Tuesday, April 07, 2009

The Banging Of The Gong.....Is CKNW Doomed?


In case you missed it, CBC Radio One (CBU) banged CKNW's gong last week and took the lead in the Lotuslandian Radio Ratings in the first quarter (S1) of 2009. Here's the overall 'book' from BBM Canada:

What you don't see in the chart above is how badly the (nolongerso)Giant98 is doing in the morning slot that they used to rule with impunity back in the days of Frosty Forst .

And in a classic addition-by-subtraction reverse-o-rama this means that, get this(!), the CBC's Cluffmaster Flash is now the King of the morning drive time in Lotusland:

"CBU’s The Early Edition with host Rick Cluff had very strong numbers, pulling in a record market share of 16.7 per cent in the 5:30 to 8:30 a.m. time slot....."

For those of you that don't know already know it, for some time now I have been unable to listen to Mr. Cluff for any extended period of time without inducing a massive seizure of my medulla oblongata.

Which just means that I go through all manner of contortions, including streaming NPR and BBC online (when I don't give in to the dumbguy/Sports station), pretty much every single morning.

But, based on the recent ratings shake-up, I decided to do a little experiment....



Normally, the only time CKNW comes on with the clock-radio at wake-up time occurs after I've fallen asleep the night before listening to old man Russell.....

But Monday morning I tuned in to AM980 on purpose.

And what I heard was so excerable I can barely describe it. First, there was almost no information. Second, there appeared to be no sense of humour or wit emanating from host Philip Till when he pseudo-kibbitzed/bullied his staff and/or his regulars into submission. Instead, to my ear at least, there was only a barely suppressed meanness and a fauxian layer of big-time newsman world-weariness that was grating in the extreme. Heckfire, even the sports was crappy before Big Al's replacement finally got up after the 7:00am news.

And as for the 'features'? Don't get me started...... I mean, a series about the squalor of life on the streets of the Downtown Eastside wherein the lead-in music is Lou Reed's 'Walk On The Wild Side' which is then followed by the traffic guy telling everyone they should periodically take their kids down there and 'scare them straight'? .


Now, bookend all that with the anemic Adler in the 7-9pm slot after a day of blandoid not-quite-talk-radio and ask yourself if it is any wonder that all that Frank Griffiths once built has now been pretty much turned to mush by the geniuses at Corus.

Hey, RailGate Obsessives/Cultists....Check out the author of the profile of sports talker Dan Russell linked to above.....Recognize the name?


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