Hugh Bramner; Star Tapleyl; Jim Van Kurgn


00:00:06 Speaker 1 

Hugh, how long is it that you’ve been in the news business? 

00:00:11 Speaker 2 

Well, 40 years in radio in which I’ve spent about 22 years exclusively in news, the last 22. 

00:00:23 Speaker 1 

You know, so you would have started in about 1936 then. And where was that? 

00:00:27 Speaker 2 

That’s right. 

00:00:28 Speaker 2 

May 5th, 1936, in Brantford ON CKPC, the phone city. 

00:00:34 Speaker 1 

How did? 

00:00:35 Speaker 1 

How did you? 

00:00:35 Speaker 1 

How did you happen to get into into the radio station? 

00:00:38 Speaker 1 

That doesn’t strike me as a place where a youngster would normally have gone at that time. 

00:00:44 Speaker 2 

Oh well, my dear old Gray haired mother had ambitions to have one of her children be musical and she’d given me lessons or had lessons given to me on piano, violin, cornet, twang guitar. 

00:00:58 Speaker 2 

But I’ve got a tin ear and finally in desperation she arranged for me to have. 

00:01:04 Speaker 2 

Elocution lessons, as they were called, and perhaps they still are that so. 

00:01:08 Speaker 2 

I did quite a bit of amateur theatricals at the Conservatory there, and at the high school and. 

00:01:17 Speaker 2 

The radio station in 36 wanted an announcer and approached the principal at the old BCI&VS. 

00:01:25 Speaker 2 

And they recommended three of us. 

00:01:27 Speaker 2 

I think in my case, they were trying to get rid of me. 

00:01:29 Speaker 2 

I’d been around too long and uh, we all went down and took an audition. 

00:01:33 Speaker 2 

And and I won the audition. 

00:01:36 Speaker 1 

How much? 

00:01:36 Speaker 1 

How much were they paying? 

00:01:37 Speaker 1 

And now it’s season those days? 

00:01:40 Speaker 2 

My starting salary was $15 a week and believe me that was in, you know, that was in the depression and there were a lot of people. 

00:01:48 Speaker 2 

Uh, some of them with pH D’s, I guess walking around and coming up and asking if they could sweep the. 

00:01:53 Speaker 2 

Sidewalk or in a. 

00:01:55 Speaker 1 

Few pennies. 

00:01:56 Speaker 1 

So what? 

00:01:57 Speaker 1 

So what did you have to do for that? 

00:01:59 Speaker 1 

Sum of money. 

00:01:59 Speaker 2 

Oh well, I was going to say really. 

00:02:02 Speaker 2 

I’ve been in the news business from the beginning because you did everything in those days, you read newscast, you operated, it was all announced operated in those days, almost all you played the records you wrote, the commercials you filed the records. 

00:02:17 Speaker 2 

Even did a little selling now and again, although I was never very much at that. 

00:02:22 Speaker 2 

But with the staff of. 

00:02:25 Speaker 2 

Oh gosh, I guess 10 or 12 at the most in 36 uh, everybody did everything. 

00:02:32 Speaker 1 

So you what? 

00:02:34 Speaker 1 

What sort of equipment did you have that must have been? 

00:02:36 Speaker 1 

Must be quite some changes in equipment since you started? 

00:02:39 Speaker 2 

Boy, has there ever been? 

00:02:42 Speaker 2 

I don’t remember the name of the equipment, although somewhere along the lines I think I saw Collins. 

00:02:47 Speaker 2 

I remember at Collins and they’re still making equipment. 

00:02:50 Speaker 2 

I know. 

00:02:52 Speaker 2 

But I do recall the old turntables we had, you’d have to get in a little. 

00:02:59 Speaker 2 

You were supposed to get in earlier than you went on the air in the morning. 

00:03:02 Speaker 2 

We signed on at 8 in the beginning. 

00:03:04 Speaker 1 

Getting in early is always a. 

00:03:05 Speaker 2 

Problem it’s always a problem. 

00:03:07 Speaker 2 

Yes, it hasn’t got any better, believe me. 

00:03:09 Speaker 2 

But I had to put a heater under the turntables to get the grease that lubricated it. 

00:03:15 Speaker 2 

To liquid enough that it would go at a proper speed. 

00:03:19 Speaker 2 

And we had to turn on the equipment. 

00:03:23 Speaker 2 

It wasn’t the transmitter, it was the equipment that fed the transmitter. 

00:03:27 Speaker 2 

Turn it on and get certain readings that the engineer had shown us. 

00:03:33 Speaker 2 

Uh equipment, of course. 

00:03:34 Speaker 2 

We had no tape recorders. 

00:03:36 Speaker 1 

Well, what? 

00:03:36 Speaker 1 

What did you do if you went out to to do an interview for a newscast? 

00:03:40 Speaker 1 

What what would you do in that case? 

00:03:43 Speaker 2 

You just made. 

00:03:43 Speaker 1 

Notes you just made notes, so you had no really no voyage. 

00:03:46 Speaker 1 

We had the voice clips or actuality. 

00:03:48 Speaker 2 

No, no. 

00:03:50 Speaker 1 

When did, when did you start using tape recorders? 

00:03:52 Speaker 1 

When did they first come in? 

00:03:54 Speaker 1 

As far as you? 

00:03:54 Speaker 2 

Were concerned well when I came back from the war. 

00:04:00 Speaker 2 

I was away for about four years and they had tape recorders and we’d never had them before. 

00:04:06 Speaker 2 

No, it wasn’t a tape recorder. 

00:04:07 Speaker 2 

It was a wire recorder. 

00:04:09 Speaker 2 

It was actually actually a piece of wire. 

00:04:12 Speaker 2 

That made the recording instead of a flat tape that we used now and then, there were the old brush mirror recorders. 

00:04:22 Speaker 2 

They used a paper tape and shortly after that the plastic backed mylar type tape came in. 

00:04:28 Speaker 1 

How would you go about editing a wire recording? 

00:04:31 Speaker 1 

Or could you edit it? 

00:04:32 Speaker 1 

Could you do it physically or electronically? 

00:04:34 Speaker 1 

Or did you just have to use whatever happened to come off there then? 

00:04:37 Speaker 2 

I think I think the letter is true. 

00:04:39 Speaker 2 

I don’t really remember you. 

00:04:43 Speaker 2 

You asked me there about. 

00:04:49 Speaker 2 

News you getting inserts for news, interviews for news. 

00:04:54 Speaker 2 

We did very little local news in those days, you know. 

00:04:59 Speaker 2 

Although that didn’t last long, we eventually formed an arrangement with the Brantford Expositor and they would send over to the radio station a pretty good summary of local news. 

00:05:13 Speaker 2 

For every day at noon. But just for that 1230 newscast. 

00:05:16 Speaker 1 

Well, that would come out after their paper then, so you wouldn’t be able to beat them on a story. 

00:05:20 Speaker 2 

Well, that’s right. Yeah. 

00:05:22 Speaker 1 

What do? 

00:05:22 Speaker 1 

What would you say? 

00:05:23 Speaker 1 

Would you call tape recording and the portable equipment? 

00:05:27 Speaker 1 

The biggest change you’ve seen in news operations in those forty years or what? 

00:05:31 Speaker 1 

What would you say is the big change that’s? 

00:05:33 Speaker 2 

Oh yes, no question about it. 

00:05:35 Speaker 2 

The use of tape recordings has brought actualities to radio. 

00:05:42 Speaker 2 

It’s made it much more dramatic. 

00:05:43 Speaker 2 

It’s made it more real, more believable. 

00:05:49 Speaker 2 

Yes, I I don’t think there’s been any change to compare with the use of tape recorders. 

00:05:54 Speaker 1 

Or would this then, I suppose, influence the kind of news that you’re doing and the way you do news? 

00:05:59 Speaker 1 

Would you say that today, how would you compare news as you started out and news as it is today on on radio anyway? 

00:06:08 Speaker 2 

Oh dear. 

00:06:09 Speaker 2 

Well, we pay more attention now to to local area stories than we did then. 

00:06:15 Speaker 2 

In those days, we. 

00:06:17 Speaker 2 

Wire story news. 

00:06:18 Speaker 2 

And by the way, I might mention there that when I started they were using the ribbon type of wire wire machine. 

00:06:27 Speaker 2 

It wasn’t a sheet printer, so you’d come in maybe a 7:50 or 5:00 to 8:00 in the morning to sign on and find. 

00:06:37 Speaker 2 

Miles of this ribbon all. 

00:06:40 Speaker 2 

Piled up on the floor. 

00:06:42 Speaker 2 

And you had to. 

00:06:43 Speaker 2 

You’re supposed to put it through a glass tube with water in it. 

00:06:46 Speaker 2 

And a little felt pad and stick it on a sheet of paper so that you could read it as you would read normal copy. 

00:06:52 Speaker 1 

Kind of like a telegram I used to get. 

00:06:53 Speaker 1 

All pasted with one pasted. 

00:06:54 Speaker 2 

That’s right. 

00:06:55 Speaker 2 

Exactly the same. 

00:06:56 Speaker 2 

There were occasions I remember one in particular when I didn’t have time to do that and I simply had to pull the tape through my fingers. 

00:07:05 Speaker 2 

And, you know, occasionally it would get snarled in the little knots and the oh, my, what a time that was. 

00:07:12 Speaker 1 

You know, people in broadcasting have a reputation. 

00:07:15 Speaker 1 

I don’t know if it’s true or not. 

00:07:16 Speaker 1 

Have a reputation for pulling pranks on each other. 

00:07:18 Speaker 1 

Were you ever the victim of or the perpetrator of a prank? 

00:07:21 Speaker 1 

Uh setting cop fire to copy or that kind of thing? 

00:07:24 Speaker 2 

Ohh yes. 

00:07:25 Speaker 2 

Ohh yeah I I think it was because we really didn’t view radio in those days as a business the way we do it today. 

00:07:31 Speaker 2 

Mind you, we’ve got our pranksters today too, but we’re a little more concerned about the business aspect of what business there was in those days. 

00:07:40 Speaker 2 

You didn’t do an awful lot, but. 

00:07:43 Speaker 2 

There was bucks coming in, both from national advertisers and local. 

00:07:48 Speaker 2 

Yes, I’ve had them come in with a great pair of shears and cut through every news story that I had to match up for the rest of the newscast, spray news copy with the. 

00:08:02 Speaker 2 

Lighter fluid and then throw a match on it and you’re trying to put out a fire and read the news at the same time. 

00:08:07 Speaker 2 

Set fires with lighter fluid and paper in the waste paper basket in the studio. 

00:08:13 Speaker 1 

Did they ever succeed in breaking you up? 

00:08:15 Speaker 1 

I imagine that’s the aim of it. 

00:08:17 Speaker 2 

All I didn’t break easily. 

00:08:19 Speaker 2 

Oh yes, they did. 

00:08:20 Speaker 2 

I once in a while I’d give evidence that something was happening to me, such as the time that we used to read the news, standing at a lectern, and we believe then, and I believe today too, that you can get far better projection. 

00:08:34 Speaker 2 

Actually standing up and reading the news than you can sitting down. 

00:08:38 Speaker 2 

But somebody came in and put a string of those little firecrackers in my pant cuff and set them off. 

00:08:45 Speaker 2 

Which broke me up. 

00:08:50 Speaker 2 

Another another thing too. 

00:08:51 Speaker 2 

And it has to do with tape recorders as well. 

00:08:53 Speaker 2 

And recorders generally is the use of sound effects in commercials. 

00:08:58 Speaker 2 

We had a. 

00:09:00 Speaker 2 

The coal dealer, who advertised frequently on CPC and Brantford, MacDonald Cola was and uh. 

00:09:07 Speaker 2 

A slogan or part of his commercial was always just another load of MacDonald Cole. 

00:09:12 Speaker 2 

So that was preceded by us pouring somebody there pouring, and usually it was the announcer. 

00:09:20 Speaker 2 

A small bucket of coal down a tin chute into another bucket. 

00:09:23 Speaker 2 

See so. 

00:09:25 Speaker 2 

You can image. 

00:09:26 Speaker 2 

And the number of such things, if you wanted to make your commercials colorful, you had to have these sound effects, and very seldom were they on disc, at least for us at Brantford. 

00:09:37 Speaker 2 

I don’t know what they were at other stations, so quite often we we did the sound effects ourselves, so we had quite a variety of props around the place. 

00:09:44 Speaker 1 

So then that’s changed too, because all of this is now on tape where record. 

00:09:48 Speaker 1 

I imagine. Well, sure. 

00:09:49 Speaker 2 

And not only that, but of course today you tape your commercials in advance. 

00:09:53 Speaker 2 

There’s very few commercials given live anymore. 

00:09:56 Speaker 1 

Well, of course that’s one thing all of your work had to be live. 

00:09:58 Speaker 1 

You said to no tape recorders around, so you had to do everything alive and that must have led to occasionally at least to a. 

00:10:05 Speaker 1 

An untoward incident or some break up some kind of excuse on Earth. 

00:10:08 Speaker 2 

Oh, it is. 

00:10:09 Speaker 2 

Yeah, yeah. 

00:10:11 Speaker 2 

If there was a mistake, it it went. 

00:10:12 Speaker 1 

Out, you know, and it was there for all to hear, but never again because it hadn’t been recorded anywhere. 

00:10:18 Speaker 1 

Once having gotten into the business you did you develop any sort of heroes, the people you looked up to, who were they and you know, where did they work kind of thing? 

00:10:30 Speaker 2 

Yeah, I suppose. 

00:10:34 Speaker 2 

Everybody in our part of Ontario at that time, uh, made a point of listening to Jimmy Hunter. 

00:10:41 Speaker 2 

I think he was CFRB in those days. 

00:10:44 Speaker 2 

He get read the news now. 

00:10:46 Speaker 2 

He had a voice. 

00:10:47 Speaker 2 

That was the type of voice you’d never believe would end up giving news. 

00:10:51 Speaker 1 


00:10:52 Speaker 2 

It was sort of. 

00:10:52 Speaker 1 

Almost anybody did. 

00:10:53 Speaker 1 

I guess that that early on though. 

00:10:55 Speaker 2 

Yeah, well, a lot of them did. 

00:10:57 Speaker 2 

And, but boy, he read it. 

00:11:01 Speaker 2 

It was done dramatically. 

00:11:02 Speaker 2 

It was done in newspaper Rees because he was a newspaper man. 

00:11:06 Speaker 2 

I think on loan for that hour to read the news and CFRB. 

00:11:10 Speaker 2 

But and he his signature was a hunting horn. 

00:11:16 Speaker 2 

As I recall, dear Ken John Peel at the break of day. 

00:11:20 Speaker 2 

Now why they choose dog? 

00:11:21 Speaker 2 

Was that I don’t know. 

00:11:22 Speaker 2 

But Jimmy Hunter, Phillip H Phillip K Carlton born. 

00:11:26 Speaker 2 

Was it or Phillip HHV. 

00:11:27 Speaker 1 

HIV was HIV calls for him. 

00:11:29 Speaker 2 

That’s it. 

00:11:31 Speaker 1 

He was an American. 

00:11:32 Speaker 2 

He was an American, yes, but. 

00:11:33 Speaker 1 

But of course, in this part of the world you do a lot of listening to American radio. 

00:11:36 Speaker 2 

Well, we did then, sure. 

00:11:38 Speaker 2 

Of course, he was big during the war, his broadcast about the war. 

00:11:42 Speaker 2 

Lowell Thomas. 

00:11:44 Speaker 2 

Who I see is just decided to retire, partially retire. 

00:11:48 Speaker 1 

Partially retired earlier, he doesn’t sound as if he’s very serious about it after all. 

00:11:52 Speaker 1 

He’s only 80. 

00:11:53 Speaker 2 

Yeah, right. Praise the Lord. 

00:11:56 Speaker 1 

But you worked. 

00:11:57 Speaker 1 

Who were the people you worked with in Bradford? 

00:12:00 Speaker 1 

Anyone who’s still in the business. 

00:12:01 Speaker 2 

Or, well, the one who comes to mind the most readily was the chap I joined the Air Force with and that’s. 

00:12:10 Speaker 2 

Mack McCurdy. 

00:12:11 Speaker 2 

Hollis McCurdy. 

00:12:12 Speaker 2 

Who now is president? 

00:12:13 Speaker 2 

I think of standard radio and CFRB and CJD. 

00:12:17 Speaker 2 

And he, he and I joined the Air Force together. 

00:12:21 Speaker 2 

So my association with him was longer than it was with many of the others both at the station and and in train. 

00:12:30 Speaker 1 

I did most of them come into the business for a while and then move on into other fields. 

00:12:34 Speaker 1 

Or did they tend to stick in broadcasting? 

00:12:36 Speaker 2 

They tended to stay in broadcasting, but they moved around a lot, an awful lot as they still do. 

00:12:41 Speaker 2 

I’m one of the rare ones. 

00:12:42 Speaker 2 

For some reason I I never had a great deal of ambition to get out of Brantford or to better myself financially, I guess. 

00:12:49 Speaker 2 

I sort of let what happened to me happened to me and. 

00:12:53 Speaker 2 

So far I have no reason to regret it. You know, I’m. I’m with a good station. I’m in a good city and everything’s worked out fine for me in my view. 

00:13:03 Speaker 1 

When did you move up to or move on to CFPL in London? 

00:13:07 Speaker 2 

That was in 54. I heard they were looking for a news man. 

00:13:13 Speaker 2 

In my relations with the owners at CPC at the time where. 

00:13:17 Speaker 2 

Not the best. 

00:13:19 Speaker 2 

Well, we won’t go into personalities there. 

00:13:22 Speaker 2 

There’s no point in that. 

00:13:23 Speaker 2 

But I heard they had an opening and applied and. 

00:13:28 Speaker 1 

We got the. 

00:13:28 Speaker 2 

Came down in 54 years. 

00:13:31 Speaker 1 

So what? 

00:13:36 Speaker 2 

Well, if you were talking about changes, one of the changes that comes to mind has to do with programming political broadcasts. 

00:13:44 Speaker 2 

Oh man, in those days, did we have political broadcast? 

00:13:48 Speaker 2 

Whether it was a a City Council election or provincial or federal, they bought time in gobs. 

00:13:55 Speaker 2 

A by an hour and a half for a man to make a speech. 

00:13:58 Speaker 2 

Was nothing at. 

00:13:59 Speaker 2 

Yeah, I was quite expected. 

00:14:01 Speaker 2 

This is what you do. 

00:14:02 Speaker 2 

Mind you, we made a fair bit of a percentage of our revenue out of political speeches, but politics in those days, especially in Brantford, I I’m thinking particularly of one man called Morris and Man McBride. 

00:14:15 Speaker 2 

Man, he came down to the station with bodyguards and. 

00:14:19 Speaker 2 

His his political opponents came to the station with bodyguards. 

00:14:24 Speaker 2 

I don’t recall that there was any any a great deal of violence involved, but they had bodyguards, or so we were told. 

00:14:30 Speaker 1 

So what you’re saying is political advertising and the use of the airwaves by politicians isn’t particularly new. 

00:14:36 Speaker 2 

Ohh goodness no, no, I can remember. 

00:14:39 Speaker 2 

Right back in 36 where they’d they’d take an hour, an hour and a half on a Saturday night. Particularly why Saturday night, maybe. I don’t know. 

00:14:47 Speaker 1 

Any idea what the audience would be for an hour and a half political speech? 

00:14:52 Speaker 2 

With Morris and Mann, McBride might have been pretty good. 

00:14:54 Speaker 2 

He was a rather colorful character, but uh. 

00:14:58 Speaker 2 

Oh, and of course, religious broadcasts. 

00:15:01 Speaker 2 

Yeah, week. 

00:15:01 Speaker 1 

Yes, they were a big one. 

00:15:02 Speaker 2 

Oh, we carry them every day. 

00:15:05 Speaker 2 

We had them and all day Sunday. 

00:15:07 Speaker 1 

The station got paid and I think many, many stations still do get paid for actually carrying them. 

00:15:12 Speaker 2 

Oh yes. 

00:15:14 Speaker 1 

So that that would actually a piece of revenue, you say you got into and stayed in news and people such as your friend McCurdy went on to management, went on to, you know, the financial side or the administrator said, why did you decide to stay on the news side as such? 

00:15:31 Speaker 2 

I just found it interesting. 

00:15:33 Speaker 2 

I found it something I felt I could do reasonably well and I wasn’t sure I could be management reasonably well. 

00:15:39 Speaker 2 

Well, it didn’t interest me. 

00:15:40 Speaker 2 

Primarily I’m. 

00:15:42 Speaker 2 

It wasn’t my bag and. 

00:15:46 Speaker 1 

You were news director CFPL radio. 

00:15:48 Speaker 2 

Though I was reluctantly, really I I was quite happy to get the position. 

00:15:54 Speaker 2 

But over the years it developed as the staff got larger and the our broadcast hours were longer, it became a an accountants job in my view, and. 

00:16:05 Speaker 2 

I liked writing commentaries and editorials and news stories, and I found that I couldn’t do either one well because I was trying to do both. 

00:16:16 Speaker 2 

So for some years I asked management to. 

00:16:21 Speaker 2 

Put me into a commentary writing position news reading position and Get Me Out of looking after overtime and such like. 

00:16:30 Speaker 1 

Well, you walked in into the business right out of high school with no, if you like formal training or education. 

00:16:36 Speaker 1 

What sort of on the job training did you get? 

00:16:38 Speaker 1 

Where did you get any instruction? 

00:16:39 Speaker 1 

Or would a trial and error? 

00:16:41 Speaker 1 

How do I sound today sort? 

00:16:44 Speaker 2 

Well, I guess. 

00:16:45 Speaker 2 

It’s basically how do I sound today? 

00:16:47 Speaker 2 

But yes, you do. 

00:16:49 Speaker 2 

The people that you worked with, Claude Kane, who ended up with British United Press, certainly taught me a lot about broadcasting all the people I worked with taught me something and I hope over the years that they’ve learned something. 

00:17:03 Speaker 2 

For me too, it’s a learning on the job. 

00:17:06 Speaker 2 

Experience and of course there there are books that you can read and somebody was always putting out memos to do this or don’t do that. 

00:17:14 Speaker 2 

And you’d argue about it and debate whether there really was logic to it. 

00:17:18 Speaker 2 

So it’s it’s sort of an osmosis type of thing. 

00:17:21 Speaker 2 

You absorb a certain amount of understanding of the job that. 

00:17:25 Speaker 1 

Way you do a considerable amount of reading. 

00:17:28 Speaker 1 

And keep a keep a West of current affairs and news so that you you over the years really have educated yourself as far as your background. 

00:17:36 Speaker 1 

It was but the the actual practicalities of it came while you were on the. 

00:17:40 Speaker 1 

Job and from other people. 

00:17:41 Speaker 2 

That’s right, yes, unfortunately my English, I suppose, was my big subject in high school, and it’s the only subject I got in two. 

00:17:52 Speaker 2 

I got 2, the two English in Grade 13 and they were the only grade 13 subjects. 

00:17:56 Speaker 2 

I well, when I left in May to take the audition and and the job. 

00:18:01 Speaker 2 

Uh, that’s what I had. 

00:18:04 Speaker 1 

What do you consider to be the most frightening experience on air experience you’ve had, or I should say, probably most disturbing or uncomfortable on air situation? 

00:18:14 Speaker 1 

Was it a fluff? 

00:18:15 Speaker 1 

Was it a case of having to do something you didn’t want to do to what would be the most uncomfortable period you’ve ever spent on air? 

00:18:26 Speaker 2 

You know, it’s strangely the most. 

00:18:28 Speaker 2 

Uncomfortable experience I’ve had has been in my dreams. 

00:18:32 Speaker 2 

I am always dreaming. 

00:18:34 Speaker 2 

It’s not quite bad enough to call it a nightmare, but it’s the most uncomfortable dream. 

00:18:38 Speaker 2 

I’m always dreaming that I’m due on the air in about 6 minutes and I am a mile away from the studio and I’m not quite sure where it is or I’m in a big building like a hotel. 

00:18:48 Speaker 2 

And I’m on one level and the studios on another level and I may get there just at the last minute and find there’s no news prepared. 

00:18:56 Speaker 2 

I haven’t got time to do it myself. 

00:18:57 Speaker 2 

I grab some coffee, go in the studio, sit down and it’s the wrong pile of coffee that. 

00:19:01 Speaker 2 

I have with me. 

00:19:02 Speaker 1 

It’s just, it’s yesterday’s coffee. 

00:19:04 Speaker 2 

I dream this over and over and. 

00:19:06 Speaker 1 

Over but. 

00:19:06 Speaker 1 

You didn’t. You never had. 

00:19:07 Speaker 2 

You’ve really. 

00:19:09 Speaker 2 

A grotesque experience in the air. 

00:19:11 Speaker 2 

That not enough that I remember it. 

00:19:13 Speaker 1 

Though, is there a funny incident that comes to mind out of 40 years of broadcasting, something must have happened to give you a. 

00:19:21 Speaker 1 

Chuckle or two. 

00:19:22 Speaker 2 

If I were to Bill Brady, these things would snap into my mind, right? 

00:19:25 Speaker 2 

Away, I’m sure. 

00:19:27 Speaker 2 

Other than. 

00:19:29 Speaker 2 

Some of the funny little. 

00:19:32 Speaker 2 

Things you say. 

00:19:36 Speaker 2 

The four paws like calling them the jersey ****** giants and you know that sort of thing. 

00:19:41 Speaker 2 

It happens and I’m sure it happens to everybody, but nothing very outstanding. 

00:19:47 Speaker 1 

Where? Where do you see broadcasting going? We’re now into the second-half century of of broadcasting in this country. Where do you see it going? What changes? 

00:19:56 Speaker 1 

You anticipate, say, in the next till the end of the century. 

00:20:00 Speaker 1 

I know it it sounds like a long time, but it’s getting. 

00:20:02 Speaker 1 

Shorter all the time. 

00:20:04 Speaker 2 

Oh, I suppose a greater splintering of audience as technological improvements are made. 

00:20:14 Speaker 2 

No doubt there will be more stations available to each radio set. 

00:20:20 Speaker 2 

And that will mean that more stations will be on the air. 

00:20:23 Speaker 2 

And I think that they will specialize more as they do now in the larger cities. 

00:20:27 Speaker 2 

I remember one time. 

00:20:29 Speaker 2 

Oh, just before. 

00:20:31 Speaker 2 

Castro took over in Cuba going into some radio stations down there. They had 35 radio stations in Havana at that time. 

00:20:37 Speaker 2 

That would be but 19561 station played nothing but mambos all day and gave household hints. Another station gave nothing but sports. 

00:20:46 Speaker 2 

Another station specialized in something else and I I think perhaps the day is coming and it may come in. 

00:20:52 Speaker 2 

TV two as the. 

00:20:54 Speaker 2 

Channels are opened up through the little black box that you want to watch plays. 

00:21:00 Speaker 2 

You’ll dial. 

00:21:01 Speaker 2 

So and so you’ll know that they’ll always have drama on. 

00:21:04 Speaker 2 

Somebody else will have sports and as a producer who spoke to one of the classes here at Western said a couple of years ago, I I think there’s a danger. 

00:21:14 Speaker 2 

Here to our our society, to our system, if you like our democratic system, because there’s something tremendous about. 

00:21:24 Speaker 2 

Watching the moonwalk, for example, or fireside chat as Roosevelt used to do it, and knowing you’re part of a of an enormous audience, and you go to work in the morning and you meet somebody in the elevator and. 

00:21:37 Speaker 2 

You say, Gee. 

00:21:38 Speaker 2 

Do you hear what he said last night? 

00:21:40 Speaker 2 

And you, my friend, did hear it. 

00:21:41 Speaker 2 

And we can talk about it. 

00:21:42 Speaker 2 

But if he’s watching drama and the others are watching. 

00:21:45 Speaker 2 

Sports and other associated things. 

00:21:48 Speaker 2 

We’re going to lose a common bond somewhere and I see this as a development in all types of broadcasting and print too, right? 

00:21:55 Speaker 2 

That is going to fragment interests of people and I don’t think this is going to be done. 

00:22:01 Speaker 2 

It isn’t being done in the communist societies or societies where there is direct control of the media by government, whatever its political stripe, so they can retain, they can keep their channels open to to the minds of the people. 

00:22:16 Speaker 2 

And do a better brainwashing job, if you will. 

00:22:19 Speaker 2 

Then our very fragmented system can. 

00:22:22 Speaker 1 

Coming so that’s the big change. 

00:22:23 Speaker 1 

Well, thank you very much, Hugh. 

00:22:25 Speaker 1 

As Hugh Bremner, who is radio editor at CFL Radio in. 

00:22:29 Speaker 1 

London and who is one of the broadcast pioneers, is now celebrated or has just recently celebrated his 40th year in the business in a business that has just over 50 years old itself. 

00:22:41 Speaker 1 

Thanks again. 

00:22:42 Speaker 2 


00:22:49 Speaker 2 

Yeah, just like the old days. 

00:23:21 Speaker 3 

In 1933, at CFC Victoria. Now it doesn’t exist. 

00:23:28 Speaker 3 

Under those call letters, it later was sold out and became CJ VI, but that was in 33, and strangely enough. 

00:23:41 Speaker 3 

I started in singing, just worked into it, you know. 

00:23:49 Speaker 3 

Then I began. 

00:23:51 Speaker 3 

Doing some announcing and we were paid the huge sum of $15.00 a month and. 

00:24:02 Speaker 3 

It was, you know, pretty difficult even those days to to exist on that. 

00:24:07 Speaker 3 

But I made a deal with the management, which was Mr. 

00:24:12 Speaker 3 

Deville on the station. 

00:24:15 Speaker 3 

It was in a. 

00:24:16 Speaker 3 

Penthouse Penthouse in Victoria. 

00:24:20 Speaker 3 

Well, there was on this particular building on. 

00:24:24 Speaker 3 

It was the central building on View Street. 

00:24:27 Speaker 3 

Yeah, I believe it was view. 

00:24:30 Speaker 3 

And I made a deal with them that I would sign on and sign off if they would give me permission to put a cot that I could sleep on. 

00:24:39 Speaker 3 

So they they said, well, if we ever come in here at 8:00 o’clock in the morning and that card. 

00:24:44 Speaker 3 

Isn’t out of sight. Why? 

00:24:46 Speaker 3 

The deal is off. 

00:24:48 Speaker 3 

But in the summer time, I moved a card out onto the roof and. 

00:24:53 Speaker 3 

So we worked on that basis. 

00:24:58 Speaker 3 

While I was there. 

00:25:00 Speaker 3 

And then. 

00:25:03 Speaker 3 

When it came to food, I made a deal with a restaurant. 

00:25:07 Speaker 3 

I would type their menus. 

00:25:10 Speaker 3 

For breakfast, I got another one for lunch. 

00:25:14 Speaker 3 

Another one for dinner. 

00:25:17 Speaker 3 

So that looked after the food and then the $15.00 a month that brought your socks would walk a walk around money and. 

00:25:23 Speaker 3 

Yeah, shaving cream. 

00:25:24 Speaker 3 

All right. 

00:25:24 Speaker 1 

You say you started out singing. 

00:25:26 Speaker 1 

Had you had voice training at all, or did you just have a good voice? 

00:25:29 Speaker 1 

Just the voice, I guess. 

00:25:33 Speaker 1 

And what what sort of singing did you? 

00:25:35 Speaker 1 

It was popular. 

00:25:36 Speaker 1 

Popular songs of the day. 

00:25:38 Speaker 1 

What was the program format? 

00:25:40 Speaker 1 

Did they have their own orchestra or their own piano player? 

00:25:45 Speaker 3 

Yeah, art fair. 

00:25:46 Speaker 3 

He was the pianist. 

00:25:49 Speaker 3 

And he was the sort of a fellow player play anything he. 

00:25:51 Speaker 3 

Played by ear. 

00:25:53 Speaker 3 

And he’d be playing. 

00:25:54 Speaker 3 

It was a request program, actually. 

00:26:00 Speaker 3 

The phone would. 

00:26:03 Speaker 3 

A phone request would come in and I’d look at it and I’d take it over to art and he’s playing. 

00:26:08 Speaker 3 

Something and I’d show this to him, and he’d nod his head yes. 

00:26:13 Speaker 3 

So then I would announce that. 

00:26:15 Speaker 3 

And here’s a request for such and such for so and so. 

00:26:20 Speaker 3 

If he didn’t know it. 

00:26:23 Speaker 3 

He’d **** his ear up like this and I’d get right close to his ear and I’d hum the tune, and then he’d nod his head so away we would. 

00:26:33 Speaker 1 

Well, how did you know all the words? 

00:26:34 Speaker 1 

All the. 

00:26:34 Speaker 1 

Melodies well. 

00:26:37 Speaker 3 

As a young person, you. 

00:26:40 Speaker 3 

You just did. 

00:26:41 Speaker 3 

Now I didn’t begin singing on this program. 

00:26:45 Speaker 3 

I was strictly the announcer. 

00:26:48 Speaker 3 

Can we? 

00:26:50 Speaker 3 

I was about to say I I was merely the the announcer I was working on a part time basis and liking music I. 

00:27:05 Speaker 3 

I’d begin to hum or sing a few bars and people would hear this. 

00:27:09 Speaker 3 

Can you have the announcer sing this? 

00:27:12 Speaker 3 

And I was reluctant I, you know, church choir singing, that sort of thing I was. 

00:27:19 Speaker 3 

Boy Soprano Arts and James in Saskatoon as a kid. 

00:27:24 Speaker 3 

So anyway, I began to do this. 

00:27:26 Speaker 3 

Now I I never used my name. 

00:27:28 Speaker 3 

I was always the announcer. 

00:27:31 Speaker 3 

Just you know. 

00:27:34 Speaker 3 

One day, Cliff Deville. This is the boss’s son. He was the engineer. 

00:27:44 Speaker 3 

I guess before just the day before, somebody phoned up. 

00:27:48 Speaker 3 

Wonder who this was singing while the girl on the reception board had strict orders from me, never divulged that in my name. 

00:27:56 Speaker 3 

So he explained that he was the manager of. 

00:27:59 Speaker 3 

One of the Los Angeles stations, and he was in Victoria for the weekend and. 

00:28:05 Speaker 3 

I was leaving, so could iPhone him. 

00:28:09 Speaker 3 

And I was lonely. 

00:28:11 Speaker 3 

Somebody just wants to know who it is. 

00:28:13 Speaker 3 

So I never phoned them. 

00:28:15 Speaker 3 

But Sunday morning Cliftonville came in there used to be a Sunday morning paper. 

00:28:20 Speaker 3 

The columnist for the Times. 

00:28:22 Speaker 3 

It was printed Sunday morning, he said. 

00:28:25 Speaker 3 

What was the name of that fella? 

00:28:27 Speaker 3 

Sorry, said Ralph. 

00:28:30 Speaker 3 

So and so. 

00:28:31 Speaker 3 

And he says, here’s an interesting item, Mr. 

00:28:34 Speaker 3 

and Mrs. 

00:28:35 Speaker 3 

so and so of KKF I Los Angeles, who had been. 

00:28:41 Speaker 3 

Spending the weekend at the in Vic. 

00:28:49 Speaker 3 

Saturday night at 5:00, o’clock to go home. 

00:28:54 Speaker 3 

So he says. 

00:28:55 Speaker 3 

You blew it. 

00:28:56 Speaker 3 

I said, well, maybe. 

00:28:58 Speaker 3 

Maybe I did. 

00:28:59 Speaker 3 

Maybe I didn’t. 

00:29:03 Speaker 3 

I never did get in touch with. 

00:29:04 Speaker 1 

Them why did you adopt the stance that you didn’t want your name name known? 

00:29:11 Speaker 3 

Well, I don’t know why I have. 

00:29:16 Speaker 3 

I really don’t know. 

00:29:17 Speaker 3 

I when you’re young. 

00:29:19 Speaker 3 

I just didn’t want to be bothered, you know. 

00:29:22 Speaker 3 

I’d rather be anonymous. 

00:29:26 Speaker 1 

Well, how did you get to get into radio itself? 

00:29:29 Speaker 1 

It’s, I wouldn’t think it was something you’d normally. 

00:29:32 Speaker 1 

Well, this goes back even beyond this in Saskatoon. 

00:29:38 Speaker 3 

Is that where you were born? 

00:29:39 Speaker 3 

I was born in Moosejaw. 

00:29:40 Speaker 3 

But I. 

00:29:45 Speaker 3 

While all my school life in Saskatoon and I used to chum around with a chap by the name of Vanesse. 

00:29:54 Speaker 3 

This is a a big family and I guess I spent more time there than I did really at home and. 

00:30:03 Speaker 3 

Art was the school chum. 

00:30:07 Speaker 3 

But he had a brother. 

00:30:11 Speaker 3 

And Tom, he played around with radio. 

00:30:16 Speaker 3 

I guess he would be one of the first in Saskatoon to have a transmitter on phone. 

00:30:23 Speaker 3 

An amateur sat. 

00:30:26 Speaker 3 

And it just so happened if I was there. 

00:30:29 Speaker 3 

Tom had this gear up in his bedroom and he’d want to hand, he’d holler down. 

00:30:34 Speaker 3 

Anybody down there can help me so I’d wander up and he’s in behind and he’d stick me on the mic. 

00:30:41 Speaker 3 

And he’d say now read something as what do you want me to read? 

00:30:46 Speaker 3 

There’s a newspaper read that, he said. 

00:30:49 Speaker 3 

I want to check while the microphone is open and I kind of got interested in it that way. 

00:30:57 Speaker 3 

And then when I went out to the coast. 

00:31:02 Speaker 3 

There was a friend of mine. 

00:31:06 Speaker 3 

I was listening to the local station, this one particular night when I hear Netherby Irving Britain Netherby. 

00:31:13 Speaker 3 

He’s in Toronto now with he’s a court stenographer. 

00:31:20 Speaker 3 

Shorthand he he was a whiz. 

00:31:22 Speaker 3 

But anyway, he signed it off and I was just up the street, so I thought, well, I’ll just wander down there and I did and. 

00:31:33 Speaker 3 

Next thing I just kind of worked into it. 

00:31:37 Speaker 1 

Just that they they took you in right off the street. 

00:31:39 Speaker 1 

I don’t spoil your dad any training or any in the in the business, no. 

00:31:44 Speaker 1 

Well, nobody did know you all flying, but that’s right. 

00:31:49 Speaker 1 

How long were you on the Vic? 

00:31:54 Speaker 3 

Well, I left. 

00:31:55 Speaker 3 

I was there about a year and a half. 

00:31:58 Speaker 3 

And then I packed that in. 

00:32:00 Speaker 3 

And I headed east. 

00:32:06 Speaker 3 

Or I puttered around. 

00:32:07 Speaker 3 

You know, you didn’t have any money and you grabbed a freight and so on. 

00:32:15 Speaker 3 

I couldn’t see any point in staying out there because every unemployed or young fellow on the Prairies he headed for British Columbia. 

00:32:24 Speaker 3 

But and. 

00:32:30 Speaker 3 

I came down East, I got into Toronto in 37. 

00:32:38 Speaker 3 

I tried all over the city of Toronto advertising agencies, broadcasting stations and so on. 

00:32:47 Speaker 3 

I picked up a little bit of work with CFRB singing. 

00:32:51 Speaker 3 

They had an orchestra. 

00:32:54 Speaker 1 

And that was fairly common in the Ruby’s. 

00:32:57 Speaker 3 

It was. Woohoo. 

00:32:59 Speaker 1 

Because there weren’t any net workers, syndicated programs really available to you? 

00:33:04 Speaker 1 

Well, there was. 

00:33:04 Speaker 1 

There was the old CBC network operating it. 

00:33:11 Speaker 3 

That opened to us about 1928. 

00:33:17 Speaker 3 

But actually I I was heading for England. 

00:33:21 Speaker 3 

Strangely enough, I I could see there was. 

00:33:23 Speaker 3 

Going to be. 

00:33:24 Speaker 3 

A war. 

00:33:26 Speaker 3 

And I thought, well, I’ll get over to England, maybe get into the RCF. 

00:33:31 Speaker 3 

In the early stages, you know before everybody else gets in. 

00:33:35 Speaker 3 

But however, I never made it and Jack Kent Cook was operating this station in those days for Thompson. 

00:33:45 Speaker 3 

They had sold out, just sold out to Frank Squires, this station. 

00:33:51 Speaker 1 

Yes. Yeah. 

00:33:56 Speaker 3 

So I was heading down to eatons’s bargain basement warehouse. I’m going to buy a pair of coveralls and get out of the rat race in Toronto and head back West where people I thought were. 

00:34:11 Speaker 3 

Civilized and. 

00:34:14 Speaker 3 

As I passed the old Goodrum and work station on University Ave. 

00:34:20 Speaker 3 

I walked by it and I stopped. 

00:34:22 Speaker 3 

Now you’re never going to be any closer. 

00:34:24 Speaker 3 

So I went back and headed in. 

00:34:26 Speaker 3 

And as I was about to open the door. 

00:34:28 Speaker 3 

The door opened and out came the manager. 

00:34:31 Speaker 3 

He later went to California and died down there. 

00:34:37 Speaker 3 

And he said, I’ve been looking for you. 

00:34:39 Speaker 3 

And I said, have you got a job? 

00:34:40 Speaker 3 

He says no, I haven’t. 

00:34:41 Speaker 3 

But I know where there is one, so. 

00:34:45 Speaker 3 

Went back into his office and he. 

00:34:47 Speaker 1 

Phoned he’d been in to see him before then. 

00:34:49 Speaker 3 

Yes, I had. 

00:34:51 Speaker 3 

I’ve been everywhere even. 

00:34:56 Speaker 3 

Tried these all night? 

00:34:57 Speaker 3 

Diners washing dishes, trying to get any any? 

00:35:00 Speaker 3 

Well, there weren’t. 

00:35:01 Speaker 3 

There weren’t that many jobs around. 

00:35:02 Speaker 3 

There weren’t used to hang around the star and get the first issue of the paper, and then you throw everything away, but the help wanted. 

00:35:13 Speaker 3 

Check this out in the way you’d go. 

00:35:16 Speaker 3 

You’d get there, and there’d be a queue city block long. 

00:35:19 Speaker 3 

You stand in line and they only go through the first half dozen, and then that’s it, boys. 

00:35:25 Speaker 3 

The jobs taken. 

00:35:28 Speaker 3 

So anyway, we went into his office and he phoned what is now all Canada radio facilities. 

00:35:38 Speaker 3 

It wasn’t called that in those days, and Burt Cairns, who later was manager of CF AC Calgary, he was in charge of this office at the time. 

00:35:54 Speaker 3 

So I went around to see him. This was on a a Monday. I had $6 left. 

00:36:03 Speaker 3 

And he phoned Stratford and Cook said he’d be down on Saturday and find me there at 10:00 o’clock, where he’d interview me. 

00:36:11 Speaker 3 

And so I had to decide, am I going to? 

00:36:14 Speaker 3 

Spend my 6 bucks and stay in Toronto or carry on with the original plan. 

00:36:19 Speaker 3 

So I said. 

00:36:19 Speaker 3 

OK, I’ll. 

00:36:20 Speaker 3 

I’ll be here now. 

00:36:22 Speaker 3 

The Monday this was. 

00:36:24 Speaker 3 

This was Monday that I made this decision. 

00:36:27 Speaker 3 

I had to see cook down there. 

00:36:30 Speaker 3 

So he hired me and said when you? 

00:36:35 Speaker 3 

Planning to get up there and I said, well, I’ll get up there right away. 

00:36:39 Speaker 3 

Where is it? 

00:36:41 Speaker 3 

I’d never heard of Stratford. 

00:36:42 Speaker 3 

Right, well, he said. I’m going up Monday morning. Where are you staying? I told him. He said I’ll meet you on the corner at about 9:30. 

00:36:54 Speaker 3 

So I was there in plenty of time and 10:00 o’clock he hadn’t shown up, so I picked up my bag and was heading back. 

00:37:02 Speaker 3 

I was going to get my room back. 

00:37:04 Speaker 3 

I’d only gotten maybe 20 paces when there’s a honk on the horn and I turned around and there was cook. 

00:37:10 Speaker 3 

So here I am. 

00:37:13 Speaker 3 

And I stayed here until 45, and then I went back West Kelowna. 

00:37:17 Speaker 1 

Where did you go? 

00:37:19 Speaker 1 

What did you do when you hear you’re announcing? 

00:37:21 Speaker 3 

Again, when I came up here, yeah, strictly announcing well, no, not strictly announcing. 

00:37:28 Speaker 3 

You did everything. 

00:37:30 Speaker 3 

I typed logs. 

00:37:32 Speaker 3 

I wrote the copy. 

00:37:34 Speaker 3 

I signed the station on. 

00:37:35 Speaker 3 

I signed the station off. 

00:37:37 Speaker 3 

We used to sign off in the afternoon. 1:15. We were back on the 4:45 in that time he went around selling advertising. 

00:37:48 Speaker 1 

Was it what sort of problems did you have selling advertising? 

00:37:52 Speaker 1 

So it wasn’t easy? 

00:37:54 Speaker 1 

How much? 

00:37:54 Speaker 1 

How much were you charging for a spot? 

00:37:56 Speaker 3 

In those views back then. 

00:38:00 Speaker 1 

Want to be 30 seconds or a minute? 

00:38:03 Speaker 3 

Mostly minutes in those days. 

00:38:06 Speaker 3 

And well, the first month that I was here, the station grossed. 

00:38:13 Speaker 3 

$600.00 for the month and we got up to December, that was October, December. We just went over $1000. So we thought well we’ve arrived and. 

00:38:27 Speaker 3 

It was a slow uphill. 

00:38:30 Speaker 1 

Thing was a station fairly new at that time. 

00:38:33 Speaker 1 

No been here. 

00:38:34 Speaker 1 

Been here quite a few years. 

00:38:36 Speaker 1 

If there originally was that. 

00:38:36 Speaker 3 

Richard 10A K It was one of those old experimentals. Yeah, and about 1930. 

00:38:45 Speaker 3 

Two, I think. 

00:38:47 Speaker 3 

They adopted the CJCS call letters, so it was a commercial station. 

00:38:54 Speaker 1 

Were worth that much live in your home and you used to have people with your. 

00:38:58 Speaker 1 

Me beside yourself then? 

00:39:01 Speaker 3 

We had two announcers of bookkeeper. 

00:39:06 Speaker 3 

An engineer. 

00:39:07 Speaker 3 

And Frank Squires, the chap wounded. 

00:39:11 Speaker 3 

We had five people. 

00:39:14 Speaker 3 

And uh. 

00:39:17 Speaker 3 

You didn’t get holidays or days off. You worked seven days a week and you worked 1617 hours a day. Of course. Mind you, people are people in radio then were in it not. 

00:39:31 Speaker 3 

Particularly because it was a job, but because they liked it, right? 

00:39:36 Speaker 3 

You had to like it or something when you well, yeah. 

00:39:43 Speaker 3 

I guess radio really didn’t get rolling until about 1927. I mean, sure that we had radios prior to that, but. 

00:39:55 Speaker 3 

There weren’t that many radio stations. 

00:39:59 Speaker 3 

You know, it was just the high power stations you could pick up and on the prairies, of course. 

00:40:04 Speaker 3 

We could reach out and get signals, but you had to fiddle around with umpteen dials. 

00:40:12 Speaker 3 

Did you any trouble collecting our accounts? 

00:40:15 Speaker 3 

Well, our bookkeeper, he used to go out Saturday morning with his list of accounts receivable. 

00:40:22 Speaker 3 

Try to collect enough money to meet the payroll. 

00:40:25 Speaker 1 

What? What would the payroll have been in math terms, you said you go 600 a month. Would payroll have been? 

00:40:32 Speaker 3 

Well, I started here at $12.50 a week. 

00:40:37 Speaker 1 

That was a that was a big improvement over Victoria, yes. 

00:40:45 Speaker 1 

And you were evil on on that money. 

00:40:47 Speaker 1 

Sounds like a small amount these days, but you were able on that money and presumed to eat and to provide yourself with lodging. 

00:40:54 Speaker 1 

Oh, yeah. 

00:40:54 Speaker 1 

You back then? 

00:40:56 Speaker 1 

You you got your your room and breakfast for. 

00:41:05 Speaker 3 

$3 a week in laundry. 

00:41:08 Speaker 3 

$3 a week. 

00:41:10 Speaker 3 

A haircut was only 1/4 go to a show for quarter arrow shirts, Dollar 95 and 14 days, and there’s no problem. 

00:41:26 Speaker 1 

Did you what? What sort? 

00:41:27 Speaker 1 

Of programming were you doing? 

00:41:32 Speaker 1 

What would it? 

00:41:33 Speaker 1 

What would these log look like? 

00:41:38 Speaker 3 

Well, it was pretty much music, news, weather. 

00:41:44 Speaker 3 

Birthday club. 

00:41:45 Speaker 3 

You know, we tried to involve the public as much as possible, but oh it it was a popularly well listened to station. 

00:42:01 Speaker 3 

I remember 39. 

00:42:04 Speaker 3 

The CAIB brought out a royal visit spoon. 

00:42:10 Speaker 3 

And we took orders for this and we we. 

00:42:17 Speaker 1 

Ran somewhere around 5000 individual or yeah, spoons. That’s quite quite something in those days too, but it was. 

00:42:29 Speaker 3 

The CAB did it just to sort of prove that. 

00:42:34 Speaker 1 

That radio could sell, you see. 

00:42:35 Speaker 1 

Then we couldn’t mention price. 

00:42:37 Speaker 1 

That didn’t come until. 

00:42:39 Speaker 1 

Well, it was about around about that time. 

00:42:40 Speaker 1 

You got permission to mention Price wasn’t any. 

00:42:42 Speaker 1 

No, no. 

00:42:44 Speaker 3 

It was maybe around 194950. 

00:42:48 Speaker 1 

I didn’t think it held that late. 

00:42:50 Speaker 1 

Matter of fact, I was looking through the CV boot they see. 

00:42:55 Speaker 1 

Whether it was at least, so it was strictly an institutional kind of agritech. 

00:42:58 Speaker 3 

Oh yes, it was, but it worked. 

00:43:04 Speaker 3 

The the big problem was making that initial sale. If if you could make the sale and get the the account on the air, you could pretty well be sure they’d stay and we have accounts today that we sold back in 1937. They’re still with us. 

00:43:22 Speaker 3 

The prices have changed a little bit. 

00:43:24 Speaker 3 

Hey, boy. 

00:43:26 Speaker 3 

Well, we were just talking the other day. 

00:43:28 Speaker 3 

We do more in a month now than we used to do, for instance. 

00:43:35 Speaker 3 

In the year of 1945. 

00:43:39 Speaker 1 

Our gross sales in the month today are greater than the whole year of 45. It was a slow build little thing or the greater in numbers or the IT is the profit margin up as well I would presume would hope it would be not percentage. 

00:44:00 Speaker 3 

You know. 

00:44:01 Speaker 3 

But then, as I say. 

00:44:04 Speaker 3 

When you worked along with the staff four or five, six people. 

00:44:11 Speaker 1 

All of that you stay working seven days a week. Sure, 52 weeks a year. 

00:44:16 Speaker 1 

Well, you were on air. 

00:44:17 Speaker 1 

When did when did you stop being an air person? 

00:44:23 Speaker 3 

I left here in the fall of 45. I went out to Kelowna on a 2 year contract. 

00:44:30 Speaker 3 

And when when I got out there. 

00:44:34 Speaker 3 

Is really when I stopped being on the air. 

00:44:37 Speaker 1 

You know this manager? 

00:44:39 Speaker 1 

That’s the yeah. 

00:44:41 Speaker 3 

And I came back in 47. 

00:44:45 Speaker 3 

I walked in to see Mr. 

00:44:50 Speaker 3 

And I said I’m looking for a job and he said you’re hired, I said, what do you want me. 

00:44:54 Speaker 3 

To do, he said. 

00:44:54 Speaker 3 

I want you to go home. 

00:44:56 Speaker 3 

For two or three days, just listen to the station then, he says. 

00:44:59 Speaker 3 

You come on and tell me where you. 

00:45:00 Speaker 3 

Think you’re going? 

00:45:01 Speaker 3 

To fit. 

00:45:02 Speaker 3 

So I did that and I came in, I said sales. 

00:45:06 Speaker 3 

I said everything sounds good, but you need more sponsors, right? 

00:45:10 Speaker 3 

And so that that would appeal to an owner. 

00:45:14 Speaker 3 

Yeah. So that’s where and and sales leads to management. It was 4748 and he took a bad heart attack and. 

00:45:26 Speaker 3 

So I pretty well carried on everything from that point, but I never did really stop being on the air. 

00:45:34 Speaker 3 

I mean even today. 

00:45:36 Speaker 3 

That we have accounts in this town who want me to tape their commercials. 

00:45:42 Speaker 1 

So I still do some not, not that many back in the days when you started, of course, everything was alive. 

00:45:49 Speaker 1 

Did you ever have any bad experiences on Earth? 

00:45:53 Speaker 1 

And because it runs in my mind that at least one time, one of the great joys of the business was to make the airman break. 

00:46:02 Speaker 3 

Yeah, they used to try that. 

00:46:05 Speaker 3 


00:46:08 Speaker 3 

We had a chat. 

00:46:10 Speaker 3 

He worked here while he staszko he’s manager of Zed BM in Bermuda now and. 

00:46:18 Speaker 3 

Wally was the sort of guy he never woke up until he was coming into the station. 

00:46:27 Speaker 3 

And he’d be coming up the street, putting his tie on, and so on. 

00:46:33 Speaker 3 

And then he get in, he get his news together. 

00:46:39 Speaker 3 

For the 8:00 o’clock news. 

00:46:40 Speaker 3 

And then he’d go into the studio and read it all over and the morning man would always pose a question to him and open his mic. 

00:46:54 Speaker 3 

This particular morning he’d been up Mitchell to visit girlfriend. 

00:46:58 Speaker 3 

I don’t know. 

00:47:00 Speaker 3 

And he had to hitchhike home and walk most of the way, I guess. 

00:47:05 Speaker 3 

And he was tired. 

00:47:06 Speaker 3 

He put his head down home to sleep. 

00:47:10 Speaker 3 

And this was Jack Haney was our morning man. 

00:47:17 Speaker 3 

He put the question to him and there was no reply and he looked through the window and he shut off and Mike and he said, why doesn’t a sleepy ****** go home to bed at night? 

00:47:28 Speaker 3 

But what he had done instead of shutting stasko. 

00:47:31 Speaker 3 

Instead of shutting shutting off his own mic, he shuts task, goes mic off and his own mic was on full volume and this went out beautifully well. 

00:47:40 Speaker 3 

Today, you know that’s nothing. You hear this all the time. You hear the four letter words and people pay no attention but back then, which was about 1941 or two by. 

00:47:55 Speaker 3 

All hell broke loose the. 

Part 2


00:00:02 Speaker 1 

People pay no attention but back then, which was about 1941 or two by. 

00:00:11 Speaker 1 

All hell broke loose the. 

00:00:16 Speaker 1 

Police station for getting calls the Bell Telephone they had was the operator system and their switchboard lit up. 

00:00:24 Speaker 1 

The they were phoning the. 

00:00:29 Speaker 1 

Ministerial association. 

00:00:32 Speaker 1 

They were trying to phone us and we had to take to hanging off the air for a week until this quietened down. 

00:00:40 Speaker 1 

But it’s the way it was. 

00:00:45 Speaker 2 

You didn’t swear? 

00:00:47 Speaker 2 

Oh, gosh, no. 

00:00:48 Speaker 2 

Did you or did you but did anything ever happen to you in in that vein? 

00:00:51 Speaker 2 

Did you muffa line or muffa song for instance, when you were back in Vic? 

00:00:56 Speaker 2 

Well, so long. 

00:00:57 Speaker 2 

The middle. 

00:00:58 Speaker 2 

I forget the words. 

00:00:59 Speaker 1 

Yeah, well, there was only one real bad experience there and we were doing. 

00:01:04 Speaker 1 

We were, we were doing this show from a local theater. 

00:01:08 Speaker 1 

The thing had developed. 

00:01:11 Speaker 1 

To quite a large production and. 

00:01:17 Speaker 1 

We were putting this show on from a local theater and the flood lights here you see, and I had a top hat and I had the words in the bottom of the hat and somebody tripped over a car. 

00:01:32 Speaker 1 

Which put a flood back out here that gave me the light in the hat and put this flood light on. 

00:01:39 Speaker 1 

And of course I couldn’t see into the hat because I was blinded with these lights. 

00:01:45 Speaker 1 

Here we are in the middle of the thing. 

00:01:49 Speaker 1 

Apparently I began to talk. 

00:01:51 Speaker 1 

And I talked my way out of it until I got the light tonight, got back on. 

00:01:56 Speaker 2 

I don’t believe at this day. 

00:01:57 Speaker 2 

Do you remember what? 

00:01:58 Speaker 1 

You said no, no idea at all. 

00:02:02 Speaker 2 

So they show. 

00:02:03 Speaker 2 

Must go on there you were when you were. 

00:02:08 Speaker 2 

When you’re doing advertising too, again, the commercials were live. 

00:02:12 Speaker 1 

And this. 

00:02:12 Speaker 2 

They weren’t transcribed. 

00:02:13 Speaker 2 

What did you do about sound effects? 

00:02:16 Speaker 2 

Do you have any or was it all copy announcer? 

00:02:18 Speaker 1 

Copy, just start announcer copy. 

00:02:21 Speaker 1 

We used to spin a disc. 

00:02:24 Speaker 1 

And fade the disc and then come in with a commercial with a musical background but. 

00:02:32 Speaker 1 

You needed four hands, you know, because you were announcer operator and extra staff. 

00:02:40 Speaker 1 

Oh, no. 

00:02:41 Speaker 1 

And you fit your commercials in. 

00:02:43 Speaker 1 

But you you rehearsed them. 

00:02:51 Speaker 1 

You you just didn’t take a chance on hitting alive. 

00:02:57 Speaker 1 

At least the commercial cold you. 

00:03:00 Speaker 1 

You went over the thing before. 

00:03:03 Speaker 1 

And but that was another thing we learned to read as kids. 

00:03:07 Speaker 1 

That was our main source of entertainment was reading that. 

00:03:12 Speaker 1 

But today, it’s pretty impossible. 

00:03:19 Speaker 2 

Hugh Bremner was saying that he used to and when he started out, he used to stand at a lecture and he found that even today that he would really prefer to do this, except that nobody does it anymore because it’s better for his projection, yeah. 

00:03:32 Speaker 2 

Did you have the same? 

00:03:33 Speaker 1 

Kind of experience. 

00:03:34 Speaker 1 

No, simply because we were announcer operator and you were sitting here. 

00:03:41 Speaker 1 

And there’s your turntables. 

00:03:43 Speaker 1 

And your mic switches and. 

00:03:46 Speaker 1 

All your national commercials came in on these big disks and you had to get them queued up. 

00:03:54 Speaker 1 

And the equipment that we had in those days too, the needle went in at a slant. 

00:04:00 Speaker 1 

So that you couldn’t back queue. 

00:04:03 Speaker 1 

Now you see the needle is upright and they put it on. 

00:04:07 Speaker 1 

Turn the table on till they hit the music. 

00:04:09 Speaker 1 

Then they just backed the record up on what we had to do, we would. 

00:04:15 Speaker 1 

Put the disc on with the label horizontal. 

00:04:20 Speaker 1 

And you’d put the needle on. Turn the table on, and you’d count the revolutions. And they were 78 RPM’s. 

00:04:28 Speaker 1 

Until you hit the music, then you would stop the thing, line it up again, put your needle in, and if it was five revolutions till you hit the music, then you let her run in four, right? 

00:04:41 Speaker 1 

And then you held, you held the disc, the table was going and. 

00:04:48 Speaker 1 

Then your this one finishes. 

00:04:51 Speaker 1 

This one is queued up and then you take your copy, open your mic and after you mentioned the time and something about the weather, then you went into your commercial and as you finished the commercial you’d let this disc go. 

00:05:08 Speaker 1 

And by the time you’re saying your last word or to hear you let the the disco, then boom, there was the music and then you would fade. 

00:05:21 Speaker 1 

The music to background introduced the selection and bring it up, and then you’re working on this and you have to change your gramophone needle every every plane. 

00:05:30 Speaker 2 

And it only lasted one place. 

00:05:32 Speaker 1 

That’s all we ever played in. 

00:05:34 Speaker 1 

There were steel needles. 

00:05:38 Speaker 2 

Well, that was certainly a different thing to do with the carts and the. 

00:05:44 Speaker 1 

Young people today don’t know how we did it. 

00:05:46 Speaker 1 

No, they really don’t. 

00:05:48 Speaker 1 

Now mind you, we weren’t as busy that from the standpoint of commercial, but you, the individual was far, far busier. 

00:05:59 Speaker 1 

Because when you when. 

00:06:00 Speaker 1 

You had done a four hour shift. 

00:06:03 Speaker 1 

You knew that you had been through the mill, you know. 

00:06:06 Speaker 2 

And I suppose you just began when you began selling. 

00:06:08 Speaker 2 

You just began writing the commercials again. 

00:06:11 Speaker 2 

Nobody told you what was good, bad or indifferent. 

00:06:13 Speaker 2 

You learn by trial on the Earth. 

00:06:15 Speaker 1 

That’s right. 

00:06:17 Speaker 1 

You had something to sell and you would write it up as force as forcefully as you could. 

00:06:27 Speaker 1 

The announcer was going to do it. 

00:06:28 Speaker 1 

You know, I used to tell them, get in front of a mirror and. 

00:06:33 Speaker 1 

Use your hands to emphasize I do it on the board, but I don’t hit the board because everything will jump. 

00:06:55 Speaker 1 

Turned out a lot of broadcasters from here. 

00:06:58 Speaker 1 

Lloyd Robertson on the national right. 

00:07:07 Speaker 1 

They’re all over there. 

00:07:08 Speaker 1 

The country, some in the states, and I couldn’t begin to remember the names, you know, while you go back a little ways of. 

00:07:18 Speaker 1 

And I’m only Parsons. 

00:07:20 Speaker 1 

He was. 

00:07:23 Speaker 1 

He was one of the top newscasters on CF. 

00:07:28 Speaker 1 

CTV network. 

00:07:30 Speaker 1 

And I hired Tony just from a letter. 

00:07:35 Speaker 1 

He worked in a hardware store down in Sarnia, or down that way, just the tone of his letter. 

00:07:42 Speaker 1 

He wanted it so I phoned him and the voice on the phone was enough. 

00:07:50 Speaker 1 

So Tony came up. 

00:07:53 Speaker 1 

Moved on, we we we haven’t been able to hold people as they get to the point that well they go beyond Stratford, they want the Londons, the Hamiltons, the Toronto’s and you just can’t keep them. Tom Bird over in London. 

00:08:12 Speaker 1 

He was from here. 

00:08:17 Speaker 1 

John, trust away. Years back. He that’s his brother is our bookkeeper, accountant. He’s in Montreal now, but at one time, CCFPL had five or six of our announcers. John. Johnny who? 

00:08:36 Speaker 1 

He’s a producer and TV. 

00:08:39 Speaker 1 

English voice. 

00:08:40 Speaker 1 

Ohh Yes, Phillips Phillips was he? 

00:08:44 Speaker 1 

John left here and went over to London. 

00:08:49 Speaker 1 

We even got one of our receptionists. 

00:08:53 Speaker 2 

That’s going a little farther down the. 

00:08:55 Speaker 1 

Well, with Tom bird. 

00:08:57 Speaker 1 

When Tom came in and. 

00:08:59 Speaker 1 

Said he was going to London and I said, what are they going to pay you? 

00:09:04 Speaker 1 

He told me and I said, are you nuts? 

00:09:06 Speaker 1 

You’re not going over that. 

00:09:07 Speaker 1 

So I picked up the phone and called the guy. 

00:09:10 Speaker 1 

I said I hear you’re hiring Tom Bird from us. 

00:09:13 Speaker 1 

Yeah, we are staying. 

00:09:14 Speaker 1 

I’m sorry. 

00:09:15 Speaker 1 

Well, I said you’re only paying him so much. 

00:09:17 Speaker 1 

And they said, well, that’s the figure of greed. 

00:09:20 Speaker 1 

And I said forget it. 

00:09:22 Speaker 1 

You give them another $15.00 a month or you don’t get them. OK, what do you think’s the biggest change in broadcasting that you’ve been in? 

00:09:36 Speaker 1 

The regulatory body. 

00:09:40 Speaker 2 

The establishment of this BBG and now the CRT site or CRT TTC, I guess, yeah, yeah. 

00:09:47 Speaker 2 

I would say that is. 

00:09:49 Speaker 2 

Do you think that’s a good step for a four week step? 

00:09:52 Speaker 2 

I know that private broadcaster for years wanted a separate body. 

00:09:59 Speaker 1 

I often thought the private broadcasters were just. 

00:10:04 Speaker 1 

Because the CBC was. 

00:10:08 Speaker 1 

Our judge, they set the rules, they. 

00:10:12 Speaker 1 

Judge the rules and they were also in competition. 

00:10:17 Speaker 1 

I often thought the private broadcasters were hollering for this separate regulatory body just to embarrass the government or the CBC. 

00:10:28 Speaker 1 

Beardall down in Chatham. 

00:10:31 Speaker 1 

When when it was agreed there would be the control would be taken away from CBC and would be set up under the BBG, he sent a telegram down saying that in spite of the. 

00:10:46 Speaker 1 

Resolution that was passed by the CAB. 

00:10:50 Speaker 1 

He was not in favor of it. 

00:10:56 Speaker 1 

Often felt bad, but anyway, now we have the separate regulatory body. 

00:11:02 Speaker 1 

You see, the CBC were never that pure either, and then they broke rules. 

00:11:07 Speaker 1 

They couldn’t spank us too hard. 

00:11:10 Speaker 1 

But it’s a new ball game now. 

00:11:13 Speaker 2 

Or you don’t. 

00:11:14 Speaker 2 

Have an FM license here so you wouldn’t be affected by the new FM. 

00:11:20 Speaker 2 

Have you been found? 

00:11:21 Speaker 2 

You’ve been able to live fairly well with the Canadian content. 

00:11:24 Speaker 1 

Or yeah, yeah, it hasn’t been. 

00:11:28 Speaker 1 

That big a problem, as a matter of fact, I think that we have exceeded the regulation requirement. 

00:11:38 Speaker 2 

Have been helpful to the Canadian industry both broadcasting and entertainment and or music whenever well. 

00:11:51 Speaker 1 

Take Anne Murray, one of the brightest, most listenable stars. 

00:11:59 Speaker 1 

In some time, because of the Canadian Content regulation. 

00:12:06 Speaker 1 

Her records were played and played and played overplayed, I think. 

00:12:15 Speaker 1 

Gordon Lightfoot was another. 

00:12:18 Speaker 1 

And you can suffer from overexposure, right? 

00:12:24 Speaker 1 

So there’s a lot of. 

00:12:27 Speaker 1 

Not only Canadian, but American too, that is. 

00:12:31 Speaker 1 

In my opinion, real garbage. 

00:12:35 Speaker 1 

I don’t think this is a new phenomenon. 

00:12:37 Speaker 1 

You know, it’s always been true. 

00:12:40 Speaker 1 

But see in in the old days of radio, the rule of thumb was if you could whistle the tune plant. 

00:12:49 Speaker 1 

Because in other words, it wasn’t that intricate. 

00:12:51 Speaker 1 

And if you like to whistle it, then. 

00:13:02 Speaker 1 

I’ve gotten away from programming per se. 

00:13:09 Speaker 1 

I’m not familiar with the modern day music. 

00:13:14 Speaker 1 

I wonder if anybody is. 

00:13:16 Speaker 1 

Yeah, but I I still know it too that I like. 

00:13:23 Speaker 1 

They seem to be coming back to it a little bit. 

00:13:25 Speaker 1 

There’s a lot of the old tunes coming in. 

00:13:27 Speaker 1 

We hear the voice say, Gee, that’s just. 

00:13:29 Speaker 1 

Smashing tune the brand new one that’s brand new that came up 1929 and 30. 

00:13:34 Speaker 2 

And they look at you and say I didn’t. 

00:13:36 Speaker 2 

Know you were that old. 

00:13:38 Speaker 1 

Yeah, well. 

00:14:39 Speaker 1 

OK at a. 

00:14:39 Speaker 3 

Level I’ll use a machine like this every day. 

00:14:43 Speaker 3 

Now these it’s not a Matic level on this, I just want to make sure we are recording, got it on the brilliant, I mean the the treble high. 

00:14:52 Speaker 3 

Yeah, because I tend to have a heavy voice that doesn’t have many highs. 

00:15:00 Speaker 3 

Might as well straight up with biographical bit. 

00:15:02 Speaker 3 

Jim, when did you get into the into the radio business? 

00:15:06 Speaker 3 

I think I spoke my first words into a live microphone. 

00:15:11 Speaker 3 

On October the 12th, 1936. 

00:15:15 Speaker 3 

At a little station in Brantford known as CPC. 

00:15:20 Speaker 2 

Was Hugh Bremner there when you? 

00:15:21 Speaker 3 

Were, yeah, he was on duty. 

00:15:25 Speaker 3 

And I had known him in high school. 

00:15:27 Speaker 3 

I think he was a class or two ahead of me. 

00:15:30 Speaker 3 

And I can say at the outset that they dealt very much. 

00:15:35 Speaker 3 

If I would have had any kind of career in broadcasting, had it not been for Hugh Bremner because he encouraged me? 

00:15:43 Speaker 3 

And he helped me and at one stage when I was out of it. 

00:15:48 Speaker 3 

It was Hugh Brenner who caused me to be brought back in. 

00:15:53 Speaker 2 

Well, you heard what? 

00:15:54 Speaker 2 

What happened? 

00:15:56 Speaker 3 

The man that ran the station I had gone in there as a singer. 

00:16:02 Speaker 3 

Curiously, I was always much more interested in music than I was in. 

00:16:07 Speaker 3 

Broadcasting the news. 

00:16:13 Speaker 3 

As I recall it. 

00:16:14 Speaker 3 

A newscaster called Karl Roadhouse had finished the newscast and he had put it on the table or a lecture, and I should say they stood up in those days to broadcast everything. 

00:16:27 Speaker 3 

And I was very nervous and I was waiting for my accompanist to come in and play the piano. 

00:16:33 Speaker 3 

And I didn’t know what the hell else to do. 

00:16:35 Speaker 3 

And so I picked up this newscast, which had, when left lying there and began to read it. 

00:16:43 Speaker 3 

And a guy called Jerry Kelly, who I had grown up with, who lived in a neighborhood where I grew, he was a. 

00:16:49 Speaker 3 

Technician, he opened the pot in the control room and. 

00:16:56 Speaker 3 

I guess he started listening to me just for the hell of it. 

00:16:59 Speaker 3 

And this manager of the station came by and I guess he. 

00:17:04 Speaker 3 

Must have got an idea and he said, hey, this kid hasn’t got too bad a voice and he began to talk to me and he said, well, you know, we. 

00:17:14 Speaker 3 

Could use you in the morning if you want to come in say from about 10:00 o’clock until noon. 

00:17:21 Speaker 3 

And we can’t pay you anything, of course. 

00:17:24 Speaker 3 

But think of all the marvellous experience you will get. 

00:17:27 Speaker 3 

Matter of fact, you should be paying us, he said. 

00:17:30 Speaker 3 

Would you be interested? 

00:17:31 Speaker 3 

And I said sure. 

00:17:32 Speaker 3 

So I came in every morning and spelled Huey off. 

00:17:37 Speaker 3 

He usually come in about 7 and I would come in about 10 and. 

00:17:41 Speaker 3 

In those days, we had programs that would go half hour or 15 minutes or something like that. 

00:17:46 Speaker 3 

Just just a matter of some records and the and the newscast. 

00:17:52 Speaker 3 

The difference was that the 15 minute program might be 1 singer for 15 minutes, or one piano player for 15 minutes, or an orchestra for 1/2 hour with a certain type of music and. 

00:18:05 Speaker 3 

One guy would spell these. We’d spell each other off throughout the morning, and I don’t think it’s any secret that Hugh wasn’t making the magnificent sum of $16.00 a week. 

00:18:18 Speaker 3 

And I was making nothing a week, and that went on for about a about a year. 

00:18:25 Speaker 3 

And in the evenings I had lied a bit about my age and I got a job as a beer waiter in the Kirby House and rent when I was, I think, 18. 

00:18:36 Speaker 3 

But I was tall and looked a little older, so I made $8.00 a week slinging beer from about. 

00:18:43 Speaker 3 

I think it was six or 7:00 o’clock at night till midnight, and then I would go into the radio station in the morning and work for free. 

00:18:55 Speaker 3 

And at the end of the year, I must have said something that offended the guy, the manager, because he fired me. 

00:19:01 Speaker 3 

He never told me why. 

00:19:02 Speaker 2 

How can you how can you fire you when you’re isn’t paying you? 

00:19:05 Speaker 3 

Yeah, that was a shocking thing. 

00:19:06 Speaker 3 

When I, when I look back on it now, it’s pretty ridiculous, but remember, this was 36 in the middle of the depression. 

00:19:14 Speaker 3 

And and in the in our society in those days, it was a great. 

00:19:20 Speaker 3 

To be fired, you know, you just didn’t get fired. 

00:19:22 Speaker 3 

It was a terrible thing. 

00:19:24 Speaker 3 

Even when you were working for nothing. 

00:19:25 Speaker 3 

It was a bad thing. 

00:19:28 Speaker 3 

Anyway, he fired me and. 

00:19:32 Speaker 3 

The guy who took the job. 

00:19:36 Speaker 3 

Wouldn’t put up with the guff of this man handed out and he was a martinet. 

00:19:41 Speaker 3 

Very unreasonable person, and the guy who took the job finally couldn’t take it and he just told him to stuff it and walked out and then they were stuck. 

00:19:53 Speaker 3 

They had only. 

00:19:55 Speaker 3 

And so they were going to go to Kitchener and bring in a guy. 

00:20:00 Speaker 3 

And he says, what do you want to do that for? 

00:20:02 Speaker 3 

You got vancuren right here. 

00:20:04 Speaker 3 

He knows the board. 

00:20:05 Speaker 3 

He knows the whole operation. 

00:20:07 Speaker 3 

He can come in tomorrow morning. 

00:20:09 Speaker 3 

And and take over. 

00:20:10 Speaker 3 

I won’t have to break anybody in. 

00:20:11 Speaker 3 

And besides, he deserves a chance. 

00:20:14 Speaker 3 

And Hugh argued very vigorously on my behalf. 

00:20:19 Speaker 3 

And the the manager gave in his name was Don Buchanan. 

00:20:24 Speaker 3 

And he said all right, we’ll try him. 

00:20:26 Speaker 3 

So he brought this Andy guy. 

00:20:28 Speaker 3 

And I and I in for for an evening 6:00 o’clock we all donated every half hour till midnight, knowing full well that Buchanan was sitting home listening to both of us, probably with his wife, you know, and deciding which one of these two guys do you like the better? 

00:20:48 Speaker 3 

Because pick him and we will hire him for $15 a week, which is what I got. 

00:20:53 Speaker 3 

When I started. 

00:20:55 Speaker 3 

That would have been about early 37 by that time, I guess, or late 37, I suppose. I’m not just sure. 

00:21:07 Speaker 2 

So obviously you’re the one that got picked out of that. 

00:21:10 Speaker 3 

Yeah, I was. 

00:21:14 Speaker 3 

I don’t think he did it. 

00:21:17 Speaker 3 

Any reasons other than the fact that? 

00:21:21 Speaker 3 

He had to bring the other guy in from Kitchener. 

00:21:23 Speaker 3 

I was already there. 

00:21:25 Speaker 3 

It was better. 

00:21:26 Speaker 3 

The devil you know than the devil you don’t know. 

00:21:29 Speaker 3 

I think it was that and plus of course the pressure from Hugh Brenner and also Jerry Kelly who. 

00:21:39 Speaker 3 

Had a lot of influence and they went a long way to persuade him. 

00:21:43 Speaker 3 

And I work that way until the summer of 38. 

00:21:48 Speaker 3 

And I want it out of there so badly. 

00:21:50 Speaker 3 

You couldn’t believe it. 

00:21:51 Speaker 3 

I mean, I was just. 

00:21:53 Speaker 3 

Learning, trying my best to learn a little bit about the business so I could get out. 

00:21:59 Speaker 3 

And I did. 

00:22:03 Speaker 2 

You went from there? 

00:22:04 Speaker 2 

Down to Windsor. 

00:22:05 Speaker 3 

Then yeah, there was another guy that had gone to school with Hugh and I in Brantford named John Stinson, and he had got a job at CKLW in Windsor for considerably more money. 

00:22:18 Speaker 3 

But we thought in those days. 

00:22:21 Speaker 3 

Then where it was being paid in Branford. 

00:22:25 Speaker 3 

And then John had gone across the river to WJR Detroit, and we thought that was marvelous. 

00:22:32 Speaker 2 

That was the big time. 

00:22:33 Speaker 3 

Oh yeah, we thought so. 

00:22:35 Speaker 3 

And he’d come home periodically to Brantford and. 

00:22:39 Speaker 3 

Brag it up. 

00:22:41 Speaker 3 

So I had an opportunity to go to. 

00:22:45 Speaker 3 

CHML Hamilton or CKLW and I didn’t know which which to take, except that. 

00:22:53 Speaker 3 

Senator Hardy, the late Senator Hardy, had a idiot son running the station. 

00:22:58 Speaker 3 

Who was who knew nothing about broadcasting? 

00:23:02 Speaker 3 

But he knew a little bit about electronics and his main. 

00:23:06 Speaker 3 

Pleasure in life was wiring the seat in the lobby of the radio station so that anybody that sat down would come up real fast when he pushed the button and that would crack him up. 

00:23:15 Speaker 3 

I had gone there. 

00:23:16 Speaker 3 

He had done that to me and I didn’t want to work for him if I could possibly avoid it. 

00:23:20 Speaker 2 

That’s right. 

00:23:20 Speaker 3 

So it’s in Hamilton. 

00:23:23 Speaker 3 

So I went to. 

00:23:24 Speaker 3 

It’s very strange thing happened in Windsor. 

00:23:27 Speaker 3 

I wrote a letter I knew nobody. 

00:23:29 Speaker 3 

I even misspelled of station manager’s name and told him I’d be in town on a certain day and I asked for an audition. 

00:23:37 Speaker 3 

And when I got there, the program director was a guy I had also known in Brantford, and he had worked in a CHML and Hamilton. 

00:23:47 Speaker 3 

That was Campbell Ritchie, and he had been a singer and and an announcer too. 

00:24:00 Speaker 3 

They told me. 

00:24:01 Speaker 3 

Then they said, well, we don’t need any announcers at the moment. 

00:24:08 Speaker 3 

Do you know anything about classical music? 

00:24:11 Speaker 3 

And I said yes. 

00:24:12 Speaker 3 

If I know anything, I probably know more about that than than most other things, which was sort of true. 

00:24:20 Speaker 3 

And they said, well, you know, it has just happened. 

00:24:25 Speaker 3 

Henry Ford has just fired Truman Bradley. 

00:24:27 Speaker 3 

You know, Truman Bradley in those days was a big star. 

00:24:31 Speaker 3 

I used to fly him in every uh. 

00:24:34 Speaker 3 

Sunday evening from Chicago to do the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. 

00:24:39 Speaker 3 

In the Masonic Temple, and it was a vehicle for. 

00:24:44 Speaker 3 

A guy called Campbell who ran the Dearborn Press to. 

00:24:48 Speaker 3 

Put forth the extreme right wing views of the old Henry Ford and Old Henry was a very he pride in everybody’s life, and he found that Bradley when he came to Detroit, did a lot of things that he’s an approve of. 

00:25:01 Speaker 3 

So he fired him. 

00:25:03 Speaker 3 

And instantly all the stations in the Detroit area then started out to get this account. 

00:25:09 Speaker 3 

And even if you didn’t win, it was very important that you enter or that you try for it. 

00:25:15 Speaker 3 

And CKLW did not have anybody who did this kind of announcing. 

00:25:20 Speaker 3 

And so they said make a record for us and we’ll submit it. 

00:25:26 Speaker 3 

It will submit you as our man and I said, well, OK, why not? 

00:25:30 Speaker 3 

So they gave me the standard audition that the advertising agency was handing out, and I made a record and they sent it to the agency. 

00:25:39 Speaker 3 

And I didn’t win. 

00:25:41 Speaker 3 

But it must have come awfully close. 

00:25:44 Speaker 3 

And this impressed them. 

00:25:46 Speaker 3 

So they said, well, Gee whiz, you know that was. 

00:25:47 Speaker 3 

Pretty good. 

00:25:49 Speaker 3 

The first opening comes we will give you the job. 

00:25:54 Speaker 3 

First opening came when a man named Jack White, who had come from CKB in Brantford. 

00:26:01 Speaker 3 

Or pardon me, in Saint Catharines, where I was born, by the way. 

00:26:05 Speaker 3 

And I’ve gone to CKLW. 

00:26:06 Speaker 3 

He then went to WJR and musical series began again. 

00:26:11 Speaker 3 

And I took Jack’s job at CKLW, which I thought the maximum amount of time I wanted to be there was two years wound up. 

00:26:21 Speaker 3 

And already in my 38th. 

00:26:24 Speaker 3 

Well, what do? 

00:26:25 Speaker 3 

What were you doing when you’re newsmen at the time were chiefly an announcer or? 

00:26:28 Speaker 3 

I was chiefly an announcer doing anything. 

00:26:32 Speaker 3 

Reading spot announcements on station brakes doing in studio programs and those they’ve had live studio shows with live orchestras, live singers, and all sorts of things. 

00:26:44 Speaker 3 

You know, spin record, there were no disc jockeys, by the way. 

00:26:46 Speaker 3 

As such, we didn’t have them. 

00:26:48 Speaker 3 

You were an announcer. 

00:26:49 Speaker 3 

And if somebody didn’t show up to do an with Kathy did that. 

00:26:53 Speaker 3 

So we did everything I don’t know of anything. 

00:26:56 Speaker 3 

I did not do except play by play sports. 

00:26:59 Speaker 3 

That’s the only thing I don’t recall ever having done. 

00:27:04 Speaker 2 

But Hugh was saying that at one time when he was in Bradford, of course they had to do the commercials live as well as everything else, and he was recollecting 1 coal account they had with imported coal out of a scuttle and into another one to make the sound of the coal being delivered. 

00:27:20 Speaker 2 

Did you have any experience with that kind of? 

00:27:22 Speaker 3 

Yes, I did. 

00:27:24 Speaker 3 

There was a. 

00:27:25 Speaker 3 

It was in Windsor, curiously. 

00:27:29 Speaker 3 

It was on Sunday afternoon, one of the big things. 

00:27:33 Speaker 3 

Oh, the spot that Hugh meant was. 

00:27:36 Speaker 3 

I remember that that was a local Brantford coal dealer. 

00:27:40 Speaker 3 

But yeah, we used to do across sorts of things like that, but the one I remember. 

00:27:45 Speaker 3 

Vividly was the shadows Half Hour network show with the shadow, who at that time was being played by Orson Welles. 

00:27:55 Speaker 3 

And locally he was sponsored by. 

00:28:00 Speaker 3 

An outfit? Excuse me. 

00:28:04 Speaker 3 

Called blue coal, all it was was anthracite that somebody had slapped a. 

00:28:10 Speaker 3 

Coat of Blue wash on I guess it would be like whitewashing when it was blue. 

00:28:15 Speaker 3 

And blue coral was supposed to be something. 

00:28:18 Speaker 3 

And we used to have to do live spots for blue coal and one guy, not myself, but another guy that I remember. 

00:28:26 Speaker 3 

A very prissy guy who was very finicky and and sort of straight laced and he had the the spot this day and he had done the opening. 

00:28:37 Speaker 3 

Commercial quite well. 

00:28:40 Speaker 3 

And he had a middle and a close to do or blue coal, and the coal was supposed to be tossed in the scuttle and down the chute. 

00:28:49 Speaker 3 

And he was supposed to come on saying, folks. 

00:28:53 Speaker 3 

Don’t sit and shiver. 

00:28:56 Speaker 3 

Get blue coal is Sunday afternoon. 

00:28:59 Speaker 3 

Instead of that, he said, folks don’t **** and silver. 

00:29:02 Speaker 3 

And he and he froze right there, and it went out and and it was awful and. 

00:29:03 Speaker 2 


00:29:09 Speaker 3 

Those were the dangers of doing live spots, but you had no choice because we had no tape recorders and it was time consuming and expensive to put them on a disk because somebody had to run the disk. 

00:29:23 Speaker 3 

And so you either did it right or you blew it, and if you blew enough of them, you were in trouble. 

00:29:29 Speaker 2 

Or did you ever have any direction? 

00:29:31 Speaker 3 

Oh, sure. 

00:29:32 Speaker 3 

My share. 

00:29:33 Speaker 3 

Oh yeah. 

00:29:33 Speaker 3 

More than my share, probably. 

00:29:36 Speaker 3 

But I would make dumb mistakes because I. 

00:29:39 Speaker 3 

In those days, I was not a good reader. 

00:29:43 Speaker 3 

And the reason I was not a good reader, looking back on it now was pretty simple. 

00:29:50 Speaker 3 

And it’s kind of tragic that. 

00:29:54 Speaker 3 

But even today. 

00:29:56 Speaker 3 

Young guys aren’t properly trained by anybody. 

00:29:59 Speaker 3 

You just pick it up here and there. 

00:30:01 Speaker 3 

There is nobody who’s a real pro, who knows that teaches them anything. 

00:30:07 Speaker 3 

They sort of imitate somebody else or. 

00:30:10 Speaker 3 

Or you you go through it by trial and error and it’s it’s very unfortunate the young guys aren’t even taught to work. 

00:30:17 Speaker 3 

I don’t think it’s just our job in radio broadcasting, but or television, even. 

00:30:24 Speaker 3 

The whole right across our. 

00:30:25 Speaker 3 

Whole spectrum, I don’t think people are taught the fundamentals. 

00:30:33 Speaker 2 

So how long was it then before you got got off the off the street and into so-called middle maze when you? 

00:30:40 Speaker 3 

Oh, that was many years. 

00:30:43 Speaker 3 

What happened curiously? 

00:30:44 Speaker 3 

I mean, you don’t even vacuums as you know. 

00:30:48 Speaker 3 

This was in January of 39 that I went to officially to CKLW and eight months later. 

00:30:58 Speaker 3 

We were at war. 

00:31:00 Speaker 3 

You know September, there was about well, just the other day. What what what would that make it? 39. Yeah, I don’t know. 3937 years ago. 

00:31:06 Speaker 2 

35th anniversary 35th. 

00:31:21 Speaker 3 

Then you know you hadn’t. 

00:31:25 Speaker 3 

Much choice, you know. 

00:31:26 Speaker 3 

You go join the army or. 

00:31:28 Speaker 3 

The Air Force you stand and wait to get called up. 

00:31:31 Speaker 3 

We didn’t know what to do. 

00:31:34 Speaker 3 

One of the other announcers, 2 of the other announcers that I work with, Cam Ritchie, who eventually became president of the station, and Bud Lynch, who both of whom had come from Hamilton Bud. 

00:31:46 Speaker 3 

Did the hockey broadcast for the Red Wings from many, many. 

00:31:51 Speaker 3 

They enlisted in the Essex Scottish as officers. 

00:31:54 Speaker 3 

They had the right connections or something. 

00:31:57 Speaker 3 

One of our technicians was a major in the reserve of that regiment and they got commissioned. 

00:32:03 Speaker 3 

But I didn’t do that. 

00:32:03 Speaker 3 

I I just walked over with the office boy and signed up as a private. 

00:32:09 Speaker 3 

And my military career only lasted about three or four weeks, and then I was back at the station. 

00:32:16 Speaker 2 

For physical reasons. 

00:32:17 Speaker 3 

Yeah, I had ulcers and hemorrhaging ulcers and it just happened. 

00:32:24 Speaker 3 

That the medical officer in the regiment was also. 

00:32:29 Speaker 3 

The Doctor Who practiced across the street from the radio station, and I didn’t go to him, but he knew me. 

00:32:37 Speaker 3 

We frequently had lunch together or in in company with other people, and he said, what the hell are you doing here? 

00:32:43 Speaker 3 

And I said, well, you know, come to join the army. 

00:32:46 Speaker 3 

He said bag it because we don’t need you around here. 

00:32:49 Speaker 3 

He said. 

00:32:50 Speaker 3 

I said, why not? 

00:32:51 Speaker 3 

He said. 

00:32:51 Speaker 3 

Well, you know, you’re around Canada here. 

00:32:57 Speaker 3 

Getting decent food and things he said you might be. 

00:32:59 Speaker 3 

All right. 

00:33:00 Speaker 3 

But we were to send you to, as he I remember, he said North Africa, because at that time Montgomery was well, I think we were getting whacked in Africa. 

00:33:09 Speaker 3 

And he said to you, you know, we couldn’t afford to have you crack up. 

00:33:13 Speaker 3 

I was quite happy about that because I wasn’t overly eager to go to war anyway, and I think that most of the guys who are honest. 

00:33:23 Speaker 3 

Those that are still around will admit that nobody really was. 

00:33:29 Speaker 3 

Many of them didn’t have anything else to do, or they were too dumb to know what they were getting into and thought it was exciting. 

00:33:36 Speaker 3 

At least I think that’s the case. 

00:33:38 Speaker 3 

I have good reason to suspect that’s the case. 

00:33:44 Speaker 2 

So you got your back to the station then? 

00:33:46 Speaker 3 

I went back to the station and then we were frozen in our jobs. 

00:33:50 Speaker 3 

We couldn’t quit. 

00:33:51 Speaker 3 

You couldn’t leave. 

00:33:51 Speaker 3 

You couldn’t do anything. 

00:33:52 Speaker 2 

Declaring an essential occupation. 

00:33:54 Speaker 3 

That’s right. 

00:33:59 Speaker 3 

Excuse me. 

00:34:02 Speaker 3 

Terribly foggy today. 

00:34:03 Speaker 3 

I don’t know what it is that this must be. 

00:34:06 Speaker 3 

Or ragweed season. 

00:34:09 Speaker 3 

Well, we. 

00:34:12 Speaker 3 

We were frozen. 

00:34:14 Speaker 3 

WWJ had offered me a job which I was very interested in. 

00:34:24 Speaker 3 

WJR eventually did offer me a job I wanted to go there. 

00:34:30 Speaker 3 

And originally, but when they offered me the job, it just happened. 

00:34:35 Speaker 3 

That it wasn’t all that great a place I was making more money where I was. 

00:34:41 Speaker 3 

I was curious because I didn’t think it was that way, but it was. 

00:34:46 Speaker 3 

So I said, well, no, I can’t come for the same dough because this doesn’t make any sense. 

00:34:52 Speaker 3 

So I turned the job down and. 

00:34:56 Speaker 3 

I thought, well, eventually I’ll I’ll go over there, but not to this job and. 

00:35:02 Speaker 3 

Then I got married and divorced and married again, and I was paying a lot of alimony. 

00:35:09 Speaker 3 

I was really pinned down pretty much and a lot of the guys were back from overseas and they were getting the priority jobs. 

00:35:17 Speaker 3 

Why not they should. 

00:35:19 Speaker 3 

And so the opportunity wasn’t there to really move ahead. 

00:35:24 Speaker 3 

Or else I didn’t have what exactly would somebody wanted at that time? 

00:35:28 Speaker 3 

Or maybe there were a combination of such factors? 

00:35:32 Speaker 3 

As I recall it and then television loomed its ugly head. 

00:35:40 Speaker 3 

And we didn’t know what to do. 

00:35:42 Speaker 3 

And the guy that ran the station where I worked came to us. 

00:35:46 Speaker 3 

He ran the station on beneficent paternalism. 

00:35:50 Speaker 3 

It was a diametrically opposed to the type of. 

00:35:54 Speaker 3 

Operation that Brantford had run instead of a martinette, we had beneficent paternalism, which was pretty good. 

00:36:03 Speaker 3 

It was more paternal and beneficent, but that was OK because we we was better than what I’ve been used to and he said, well, why don’t you guys stay here? 

00:36:14 Speaker 3 

After all, we are applying for all the franchise to operate a TV station. 

00:36:18 Speaker 3 

If we get it. 

00:36:20 Speaker 3 

You’ll all be in on the ground floor. 

00:36:22 Speaker 3 

Which makes sense too. 

00:36:24 Speaker 3 

And I had been going to Detroit and moonlighting for Ross Roy advertising agency and welding pictures, doing commercials for little movies for commercial spots and TV. 

00:36:38 Speaker 3 

And I was aware of cameras and some of the things you had to do. 

00:36:43 Speaker 3 

And I thought that would be a great idea. 

00:36:46 Speaker 3 

And our senior news people were getting very old. 

00:36:51 Speaker 3 

And I thought, well, this this is it, you know, it’s it makes sense. 

00:36:54 Speaker 3 

Stay here. 

00:36:55 Speaker 3 

You’re in on the ground floor. 

00:36:57 Speaker 3 

And I stayed there and I sure wasn’t on the ground floor. 

00:37:01 Speaker 3 

And as a matter of fact, I almost stayed on the ground floor. 

00:37:06 Speaker 3 

What happened? 

00:37:08 Speaker 3 

Nothing much. 

00:37:13 Speaker 3 

I have been on the show and it got cut for budgetary reasons. 

00:37:18 Speaker 3 

The station, they just, they had gone into television the way they had run radio in block programming and things like this and it was just too expensive. 

00:37:28 Speaker 3 

And they thought that all you had to do was take a picture of a guy. 

00:37:31 Speaker 3 

Reading the newscast. 

00:37:33 Speaker 3 

And in those days, that’s what they did. 

00:37:35 Speaker 3 

And you didn’t have any crew out in the street to speak of, and you had very little film, very few visuals. 

00:37:41 Speaker 3 

If you had a visual, which is a still pic. 

00:37:44 Speaker 3 

And it was pretty primitive. 

00:37:46 Speaker 3 

As we look back on. 

00:37:48 Speaker 3 

And so it got cut for budgetary reasons. 

00:37:52 Speaker 3 

And then I went back into radio. 

00:37:54 Speaker 3 

Then I swung for several years back and forth two or three days in the. 

00:37:58 Speaker 3 

Radio couple of days in TV and and vice versa. 

00:38:03 Speaker 3 

And then the news director got himself summarily dismissed. 

00:38:11 Speaker 3 

And by this time they had told me. 

00:38:13 Speaker 3 

Why don’t you run our FM station? 

00:38:16 Speaker 3 

All we don’t want you to do very much because we haven’t got any budget for it. 

00:38:19 Speaker 3 

You know, just program it separately for a few hours a day and you’ll be the announcer and run anything you want. 

00:38:26 Speaker 3 

And I tried that and it was. 

00:38:28 Speaker 3 

It was brutally hard work trying to do it all alone. 

00:38:35 Speaker 3 

Finally, the news director at the time became they separated. 

00:38:41 Speaker 3 

RKL general by this time owned this station. 

00:38:43 Speaker 3 

That was an American outfit, a subsidiary of General Tire and Rubber. 

00:38:54 Speaker 3 

Or tire and rubber. 

00:38:56 Speaker 3 

And they decided that there were two separate operations, so they. 

00:39:02 Speaker 3 

Made Dick’s Mipe, the radio news director **** now is the same job in CHUM in Toronto. 

00:39:07 Speaker 2 

Show me. 

00:39:10 Speaker 3 

And they gave me the job as a television news director. 

00:39:13 Speaker 3 

But they said don’t do anything, you know, fake it. 

00:39:17 Speaker 3 

We have no budget, we have no people put on a couple of newscasts, we’ll have the booth announcer read them, shoot a little film. 

00:39:23 Speaker 3 

If you get a chance, don’t shoot too much sound on the film because we can’t afford it. 

00:39:27 Speaker 3 

It takes a sound man. 

00:39:29 Speaker 3 

And things like that. 

00:39:30 Speaker 3 

And it was extremely discouraging. 

00:39:33 Speaker 3 

To go through five years of faking it and winging it. 

00:39:37 Speaker 3 

And trying to make something out of nothing. 

00:39:40 Speaker 3 

And then when the Bassat operation came in. 

00:39:45 Speaker 3 

I knew then that I didn’t want any part of management and and administrative type duties that essentially that was what it was and I told them, look, I I really don’t have it for this. 

00:39:57 Speaker 3 

I feel better when I’m in the street. 

00:39:59 Speaker 3 

I really feel better. 

00:40:01 Speaker 3 

I know it doesn’t have the status. 

00:40:03 Speaker 3 

I think I can do it better than I can do anything else and I’m more home in the street, especially in Detroit. 

00:40:13 Speaker 3 

And so they said, OK, you’re a reporter. 

00:40:20 Speaker 3 

It was a hell of a long step down from news director to a reporter, although the money was the same, you know, they didn’t really change the money, but people began to treat me differently. 

00:40:32 Speaker 3 

And I found myself off mailing lists and. 

00:40:36 Speaker 3 

There are all. 

00:40:36 Speaker 3 

Sorts of little things that annoyed the hell out of me. 

00:40:40 Speaker 3 

And it was quite a traumatic experience to suddenly realize that. 

00:40:46 Speaker 3 

Well, I can’t go that route and. 

00:40:49 Speaker 3 

I have to go to. 

00:40:51 Speaker 3 

The route that is my normal bent, I think this present one. 

00:40:56 Speaker 3 

Is my normal bent, but it is strange that. 

00:40:59 Speaker 3 

I was well past 50 before I got into it, and that’s a little too old to be a street man because most of the street men, while the old, the oldest one next to me. 

00:41:12 Speaker 3 

That I work with all the time, as Joe Weaver at. 

00:41:17 Speaker 3 

CBS in Detroit and Joe is 10 years younger than me and Dwayne X Riley. 

00:41:25 Speaker 3 

Well, Dwayne X now would be in his early 40s, so. 

00:41:30 Speaker 3 

We all work the labor beat together and that’s the one that matters in our market and you don’t leave kids. 

00:41:38 Speaker 3 

In on that one, because they mess it up every time. 

00:41:41 Speaker 2 

They don’t understand these as a background or anything else. 

00:41:44 Speaker 3 

Well, of course not. They don’t understand the labor movement. They weren’t even born when the UAW was being formed under Flint in 36 when they were doing sit down strikes. 

00:41:54 Speaker 3 

They have no knowledge of the evolution of the labor movement and the games that are played in some of. 

00:42:00 Speaker 3 

Well, they don’t even understand the Business Standard. 

00:42:02 Speaker 3 

It isn’t that they’re not willing. 

00:42:05 Speaker 3 

It’s just that you can’t learn that overnight. 

00:42:08 Speaker 2 

But what are some of these stories that you’ve covered over the years of stand out, stand out in your mind? 

00:42:14 Speaker 3 

Well, I would say that Detroit. 

00:42:17 Speaker 3 

Well, you know, I did go into the street. 

00:42:21 Speaker 3 

In 43 in June of 43. 

00:42:26 Speaker 3 

When they had the rioting in Detroit, unfortunately we didn’t have tape recorders. 

00:42:32 Speaker 3 

There was nothing you could do except write it down and come back and read it into a microphone. 

00:42:38 Speaker 3 

And so I did that. 

00:42:40 Speaker 3 

When the first riots in Detroit took place, which were very frightening. 

00:42:46 Speaker 3 

And I never stopped emphasizing the fact that those were white riots in which white people in packs set upon black people and killed them. 

00:42:57 Speaker 3 

And I saw that with my own eyes. 

00:42:58 Speaker 3 

And it was frightening. 

00:43:02 Speaker 3 

That was the first real. 

00:43:05 Speaker 3 

Taste of the street that I’d ever had. 

00:43:08 Speaker 3 

I can’t say that I liked it, but I knew there was a hell of a lot of difference between what went on out in the street and what some guy sitting in a desk in a broadcasting studio thought was going out on the street. 

00:43:22 Speaker 3 

And then, of course the other. 

00:43:24 Speaker 3 

Big thing that instantly. 

00:43:26 Speaker 3 

Crowds my mind is the 67 riots in Detroit, which were quite a different thing. That was more burning and looting than anything else. 

00:43:37 Speaker 3 

Never forget them. 

00:43:39 Speaker 3 

We were television then, and I’d have to go with the crew. 

00:43:43 Speaker 3 

There was just one other guy. 

00:43:46 Speaker 3 

Was brave enough to go out there, and two of them just flatly refused, and so we go out and I stand behind him. 

00:43:55 Speaker 3 

And he realized this stuff and role, I should say. 

00:43:59 Speaker 3 

And most of it happened at night, of course. 

00:44:04 Speaker 3 

But he had been through Normandy and the Normandy invasion, and he wasn’t physically afraid of anything like that. 

00:44:11 Speaker 3 

And so we. 

00:44:14 Speaker 3 

We had quite a time in those and of course, so they don’t happen anymore. 

00:44:20 Speaker 3 

I’ve been on minor things like that, but. 

00:44:24 Speaker 3 

The auto talks were the were in 70 I got in and no I got in them in 67 when Ford was struck. 

00:44:33 Speaker 3 

And then 70 General Motors got at 73 Chrysler and right now we’re back to Ford again and how they’re going to avoid it. 

00:44:42 Speaker 3 

I don’t know. 

00:44:42 Speaker 3 

They got nine days to the deadline. 

00:44:45 Speaker 3 

And if they don’t walk out, I’ll be surprised as hell. 

00:44:50 Speaker 2 

Well, you you weren’t. 

00:44:51 Speaker 2 

You didn’t cover them. 

00:44:52 Speaker 2 

The forward strikes in Windsor when they blocked. 

00:44:55 Speaker 3 

Oh yeah. Oh, yeah. 46 sure. Oh, yeah, sure we did then. But that was a little different. 

00:45:01 Speaker 3 

That was kind of interesting. 

00:45:02 Speaker 3 

We would we didn’t have, as I said, tape recorders, we’d go out and see what happened, come back and write it. 

00:45:08 Speaker 3 

And Ford didn’t have a very good PR outfit in Canada at that time. 

00:45:11 Speaker 3 

They had an ex newspaper guy. 

00:45:14 Speaker 3 

And all he wanted was Rosie. 

00:45:18 Speaker 3 

They walked out on Riverside Drive and I can remember the OPP armed. 

00:45:25 Speaker 3 

On one side, on the South side of the street and the UAW guys from Local 200 on the other side and 1 occasional I. 

00:45:38 Speaker 3 

Canada strike. 

00:45:43 Speaker 3 

The violence. 

00:45:45 Speaker 3 

Really wasn’t there as I had come to know it. 

00:45:49 Speaker 3 

So I really don’t think. 

00:45:52 Speaker 3 

First hand of Florida Canada’s 46 string. In fact, I forgot about. 

00:45:58 Speaker 3 

What I do remember was the tactics that the Union used, in which all the guys would bring their cars, and for I think about a three block or four block stretch from Peabody Bridge Straight E They had their cars parked bumper to bumper, about 3 or 4. 

00:46:18 Speaker 3 

And luck. 

00:46:20 Speaker 3 

There they sat and there was three or four. 

00:46:22 Speaker 3 

It looked like a massive used car lot, and there was just no traffic up and down that street in front of plant one, which now doesn’t exist. 

00:46:34 Speaker 3 

That was. 

00:46:37 Speaker 3 

There was threats and there was yelling and maybe threw rocks few rocks thrown. 

00:46:43 Speaker 3 

But it wasn’t quite the same thing. 

00:46:46 Speaker 3 

As a matter of fact, Chrysler had a strike, I think of about 100 days a year or two after that. I’m just the exact year doesn’t come in my. 

00:46:56 Speaker 3 

That was perhaps in some ways, more bitter. 

00:47:01 Speaker 3 

Than the Ford strike, but they were the crucial strikes in Windsor. But you know, when you look back on them and then you think of 41 in the battle of the overpass by River Rouge where Walter Reuther and **** Frankenstein were set upon by the Goons. 

00:47:20 Speaker 3 

And beaten badly, really beaten viciously. 

00:47:27 Speaker 3 

We can’t really in Canada compare anything to that because you see in Canada. 

00:47:33 Speaker 3 

Ford did not have the goon squads, which were openly acknowledged. 

00:47:38 Speaker 3 

They were just hired thugs and anybody that talked union would get the hell beat out of them in the parking lot and some guys would get named for life. 

00:47:47 Speaker 3 

I mean, real bad beatings. 

00:47:50 Speaker 3 

And they would. 

00:47:53 Speaker 3 

Not Ford, exactly. 

00:47:54 Speaker 3 

But Chrysler was one example where you.