Bruce Toews (masterofmusings) wrote,
Bruce Toews

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The Joy of Radio

I'm sitting here now, listening to my favorite radio station. But for local Winnipeg Goldeyes baseball games, my radio might as well be glued to CJOB in Winnipeg. I love the station, I know some of the people there, and many otehrs know me by name/disreputation.

It wasn't always this way. Growing up on the farm, our radio was always tuned to the local news/farming/elevator music station, CFAM in Altona, Manitoba. So I basically grew up on this station: lots of classical music, lots of instrumentals, and the only station I know of to actually censor a commercial, and even Paul Harvey News!

I was laughed at for listening to this station. It was viewed as an old-people's station, and not without warrant. So I tried CJOB for a while, kind of liked it actually. But I was getting laughed at still, because CJOB, dubbed the "Hair-Net Station", was little more than CFAM for the city instead of the rual environment. Trapped. I didn't much are for the music of my generation, what was I to do?

I did what any red-blooded Canadian blind person named Bruce Toews would do, I decided not to care. Ignore the problem.

Over my college years, I grew to largely ignore the radio, surprised to come home for the summer and discover that Paul Harvey was still alive, let alone still broadcasting. He still is both, you know. But I digress.

After college, I started in on being a radio fanatic again. I guest hosted a comedy program on 92 CITI FM here in Winnipeg (can't find the Website) for a while, then when comedy all but left Winnipeg radio for good, I gravitated slowly to CJOB, hair-net or no hair-net.

When Charles Adler came on the scene in 1998, CJOB's reputation began to change, and its audience began to youngify (new word; it was either that or youthen).

I love radio. Ever since I was two or three, I wanted to be in radio. I used to wander around the house as a very young kid, and be doing my own little radio show called the Brucie Bang Show. No, if tapes of that survive, you may not hear them. When I discovered boomboxes, patch cords, turntables, and later CD's, I started recording some programs with a reasonable amount of technical quality. IT was no longer the Brucie Bang Show. I know some of these tapes survived, and no, you may not listen to them. I don't care who you are, you may not listen to them. Not. Got it?

So I would get tours of radio stations. Radio personalities who had the misfortune to get cornered by me would spend hours answering my technical questions.

So the radio dream has been at least partialy fulfilled with Toews on the Waves, my Internet radio show. I've come to realize that, much more than announcing, what I really want to do is to produce, to push the buttons, to put the programs on the air.

Most of what I learned about radio I learned from CJOB. It's a Winnipeg institution and easily one of the most community-minded stations I've heard anywhere. If I ever win the lottery, I'll offer to pay CJOB to let me work there.

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