John Gilbert (broadcaster)

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John Gilbert (14 September 1930 – 14 September 1998)[1][2] was a Canadian radio broadcaster.

Gilbert grew up in the Cabbagetown section of Toronto before running away from home to join a carnival when he was 13.[3] He began his broadcasting career in Cornwall, Ontario at age 17 and hosted his first talk show in Saint John, New Brunswick around 1966.[3]

Gilbert was a broadcaster with CJCH Halifax, which was acquired by CHUM Limited in 1970. In February 1971, Toronto's 1050 CHUM announced that he would succeed Larry Solway as host of the talk show Speak Your Mind.[4] In 1973, he became the most successful radio talk show host in Canada with 120 000 measured listeners, more than Vancouver media legend Jack Webster.[5] Gilbert's term with CHUM ended in 1977.[2]

In 1980, Gilbert hosted Night Talk, a weekday late night program planned as a national talk show. However, the CRTC ordered that the network of stations broadcasting the program be cut back from 13 to the six stations then owned by Maclean-Hunter: CKEY Toronto (host station), CFCN Calgary, CFCO Chatham, CHNS Halifax, CKGL-FM Kitchener, and CKOY Ottawa.[6] A year after it launched, it was also broadcast by CJJD Hamilton, CJBQ Belleville, CJNH Bancroft, CHSC St. Catharines, and CHEX Peterborough.[7] The show ran until 1982, when Gilbert re-joined Night Talk co-creator Taylor Parnaby, who had become station manager of CKO.



  1. ^ "Birth and Death notices". The Globe and Mail. 17 September 1998. p. A18.  Indicated death on 68th birthday.
  2. ^ a b Pron, Nick (16 September 1998). "John Gilbert was famous for on-air advice". Toronto Star.  Rock Radio Heaven obituary page indicated a conflicting date of death, the previous day (13 September).
  3. ^ a b Mietkiewicz, Henry (17 March 1984). "Screaming matches too much to handle". Toronto Star. p. H5. 
  4. ^ Kirby, Blaik (2 February 1971). "Television: The Bruins' gay dog deflates athlete image (multi-topic article)". The Globe and Mail. p. 11. 
  5. ^ Kirby, Blaik (12 May 1973). "There's NOTHING women won't discuss on hotlines". The Globe and Mail. p. 27. 
  6. ^ "Briefly: CRTC cuts off talk-show network". The Globe and Mail. 30 July 1980. p. 13. 
  7. ^ Fisher, Stan (5 July 1981). "You can phone John Gilbert with answers to Enigma". Toronto Star. p. C6. 

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