The time has come
for my return
back to the place
where I started to learn
An overdue reunion
at old CKY
And probably our last chance
to say our goodbyes.
A few years ago, Jim Hilliard and I flew back to Winnipeg for a CKY reunion. (Jim pictured above with Deno Corrie, me, and Burton Cummings) We’d worked together in the mid-sixties when I was beginning my radio career, and he was the PD of CKY.
After we landed, he said, “Hey Johns, I think we’ve lucked out, the ground crew’s not wearing parkas.”
Michael Gillespie Ron Taylor, with some help from Ron Taylor Embree McDermid, did a super job of putting the reunion together. Unfortunately, we were a little late because most of the first team were already gone. Sadly my old friend Chuck Dann (Chuck pictured above on the bottom left) who taught me how to do production and along with Daryl ‘B’ who is also gone, helped produce my first record.
Also missing in action is Frank Roberts and Mike Hopkins, (shown above interviewing the Beatles) as are fellow newsmen, John Pierce, and Bill Trebilcoe. Bill Grogan, who was my PD after Jim left, is gone, as is my good friend Jim Coghill (pictured below), who stayed up all night with me waiting for the birth of my daughter Candis. I sure miss singing background with my old buddy Daryl ‘B’, whenever he’d make an appearance with the Jury.” (pictured above with me)
Hey, and what I wouldn’t have given to see Cactus Jack Wells (pictured below with Marvin Miller) so I could thank him for teaching me that if I could handle him, I could handle anybody. I genuinely do miss all those people who filled my young head back then with all the radio knowledge I still use today.
The only bad memories I have about my early days at CKY is that just like the rest of my radio career, it went by too damn fast.
I had a great time catching up with some of the old crew like Deno Corrie, Roy Hennessy, Embree McDermid, Warren Cosford, and even a couple of my former bandmates from the Jury, Bruce Walker and Terry Kenny showed up.
Superstar Burton Cummings (The Guess Who) had the best line of the night after asking me to introduce him to Jimmy Darin. (Hilliard) Jim was pleased to see him, but when he said, “Hey Burton, I’m not a starf#cker, but my wife Barbara wanted me to say hi to you.
Burton responded with, “Jim, I can certainly understand you not being a starfucker, but perhaps Barbara is?”
Unfortunately, Burton’s mother wasn’t doing well and not expected to make it through the night, so he had to leave early.
Before leaving, though, he did sing a couple of his hits along with a few bars of our first record, “Until You Do,” which he claimed he purchased with his paper route money.
Wow, it was so good to see him and get caught up on all the things he was doing, like leading a rebellion of cottage owners against some foolish ordinance.
into the Hall of Fame
which is sure not my game
and writing three books
not getting ready to give me the hook.
but it’s gone by too fast
will help make it last
got a few chapters to go
so we’ll see how it goes.