Men Find Their Voice

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Syndicated radio psychologist Dr. Joy Browne was interrupted in mid-sentence late Thursday morning, when Toronto's Talk 640-AM radio station cut from her program to a live news conference.

Making "an important announcement about the future of this radio station," senior executives revealed news about the dawn of a new era - and a revolution in radio. They proudly introduced Mojo Radio: a station "just for guys."

Beginning tomorrow - Monday, April 23 - Toronto men will finally have a radio station to call their own. This is "the first Canadian radio station that speaks exclusively to men," says Jim (J.J.) Johnston, general manager of Corus Radio.

Corus Entertainment owns nearly fifty radio stations across the country, including this city's brother stations, Q107 and Edge 102. Mojo Radio is touted as "a shot of audio testosterone," and "the aural fix that Toronto has been waiting for." That, according to the press release, means lots of talk about sports and sex.

Lest men in the rest of the country - or for that matter the world - feel deprived, Mojo Radio is available online.

The new station's on-air revolutionaries include old-timers Humble and Fred, Scruff Connors, and John Derringer. Derringer's program, Definitely Derringer, promises to focus on "chicks, cars, war, the Mob, sports and chicks." The lunchtime show serves up, among other things, "toys for boys and sex, sex, sex."

So how are guys reacting to news of this breakthrough in broadcasting? "Their mojo sure ain't working for me," says writer and educator Ian Pearson. "There is nothing on this site that interests me in any way. The whole thing is repulsive and dated."New-media creative director Sandy Kovak says, "It seems odd to me that guys feel they need a special voice. Most of the media are guy-controlled. Guy-ness is pretty mainstream. This seems like a definite reaction to having to be so politically correct. It looks very clichéd."

With so much time to devote to men, listeners might well expect to hear the rich diversity of male culture reflected on the station. Former boxer Spider Jones, who hosts a nightly sports show, is the station's sole announcer of colour. When asked if there was any programming for gay men, general manager J.J. Johston told rabble that "there's no programming specifically for gay men at this time, but our target audience is men aged twenty-five to fifty-four, and that includes gay men."

Tell that to man-about-town Luis Jacob. Intrigued at hearing the station described as "like being in a locker-room 24 hours a day," Jacob was surprised to see so many scantily-clad women on its Website. He was expecting Mojo to be "all about guys." Regardless, he checked the online schedule. "One show interested me. Cover Your Ass with Andrew Krystal sounded right up my alley. But it turned out to be an investment show. This station for guys says it's about 'gears, sports, babes and beers.' I'm a guy, and I'm not interested in any of those things."

At long last, the entertainment world provides some relief from those female-dominated boardrooms and airwaves. Not to mention the last two millennia of much of human history. Mojo Radio is an idea whose time has come and gone.

Other Mojos:

  • Mother Jones "a magazine of investigation and ideas for independent thinkers."
  • mojo4music A slow-moving site that's all about music - and features those annoying pop-up ads.
  • mojomag A Jackson Mississippi online monthly entertainment magazine.
  • Memphis Mojo "Spreading the butter of Memphis music across the world biscuit."
  • According to Webster's Dictionary
    Main Entry: mo·jo/
    Pronunciation: 'mO-(")jO
    Function: noun
    Inflected Form(s): plural mojoes or mojos
    Etymology: probably of African origin; akin to Fulani moco'o medicine man
    Date: 1926
    : a magic spell, hex, or charm; broadly : magical power
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