When did CFNY end?

Memories and personal experiences
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John Bisci

When did CFNY end?

Post by John Bisci »

Hi, I am new to this great site. I was a huge fan of CFNY when I "discovered" it in the mid-'80s until I moved away from Buffalo in 1994. I am listening to the 'check of "Marsden's Plea." When did CFNY change/go off the air? As a nightclub DJ in Buffalo/Niagara Falls, they had a huge influence on my career.

John Bisci
Las Vegas

When did CFNY end?

Post by swerve »

The Spirit Of Radio died in 1987... CFNY still lives to this day.
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Post by Pizza Nova »

Perhaps CFNY's designation as \"The Spirit of Radio\" came to a close in the late '80s, but the end of CFNY \"as we knew it\" probably happened shortly after 1996.

The reason most radio sucks today is because of the Telecommunications Act of 1996. That act essentially killed alternative radio in North America. Whereas before this legislation, alternative radio was a loosely held constellation of small- to medium-sized stations that could take the financial risk on offbeat music, this act encouraged radio execs everywhere to go big or go home. Now there are huge radio conglomerates like Clear Channel that depend on radio stations they own, especially in large markets, to generate huge amounts of revenue. And the only way to do that is play music that are known hits. The radio market is a single-driven market today - a new song has to debut big and that's more likely to happen if the group is well-known or well-supported by its music label. It no longer makes business sense to play music by an unknown band or one with a small following. Which poses a very important question for the future...How will there ever be new music produced if new bands can't get a break?

There were hints toward the end that CFNY was feeling financial pressure...remember the days about 1988 when the station was playing Bruce Hornsby, Milli Vanilli and even Michael Jackson until listener complaints brought back the usual playlist? (Nothing against those artists, they just weren't \"CFNY material\" and I don't think I have to explain that distinction to any of you.) In the early '90s there were even stations established on both sides of the border to protest the pressure to compromise music quality and focus on profit such as \"The Planet\" and \"The River\". But shortly after 1996, the party was over and the bean counters had won.

Some alternative stations responded to the Telecommunications Act by going completely underground. A good example is WOXY out of the Cincinnati area. They decided to go Internet only instead of compromising their vision. Take a listen sometime to WOXY's Vintage channel, besides Iceberg radio it's about as close to the vintage CFNY as we are likely to get.
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Post by pmhvps »

439 oh oh oh oh Pizza Nova.... :wink: was a big hit on \"The Spirit of Radio!

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Post by dcappe »

I seem to recall around that time, CFNY used to play songs and have people call in to decide whether they should be played at all on the station.
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Re: When did CFNY end?

Post by Niagaradude »

I think that CFNY was at its best from the late 70's to about 1985 or was 86(?) when CHCH bought it?
I remember I had all my radios, car, home and work, glued to CFNY day and night. I was an avid listener and watched no TV to speak of. Radio was my life, but when I heard Michael Jackson being played on "The Spirit of Radio" I had to take another look! They made a HUGE change in the programming and many listeners fled the station, but it had its reprise in 87-88 when Don Burns the old program director came back to straighten it out. I listened till the early 90's but I found the sound beginning to change. I don't blame the station as much as the poor artistry that was being done by bands of that era. A total lack of compassion for music!
The other poster before me mentioned the rules and regs and yes that played a big part too and I never listened after 96. Sadly I went back to what I knew at "the other rock station"(I won't say its name)
The late 70's to the mid 80's were the best years of my life. I was young, had money to spare, lived a good life and CFNY was a huge part of my life. Today when I hear a familiar song from that era, it always makes me smile.
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