Courtesy of All Access
February 9, 2021
BELL MEDIA has abruptly dropped the Sports format from three of its TSN RADIO stations, CKST-A (TSN 1040)/VANCOUVER, CFRW-A (TSN 1290)/WINNIPEG, and CKOC-A (TSN 1150)/HAMILTON. CKOC has picked up the Business News format of BNN BLOOMBERG RADIO, the Canadian version of BLOOMBERG currently also airing on BELL’s CFUN-A/VANCOUVER.
The company, which made substantial cuts at CTV and some of its News-Talk radio stations last week, said that an announcement will be made on FRIDAY at 7a local time, and ALL ACCESS hears that BELL MEDIA President WADE OOSTERMAN has told remaining staff in an email that the stations will flip to the “FUNNY” Comedy format used at CHAM-A (FUNNY 850)/HAMILTON and CKMX-A (FUNNY 1060)/CALGARY at that time. The entire staffs of the affected TSN stations appear to be out in the move. TSN stations in four other markets — TORONTO, MONTREAL, OTTAWA, and EDMONTON — appear to be continuing for now, as is the national TSN RADIO feed on iHEARTRADIO CANADA.
Update: Courtesy of Gord Lansdell NW Broadcasters
2/10/21 (Updated) – The list of popular personalities who were displaced yesterday by Bell Media’s format change and dropping of sports on CKST AM 1040 Vancouver includes Matt Sekeres, Blake Price, Don Taylor, Bob Marjanovich, Mike Halford, Jason Brough, Jeff Paterson, Rick Dhaliwal, Brook Ward, Rob Fai, Shantelle Chand, Aneesa Heatherington, Andrew Wadden, J.D. Burke, Jay Kroeker, Iain McLetchie, Ryan Henderson, Andy Cole and Tom Mayenknecht. Also laid off were a number of off-air technicians, sales people Lisa Letwin, Mike Longridge and Christina Papadimitriou, managers and more. CKST will become Funny 1040 at 7:00 a.m. Friday. To those laid off, it is not at all funny.
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Well, it was bound to happen. It had better be oldies or comedy. One of the two. We already have the sports station that replaced cisl anyway, and 1410 is still partly sports. Wonder if 104.3 will change to sports preemptively or a feminist or a lgbt themed talk station. Maybe nw or 730 will switch to the oldies and or standards genre. Who knows???
What is on the station is right now is nonstop commercial free muzak until early friday morning.
They did this to 1060 in Calgary, which was classic country, they are now at the ratings bottom in Calgary, the pinheads never listen or understand, because they are all in eastern Canada, what works there rarely works out west.
As a female who likes sports this is sad. Although, I hardly ever listened anyway, it’s better to watch sports and highlights on TV. I hope they play music. Actually the music they are playing on the station sounds pretty good! It even sounds good on AM. Reminds me of the AM station out of Bellingham I listen too. K-Bay. I’d love a local AM station like that! I’d listen! But if they go for that garbage comedy that plays on AM 106 in Calgary?? Forget it. That station will be dead last even below Traffic730. Comedy on radio is a FAIL, it’s visual much like sports. But I guess there is nobody intelligent running these stations so they won’t listen to me or people like me.
If they promote it a bit they might get a 1 or 2 share with the funny format but actually might be profitable when you consider it doesnt cost much to operate. Right now they had an over 2 share with monster overhead. They didnt do themselves any favors by having two hosts for every show as well, you would think they had NW numbers. Not sure how the beancounters put up with it up to now.
We’ve known forever 2 sports stations in Vcr won’t work. I never listen to Sportsnet650,
caught TSN1040 a few times a week, but do like BNN/Bloomberg1410, despite my annoyance when 1410 went from sports to business. The Jim Rome and Dan Patrick shows on 1410 were fantastic.
Going comedy…fuggedaboutit! Sorry Amy, but the music playing today won’t attract me.
Will be interesting to see what happens with the Lions, Whitecaps and Canadians with only one sports station still available.
bagoverheadguy Rogers will probably make the Whitecaps and Lions pay to have them carry the games.
To bagoverheadguy: interestingly, coincidentally, the producer of the former sports program these days (which I listen to all the time) is adam hawk originally from seattle though born in california and he has limited knowledge in sports. And what is a coincidence about that is he is actually a friend of simone program director today at 104.3 breeze fm, and could be the lady who killed cisl with help feom her friends at rogers!!!! So go figure, guys!!!! Knuckleheads with no taste in sports, music , etc, now running a north america wide syndicated sports talk radio program!!!! And worse than that, a friend from the u.s. of somebody with similarly limited taste in music whos now program director of what supposed to be a true easy listening station now increasingly playing the same crap as move fm and 1040s “warm up transition tunes”!!! At least thats what I heard from others!!!! If people wanted 104.3 to change formats completely under any name, they found the right person two years ago to do it with simona!!!! But, thats just my opinion. Funny story, anyway.
Disgusting treatment of their staff. First song in the canned music was ‘Good Riddance’, by Green Day. These corporate vultures want to operate a station with virtually no employees, playing recorded comedy bits. Nobody listens to Bloomberg 1410 (look at the ratings) but when you have no staff expenses, life is easy. They don’t deserve their broadcast licenses when they add nothing to the community they serve.
Alex: I would agree that 1040 will stay in the ratings basement with this format. But there will likely be low overhead costs, which is probably what they’re looking for. At least they’re not ditching a music station unlike in Calgary.
And in response to alex: as somebody whos not a big fan of todays country music (even most of 90s and some of 80s and there have been too much of that on 1060) I was actually relieved that 1060 from alberta switched to comedy. Sounds sacrilegious but todays country (not all but most) does not appeal to me for sure.
This reminds me of the old days on CJCA in Edmonton before they went all-talk, when they had an hour in the middle of the night (I think it was originally 3-4 A.M., then later it was 2-3 A.M.) when they would play comedy records.
Cam Mitchell……1060 in Calgary was classic country, not today’s country.
I have been listening on Telus and in the car since they flipped over on Tuesday.
I have to say, they are playing some great music, all commercial free.
This week they will probably get higher ratings than they have ever received since going sports.
Wokey woke woke pays great! They should apply for some gov’t funding to continue the great SJW work they were doing, especially the afternoon drive team… Oh, that’s right, Bell already did that!
Alex: just before 1060 switched to comedy they played a lot of the more current stuff from 90s and 2000s. Even earlier there was a lot of that. Thats why I rarely even gave a damn about that one.
I am only asking but I do have my suspicions .
Is part of the problem that it appears a high percentage of People Kind are tuning out the Radio Sports Shows the fact that many under say 35 year old so called males are tuning more into various types of gaming ?
Seems to me that many of those mentioned would rather be inside gaming as opposed to partaking any sports, hockey, football, baseball, golf, etc. .
It also seems to me that the same demographic would rather game than go out to see Ccanuck’s, Leaf’s, Hab’s, Buc’s, Lakers, or any other live sport event .
My own son who is 31 played all of those sports and still plays some along with golf on a regular basis as do his friends but lots his age have no interest in playing, watching, or talking sports whatsoever .
Personally I believe the situation might get even worse over the next decade and more. .
If that turns out to be the case we will see salaries for pro sports diminish in the same way .
I for one believe the writing is on the wall, mothers basements all over North America are gradually being populated and taken over by “Pajama Boys” and the ending will not be good .
My apologies to Terry, but as Fred Williamson once said to me, “I got to know” !
Amy hit the nail on the head. Go back to the late 1980’s and bring back 1040 Kicks my old alma mater! Re-hire Stu Jeffries, Mike Donovan, Russ Hamilton, Tarzan Dan Freeman, Joe Nickolls, Kevin Hayes, JC Carr, etc. A real music station with talented hip jocks and a music station Vancouverites can be proud of! Thanks to Bell for getting rid of TSN 1040 and the dinosaurs who worked there and talked of politics, favorite restaurants, non-sports celebrities, mindless drivel and anything but sports to fill up their four hour shows!
To keith: the president of bell media said it will change to comedy. However, 103.1 in victoria two years ago switched back to its erstwhile format jack fm. So you kinda never know. I actually remember CISL in early 2013 had its former network astral getting taken over by bell, yet the station moved preemptively to newcap. But simona was maternity leave at the time still after her first baby. Like, if it wasnt for that CISL would have probably been gone under any name then over four years earlier than it already did and bell would have taken it over and it would have been “funny 650”, like there would have been a comedy stationfor years. So in other words, CISL dodged that bullet barely in my opinion, but the next time around with simona on the radio again it didnt. And lg 104.3 posted a story on instagram showing kelly and simone grooving to some gangsta rap tune and then the song seguing into mariah carey “all I want for christmas”, only going to show the rumours floating around for the stations format flip to urban/hip hop which it never did (yet anyway if it will). Only goes to show you radio these days commercial or otherwise is all about whats relevant and or politically correct and if the program director even if not for financial reasons wants the station to direct clone another, he or she will do it in a heartbeat.
Never mind 1040 Kicks…bring back Coast 1040. That was the best station in the history of that frequency. And the CKST call letters are the legacy of Coast 800/1040. David Marsden needs to come back to the helm. A great station that has never been seen again in Vancouver since it left the air in 1993.
Cam Mitchell – why are you so obsessed with Simone and The Breeze? Did she hurt you? You seem to mention her in most of your posts.
Yes, Coast 1040 was great.
Al: because 104.3 the breeze instead of being an easy listening station outright is ironically having increasingly same playlist as 103.5 qm (though now the latter dropped the love song program). And because of this I still have a feeling it might be next, like something new like a feminist or lgbt themed talk station like the first commercial talk station on fm in canada or one of them anyway. Like my sincere apologies to simone yet with her it seems to be whats relevant and or politically correct and this is why the smooth jazz program is on still even though it wouldnt do the station any good. And I wanted a 50s 60s 70s soft oldie show on the station but it didnt happen on that station and never will. So while its actually a real shame about the format change in the first place, it will look like there will be a good station overall in our listening range. Hopefully others will follow, for we certainly need a shake up on radio here at this rate.
I am not an industry insider, but could somebody explain to me how these corporations gain access to these radio frequencies promising a certain format, then dump these formats at a drop of a hat. Is this not something that the CRTC should have a say in?
Cam, you realize there’s other Breeze stations across Canada right? I’ve listened, they all have the same music schedule (and the same hosts too). It’s clearly being programmed centrally, I doubt she has much of a say in it. And an lgbt or feminist themed station? In what universe would that make ANY money? Especially compared to an easy listening station.
Personally, I believe it’s time these radio station licenses should be revoked, especially when these corporations abandon their promises to the CRTC. The sad reality is the CRTC is as corrupt as they come. Giving favourtism to their buddies…
I love that article about the FCC in America auctioning off am and fm radio stations south of the border. We Need the to happen here in Canada…. We have our own swamp in this country and it involved these corporations, governments at all levels across the country.
It Must Stop Now!
Al: actually the breezes morning men are actually local vancouver and edmonton respectively. And simona if shes still around on pm drive is local vancouver as well at least. But like, its her station, she can do what she wants, like when cisl got bought by rogers and got the canucks rights and it changed to sports overall when it should actually have been the oldies genre still i have a feeling in reality it was kinda like for relevance/political correctness reasons (“woke” in todays lingo) as well which in reality the negotiation talk with her took around five minutes on paper from rogers since sandra klaric assistant pd of lg 104.3 at the time left on her on terms and devon and simone took the reins in april 2017 (though paul sereda was still pd then). If not those, then probably hip hop or even new country or maybe even sports to fill 1040s void alone. I wonder what the future holds.
These sports stations were doomed from day One. Too many talking heads behind the microphone talking to each other rather than to we fans. Why pay two or more salaries when one would have done the job. Phone in calls were never a priority. As I write Brenden Bachelor is not doing the play by play of the Canucks. I hope he was not fired. Yikes!
The telecom giants are among the country’s most active lobbyists. They have ex-employees now in key political roles. They are monopolies and charge more for their services than any other country in the world. They owe the CRA billions…and are contesting it. They are facing anti-trust lawsuits. They hoard broadcast licenses, then “streamline” and squat on them. They own the mainstream media, but have systematically gutted newsrooms, leaving very few to question governments or big business. Coincidentally, as owners of the outlets that have peddled pandemic panic porn all year, have made out like bandits as everyone worked from home and required on-line services. This is a MAJOR issue. Democracy depends on a strong media. I’m starting to see that people are starting to realize what’s happening. This is an issue you need to write to your MP about.
Speaking of the CRTC – the Canadian content requirement has been long overdue for an overhaul. Music stations are simply filling the requirement for roughly 1/3 of music to be Canadian with constant repetition of acts such as Shawn Mendes, The Weeknd, Alanis Morrissette and Shania Twain that are neither local or in need of more exposure.
How many unheralded local Canadian acts get played as a result of the CRTC requirement? Not many, especially with the lack of local input in today’s radio climate, regardless of the format. No wonder talk shows like CKNW are so popular.
1040 station replacement pile of crap.
OMG that comedy station on 1040 is terrible! Too bad, i liked the music they were playing the last several days, it was like a better version of JACK. Honestly the CRTC should seize this frequency and action it off to a local owner who will do something good with it. Bell is garbage, like this new format.
To nicolas: I agree very much especially we need a 50s 60s 70s oldie station here in vancouver too or at least as a special feature; can con rules are good that way actually, not in others. And even on the breeze these days a lot of the canadian hits are hard to differentiate at this period in time. And to lisa: the music was literally in a loop every several hours non stop; not much good about it; just warm up “muzak”.
And to add to AI’s comment: few if any radio PDs are empowered to do what they want with a station. I also preferred the Breeze when it first came out, but clearly the powers that be ditched LG because they wanted a younger market share, not an older one.
In total agreement with Tom about CRTC licensing, and I wish license revoking would extend not only to format ditching but also with staff ditching, i.e. Z95.3 ditching their morning staff multiple times. But, of course, ratings and cost savings are at the forefront these days, the latter becoming increasingly important.
But maybe these media giants could learn from three stations that are doing well..CKNW, Rock 101 and CFOX, all who’ve been relatively stable over the years. That also applies to 103.5 — who knows where the Move takeover will lead, but at least the staff aren’t out of work and the old/new upbeat mix is still in place since that’s what their listeners seem to want.
And to add to nicolas comment: simone sadly is a hipster wannabe radio know it all with very limited taste in music and seems to have lip service to the olden days. And ironically, she herself was on CISL full time as pm drive from 2016 to the tuesday before the shutdown in august 2017. I was kinda pushing for a 50s 60s 70s oldies show on 104.3 early on, but devon and simona obviously had no need for it, hence devons message on insta. So maybe those two did seem entitled to do what they want with it after all, hence the station in summer 2019 suddenly putting in newer songs that 103.5 are playing already and as a result graham abruptly leaving possibly on his own terms last year. So I agree its ratings and cost savings, but its other factors like relevance and keeping things fresh and political correctness. Like the same lady who was a dj on the boomer station is now playing the ok boomer card on me and everybody else who misses the CISL music. Like, I believe the writing is on the wall, that many older people and members of many certain ethnic groups like filipinos, middle easterners, east europeans, latinas who are not too good at high tech stuff and who are mainly into older music and didnt like lgs old mainly disco/80s synth pop format since CISL shut down are increasingly for at least the last couple of years being converted to “pajama kids”, ironic hipster wannabes, celebrity “news” obsessed teenyboppers, and pathetic pseudo cowboys who never seen a cow in their lives, and those who liked the old lg format before it became the breeze will suddenly are by now “working for adam hawk” (to put in words the female pd of jack fm los angeles to sportscaster jim rome, which the aforementioned would be the producer of) and the ending wont be good at all. Like vancouver will be more than less like say, los angeles, las vegas or colorado springs in the u.s. so hint for our program directors of radio here: listen to your employees, and listen to your customers, or have your customers to just “get on with it” as peter warren said many times.
The new format of 1040 Fun Comedy is disgusting and is like going to the dentist not funny one bit. Team 1040 was the best. I hope the Manager has guts to tell Bell Media that we need to go back to Sports and or change it in to oldies station playing the greatest hits. This Comedy station is terrible. Or maybe the GM should look for another job
Will never listen to AM 1040 not with this garbage on there in Vancouver as I enjoyed Team 1040 Vancouver. The Fun Comedy station sucks big time. Bring out sports station back Bell Media and the staff. Or bring oldies station to 1040 Listeners if you like sports change to 650 on the AM dial The Manager at Bell Vancouver needs to be fired for allowing this to happen.
Bell had their eyes wide open when they did this. They new that the new format would lose almost all of 1040’s listeners, but they wanted a format with the lowest possible payroll.
Just the same, I’m with those calling for an end to the Bell Let’s Talk Mental Health days. Hard to imagine them genuinely caring about mental health when the mental health of their own employees wasn’t on the radar, given the manner in which many of the employees were let go. I hope the laid off employees land on their feet.
Would any owner looking to downsize switch to oldies? Only if they could do so with a minimum of staff, similar to the on-air staffing Jack FM has right now. And I doubt that would have too much success with the under-55 market on the AM dial. Rock 101 has had success with the 18-55 market partly because of their on-air announcers. Robin LaRose and Dean Hill have been around forever. But would almost any format do better ratings-wise than comedy? Unquestionably yes.
And nicolas: when bell bought astral in early 2013, CISL was really this close to switching to the comedy format, but then it was taken over preemptively by newcap, which became the new owners. One positive about sterling faux being on there and not on nw then is that at least he saved the station from the corporate hacks, and not just that, big mouthpiece for those simone was on maternity leave after having her first baby, I found out. So CISL dodged the bullet the first time, but not the second time in 2017 when it finally ditched the oldies format likely for good then. Thats what I figure anyway.
This is obviously just a holding move to keep the frequency active while they wait for a government funded bailout. The station will eventually just be used to broadcast gov’t PSA’s most likely.
Likely, same goes with 104.3 the breeze at this rate, what with it being increasingly same as 103.5. What else can I say?