Ah, “beautiful music.” A term rarely attached to current radio formats, this middle-of-the-road mix was the mainstay of many powerhouse radio stations in the 1970s. Two versions of the format tended to exist:
• Stations that played mainly light instrumentals, covers of popular tunes, Mantovani and Percy Faith, all to be used as inoffensive background music.
• Stations that mixed these tunes with Broadway selections, crooners, lighter pop acts and heavy servings of news, sports, weather and commentary—this type was also known as a “full service” station.
CKEY was among the stations that waded into the full service battlefield. With all the references to “cheery,” “smile,” and “warm,” don’t you want to flip on the radio to feel all fuzzy as you’re sitting in traffic on the Don Valley Parking Lot?
After attempts to compete with CHUM for Top 40 listeners in the late 1950s/early 1960s, CKEY switched format in 1965, battling for an older audience with CFRB. Keith Rich was morning man for most of the station’s full service days, from 1965 through 1986. The station switched to oldies in 1984, then country (as CKYC, aka “Country 59”) in 1991. The station’s format and call letters were switched with all-sports CJCL 1430 in 1995, leading to today’s Fan 590.
Number One Yonge Street was a month away from its official opening when this ad appeared. Its prime (and current) tenant, the Toronto Star, had moved its operations over in December. Note the limited number of modern skyscrapers in the two skyline views—the boom was about to get underway (including the Star’s old site, soon to become First Canadian Place).
Link: April 1973 airchecks of Keith Rich, and other Toronto stations that year, from Rock Radio Scrapbook.
Source: Toronto Life, April, 1972