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May 29, 2015 3:12 pm  #1

When Elvis’ bumps and grinds left Toronto reeling...

Nice article with nods to CHUM in today's Star.
(Via Toronto Star)

Back at home, the family Philco was getting set to explode. On May 27, 1957, just weeks after the King raised the rafters on Carlton St., 1050 CHUM on the AM dial flipped the switch on its new sound as Canada’s first rock-around-the-clock station.

“Radio must be exciting,” owner Allan Waters, inspired by American airwaves, told staffers before unleashing upbeat jingles, crazy contests and the dreaded rock and roll – with Elvis’s All Shook Up the first record played that day.

Spinning the Top 40 hits and hosting concerts for musical heavyweights helped cement CHUM’s place in broadcasting history.

“They were very influential. They led the way and other stations would follow,” recalls Roger Ashby, a golden oldie in his own right, having joined the lineup of disc jockeys in August, 1969, three days shy of his 20th birthday.

“Bobby Curtola was one of the first big Canadian stars,” thanks to 1050 CHUM’s boost, says Ashby, still a much-loved morning fixture on sister station CHUM-FM.

The brazen broadcasters further raised the station’s profile with a pastel-coloured pamphlet known as the CHUM chart. The weekly publication listing the top-ranking songs was a big hit over its 29 years and is still a collector’s item. Ironically, All Shook Up, which was No. 1 on the first chart published the day of the station’s relaunch, was also the last song played 44 years later when the music died to make way for a sports format.



Madness takes its toll.  Please have exact change.