as host of the new morning show. He will be joined by Buzz Bishop and Heather Prosak in a new format.

I have been providing movie reviews and industry tidbits for Don, Joanne and the Coach for 23 years, first at Lite 96 and then at XL103 and Coach promises he’ll keep a spot on the new show open for me.

It was in the buffet line at Stage West that Coach first tapped me on the shoulder and asked if I’d like to be their man at the movies. At that time, I only knew Don and Coach by their voices, but I had taught Joanne at Central Memorial High School.

I sat down recently with my three fast-friends for breakfast to chat about their careers and their time together on Calgary radio.

Don has been in the business for 55 years, or, as Joanne likes to point out, as long as she has been alive. He was 16 when he embarked on this career.

“I took a summer job at a TV station in Saskatoon. I hung out with the radio guys because they seemed like the real media gods to me,” says Don. “Instead of going back to school, I got a job at a radio station in Lloydminster and I’ve never been out of work since 1962.”

Coach began by doing sports announcing for his high school radio program in Niagara Falls.

“I’d practise at home, pretending the handle of my mom’s upright vacuum cleaner was a microphone stand. I did stints at university and college radios which got me into professional radio.”

Joanne was bitten by the radio bug while studying TV Crafts with Dave Cormack at Central Memorial.

“Dave was a real inspiration, not just for me, but for a lot of kids at Central who, on his recommendation, were accepted into SAIT’s Radio Arts Program.”

Don feels it was the dynamic that he, Joanne and Coach brought to their morning show that made it so popular for so long.

“We had completely different lives that really complemented each other. This meant we always had different things to bring to the discussion and different opinions on issue and music and artists.”

Joanne adds that each of them appealed to a different piece of their audience.

When I asked them to each pick a highlight of their 25 years together, I expected three very different memories, but I was wrong. Without hesitation, they all noted a day in 2003 when they shaved their heads for Kids Cancer.

For 24 years, Don, Joanne and Coach have headed up Golf-a-Kid to Camp which raises funds to send kids with cancer to a summer camp. Their efforts have raised $3.5 million for this charity.

“In 2003, we raised $260,000 alone for shaving our heads,” recalls Joanne. “A group of 50 women we dubbed The JoJo Sisters each put in $1,000 to kick-start that amazing campaign.

“People asked why, when I had my head shaved, I looked upward. I lost both my brother and my father to cancer which explains it all.”

Joanne says, that after 35 years in radio, it’s time to try something new. “I don’t know what that might be yet but I plan to sleep on it for a year.”

She’s off to Bali for a holiday in the immediate future.

Don plans to go to Palm Springs to golf and says he relishes the new freedom that retirement will give him.

“I won’t have to go to matinees to see movies anymore and I will actually be able to take in plays and concerts. I won’t miss getting up at 2:30 a.m.”

Not so for Coach, who will, after the big December farewell, go back to waking up Calgarians on XL103.

Joanne says she’ll be getting up at 8:55 a.m. for a while “just to check if Coach made it to the station.”


Bell Media Confirms Local Radio And TV Layoffs


Bell Media is laying off employees, including prominent on-air personalities, at radio and TV stations across Canada.

However, the company won’t say how many, who or where.

Unifor, the union representing on-air and broadcasting technicians at 17 CTV stations, estimates 50 jobs are being eliminated at Bell Media’s TV network alone in the latest round.

It says CFTO sportscasters Joe Tilley and Lance Brown, along with on-air personalities such as BNN host Michael Kane and Ottawa CTV 2 hosts Melissa Lamb and Lianne Laing, are among those affected.

The union said the cuts mean the end of local sports broadcasts as of Dec. 27 at CTV’s flagship station CFTO in Toronto, a move it claims has already been made at CTV stations in Edmonton, Calgary and Montreal.

In an email sent Monday, Bell Media spokesman Matthew Garrow confirmed a union report that a number of employees were told last week their jobs would end due to a reorganization designed in part to address declines in advertising revenue.

“Like other Canadian broadcasters, we are confronting rapid change in the media marketplace including new broadcast technologies and viewing options and fast-growing international competition,” he said.

“As the media marketplace evolves, local radio and TV stations are facing significant declines in advertising, their only source of revenue. We need to reorganize and reduce costs to manage the impact.”

Garrow said Bell is cutting its local sports presence but will continue to have sports in its local newscasts.

“With respect to sports, I can confirm that we are phasing out specific sportscasts and anchors wholly dedicated to sports as an editorial decision to transition sports coverage in response to evolving viewer behaviour,” he said.

Last January, Bell cited similar factors as it confirmed it was cutting an unspecified number of jobs at 24 of its locations across Canada.

Quality versus quantity

Howard Law, director of Unifor’s media sector, said the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission, the federal broadcasting regulator, must take partial blame for the cuts because it has been issuing five-year broadcast licence renewals without imposing strong conditions to ensure quality local news continues.

“What the CRTC did not do, despite our urging, was to set regulations that enforced ‘quality’ over quantity, meaning that networks can continue to cut corners on staffing, actual news gathering, and allowing ‘talking heads’ current affairs shows to be called ‘news,”‘ he said in an email.

Bell Media is a division of BCE Inc., Canada’s largest telecommunications company. It owns 30 local television stations and 105 licensed radio stations.

Many media companies across Canada have been cutting staff to deal with increasing competition in advertising markets.

Early this year, Rogers Media moved to trim its workforce by four per cent or 200 jobs, in a bid to improve efficiency.

Newspaper chain Postmedia laid off 90 employees in January as part of a plan to cut $80 million in costs by mid-2017.

Net News

Will Corus Radio To Rebrand All AM Talkers To Global News Radio?

Net News

Corus Partners With Amazon Alexa

Global News, along with all of Corus Entertainment’s radio stations, will be among the first news “skills” to launch with Alexa.

Alexa is a voice-activated digital assistant developed by Amazon, similar to Siri on Apple’s iOS devices.

Amazon’s line of products that offer Alexa include; the Amazon Echo, the Echo Dot, the Echo Plus, the Echo Spot, the Echo Show and the Echo Look.

To enable the Global News “skill,” simply say “Alexa, enable Global News.”

And after that, if you say “Alexa, ask Global News for the latest news,” Alexa will begin reading the latest headlines. You can also ask it to read the full story by saying “Alexa, read full story.”

Corus will also offer livestream skills from 30 FM stations. And Corus’ eight News Talk stations offer both live streams and flash briefings.

CTV and CBC will also be available via Alexa.

Alexa skills can assist with financial services, hobbies, interests and access to a number of services.

Amazon announces Alexa will be available in Canada in December

Net News

Newcap Kamloops NL Broadcasting Layoffs

By Tim Petruk Kamloops This Week


Four people were given their walking papers on Wednesday at a Kamloops radio station, bringing to six the number of NL Broadcasting staffers who have left the company or been laid off in recent weeks.

NL Broadcasting general manager Garth Buchko told KTW the moves were part of staffing changes that also left longtime sports director Rick “The Bear” Wile without a job last month, around the same time veteran music director Tim Tyler’s retirement was announced in an internal company email.

“We’re restructuring,” Buchko said. “It’s our news department and our sports department and Bear was part of that.”

Buchko would not say which departments were impacted by the four cuts made Wednesday. KTW has learned the employees let go were senior copy writer Chris Doherty, on-air personality Matt Bellamy and two employees in the traffic department. Doherty and Bellamy were both longtime NL employees.

NL Broadcasting — which owns Radio NL 610 AM, Country 103 and 97.5 The River — was purchased earlier this year by Newcap Radio, a Nova Scotia-based broadcasting company with 95 radio stations across Canada, including three in Vancouver and one each in Kelowna and Penticton. The sale was finalized in June.

In May, when the sale was announced, Buchko told KTW the message from Newcap to employees was one of stability.

“When Ian Lurie [chief operating officer with Newcap] was in last week, he said there’s no foreseeable changes. We have a strong, profitable business,” Buchko said at the time.

In May, Lurie told KTW he had been interested in purchasing NL Broadcasting in previous positions with Standard Radio and Astral Media.

“Newcap has always wanted to expand in B.C. . . . When we looked at the stability of the economy, growth of the university, development going on, migration of people from Vancouver finding opportunities — we love the prospects for the town and the entrenched position NL has,” he said.

While Lurie acknowledged challenges of traditional media in the age of social media, he said in May that radio has fared better than newspapers and television.

NL had been an independent broadcaster prior to the sale. The station was founded in 1970.

Buchko said he’s not sure whether the restructuring is complete or more cuts are coming.

“I can’t answer that today, because no business can answer that,” he said. “But we’re pleased with our business and pleased with the staff we have. Only time will tell.”

Wile, who was inducted into the Kamloops Sports Hall of Fame in April, had been with Radio NL for nearly 39 years.

“I’m staying in Kamloops,” Wile told KTW, noting the terms of his departure from NL prevent him from discussing certain details. “I’m not retiring. I’m too young to retire. I’ll pop up some place. I’ve been doing too much around Kamloops for 40 years to just shut it down.”

Also a longtime on-air NL Broadcasting employee, Tyler retired last month after more than three decades with the company. He had been the music director at 97.5 The River and Country 103.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to include information from a story in May, when the sale of NL Broadcasting to Newcap was announced.


The #Radio: Change The World A National Radio Broadcast By KIDS About Child Rights

The #Radio: Change the World
A National Radio broadcast by KIDS about Child Rights:


Ryerson’s campus radio station in collaboration with the National Campus and
Community Radio Association (NCRA/ANREC) and youth advocates will lead non
profit radio stations across Canada in broadcasting the voices of youth in honour
of the United Nations National Child Rights day.

“From a young age I was always told that life’s not fair, and that’s very true. But I
believe that our society could do better,” says Ella, one of the youth voices
featured in the project.

In a year where residential schooling, youth suicide and the spectre of child
poverty have dominated national news, this broadcast is an effort to let young
people speak directly and tell their own stories and opinions.

“We are grateful to community radio and the NCRA/ANREC…. for its commitment
to child rights and amplifying the voice of Canada’s children,” says Irwin Elman,
the Chair of the Canada Council of Child and Youth Advocates. “It is an important
step towards remembering that the rights that come very easily to some children
are not afforded to all.”

Dozens of youth voices will be featured, on topics ranging from education to
suicide to LGBTQ+ teen issues and more.

“I am really excited about a segment we have where young people interview the
Premier of the Yukon and also a feature on a youth choir that sings in Inuktitut,”
says Jacky Tuinstra Harrison, part of the coordinating team at CJRU 1280AM.

“This type of grassroots movement not only helps the local radio station reach its
commitment to community programming, but it has an untold value outside of radio
on the impact of the lives of youth today in Canada. We are thrilled to help bring to
light some of the challenges youth in Canada, and around the world, deal with
today.”” says Barry Rooke, Executive Director of the NCRA/ANREC

The broadcast also features a special piece of music written to remember all the
youth who died this past year. Composed by artist Karis, the song is to be
released officially on November 20 and performed lived for the Senate breakfast
on November 22

Karis is a Ryerson student and advocate who uses music to empower young women. Karis has previously written and produced the music for the Toronto Youth Day Anthem.

Help #Radio Change the World on this year’s National Child Day.

The participating community radio stations are CHMR-FM (NL), CJTR-FM (SK), CICV-FM (BC), CILU-FM (ON), CJAS-FM (QC), CJLO-FM (QC), CKDU-FM (NS), CFUR-FM (BC), CJSF-FM (BC), CKUW-FM (MB), CJUM-FM (MB), CKCU-FM (ON), CKVB-FM (NL), CHYZ-FM (QC)

Media contacts:
CJRU 1280AM: Jacky Tuinstra Harrison 416-904-6889
NCRA/ANREC – Barry Rooke 613-321-1440


Ontario Association Of Broadcasters Annual Conference

FYI Music by David Farrell

More than 200 professionals attending the Ontario Association of Broadcasters annual conference and awards program at the Toronto Airport Marriott were in ebullient spirits Thursday, but the big takeaway was much the same as that headlined in last year’s events.

And that is it is time broadcasters started listening to what audiences want and stop talking about audience-engagement in an era when audiences are drifting to a broader spectrum of online news, information and music services.

Audience-engagement, or at least what broadcasters like to describe as audience-engagement, is treading on thin ice.

Last year, a panel of millennials told the Connection 2016 attendees that they wanted more variety in the music programmed, are often-times bored with the chatter, uninspired by the delivery, and annoyed by the sameness of formats found on FM dial.

This year, Jeff Vidler’s Audience Insights’ consultancy and research firm assembled a panel of tech-savvy 35 to 54-year-olds, dubbed GenX-ers.

The first point broadcasters need to ponder seriously is that after a headline of hyperbolic huffing and puffing trumpeting the arrival of the Radioplayer and the iHeartRadio apps in Canada, the exercise was a bust. Only one of eight on the panel appeared to have heard of either, whereas most are currently content using the American aggregator TuneIn app that offers users the ability to listen to streaming audio from over 100,000 radio networks and radio stations worldwide, as well as providing a menu of available podcasts and audiobooks.

Local news and information are paramount to this audience block, and the kind of hamster-wheel news cycle taken to the extreme by CNN is a tune-out. Most everyone on the panel agreed that a local emphasis on news and information is welcome, and a package of ‘what’s going on in town’ is strongly desired.

The panelists have radios in their homes, but they don’t turn them on.

The Internet is the medium they use to find information, music, entertainment, and news; some use radio-specific apps, some don’t. In the car, they listen to what they want, and if they don’t like what they hear they are gone, gone, gone.

Commercials need to be tighter, shorter, and more entertaining. National spots that sound canned and cheesy are a tune-out factor. So is increasing the volume on commercial spots.

A couple of panelists complained about hearing too many commercials. Can broadcasters find new ways to capture revenue without running the same bank of ads per hour? It’s a problem, but Internet feeds and using social media offer new means of promoting products, events and commercial campaigns.

They will listen to the hits, for a period–but they want to hear more variety and, in stride with last year’s panel, would welcome blocks of music that veer from the 24/7 playlists.

One panelist mentioned a particular broadcast network and suggested the cutbacks in staff made it sound more “generic”.

Most all agreed that a big plus for radio over Spotify is that it sounds live and entertaining, and colourful on-air personalities on the radio are a big plus.

Another enjoys listening to an a.m. game-show, and most seemed in agreement that informed talk elements add variety. In fact, variety is something all seek out.

With Spotify, Tune-In and other choices, overall listening hasn’t changed for the panelists; meaning, broadcasters are going to have to be a lot more competitive and compelling in their delivery to capture a block of time that is fragmented by increased consumer choices.

On the upside, the panelists are listening to the radio, just not so much on a radio itself.

Curiously, the CBC didn’t come up in the conversations that moderator, host and panel deviser Jeff Vidler put together; this is not to say that X-ers aren’t listening so much as that the nemesis of private broadcasters wasn’t named. And perhaps for good reason given the audience in the room Thursday morning.

A thought in having heard the reaction to the panel by other attendees, and having listened to what was said myself is that broadcasters tend to hear with only one ear; that and the fact that there are too few in radio today in positions of influence and power who are either millennials or X-ers.

Wouldn’t it be fun and even exciting to listen to an hour or two weekly where these audience demos were invited to come in and help program a station? Who knows, it could be entertaining and even audience-engaging.

David Farrell has worked at the forefront of Canadian music journalism for over 30 years, founding and editing The Record in the 1980s, before launching FYI Music News..

Net News

AC BREAKING NEWS: Newcap Radio Bloodbath In Kamloops Fires Four Staffers


All Access We chatted about Talent 10 Questions with … Paul Kaye


    It’s been a while since I have been asked to remember my career. I’ve just done the math on my fingers and it’s been over 18 years for me in radio now. Up until I moved to Canada at the start of 2012, my career was in my home of England. I started at 16 on the air at the smallest station in England (pretty sure you only needed four listeners to achieve a 100 share). From there I went to produce a morning show for Wyvern FM, where we took a new show from worst to first in six months and I got to learn from some fantastic people. I was still — foolishly — chasing my on air dreams so from there I went on to work as a jock for GWR Group and Capital Radio for a number of years. Then one day, in the middle of an evening show, the spark just fizzled out and I realized that I didn’t enjoy being on this side of the mic anymore. I think I also knew that I wasn’t good enough to make it to the top as well. From there someone bravely gave me a crack at running my own radio station at 21 (that didn’t go so well – I was just not ready for management). I went on to program GWR FM, Red Dragon FM, Wyvern FM and then took on a dual role of Group Network PD and PD for BRMB.

    In 2012, I moved to Canada to work for Newcap at 90.3 AMP Radio and XL103 in Calgary. Then a stop in Vancouver at Z95-3, LG104-3 and CISL 650 alongside my corporate duties as Newcap’s National Talent Development Dir. In 2016 I joined Rogers in Toronto, where I am VP/Product & Talent Development working across our portfolio of stations nationwide to improve our brands and overall performance.

    1) How would you describe your first radio gig?

    I worked for a station called FM107 The Falcon (it doesn’t exist anymore). I started writing the news, then reading the news and quickly got moved to weekend hosting; I think they realized that I had zero credibility reading the news. It was a defining moment for me as prior to walking through the studio doors I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. I did well at school, but got easily bored so found myself in trouble constantly. No question I was an embarrassment for my parents. I remember fondly the station having a sense of camaraderie and a constantly changing environment and I knew this was the kind of environment I wanted to always be a part of. It was also the place I met one of my best friends – the start of many years of fun and memories!

    2) How much traveling are you doing in your talent development role? Are you visiting local markets?

    I do a fair amount of travelling; being on the road and working with our teams across the country is a passion of mine; it is the most fulfilling part of the job. Even in today’s hyper-connected world, there is nothing more powerful than sitting face to face with a PD or morning show and talking about ideas, sharing thoughts, de-briefing research and building battle plans. I read that on average it takes three times more time to prepare and travel to a meeting than it does to simply jump on Skype or pick up the phone. However, there are many scientific studies that support the fact that being face to face leads to more synchronicity, more understanding and more connection. I feel lucky that the company empowers us to work together in whatever way will be most effective to getting results. For me, that often means jumping on a plane and sitting in the market, working with the team in their current reality. To be effective you need to build strong relationships with others and I think that involves suitable fact to face time.

    Being face to face with our teams helps me in my role. I notice patterns that we need to work on. I get time to brainstorm and dream with PDs and talent and that often leads to ideas that work for more than one team. It allows me to learn about people and spot opportunities to connect them with other people who may be able to help them or vice versa. When I am on the road, the teams get all of my attention and I am at my most exhausted when I am on the plane coming home.

    3) Lack of talent development in radio has been a constant theme for awhile now. What are you doing to combat that?

    Let’s start by underlining the phrase talent development in that statement. There has been a lack of talent development but there isn’t a lack of talent.

    It frustrates me when I hear people say there is a lack of talent. I don’t understand that. We live in the most connected time in history, people across the world are able to become stars and build a sizeable following with just their cell phones. There are now more entertainment choices and distribution platforms than ever before and entertainment has/will always be reliant on talent to create it. Because of all the new options available to people in which to share their thoughts, ideas and creations, they aren’t turning to radio like they once did. We’re not the shiniest toy for them. That’s on us as an industry to solve. We have to find a way to cultivate an environment of creativity and show a future that will continually excite today’s content creators.

    There is also a lot of good talent on the air today but sadly many aren’t given the freedom to experiment and express themselves. By reducing ‘off Broadway’ shows, it’s only understandable that PDs are nervous to develop new talent in peak times. All of these problems are internal; they are industry problems that we have imposed upon ourselves (often for good reasons but it was our doing regardless).

    Talent development hasn’t been prioritized as much as it should have been. The problem is that coaching is a little messy and unpredictable. Training someone to work with talent, guiding, nurturing, growing, challenging them, is harder than teaching someone to schedule music (not that I am saying that’s not important). It requires understanding people and a desire to stand in the background and push someone else into the spotlight. We need to start training people on coaching techniques and then give them the chance to practice. It takes a long time for this stuff to click. The coach needs to build their confidence. Too often we promote the best on air talent or the best MD and then they start the learning at the point of having the PD title. That’s often a little too late.

    We are doing lots of things to try and combat the lack of talent development:

    1. We talk about it all the time. It’s a key part of all our plans. Developing and acquiring the best talent. We see talent as the center of our business, and believe the company with the best talent (on and off the air) will always have the competitive edge.
    2. We have an internal talent mentor program. We are giving our PDs the chance to work with different shows and formats across the company; the PDs get exposure to different talent and programmers as well as feedback on their performance. The talent gets exposed to new perspectives and more feedback. We have just started using key talent to mentor new shows across the country, too – teaming shows up with talent who have experience and can really help shape new performers is exciting.
    3. Some of our stations are working with local broadcast schools and offering on air shifts off peak to students to practice and get feedback. Imagine your first job being in a major market as a result of this program – we have someone now who went through this program and landed their first job in market #1.
    4. We believe in developing our own. We’re focused on moving our own talent through our pipeline. We are always working with our talent to have career conversations and promote them up through the company. That’s a priority for us; it talks to our belief in partnering with talent to move forward. There have been so many examples of talent moving up for us over the last year.
    5. Our corporate programmers spend a lot of time working within their formats to offer feedback, guidance and mentoring to their PDs.
    6. We ask our PDs to actively look for and work with new talent. I have a strong belief that it’s our responsibility to be working with talent both inside and outside of our company. It’s just the right thing for the industry, the better radio becomes, the better the future for us all.

    That’s just the tip of what we’re up to. Ultimately we have prioritized the development of our teams in all roles. It starts at the top; our Head of Radio sets the bar high on ensuring we do all we can to support our talent and ensure they achieve their career goals.

    The important thing to remember with talent development is that it’s messy and unpredictable. You have to experiment and take some risks, which means we’ll likely fail often. We are constantly working on building an environment that allows for that. That’s key to building a coaching culture in an organization. We probably don’t get it right all the time but we’re trying.

    4) What advice would you give to talent who would like to receive more direction, but work for a company that doesn’t have a guy like you?

    Your career is your responsibility. Don’t wait for someone else to help you. Take control, take action and go after what you’re seeking. The job title I have doesn’t mean anything. Truly it doesn’t. Titles are overrated (in fact, most people can’t remember mine and I struggle to as well if I’m being honest). How companies structure themselves, where they focus their efforts and how they behave makes the difference. If you work for a company or someone who doesn’t prioritize your development, then you need to find someone or people who will.

    I encourage talent to reach out to PDs at stations they respect and would like to work for one day and ask for advice and input. You’d be surprised at how many PDs will get back to you. It’s also a great way to cultivate a relationship that may lead to a job in the future. One talent in Canada comes to mind who regularly reaches out to a group of PDs asking for feedback and it’s been amazing to hear her name come up from multiple PDs thinking she’ll be a big star. She has also benefitted from the input and has grown hugely in the last year.

    It doesn’t have to be someone in management that helps you. It could be a peer, another talent in another market, a family member – ask everyone for their opinion and use what resonates to help you.

    If you aren’t getting feedback and would like some, we’re always happy to help. Reach out. If I can’t get back to you promptly, I will ask someone on our team to offer some advice.

    Ultimately, if you’re working with a company that doesn’t believe in your development you should find a new home that will invest in you. But there’s lots that is in your control that you can do now.

    5) Who are some of the great personalities who you’ve had the privilege to work with?

    I can’t answer this. There’s simply too many to mention. I would forget someone. I have worked with so many amazing talents. I feel incredibly fortunate. I love working with and learning from all the talent we have at Rogers. I often feel like the stupidest person in the room, and I think for now (until I’m found out) that’s a good thing.

    6) Are you wearing more “hats” than you have in the past?

    Sure. But that’s life ,right? We can complain about the changes but it won’t make any difference. Far better for us to roll up our sleeves and get on with it. I love the variety in my job although my wife Amy has to endure the odd day where my head is spinning and I come home moaning about something. She’s the one person that always makes a bad day better.

    In the U.K., I worked with some fantastic people like Duncan Campbell, Dirk Anthony, David Lloyd and many more who shaped my approach. Wearing more “hats” means prioritizing our attention and our focus. I focus on (or at least try to) the things that make a difference … and that means I may not be the speediest on email or the one attending every meeting. When there’s more going on, we have to be more disciplined on what gets the majority of our attention.

    7) What are your favorite show prep sources?

    Life! The best shows come from people who are interesting and complex. Nothing compares to living an interesting life and bringing that to your show every day. I often say the secret to the best shows is “they are doing a show they are interested in rather than a show that they hope the audience maybe interested in” – they are people with things to say and thoughts to share, and the audience finds them.

    8) What is your favorite part of the job?

    Strategy creation. I love working with our teams to dissect research and build new plans for our brands. I love the sense of collaboration and the passion that fuels our planning. There’s something magical about sitting in a room and dreaming, challenging and deciding together.

    I love monitoring our stations, too. I seem to have always been fortunate to be able to hear the big picture challenges and the small details with ease. I like hearing what’s working (and sharing that with others) and identifying areas (big and small) that we can improve.

    Working with our teams to make s@*t happen. I don’t do well with rules and processes – I know they’re important, but they can slow us down. So I love saying to our teams “screw it, just do it … send whoever my way when we get in trouble.” I’d rather help our teams get to yes. Mind you, I haven’t had my performance review yet this year so maybe this will come back to haunt me.

    9) What is the most challenging part of the job?

    Giving each project the time I want to give it. I am a thinker, and need to ensure I find time to not be always ‘doing’ but instead ‘thinking.’ I constantly have to remind myself of the importance of prioritizing thinking.

    10) What is the one truth that has held constant throughout your career?

    You control your destiny … but it helps to surround yourself with positive, supportive and smarter people!

    Source All Acess



More Relief For Your Voice In Stressful Times (Part II)

by Ann S. Utterback

SlowDownLast month’s blog post (see below) began the process of exploring what you can do to help cope with the stressful times we’re living in right now. This process is based on the mnemonic of RELIEF.

The first three letters of RELIEF are explained in last month’s post. Today we’re going to look at the remainder of the process.

The I in RELIEF stands for IDENTIFY YOUR FEELINGS. This may sound like an odd step to take, but it is often the one that is the difference between coping well or not coping. And you can’t perform well at work if you’re feelings are left unexplored. Anger, for instance, can come out at the wrong time and to the wrong person if you suppress it.

One of the best ways to identify your feelings is to write for a few minutes daily about how you feel. This can be in a journal or on your phone or computer. No one else needs to see this so you can feel free to really express yourself. You might want to use this as a starting point to talk to friends or family about your feelings. Be sure you select someone who you think is a safe person to talk to about how you’re feeling so that you get supportive feedback.

The E in RELIEF is about Eating Well. The advice I give clients for eating in times of stress is the same as eating every day. Here are the guidelines:

Eat four or five small meals a day.

Do not exceed four hours without eating.

Aim for two-thirds carbohydrates and one-third protein every time you eat. Make sure each time you eat you get at least  ten grams of protein.

To distinguish protein from carbohydrates remember this: Carbs grow out of ground and protein walks on the ground or swims in the water (the exception are nuts, seeds, and beans, which are all great sources of protein.)

Drink at least half your body weight in water or decaffeinated, non-alcoholic fluids each day.

Finally, the F in RELIEF stands for FOCUS ON FUN. This is the easy one. Don’t let yourself get caught up in working longer than you have to because you feel guilty if you don’t. During a crisis time, it’s good to step away and think of pleasant things for some of each day. Otherwise, you may not be able to think objectively. You may also open yourself up to getting sick or having an accident because you’re overtired.  Find ways to have fun every day, even just for five minutes. Take a walk in nature, go for a swim, play with your kids or pet. Find ways to remember that crisis is not all that’s in your life.

I hope these ideas will help you find RELIEF in the coming months and years.


Jingle Bells Playing Too Early? That May Be Bad For Your Health

Are you one of those people that can’t stand hearing Christmas songs months before the holiday actually arrives? Does hearing festive carols weeks before Thanksgiving only make you upset that you haven’t eaten your turkey yet?

A psychologist in Great Britain says your reactions don’t make you a Grinch because too much Christmas music is actually bad for your mental health.

Clinical psychologist Linda Blair claims the constant barrage of Christmas tunes too early in the season forces people to remember all the things they have to do before the holiday. Blair says the songs are a reminder to buy presents, cater parties, organize travel, and all the more stressful chores during Christmas. “You’re simply spending all of your energy trying not to hear what you’re hearing,” Blair tells Sky News.

The psychologist added that store workers are most at risk for being worn down by the catchy beats. She states that hearing the same songs over and over each day make workers struggle to “tune it out” and they become “unable to focus on anything else.” “Christmas music is likely to irritate people if it’s played too loudly and too early,” Blair explained to reporters.

In the U.S., the mad dash by retailers to get consumers in the holiday spirit continues to eat up more of the calendar. The seller’s push, also known as the Christmas Creep, has made some major stores decide to break out the Christmas playlist in the middle of October. According to a survey of top retailers by the Tampa Bay Times, Best Buy outpaced all other stores by starting their holiday music on Oct. 22.

Danny Turner, a programming executive with Mood Media, told the Times he advises stores avoid playing novelty or repetitive songs that tend to be more annoying than cheerful.

“The one I have in mind is The 12 Days of Christmas… Once I’m at the third day, I’m counting how many days are left. You don’t want any songs that feel like they last for 12 days.”


Bell Media Appointments: Taylor Jukes, Val Meyer Take On New Responsibilities

FYI Music B

Rob Farina, Head of Radio Content, Strategy, and iHeartRadio for Bell Media has announced the appointment of Taylor Jukes to the role of Senior Manager, National Content, iHeartRadio.

Farina and Val Meyer, VP and GM of Bell Media Toronto Radio, have also announced that Karen Steele assumes the role of Program Director, 99.9 Virgin Radio Toronto. Both appointments are effective today (Nov. 13).

“Taylor is a tremendous asset to our radio operations, and I am delighted for her to expand her scope in a new, nationally focused role,” said Farina. “Taylor is a proven leader and a tremendous supporter of talent, both on and off air. In this role, she will apply her creative content expertise across our leading radio brands, as we continue to innovate and invest in iHeartRadio Canada.”

Reporting to Farina, Jukes’ newly created role sees her overseeing the creation and production of original content, marketing communications, and project management for iHeartRadio Canada, Bell Media’s industry-leading radio network. Since joining Bell Media in 2015, Jukes has held the position of Program Director, 99.9 Virgin Radio Toronto, following a move from Newcap Vancouver.

“Karen brings substantial leadership skills and strong relationships to the Virgin Radio Toronto team,” said Meyer. “With a wealth of experience in promotions and programming, particularly in the Toronto market, Karen is a perfect fit for this newly expanded role as we continue to elevate these strong Virgin Radio brands.”

Reporting to Meyer, Steele takes on the role of Program Director, 99.9 Virgin Radio Toronto in addition to her current role as Program Director, 105.3 Virgin Radio Kitchener. Her past accomplishments in the Toronto market include the roles of Program Director of the former Mix 99.9, Promotions Director of CHFI, and Program and Promotions Director of KISSFM.


Radio Pros OAB Town Hall Meeting

What follows is an abridged version of conversations at the Marriott Toronto Airport hotel.

Moderator: Maureen Holloway, co-host of Darren & Mo on CHFI (MH). Panelists: Julie Adam, Sr. VP, Rogers Radio (JA)’ Elmer Hilderbrand, CEO, Golden West Broadcasting (EH)’ Michele Pauchuck, advertising executive (MP); David Phillips, President & COO, NLogic (DP); and Chris Sisam, VP, Corus Radio East (CS).

MH: Coming to the end of a rating period, flat is the new up. How do you sell radio to your clients?

MP: Advertising, like radio, is changing to become more customer-centric. You need to do research and understand the analytics to understand what the consumer is doing – and that’s lacking today. Especially in the digital realm.

DP: We need to have a think about existing analytics. Numeris does what it does well, but as an industry, we need to figure out what we need from digital.

EH: Canada has a dual broadcasting system; one in the major markets and everyone else. The challenge with connecting with customers in large markets is substantial. Not for small markets; they can create a portal that encompasses everything in the community. Radio in smaller markets can really become embedded.

MH: How can we better sell radio?

DP: We’re not going to increase the number of listeners. But we can improve the yield, and we can find new revenue sources.

MP: Some radio stations are creating interesting content possibilities that they aren’t taking advantage of.

MH: Radio personalities are encouraged and expected to be social media personalities. If social media is so important, why are we relying on our on-air personalities? Shouldn’t we have dedicated social media staff?

CS: It’s both. You need both. Your personalities are your strength. They need to be leveraged to engage audiences.

EH: Our community portals generate over $3M annually in revenue. This is a small market solution that probably wouldn’t work in Toronto.

MH: Millennials: What does radio have to offer millennials?

DP: What radio offers is the same thing as other content; content they enjoy with good personalities. It’s that simple. We believe too many myths about millennials.

JA: Millennials are listening (and she tells a story to prove the point).  My kid loves Ellen (DeGeneres). She asked the daughter how do you watch the show? The daughter replied, does she have a show? She watches her on YouTube. The point is: everyone loves personalities, wherever they may be.

EH: Young people are only young for a time. They aren’t leaving. They’ll grow up and return.

MP: The content has to create that instant connection across platforms.

MH: Let’s talk about cars. What about self-driving cars?

DP: We’re overstating the danger of new technology. It’s not necessarily a new change. We tend to automatically see new tech as threats. Why not view them as opportunities?

MH: Let’s talk about sexual harassment. Bullying! How do we deal with it as an industry?

JA: I don’t know a woman who hasn’t experienced harassment. Men experience it too. Tolerance for harassment and bullying in the workplace has dropped substantially. The business has changed. Rogers has tonnes of HR people to help and the resources for those suffering.

CS: Where we’ve come from twenty years ago to today is big. Tolerance is dropping to zero. Codes of conduct are in place and there are alert lines that people can call.

MP: We exited someone from the company 18 months ago for sexual harassment. He was gone in 12 hours from the complaint being brought forward. That gives safe space to people who experience harassment.

JA: Our business has tolerated high performers with low values for too long.

MH: Talk about your greatest fears. What keeps you up at night? And what excites you?

DP: I have hope that radio has a big opportunity to innovate. My fear is that radio won’t capitalize on the opportunity. Radio hasn’t changed in 30 years. But it needs to adapt.

JA: What keeps me up at night is the people. Giving them a bright future. I’m excited about the possibilities and platforms; what keeps me up at night is how to leverage all of them effectively. We know it’s about serving the community and listeners and advertisers but it’s harder than ever.

But it is a fantastic business; it’s fun.

CS: What keeps me up at night is the perceived relevance of traditional media in our industry. We need to battle daily. We’re in a golden age of audio. Measurable audio.

EH: Nothing keeps me up. After 60 years, I’ve seen it all come and go. The most important thing is to look after our audience. We do that well and we’ll be OK.

Some radio stations are downsizing in the wrong areas, such as in talent and news. We need to keep these areas strong.

DP: The pure plays (Google, Facebook, etc.) are good at driving fear in purchasers. Driving that fear is that if ad buyers don’t get on board, they will be missing the next big thing or the next big platform.

Question from the floor: Thoughts on enabling the FM chips in smart phones?

CS: The OAB has been speaking with various cell phone manufacturers. Natural disasters have interestingly given a public policy reason to potentially turn them on, but there’s still pushback in the US and Canada.


No Fun Radio Vancouver A New Voice

Despite its small size, a 100-square-foot grilled cheese shop-turned-radio station in Gastown is making plenty of space for Vancouverites to be heard in town and abroad. The online-only No Fun Radio (NFR), which started streaming out of the old Hi-Five sandwich window at the end of September, is already a booming hub, and airs programs from folks involved with the experimental Chapel Sound arts collective and longtime Cobalt club night Glory Days. The talent runs deeper than reliable faves, though, with new voices getting equal playtime among the veterans.

Our Pleasure host Paisley Nahanee tells Westender that she only started spinning records for the public a few months ago, first learning on-the-spot at one of the Fox Cabaret’s bring-your-own-vinyl Turn Tuesdays events. But the rush she got after seeing people dance to her post-punk collection led the music-lover to book more gigs around town under the name Paisley Eva. Still, the DJ didn’t think hosting her own program was an option when she first learned about the community-geared No Fun Radio.

Source Westender Gregory Adams


English F-Word Deemed Acceptable For French Radio

Canada’s broadcast standards regulator has ruled that a swear word that’s off-limits on English-language broadcasts is acceptable in French programming.

The Canadian Broadcast Standards Council ruled that a Quebec music radio station did not violate any rules by airing two clips of celebrities using the F-word as part of public speeches.

A listener of CKOI-FM filed a complaint after hearing the profane clips from Madonna and Green Day lead singer Billie Joe Armstrong played two months apart on afternoon programming.

The council ruled that CKOI-FM did not violate broadcast standards by playing the uncensored clips.

It says the F-word does not have the same “vulgar connotation” in French that it does in English and notes that the term was not used as an insult directed at a specific target.

The latest ruling is consistent with a similar decision handed down last year regarding a French-language television broadcast.

CKOI referred to that past decision that excused television network MusiquePlus’ use of the F-word in a broadcast, emphasizing that the word is construed differently in Canada’s two official languages.

The broadcast standards regulator referenced that decision again in its latest ruling, noting that language is evolutionary and reflects current society.

“The panel prefers to impress upon broadcasters the need for appropriate viewer advisories and correct classification of programs rather than to target the occasional usage of vernacular language,” the latest decision said.

Chantal Bouchard, a sociolinguist with McGill University, said the English obscenity is fairly commonly used by French speakers in informal conversation.


Newcap Radio Picking Up Two New Glasgow Stations

The Dartmouth-based parent company behind national broadcaster Newcap Radio is picking up two FM radio stations in New Glasgow in a deal that still has to be okayed by Canada’s regulatory watchdog for the industry.

Newfoundland Capital Corporation, which owns the 72-station Newcap Radio chain, did not divulge the price it is to pay under that deal for the Hector Broadcasting’s CKEC and CKEZ in Pictou County.

Hector Broadcasting president Mike Freeman declined a request for comment about the deal or the stations’ profitability, noting the deal needs the approval from the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC).

“I won’t be discussing it until we have a decision from the CRTC,” said Freeman. “It’s still pending.”

Newfoundland Capital Corporation chief financial officer Scott Weatherby said in an interview Friday the federal regulator is expected to make its decision on the deal within the next four months.

The sale of the two radio stations comes only a bit more than five years after Hector Broadcasting’s launch of its CKEZ rock-format station in May 2012.

In its application to the CRTC for the go-ahead for that second radio station, Hector Broadcasting claimed in 2011 that 70 per cent of New Glasgow residents listened to CKEC at least once a week.

In its third-quarter financial results, Newfoundland Capital Corporation noted it expects to add $3.3 million to its long-term debt and other liabilities because of this deal.

On Friday, Weatherby said that figure includes the purchase price, the deal’s transaction costs and money the company has to pay for Canadian content development under the CRTC’s rules. The CRTC sets Canadian content development costs at six per cent of the purchase price of new radio stations.

Scooping up the two radio stations in New Glasgow fills a gap in Newcap’s coverage in Nova Scotia. The media chain already owns five radio stations in the province, Q104 – The Home of Rock n Roll and Mix 96.5 FM in Halifax, The Giant Cape Breton 101.9 and New Country 103.5 in Sydney, as well as K-Rock 89.3 in New Minas.

“It’s another area of the province that we don’t have coverage in,” said Weatherby.

Buoyed by an uptick in the ratings of its stations in Ontario and its purchase of three radio stations and four repeating signals in Kamloops, British Columbia in June, Newfoundland Capital Corporation enjoyed a four per cent bump up in its third-quarter revenues which rose to $43.1 million. Its adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, usually considered to be an indicator of a company’s operational health, also rose by two per cent in that most recent quarter.

Profits for the national broadcaster rose six per cent, to $8.2 million, in the third quarter due to higher revenues and tighter controls on costs.

“The company had a successful third quarter, which made up for the challenging start to 2017 and positioned us for another successful year,” said Rob Steele, the company’s president and chief executive officer, in a statement.

Newfoundland Capital Corporation stock, which trades on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the NCC.A and NCC.B symbols, has a market capitalization of $330.6 million and nudged up slightly in trading Friday to $12.50, the upper limit of its 52-week trading range.

Ask The Coach

6 Truths About Improving Performance

Many of us have an inbuilt desire – a burning even – to perform at our very best. We want to achieve all that can be achieved. We want to leave our mark. While our intentions are honourable, our actions don’t always support our desire. Achieving peak performance takes discipline and commitment and for some of us it is just to easy to give up or worse fail to really start. As we have studied top performing individuals and teams we have come to spot the common themes that seem to be shared by these elite performers. Here are those 6 universal truths about improving your performance:

1. Success comes from preparation. Performance takes effort. You have to build a plan and then stick to it. Decide what it is you want to do, and then how you’re going to do it. Failing to prepare will guarantee you don’t achieve your peak performance. Preparation is essential. Top performers are diligent about preparation.

2. Pain is your friend. It ain’t gonna be easy! If peak performance were easy to attain then everyone would be performing at his or her best. It takes a brave person to push him or herself out of their comfort zone but your best work lives on the edge or beyond that zone. The pain of making mistakes, failing, learning and experimenting is pain you need to embrace in order to push forward. Top performers understand that without pain there is no gain.

3. Intense concentration. Focus is a key quality of productive people. They have an ability to direct their efforts and energy toward a single task. Distractions are your biggest enemy to achieving the performance you want. When you have decided on what you want to achieve you have to zero in on it. Cut everything else. Top performers are singled minded in their approach to success.

4. Set milestones. Most people have no problem deciding on a big over arching goal. However, beyond articulating what they want they don’t break down the journey they will need to take. Inevitably they become overwhelmed by the challenge ahead of them and subsequently fail to achieve what they seek. You need to break the journey down into milestones. Being able to track your progress forward and achieve wins along the way to your goal provides the energy and motivation you need to keep going. Top performers celebrate the small wins as they pursue their holy grail.

5. Eradicate excuses. Things always go wrong. Most people make excuses when the plan comes off the rails. Instead top performers take responsibility for the setbacks. They own the mistake and see it as a valuable learning opportunity. You need to eradicate the excuses and figure out how to get back on track. Top performers take ownership and hold themselves accountable for all that happens; the good and the bad.

6. Be Passionate. In performance passion presents itself as the level of enthusiasm and interest in something (a task, a project, work, life etc). To perform at your best you need to be insanely passionate about whatever it is you are doing. This passion becomes the fuel that keeps you engaged in your mission. Top performers have an infectious love for what they are doing (it’s why they do it!)

There are of course many more truths about how to enhance your performance but you will almost always see each of these 6 truths in those individuals and teams preforming at their peak. If you come up short on any one of these 6 areas the likelihood of your achieving peak performance is slim. The encouraging news – for all of us – is that we have it in our control to choose to perform better. If we make the commitment to ourselves then there’s nothing we can’t eventually achieve.

Visit The Talent Lab and sign up for more insights and tips on improving performance and on talent development. Drop by the lab now

Paul Kaye is VP, Product and Talent Development for Rogers in Canada.  Paul spends his days working with stations and talent across all of the company’s formats with a sole focus on helping improve performance and growing the business.  Prior to being at Rogers Paul held the role of National Talent Development Director for Newcap Radio and also a Group Programming role in England.  Paul is a certified coach and is passionate about helping individuals, teams and organizations find their greatest potential, which is the fuel behind his other project The Talent Lab. Paul lives in Toronto with his wife, 2 dogs and a cat – life is never quiet!  Reach Paul at


Successful Radio Promotions On Air Worldwide

How to give away money on your radio station with new creative concepts and much more entertainment than Pay Your Bills or Double Your Salary?

If you’re not already including money giveaways in your radio promotions, contests & sweepstakes, then you probably consider it, and for good reason. In almost any radio market, Cash Calls & Co. (so to say) are a surefire way to positively influence your station’s ratings. At the same time, you may want to go beyond usual suspects. We’ve found & analysed a couple of more original ‘cash contests’ from the US, Canada and Europe.

This article will give you ideas & insights on:

Successful Radio Promotions On Air Worldwide (4)



Todd Hancock Instructor At BCIT Radio Arts and Entertainment

Former CFOX Vancouver Afternoon Drive host Todd Hancock, has landed a permanent part-time job as instructor at BCIT Radio Arts and Entertainment. Hancock has 20+ years radio experience.

Todd Hancock was laid off from Corus Radio in 2014 after fifteen year career.Todd Hancock turned to podcasting Voice Over work.

You can listen to the Toddcast Podcast or hire him for Voice Over work visit his website below.



You can register for radio school at BCIT Radio Arts and Entertainment. Website Click here.


The Spirit of Cassette Culture Lives On ‘No Pigeonholes Radio’


Decades before the invention of the MP3, the audiocassette, along with the home dubbing deck and four-track tape recorders, put the power to create and distribute recordings into the hands of anyone with the will to record. No longer reliant on record labels or the capital investment needed to rent studio time and press records, by the 1980s an international community of independent-minded artists had emerged, networked via photocopied ’zines, grassroots magazines and P.O. boxes because even the widest home-recorded cassette release was unlikely to be stocked in record stores.

Tapes were just as likely to be traded—one artist swapping her own tapes, or something else of value (like a ’zine), for another’s—as they were to be bought or sold. Even when commerce was involved, the price would only be a few bucks and quantities could be strictly limited, due more to pragmatics like blank tape supplies and dubbing time than anything else.

Shows on community and college radio stations were the few mass media platforms open to playing home recorded and distributed music. One of the longest-lasting of these is “No Pigeonholes Radio” hosted by musician Don Campeau since 1985 on community radio KKUP in Cupertino, CA.

Though cassettes, like vinyl, seem to be having a bit of revival—even with their own day—I’ve been fascinated by cassette culture for decades. I stumbled upon “No Pigeonholes Radio” a couple of months ago during a late night ’net research expedition, wherein I dived deep into the oeuvre of experimental musician Hal McGee. I found an interview with McGee that Campau published on his website, The Living Archive of Underground Music, which in turn led me to his radio show.

Initially focused on home-recording cassette artists, the show now features music released on any format, but is still dedicated to DIY musicians. After listening to some shows in the “No Pigeonholes” archive, I finally decided to drop Campau a line and see if he would be up for an email interview. What follows has been edited for clarity and length.

PR: How and why did you start “No Pigeonholes?”

DC: After I became involved in what was later called cassette culture in 1984 a light went off in my head. I already have a radio show. Why not feature all these tapes I was now getting in trade?

These trades were fostered, to begin with, by reviews in mags such as OP, Sound Choice, Option, Factsheet Five, etc.

I rarely bought tapes. I was very proactive and wrote letters everyday from reviews in these mags, and then from addresses on compilation announcements, and then from little promo papers that used to accompany a trade. I wrote literally thousands of letters (this was well before email) and I would almost always send a trade tape in return.

PR: In the 1980s it was common for college and community radio to play underground and independent music, what did you want to do that was different?

DC: I simply wanted to portray the tape scene that was happening. No styles rejected, not about the music biz, not about “making it.” These were not demos, but the finished product, representing the everyday person who was making music at home.

PR: Stations often didn’t play cassettes on air simply because they are more difficult to cue up than records, and later, CDs. Was it a challenge, from a practical point of view?

DC: It was a challenge. I had to bring in my own tape deck, and sometime two decks just to be able to record it as well. By the way, I have every show since 1985 on tape, CD or digital file. I am slowly uploading them to

PR: These days your show features music in a variety of formats, not just cassette. When did that shift first occur?

DC: In the late 90s people started turning their attention to CDs and the tape format became marginalized to some degree. I still got tapes even after 2000, but much less when digital home recording and duplication became affordable and widespread. The heyday of cassette culture is mainly painted as 1985–1995 but, in reality, was a bit longer than that.

PR: As a DJ, these days do you prefer to have the tape, CD or a digital file?

DC: I am a hard copy guy. But, really, I am fine with a digital file now, too. There is nothing holy about tapes. They were simply a means to an end. Cheap, easy to get and easy to mail.

Bandcamp is great and so is Soundcloud. Just don’t fool yourself into thinking you will make lots of money.

PR: Isn’t that no more true today than it was in the heyday of cassette culture in the 80s and 90s?

DC: Yes, but during the heyday of tapes nobody really thought their tape was going to make them big or be profitable. It was only with the advent of the CD, which people felt was somehow more legitimate, did people delude themselves in this way. That delusion continues into today, and many people write me feeling confused and angry because they cannot “make it.”

I try to softly tell them that is not my focus, and although I have played thousands of artists on the show, I have never met one who could do what I did with my job in the produce department of a grocery store: buy a house, have insurance, a pension, three kids and an ability to take care of a family. This simply does not happen in the music business for 99% of artists, ever.

The bottom line: for me, I am OK calling music a “hobby.” But that is evidently a dirty word for many musicians. I always tell people: Get a job and career you can handle and that will enable you to focus on music as an art, or something to have fun with.

PR: Cassettes are seeing a bit of revival in the last few years, even if not quite on par with the vinyl resurgence. What do you think the allure of cassettes is now?

DC: I think there are a number of reasons. First, a counter-reaction to the “invisible” digital culture where there is “no there, there.” Also, an opportunity to have something tangible to offer and hold, with art and unusual presentation. Plus, with tapes there is no easy way to get to specific songs; one must listen to the entire tape unless you want to rewind or fast forward.

To me, though, it was never about format. [It was] not about tapes at all, but about creating community and using affordable means of recording and distribution. Tape culture also offered a way to create relationships with people, too. Heck, I ended up marrying a home taper from New Jersey!

When CDs and digital distribution became the standard [there was] a certain lack of this community. For example, in the old days one would get a tape and a letter, and maybe there might be personal info [shared], and not just music talk. Letters would get exchanged, friendships developed, histories created.

In 1991 Kevyn Dymond and myself traveled to Europe for a five-week tour of other home tapers in Germany, France, Norway and England. We even performed in East Germany right after the Wall came down, with improvising crazy men, Das Freie Orchester. So, the relationship might be extended with a phone call, [or] a possible in-person meeting.

To this day, I have people that are very meaningful to me, and whom I consider to be close friends, that I have never met or even talked to.

Now, things are different. I might get a mass email from an artist saying, “here’s my mp3, can you play it on your show?” There is no asking me how I am, no relationship that goes deeper. It’s a good thing that I have long time friendships with so many people from the old days. This has created continuity for me.

PR: When you get the mass-email asking you to check out a song or artist, do you?

Yes, I do. I try to encourage a personal relationship and push it a little bit. I’ll still air stuff even if I don’t like it, or if it’s impersonal. The show is not about me. It’s about exposing unknown artists, especially those recording at home.

I always write back telling people I got their music. I am one of the few DJs that makes sure everyone knows they got airtime by sending not only playlists, but also links to podcasts with their music.

PR: Are the relationships still being forged in the underground music community?

Yes, I think so. Younger people write me all the time asking about it, and wondering how to do it. It’s hard and relentless work, even in this digital age. Not everyone is a frustrated music biz type. There are still plenty of curious and inventive people doing interesting things.

The internet is not inherently superficial. Relationships, community and personal connections are still possible—in fact, maybe even easier. There are no more trips to the post office, and tremendous amounts of money are saved on postage and materials. But why does it so rarely happen?

We seem to be in a, “look at me, push it out, one-way-street” kind of mentality to a large degree. I think Facebook and social media are a good thing. Sure, there are tons of meaningless crap, but I have made connections and reconnections with people I lost touch with for many years. I like that.

It is fashionable to knock Facebook now. I use it because it works for me. If it doesn’t work for you stop complaining and don’t do it. And while you’re at it, stop bitching that no one wants to buy your music or doesn’t pay attention to you. This is the 21st century, get on the bus if you want to be heard.


Canadian Radio CRTC Transactions

Supplied by Canadian Radio News Dan Sys


United Christian Broadcasters has until December 5, 2018 to get 10,000 watt Christian station CJAH 90.5 in Windsor, Ontario on the air. The delay is the result of a reconfigured antenna system on the tower.after the FCC expressed concerns about possible interference to Detroit area stations.

Le Son Du 49 has until January 20, 2019 to get this 50 watt French language Community station CKCJ 97.9 in Lebel-sur-Quevillon, Quebec on the air. The delay is the result of not securing the necessary equipment on time.


CKVB 100.1 “Bay of Islands Radio” in Corner Brook, Newfoundland & Labrador signed on the air today in test mode. The 50 watt station will officially launch on November 5th with a Variety/Eclectic format. BOIR has been in existence since 2009 operating as an internet station.



The nightly “LG Blues Lounge” will remain on the air after Newcap was denied its application to remove a condition of license for CHLG 104.3 in Vancouver which states 15% of the music broadcast on the station consist of Category 3 – Special Interest music (namely Blues, Jazz, and Folk). The CRTC stated that the applicant has not demonstrated a compelling economic need for the amendment.

This is the second attempt to have this condition of license removed. The CRTC rejected a similar request in Fall 2014. .



Radio Markham York Incorporated received approval today to go ahead with technical changes to CFMS 105.9 in Markham, Ontario. Average ERP will decrease from 981 to 630 watts while maximum ERP will increase from 2,500 to 3,000 watts. Antenna height will be raised from 9.1 to 54 metres (EHAAT). The transmitter will be relocated.



The CRTC has approved an application by 1811258 Alberta Limited to relocate the transmitter site of the “yet to go on the air” 10,000 watt South Asian facility on 580 AM in Edmonton. The original site could not be leased long term. The new site will be co-located with the CBC at their existing tower site in South Edmonton. The call letters which were originally CHBA appear to have changed to CHAH according to the documents.


The CRTC has granted an ownership change of the “yet to go on the air” 10,000 watt facility on 1220 AM in St. Catharines, Ontario which was approved in 2016. Sivanesarajah Kandiah and David J. Dancy will be relinquishing 100% control of the construction permit to Manu Datta and Ripudaman Singh Dhillon (Radio Dhun). Purchase price is $300,000.00. The new owners plan to stick with the original plans of launching the English language station with a Classic Hits


A hearing will be held on January 11, 2018 to discuss continual non-compliance issues related to CKFG 98.7 Toronto and CFOR 99.3 Maniwaki.

The hearing will also deal with ownership change applications in Midland, Orillia, Owen Sound, and Sudbury where Bell wants to take over the 4 stations currently controlled by Larche Communications (CICZ, CICX, CJOS, CICS),

In addition applications for new Christian stations in Kelowna, Sydney, and Regina will be heard.



Vista Radio has until April 15, 2019 to relocate CFJB 105.5 “Moose FM” in Bolton, Ontario to 102.7 and increase the power from 50 to 1,100 watts.


At noon yesterday the Jim Pattison Broadcast Group relaunched Hot AC CKQQ Q103.1 in Kelowna as BEACH RADIO with Classic Hits from the 80’s and 90’s. This comes as no surprise as Q103.1 had not been a great performer in the Kelowna ratings..

This marks the second recent format change in the Kelowna market. It was announced earlier this month that on November 1st CJUI 103.9 JUICE FM will be flipping from Variety Hits to Oldies/Classic hits from the 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s branded as Okanagan Oldies.


Net News

Why Do Radio Stations Go All Christmas?

When the holidays come along, some radio stations decide to go “all Christmas” and play holiday tracks exclusively — to the chagrin of some listeners. One listener even inquired if it were a mistake that his radio station in Indianapolis partook in this trend. While listeners who crave variety may think this is the wrong move for a radio station to make, the “all Christmas, all the time” trend is a growing and profitable one for the industry.

“All Christmas, All the Time”

More and more commercial radio stations over the past few years have been opting to play “allChristmas” music for the weeks leading up to Christmas. Each year, it starts earlier. This year, one station is reported to have begun as early as Nov. 1 – not even waiting for at least Thanksgiving, rather jumping in right after Halloween!

Usually, only one station in a market can truly be successful at it because holiday programming like this still aims at a narrow audience: those truly in the Christmas spirit – and early.

Listeners “catch” the holiday spirit in different ways and at different times. If anything, it’s a slow build which culminates Christmas week. Then, as soon as the presents are opened, nobody cares about the station playing Christmas music. It disappears soon after Christmas, usually hanging on until right up to or through New Year’s Day. Then, most radio stations resume their former format.

Also, it won’t work for every type of format. A modern rocker will fail miserably because there just isn’t enough rock-oriented Christmas music to allow a rock station to maintain its identity while executing this type of presentation.

But, an adult-contemporary station, like a “Mix” or “Kiss” formatted one can expect to have much more success because the target audience is already attuned to a softer, less rap and rock cluttered sound.

Why So Much Christmas?

So, how did radio get to the point where some stations are poised to make the mad dash into Christmas – and so early? Well, some years ago, Christian-formatted stations began to realize that switching from preaching to Christmas music at the end of the year actually let them show up in the ratings. Sure, people listen to Christian-formatted stations, but they are not market leaders. Yet, Christmas music has a broader appeal and allowed these specialty-formatted stations to attract those who were normally listeners.

After seeing this success over a period of years, commercial radio stations figured if the trick bumps listening up, then why not do the same thing? Commercial radio basically stole this novelty programming idea and never looked back. It spread, and, now, almost every radio market in America has a Christmas station – and the rush to be there first and own it has been getting sooner and sooner every year.

Tom Wood, at Tom-FM in Little Rock, Ark., explained the thinking behind the switch of his station’s format to an all Christmas-formatted station: “About six years of statistical proof that the sampling and listening for these two months to all-Christmas stations increases by a lot – 75 percent in some cases.

Plus, we have a competitor in the market that traditionally does this in mid-November.  We wanted to beat them to the punch and gather the publicity and audience.”

So, if you enjoy getting into the holiday spirit early, there’s almost always going to be a Christmas station in your city to indulge you.


Fiftieth Anniversary Of The Radio Show “Groovin’ Blue”.

in late October of 1967 the radio show “Groovin’ Blue”, produced and hosted by Bill Reiter, first aired on Vancouver radio station CKLG-FM – 99.3 MHz.  Uniquely, every record played and opinion expressed was that of the 24 year old host/producer.

Bill had originally been approached by a young man regarding CKLG-FM in Bill & Bob’s Record Shop.  Owned and operated by Bill Reiter and Bobby Garrison and located at 10 Pender Street West at Shanghai Alley in Vancouver’s Chinatown, “Bill & Bob’s” occupied half of the structure featured in Ripley’s Believe It Or Not as the narrowest building in the world.  The store’s mandate was to provide Black Music – Soul, Rhythm ‘n’ Blues, Jazz, Funk, Gospel, Salsa, Blues etc. – to Vancouver’s Lower Mainland.  The young man visiting Bill & Bob’s that day told Bill he’d been asked to host a soon-to-air Jazz show on CKLG-FM.  He suggested that Bill talk with LG-FM’s Program Director with regard to the store sponsoring the proposed show.

The well-known and respected CKLG-FM Program Director Mr. Frank Callaghan met Bill at the Moffat Communications Ltd. station a day or two later.  After an hour or so, Mr. Callaghan declared that the young fellow who came into the record shop was one of ten people that ‘LG was interested in and, more importantly, how would Bill like to host the show?  Reiter jumped at it.  Here was an opportunity to play the music he and his East End Vancouver pals loved so much.  Frank Callaghan’s offer was especially thrilling because it opened a door, for the first time, which allowed the music to reach the much wider audience outside its present Hastings Street East boundaries.  Until then, no Canadian radio program – in fact no radio show ever – had programmed such a full spectrum of Black Music.

Initially, Groovin’ Blue aired only on Saturday nights in the 6:30 to 8:30 time slot.  Then, on March 16, 1968, six months after its October 21st, 1967 premiere, the program moved to 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. – Monday to Saturday.  Eventually Groovin’ Blue would become widely known not only to listeners in British Columbia but also Black Music fans in Washington State and the many areas the 100,000 watt signal bounced to.

The show’s name was taken from the title of a 1961 Pacific Jazz album by Curtis Amy and Frank Butler.  Bill tells of the time a New Yorker phoned the show to say he’d recently been on a freighter in the middle of the Pacific Ocean heading to Vancouver from Japan when he picked up the CKLG-FM Groovin’ Blue signal.  The Big Apple denizen said he couldn’t believe that anyone on the West Coast of Canada was playing the recordings of N.Y.C. conga drum hero Mongo Santamaria – let alone Pucho & his Latin Soul Brothers.

All of this came about because CKLG-FM management wanted to air a unique program that echoed the type originally hosted by Russ “The Moose” Syracuse on KYA’s “All Night Flight” and Larry Miller on KMPX.  These San Francisco, California all-night DJ’s’ formats originally shared the designations “Underground”, “Free-Form” and “Progressive Rock”.  Moffat Communications management wondered if a Vancouver, British Columbia radio audience would accept “…a Blues music type show”.  If they did, they mused, then a more San Francisco-style format, now being shaped in the California city by KMPX program director Tom “Big Daddy” Donohue, might prove to be immensely popular.

What Moffat management didn’t know was that the Groovin’ Blue Format was more than just Jazz or only Blues. Reiter’s musical tastes covered the complete spectrum of contemporary Black Music – the same music being offered for sale at his Bill & Bob’s record shop.  Bill feels he was fortunate that the Country & Western-appreciating management weren’t sophisticated enough to ask the right questions.  Reiter speculates that if they had, the show might never have been offered to him.  Appreciatively, Groovin’ Blue paved the way to meet both parties’ needs.

Many outstanding artists got their first Canadian airplay on the program.  Ollie & The Nightingales, Marva Whitney, The Dapps, Sy Risby, The Joe Tex Band, Sly & The Family Stone, Larry Williams & Johnny Watson, George Kerr, Johnnie Taylor, The Trials of Jayson Hoover, Freddy Robinson, Mabel John, Oscar Toney Jr., The Raelettes, O’Dell Brown & The Organizers, Melvin Van Peebles, Lou Donaldson and many more Black Music artists made their Great White North radio debut on Groovin’ Blue.  Interviews with Jimmy Smith, Billy Preston, Brownie McGhee & Sonny Terry, King Curtis, John Lee Hooker, Bobby Freeman, Bobby Hebb, Joe Tex, Stanley Turrentine and others were a show feature.

Groovin’ Blue lasted for two years and ended its tenure on CKLG-FM in mid-September 1969.

Since that original show, The Groovin’ Blue Format has aired on other Vancouver radio stations including; CKST-FM (Coast 1040), CJVB-AM 1470, and CHMB-AM 1320.  The “GB Format” with Bill as guest or co-host, has also been featured on many local and national programs including C.B.C. radio’s “Variety Tonight”, CITR’s “African Rhythms” and “Stormin’ Norman’s Blues Show” on CFOX-FM.  Bill Reiter has also worked as a pop music disc-jockey on stations CHQM-FM, CKVN and CKLG-AM.  On ‘LG-AM he was known as Bill Reiter – The All Niter and earned the non-commissioned rank of “Boss Jock”.

November, 23rd 2008, saw work begin on the WAGRadio (180.2 FM & 1802 AM) blog. – with Groovin’ Blue as the flagship program along with it’s companion program entitled “Groovin’ Blue Funk Shui Specials” co-hosted by Sunny “Sweet Daddy Fonk” Wong and DJ ZigZag. The WAGRadio blog is produced by Bill Reiter and directed by Miss A of


Sportsnet 650’s Jawn Jang Vancouver

When Sportsnet 650 entered the Vancouver sports radio market, they faced an uphill battle. Owning the Canucks broadcasting rights certainly helps their cause in the Great Radio Wars of Two-Thousand-and-Seventeen, but TSN 1040 has the longevity, along with more established hosts.

The truth is, both stations have been putting out some high-quality work over the last two months, with the competition seeming to spur both stations on to higher heights. Full disclosure, Sportsnet 650 has brought me on the air several times to talk about the Canucks, though I have not been paid to air my opinions.

I have appeared a few times with Satiar Shah and Jawn Jang on Sportsnet 650’s mid-morning show. Sat is the level-headed one of the pair, as he was when he was a producer with TSN 1040 on the Dave Pratt and Bro Jake morning show. He’s well-practiced at hearing outrageous or provocative takes and bringing in a more moderate voice. It’s a skill he needs even more, as Jawn has hot takes galore and he’s not shy about sharing them.

First it was Ben Hutton, who he thought was extraneous on the Canucks blue line because the team has “too many puck-movers.” Now Hutton is playing on the top pairing with Chris Tanev and proving he is an essential member of the Canucks’ defence corps.

Read On.


FCC Takes Wraps Off Media Ownership Proposal

An FCC official speaking on background called that criticism an effort to impugn motives rather than debate substance, with the motive being the chairman’s long-held philosophy that the regulations needed a deregulatory revamp.

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai let that deregulatory cat out of the bag Wednesday (Oct. 25) at a Hill hearing.

Pai had signaled back in August that such a revamp was in the works, likely before year’s end.

The item is scheduled to be voted Nov. 16, with the rule changes taking effect after publication in the Federal Register.

FCC officials speaking on background outlined the combination order and Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Thursday (Oct. 26) and the reasons behind its proposal, notably that in a world filled with digital competitors, they were outdated The order is responsive to reconsideration petitions for the most recent Quadrennial Media Ownership Review order issued under the previous FCC.The order eliminates the newspaper-broadcast crossownership rule, the radio-TV crossownership rule, allows dual station ownership in markets with fewer that eight independent voices after the duopoly, creating an opportunity for — the FCC is not calling it a waiver — ownership of two of the top four stations in a market on a case-by-case basis, eliminates attribution of joint sales agreements as ownership; and creates an incubator program.

It still requires stations to notify the FCC of joint services agreements and does not change the dual-network ownership prohibition. There will also be no change in the local radio station rule. So, the eight radio stations and two TV’s in a market maximum will remain, just which markets that will be allowed in will change.

And broadcasters can now own newspapers again, which has been prevented with some grandfathered combos, since 1975. An official said anyone who wanted to buy a newspaper these days should be thanked, not deterred.

Asked about charges the local ownership rule changes were tailor-made to ease the Sinclair-Tribune merger, a top FCC official pointed to Chairman Ajit Pai’s consistent and longstanding position that the ownership regulations needed updating for the digital age. The suggestion is that Sinclair could have easily read those deregulatory tea leaves and decided to strike while the tea was hot, as it were.

The official said that the suggestion the changes — which respond to petitions for reconsideration from NAB, Nexstar, but not Sinclair — are to benefit any one company are at odds with Pai’s long deregulatory record.

Asked about what factors the FCC would use in those case-by-case reviews of top four stations, he said that they were still working on them, but that the order provides some examples that provide guidance.

He said that the value of what he called a “hybrid” approach of case-by-case review was that not all markets were created equal. While some markets have strong delineations between the top four and the rest, in some there might be five strong stations, or only three and a fourth that was a distant competitor.

As to eliminating the eight-voices test and allowing duopolies in smaller markets, he said they knew of no finding anywhere that eight competitors were required in a market to make it competitive.

Pai has long pushed for an incubator program, but it will be a bit longer before that takes shape.

The official said there was not a sufficient record to come up with specifics for the program, so the FCC was issuing an accompanying Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on how to structure it, how to define the eligible class, what activities would qualify, how to monitor it and what benefits would inure to the incubator.

A little over a year ago, the then-Democratic Wheeler-led majority voted not to lift cross-ownership rules or loosen local market station limits. “Based on our careful review of the record, we find that the public interest is best served by retaining our existing rules, with some minor modifications,” the order said.

NAB challenged the Wheeler decision in court, but dropped that in favor of asking the newly Republican and deregulatory FCC to reconsider the decision.

In a 17-page opus of a dissent then commissioner Pai said that while “the video marketplace has transformed dramatically,” the FCC has done nothing but rubber stamp the radio and TV ownership rules. “The more the media marketplace changes, the more the FCC’s media regulations stay the same,” calling the quadrennial an “ostrich of an order” that was not what Congress intended when it required the periodic reviews of whether regulations were still needed.

The Pai FCC will undertake its first quadrennial in 2018.

“We commend Chairman Pai for acknowledging the realities of the modern video and media marketplace, and for planning updates to broadcast ownership rules enacted in the last century before the internet became ubiquitous,” said TEGNA President Dave Lougee. “Localism and local journalism will be greatly enhanced by allowing broadcast station owners to combine duplicative resources, and our local consumers will benefit if stations have the scale necessary to compete with massive distribution and technology companies who don’t share our local values and mandates.”

Lougee stumped for such regulatory “unshackling” at a Media Institute awards dinner in September.

“The commission’s recognition of changed market conditions and acknowledgement of increased competition in the video market is consistent with the view coming from Wall Street,” said Adonis Hoffman, chairman of Business in the Public Interest and former chief of staff to commissioner Mignon Clyburn. “Investors actually want to see a thriving broadcast sector, and adjusting the rules will be well received,” said Hoffman.