By Dennis Rimmer
February 1st, 2016
Over the next few weeks, this space will take you inside a world that could very well be quite foreign to you.
You will soon be told a story about something that doesn’t exist, except for maybe a second or two. This story will unfold in many segments, and will be about something you cannot touch, see, feel or taste. But, you can hear it. This thing is called RADIO, and it has a story, especially in a Canadian province such as this one —Saskatchewan — that needs to be preserved.
The screen you are now viewing will soon take you places you may never have visited, but this space will lead you deep into a world you may have experienced for your entire life, which in all probability still remains foreign to you.
Radio is a strange sort of duck. The words and music that fly out of the radio transmitters, through the air and into your receiving apparatus, then to your ears, exist only for that fraction of time it takes for you to hear them. Then, they are gone. They might be repeated again and again over time, but always they will come and then vanish. Some say it really is magic. And maybe it is. You’ll soon find out.
Over the next few weeks we will use this space to explore RADIO, Saskatchewan style, from its earliest days to beyond tomorrow. You’ll learn about transmitters and call letters, about continuity departments, board operators, traffic logs, sign ons and sign offs.
You’ll learn the language of radio and maybe even a technical thing or two. Yes, sad to say, we have to throw a bit of electronic history at you, just the basics of course, so you can gain a better understanding of how the sounds get from there, to here, and to your ear.
Mostly, though, you’ll meet up with the people behind the microphones, at the reception desks, driving the news cruisers, writing the advertisements, sorting through the music libraries, filling out the sales contracts and cleaning the cart machines.
Some of the stories you’ll be told will be amusing, others maybe not so much. You’ll be exposed to people who have made radio their life’s work, and others who got in and got out while the getting was good.
You’ll meet the people and hear about the stations and learn some new terminologies; all of which have, in ways large and small, created the Saskatchewan radio experience. It will be a fun journey, so sit back, relax, smoke ’em if you’ve got ’em, and enjoy the ride.