First Bear morning man, Scruff Connors dies at 64

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Scruff Connors

 

Marty Forbes passes this message along from the facebook page of Eric Samuels, with a tribute to the late Scruff Connors, who passed away last night at 64 years old.

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News today of the passing of a true radio legend and friend, Scruff Connors.
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I first worked with Scruff at 97.7 HTZ-FM in St. Catharines, Ontario, when I hired him to host our morning show. I was a wet-behind-the-ears Program Director having launched this new rock station only a few years into my radio career.
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To say that Scruff was a handful to manage, would be one of the greatest understatements of all time. He made me grow up fast as a manager and a performer (he hosted the morning show and I was not only Program Director but hosted afternoon drive) by constantly testing the boundaries and pushing to see how far he could go and what he could get away with.
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It wasn’t always easy, nothing great ever is. but what I remember most, are some of the absolute best moments in radio that I have ever heard.
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Scruff had a razor-sharp creative mind and was fearless, particularly when on the phone when his calls were, almost always, live (not recorded/edited)! His show was the only one in my nearly 30-years in the business where I literally delayed heading into the shower in the morning for fear of missing something great.
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And keep in mind this was the mid-80s before Howard Stern had made it on a national level. Scruff was blazing his own path and was never a copy of anyone else, in radio, or any other medium.
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When I moved to Edmonton to launch The Bear in the early 90s, Gary Slaight convinced me to bring Scruff along to host the morning show. To say that Scruff made an impact on Edmonton would be yet another profound understatement. The city had never heard anything like him, and his antics (both on and off the air) made him the legend that is still talked about decades later.
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Sure, there were some trying times working with such a true maverick (don’t get me started – I could write a book about it), but there is zero doubt in my mind that I would not have been nearly the manager and broadcaster that I was without having had the chance to work with Scruff for so many years. Because, above all, I was a fan.
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Will miss you Scruff.
Honk on Bobo!
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Eric

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6 COMMENTS

  1. Scruff Connors gave me one of my first ever gigs in radio – if singing the national anthem on the air, eating cold creamed corn & driving around the city looking for underwear on car antennas counts as being “in radio”…ha ha!

    That being said, those stunts built character and got me into a building where I spent a lot of time with a very talented guy & learned a lot about the biz.

    RIP Scruffer…

  2. Very sad news. I remember Scruff from his Mojo Radio days, when his “Nationwide” show was syndicated from Toronto into Vancouver. I had the chance to meet Patrick Zulenov several years back at the Shore, who told me the story of being Scruff’s sidekick/”babysitter” (his words!) on The Bear. My condolences especially go out to Scruff’s son, TJ, who is making a name for himself in the radio biz, as morning host/PD at Country 103 in Kamloops.

  3. Scruff, you will be terribly missed. My sincere thoughts to your family. and friends. You won’t be forgotten! A great talent indeed.

    Charlee Redman

  4. I never met the man, but I wish I had. I always enjoyed his shows, particularly his courage. I like people who not only are creative but who have balls.

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