Voices Radio

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City of license Toronto, ON
Broadcast area national
Branding Voices Radio
Frequency various
First air date 2002
Format adult contemporary
Former callsigns CFIE
Owner Aboriginal Voices Radio Inc.
Website http://www.voicesradio.ca/

Voices Radio is a Canadian national radio network with licensed radio stations in four Canadian metropolitan areas, all which are licensed under the calls of Toronto flagship station CKAV-FM. The network features an adult contemporary format. The network's studios and offices are located in Toronto, with its administration based in Ohsweken, Ontario, on the Six Nations Indian reserve near Brantford.[1]


Aboriginal Voices logo.jpg

Aboriginal Voices Radio Network (AVRN) was founded in 1998 by a group of high-profile Aboriginal Canadians, including actor Gary Farmer, playwright, novelist and author Tomson Highway, filmmaker Alanis Obomsawin and actress/producer Jennifer Podemski. Other founders and key contributors to creation of the network included project manager and training coordinator Brian Wright-McLeod, Christopher Spence and Andre Morriseau (production and programming), John Matthews and Mark MacLeod (licencing), Robert Templeton and J. Robert Wood (corporate funding), Elaine Bomberry, David Deleary, Sherman Maness, Nicole Robertson, Minnie Two Shoes and Doug Bingley (strategic advice). The network's original scope was to feature programming produced primarily by and for Aboriginal people in Canada, featuring music and personalities from around the world.

AVR's first station, CFIE-FM in Toronto, was licensed by the CRTC in 2000. CFIE changed its callsign to CKAV in 2006. AVR had previously operated on 106.3 FM (JUMP FM) for a short 6 day period in 1998 during the Aboriginal Voices Festival at Harbourfront Centre in Toronto.

The network's earliest and largest corporate sponsor was Newcap Broadcasting.

Some sources have confused the Aboriginal Voices network with the Aboriginal Multimedia Society of Alberta, which operates a distinct community radio network in rural northern Alberta that is not affiliated with Aboriginal Voices.

Station launches[edit]

The network has faced technical and logistical problems which have prevented it from launching some of the licensed stations listed below. For some of the stations, the network had applied to the CRTC for extensions five or six times as of the end of 2005. Since then, however, the network has moved forward with most of the approved licenses.[2]

Programming as Aboriginal Voices[edit]

AVR's original playlist represents not only an American and Canadian presence but that of indigenous and diasporic performers from around the world, including Oceania, Africa and Latin America. In recent years, more popular main-stream music has been introduced into AVR's playlist. The names below represent a sample of Aboriginal and diasporic artists that have been or are currently being aired. Occasionally, identities and/or song titles are announced on-air by prerecording.


Between every second or third song, AVR does insert their station identification.

Special programming[edit]

Fridays, between 10 PM and midnight ET, featured The Plex Show,[18] a showcase of Hip hop artists hosted by emcee Plex (Doug Bedard).[19] The last and only program to be produced for AVR has since been cancelled. {Doug Bedard AKA: Plex, 2009}

Weekend programming[edit]

Airplay on Sundays featured Wisdom of the Elders with program host Arlie Neskahi (Dine' Navajo), a public radio talk show that showcases native culture, musicians, storytelling, drumming practices and flute playing. Co-hosts include educator and Herbalist Judy Bluehorse Skelton (Nez Perce-Chickasaw-Cherokee), music director Nico Wind (Assiniboine/Ojibway) and storyteller and song-carrier Judy Trejo among other recordings taken from the Smithsonian's Pulling Down the Clouds CD.[20]

Recent programming[edit]

In December 2014, AVR renamed itself to Voices Radio, as its scope expanded out of the aboriginal realm and more into music from mainstream artists, generally bent towards adult contemporary. In February 2015, Voices Radio began to air old-time radio programs from the United States, nightly from 10 pm to 12 Midnight local time.


On air[edit]

Licensed but not launched[edit]

Both stations were approved by the CRTC in May 2007 and slated for launch in 2009, but never commenced broadcasting.

Surrendered licenses[edit]

In 2009, the network surrendered its licenses for transmitters in Kitchener, Ontario (CKAV-FM-8, 102.5 MHz)[27] and Montreal (CKAV-FM-10, 106.7 MHz).[28]

On August 20, 2009, the CRTC approved an application by Canadian Hellenic Cable Radio (CHCR) to amend the broadcasting licence for its station in Montreal at 106.3 MHz, a second adjacent frequency to CKAV-FM-10 at 106.7 FM, requiring AVR to find an alternative frequency in the event of any interference with the signal of CKAV-FM-10.[29] As of January 2011, CHCR's station, CKIN-FM, has signed on at 106.3 MHz. Another broadcaster, Evanov Communications, has since filed an application for a new station at 106.7 serving the western suburb of Hudson in January 2012;[30][31] that station, since becoming CHSV-FM, was approved in October 2012.[32]

AVR's outlet in Ottawa, CKAV-FM-9 95.7 MHz[33] was on air until early October 2014, but has been silent since that time. It is unknown if that station would return to air, though it is still listed on its website among the other stations broadcasting.

Renewal application[edit]

On March 11, 2015, Voices Radio, which is still licensed as "Aboriginal Voices Radio", applied with the CRTC to renew all five station licences (including the currently-closed Ottawa outlet), which will expire on August 31, 2015. The terms of the renewal will be as before, except that Voices Radio requested an exemption from the requirement that it operate as a non-profit corporation, as well as requested that the CRTC conduct a public hearing to review its Native Broadcasting Policy. It is unknown whether or not the CRTC would grant a renewal of its stations, in light of numerous violations of licensing conditions and regulations in recent years.[1]


  1. ^ a b Broadcasting Notice of Consultation CRTC 2015-84
  2. ^ "CRTC public notice". Decision #2005-118. Retrieved 2008-03-01. 
  3. ^ "SAY Magazine © (2006)". Lindsay Knight recording artist. Retrieved 2008-03-04. 
  4. ^ MySpace.com "Leela Gilday". About Leela Gilday. Retrieved 2008-03-01. 
  5. ^ "Makoché Records © (2000)". Featured Artist. Archived from the original on 22 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-01. 
  6. ^ "Native America Calling © (2005)". Music Maker 2003: Chester Knight. Archived from the original on 14 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-04. 
  7. ^ "Wayne Lavallee © (2004)". Biography. Archived from the original on 18 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-01. 
  8. ^ "Aboriginal Peoples Choice © (2007)". Retrieved 2008-03-01. 
  9. ^ "Andrea Menard". Artist. Archived from the original on 23 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-03. 
  10. ^ "Derek Miller". Contemporary. Retrieved 2008-03-03. 
  11. ^ "Zango Music (2008)". Out of the Ashes. Retrieved 2008-03-01. 
  12. ^ "The Pappy Johns Band". General Info. Retrieved 2008-03-03. 
  13. ^ "Tamara Podemski © 2008". Biography. Archived from the original on 6 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-01. 
  14. ^ "NCI FM Aborignial Radio © (2008)". Ray St. Germain. Archived from the original on 2008-03-23. Retrieved 2008-03-03. 
  15. ^ "Sandy Scofield © (2007)". About. Retrieved 2008-03-01. 
  16. ^ "Wacky Productions © (2001-2008)". Biography. Archived from the original on 11 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-01. 
  17. ^ "MapleMusic Ltd. © (2000-2008)". Biography. Archived from the original on 23 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-01. 
  18. ^ "AVR podcast". The Plex Show. Retrieved 2008-02-01. 
  19. ^ "MySpace.com". About Plex. Retrieved 2008-03-01. 
  20. ^ "Wisdom of the Elders © (2004)". Radio Team. Retrieved 2008-03-01. 
  21. ^ Decision CRTC 2000-204
  22. ^ Decision CRTC 2001-172
  23. ^ Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2004-134
  24. ^ Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2006-258
  25. ^ Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2007-156
  26. ^ Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2007-155
  27. ^ CRTC Decision 2009-177
  28. ^ CRTC Decision 2009-178
  29. ^ Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2009-508
  30. ^ Canadian Radio News at Facebook, January 20, 2012.
  31. ^ Broadcasting Notice of Consultation CRTC 2012-29, January 20, 2012.
  32. ^ Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2012-576 English-language FM radio station in Hudson/St-Lazare, CRTC, October 19, 2012
  33. ^ Decision CRTC 2001-627

External links[edit]