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November 16, 2020 8:36 am  #1


CFRB Morning News Man Off Air After Appendicitis Attack

John Moore explained the absence of Russ Courtney on Monday by revealing that the morning newscaster was in the hospital after a sudden attack of appendicitis on the weekend. He's expected to be off the air for at least the next two weeks. 

Courtney has had a relatively rapid rise in graduating to the biggest talk station in Canada. He started at CKNX in Wingham, while also doing some work at CJBK London, and then ended up as a reporter for 'RB in Toronto before landing the coveted morning news anchor job. He's been with the station since 2011.    

 

November 16, 2020 9:49 am  #2


Re: CFRB Morning News Man Off Air After Appendicitis Attack

Nothing against Russ Courtney, who is a perfectly good newsreader, but his story made me realize that the day of the “star” newscaster on local radio is completely over.
 
Not that long ago, nearly every major radio station that was serious about news had a few megawatt stars on their rosters, who also provided commentary. Think Jack Dennett doing the 8 AM news on CFRB. (You can hear a sample of him here.) The ratings for that 10 minute or so major were huge. 1010 also boasted big names like Charles Doering, Tayler Parnaby, Bob Hesketh and of course, Gordon Sinclair. Not to mention Bill Stephenson, with sports. (Sportscasters have all but disappeared from most stations now.)
 
But it wasn’t just “Ontario’s Authoritative News Voice” as they called themselves. CKEY started the day with curmudgeon Joe Morgan and later showcased the great Pete McGarvey. The station also featured Tom Gould, and commentaries from the likes of Stephen Lewis, Charles Templeton and Pierre Berton.  
 
And no one here can forget Dick Smyth, who made CHUM’s news breaks so memorable in the morning, followed later by Brian Henderson.
 
Then there was CFTR, which for a Top 40 station, once boasted the largest private newsroom in Canada. It gave over its morning news (on the half hour) to the fantastic Robert Holiday.
 
Name anyone of similar stature on the air in Toronto these days. They just don’t exist. What happened to those people who were not only serious news people but genuine radio personalities and stars? (And sorry, but David McKee’s half hour news comedy show on 1010 doesn’t really count.) Is it money or has the business changed so much that news is now just an afterthought? Do these kinds of folks still exist somewhere or is that era of radio over forever?
 
Whatever the answer, I kind of miss the star announcers who not only reported but commented on and frequently made news themselves. When did they go out of fashion?

https://i.ibb.co/QXPszkp/CKEY-Joe-Morgan-Ad.jpg

https://i.ibb.co/wsRrKwg/CKEY-Toronto-Pete-Mc-Garvey-Ad-Toronto-Sun-Sept-16-1973.jpg

     Thread Starter
 

November 16, 2020 8:36 pm  #3


Re: CFRB Morning News Man Off Air After Appendicitis Attack

This man's appendix is about to burst!   

https://i.imgur.com/yaOnpiA.gif

 

November 16, 2020 10:44 pm  #4


Re: CFRB Morning News Man Off Air After Appendicitis Attack

RadioActive wrote:

Nothing against Russ Courtney, who is a perfectly good newsreader, but his story made me realize that the day of the “star” newscaster on local radio is completely over.
 



I think the real point is, when you want news you have 680 news, when you want sports today you have the fan and 1050. 
(WAY) back in the day, these options simply did not exist. 

 

Last edited by Radiowiz (November 16, 2020 10:45 pm)

 

November 17, 2020 2:03 am  #5


Re: CFRB Morning News Man Off Air After Appendicitis Attack

May I wish Russ Courtney a speedy recovery.

I had a severe Appendicitis blow up when I lived in West Vancouver. I arrived at Lion's Gate Hospital. Doctor said - sign this release form!" I said - "I gotta read it first." He said - "You have 30 minutes to live." I signed . 

Was in that hospital for 10 days. They only sent me home because of a nurses strike. But I was in bed at home for a few more weeks. 

All the best to you Russ Courtney. John Moore is a great talent and he will be fine......

Last edited by Marsden (November 17, 2020 2:05 am)

 

November 17, 2020 2:38 am  #6


Re: CFRB Morning News Man Off Air After Appendicitis Attack

RadioActive wrote:

Nothing against Russ Courtney, who is a perfectly good newsreader, but his story made me realize that the day of the “star” newscaster on local radio is completely over.

These days we get to have good and very good radio newscasters who simply don't have the low, gravelly voices that broadcasters back in the day had.

You used to have to have "a voice for radio" and "pipes" and that is no longer the sound stations are going for.

I still really miss hearing Dave Agar with Robert Turner from 5:00-5:30 am weekdays.

All the best to Russ Courtney and I hope his recovery continues smoothly. I had a good friend in the hospital for a few weeks not so long ago for a non covid illness, and it's an entirely different experience with the pandemic in play.

Monday morning I got a kick out of John Moore getting a kick out of how medicated and in no pain Russ was after the surgery while he was texting his co-workers at 1010 from his hospital bed.

If I have Newstalk 1010 on I will listen to Russ read the news instead of turning to another station, he has the ability to deliver the unhappier, more tragic stories in a calm, professional way that gets the info across without sensationalizing the details.

 

November 17, 2020 12:11 pm  #7


Re: CFRB Morning News Man Off Air After Appendicitis Attack

Radiowiz wrote:

RadioActive wrote:

Nothing against Russ Courtney, who is a perfectly good newsreader, but his story made me realize that the day of the “star” newscaster on local radio is completely over.
 




I think the real point is, when you want news you have 680 news, when you want sports today you have the fan and 1050. 
(WAY) back in the day, these options simply did not exist. 

 

680 news is OK for a repetitive headline news service but does not measure up to the news & commentaries of CFRB and CKEY of decades past. If you are looking for authoritative radio newscasts presented in an intelligent
format there is CBC Radio with World Report 3 times each morning and World at Six each evening. Otherwise you
need to go online for the BBC World Service which sets the standard for how radio newscasts should function.

 

November 17, 2020 12:24 pm  #8


Re: CFRB Morning News Man Off Air After Appendicitis Attack

The only authoritative news voice I trusted in Toronto was Walter "Wally" Crouter.  

https://www.toronto.ca/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/9654-cheerio.jpg


https://www.toronto.ca/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/8edb-s1661_fl0005_it0001.jpg

 

November 18, 2020 9:43 am  #9


Re: CFRB Morning News Man Off Air After Appendicitis Attack

mojo55 wrote:

Radiowiz wrote:

RadioActive wrote:

Nothing against Russ Courtney, who is a perfectly good newsreader, but his story made me realize that the day of the “star” newscaster on local radio is completely over.
 





I think the real point is, when you want news you have 680 news, when you want sports today you have the fan and 1050. 
(WAY) back in the day, these options simply did not exist. 

 

680 news is OK for a repetitive headline news service but does not measure up to the news & commentaries of CFRB and CKEY of decades past. If you are looking for authoritative radio newscasts presented in an intelligent
format there is CBC Radio with World Report 3 times each morning and World at Six each evening. Otherwise you
need to go online for the BBC World Service which sets the standard for how radio newscasts should function.

Back in the day, when I used to commute from Oakville to NW Toronto for work, I would listen to the 8AM BBC News on CJRT. I remember one morning there were some connection difficulties and they had to rely on the short wave signal. Apologies were made for the substandard sound. It sounded fine to me, but I was used to the occasional distortion associated with SW broadcasts.