November 8, 2011 – The CBC, Whitehorse, Etc.

There’s been a lot of talk and a lot of pressure from the government to change how the CBC operates and competes. Amidst all the negative press, all the demands to either cut our national broadcaster’s budget or abandon it altogether, I think people have forgotten just how important a single entity like the CBC can be to a national identity. The CBC and its various arms and branches are dedicated to Canadian artists and topics in a way that literally no other organization in this country can match.

Giving the public access to artists without the benefits of major labels, like Luke Doucet and Melissa McClelland–artists that don’t get to tour across the country supporting Lady Antebellum–is important.

The variety of personalities attracted to the CBC is interesting; as well as being staffed by Canadian icons, like the aforementioned Ghomeshi, George ‘Strombo’ Stroumboulopolous, or Peter Gzowski, people who you may not immediately think of as broadcasting personalitites, like Graham Wright from Tokyo Police Club, host some of the most entertaining and interesting segments you can find. Could most of these characters make it in private broadcasting? Maybe–if they were willing to pretend they were the same as every other coiffed-by-committee talking head staffing stations like MuchMusic, A Channel and MTV.

I think it’s really important to protect this thing, built to encourage the national identity and awareness of ourselves as a country and culture we so need. Without the CBC, I literally would never have heard of half of the bands I count as my favorites; from Toronto, how would I ever have been introduced to the Vancouver-based Yukon Blonde before they were name-dropped on How I Met Your Mother last week?

… For that matter, how would anyone from the How I Met Your Mother writing staff have been introduced to them?

—–

I suppose you may want some things to do in Toronto tonight. Imaginary Cities are playing at the Horseshoe. Their great, accessible, sing-along-able album Temporary Resident is one of the best releases of this year, and has been largely overlooked. Check them out, and buy their record. Help them pay their bills!

Next week’s insane for cool shows, but that’s definitely the coolest thing going on until Saturday night. If you’ve got something better, drop me a line. I’d love to hear it.

Did you fly a million miles for every single one that I ran? / I don’t know which of us is crazier, oh, sweet baby; that’s the madness I desire

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