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G&B: Apologies to Sting

It's been a blast, folks. The Worlds Most Popular Podcast is signing off. Truth to be told, there's not enough hours in the day for ...

Sunday, March 1, 2009

the voice on the tape player..

I remember being around 11 years old at my aunts place in the States. My uncle brought out a cassette to play in the car on the drive to the mall. It was my uncle, my father and myself out for the ride. I curled up in the backseat by the door while I thought my Dad and my uncle would be playing some random Indian music that the two men liked listening to when they were together. I was wrong. My uncle slipped the tape into the cars tape player and pressed play. I never knew what came on that summer day in 1989 would inspire me for the rest of my life. I suddenly heard this voice. Comical, serious, sincere, friendly, and trustworthy. But it wasn't his credentials that made me tune in so closely to his newscast that were playing but it was the way he was reading them, and the way the story was written. I never heard anything like it. He made a simple story sound so interessting by just picking the right words and knowing how to delver them. He was genius, I thought. I had to ask my uncle who was this American newscaster. My uncle told me with joy in his voice.

Paul Harvey.

Ever since that day I tried to stalk his newscasts and is legendary Now, You Know the Rest of the Story bits on Canadian soil. It wasn't hard. No matter where the radio station is they loved playing Paul Harvey stuff. I think its because even though Harvey was a proud American and it was obvious his material focused very much on American material, Harvey was loved by all. No matter where you lived. People just loved listening to the guy. He was the worlds favorite storyteller.

In recent years, I would tune into CFRB's John Donabie show to hear Harvey. The Rest of the Story would help me start my weekend mornings and couldn't wait till I could call my father and tell him what delightful and inspiring story Harvey just told me. Harvey made everything sound so inspiring and thought provoking. After a while, I gained a whole new respect for Donabie and soon enough I was tuning in to listen to Donabie and just happened that my favorite Harvey was on the show, too.

I knew it was close to the end last summer when Harvey Jr was filling in for his Dad. It wasn't the same. The father and son tag team was interesting. They both sounded much alike and it was obvious that his son picked up some dance moves from his father, but junior wasn't senior.

There could only be one Paul Harvey.

I woke up this morning to only have Donabie tell us that Harvey passed away last night. I knew it was coming but it's the day you never really wanted to see. One of your favorites has passed away. Someone who taught you and inspired you and entertained millions. Paul, at least we have your tapes to listen to now.

Harvey was forever 90 years young.