Most teenagers spend their weekends chasing girls.
I spent mine in radio station control rooms. At age 17, I got my very first job spinning “crystal clear compact discs” and running voicetracks at CFKM 99.9 in Toronto. At 2:30AM when it was just me, a stack of carts and no safety net, it was all very exciting. After college and 11 years of covering plane crashes, ETF takedowns and burning buildings, I can safely say radio was never boring.
Here’s where I’ve worked in radio:
’88I started my radio career hoping to become a disk jockey — until I realised I’d never be cool enough or care enough about the music. But the first two years in the business were among my favourite. I ran voice tracks and set up remote broadcasts all while still in high school.
’90I worked here when it still played music. My most memorable experiences include producing “Calling All Britons” with Ray Sonin and producing high energy talk shows for Wayne McLean, Ed Needham and Andy Barrie.
’92“How’d you like to read the news?” asked news director Owen Smart. It was my first on-air job for this big city boy in small town Ontario. I’d never seen so much snow in my life but I learned a lot about the business — and the people in it.
’92The radio division of Canada’s news agency was Broadcast News. I was the national audio editor, responsible for reporters across the country and dozens of feeds from around the world. It was the busiest I’d ever been in my life.
’93The six years I spent at 680 were the most rewarding of my 11 year career in radio. I anchored the afternoon news, met my future wife, and branched out into financial news.
My great-grandfather owned the radio seen here.
His sons bought it for him as a birthday gift. Well, that’s not quite true. They were quite poor so his boys scraped together the cash for the down payment. He had to pay the monthly installments. Talk about the gift that keeps on giving!
The radio is tuned to AM680 but also would pick up the police radio frequency. It runs on a single 12 volt battery. Back in the day, the family would use a car battery.
If you know where I can get this radio restored, send me an email.