New Brunswick — CBC has wasted no time in finding a host for its popular radio show Q. In a surprise announcement made this morning, the Canadian broadcaster announced that colourful hockey commentator Don Cherry would be taking over hosting duties starting Monday.
CBC released a statement to the press around 8 a.m.: “Don has been a valued member of the CBC family for 35 years, and we’re very excited about what he’ll be able to add to Q.” The statement made no mention of what brought this decision on, but did suggest Cherry would be a suitable persona for the network’s image. “Don is thoughtful and introspective; he cares about important issues and values the opinions of others. We’re confident he’ll be a good flag-bearer for our program.”
Cherry is scheduled to begin his hosting responsibilities this coming Monday morning where he will be talking to Perth-Andover, N.B. artist Matt Anderson about what it takes to make it as a musician, and also what it takes to be able to grow a spectacular beard.
Cherry has gained fame over the years as a colour commentator for Hockey Night in Canada, and has always been respectable and professional in his role as a public figure for the network. Cherry was a proud supporter of Toronto Mayor Rod Ford in 2010, and he showed up to his inauguration wearing a bright-pink suit — he said “for all the pinkos out there who ride bicycles.” Cherry went on to predict that Ford would become Toronto’s best mayor ever and suggested his opposition should “put that in your pipe, you left-wing kooks.” That Cherry remark may have sparked certain interest in the mayor himself.
Cherry has also been a behavioural role-model toward the multicultural people of Canada. During the 2002 winter Olympics when two Russian skiers were charged with doping, Cherry was quoted on the matter saying, “I’ve been trying to tell you for so long about the Russians, what kind of people they are — and you just love them in Canada, with your multiculturalism.”
CBC has created a brand of wholesomeness and integrity, qualities that Don Cherry presents every time he opens his mouth. One only has to remember the profound words he spoke when asked whether Swedish people were chickens: “I never called a Swede a chicken because I have nothing against chickens.”
As Cherry prepares for his tenure as host of Q, the CBC is hoping he will be as modest as his wardrobe. The Manatee asked Cherry what he was most looking forward to about his new position. “Ya know, I just love the Canada music scene,” he boomed. “I can’t wait to get people like that Frantically Hip band or April Lavigne, or that Chad Cougar fella. Good Canadian boys and girls that don’t come from that French place neither.”
Q is a national arts magazine show that features interviews with prominent cultural and entertainment figures. Cherry is sure to bring his unique charm and thoughtfulness to the program when he takes his place behind the microphone next week.