Vintage Toronto Ads: Beautiful Music in Chinatown
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Vintage Toronto Ads: Beautiful Music in Chinatown

Source: The Telegram, October 23, 1971.

By the 1970s, Toronto’s central Chinatown was establishing new roots west of its previous home around Dundas and Elizabeth Streets. The construction of City Hall and Nathan Phillips Square had resulted in the city expropriating much of the surrounding area during the 1950s, which led businesses and residents to seek new homes. The move of the Jewish community northward from Spadina Avenue provided a nearby spot for Chinatown to re-establish itself, with or without the soothing sound of CKFM in the background.
CKFM went on the air as CFRB-FM in 1947, as a replacement for an experimental station that had operated off-and-on for the previous decade. The station provided a simulcast of its AM sibling until the early 1960s, when the gradual introduction of its own programming culminated in a call letter change in 1963. To promote its easygoing, middle-of-the-road music, CKFM created a series of print ads in the late 1960s and early 1970s that highlighted Toronto landmarks and neighbourhoods. Vignettes about the city were also featured on air, usually during Carl Banas’ evening show. Later branding of the station included several variations using the word “Mix” and its current incarnation as Virgin Radio.