Dal Richards - Vancouver radio 1940s; orchestra leader; Canada's King of Swing; member of the Order of Canada and Order of B.C. and winner of City of Vancouver's Civic Merit Award; CHQM Vancouver early 1990s; host Dal's Place CKBD Vancouver current; recipient Vancouver's Freedom of the City Award 2005.
Memories of CJOR and some of the early years.
“I went to
My only recollection of station owner George Chandler was him walking around the station with a slide rule. He did not hire me and seemed not to be involved in the program side of the business. I think Don Laws took an active role in management. I remember the studios being arranged in a ‘T” shape with a news studio, a control room, and a main studio.
I remember in 1936 playing in the Wally Peters Group. The main studio in the Grosvenor Hotel would allow about 8 musicians to set up. At one point, the management established a studio on the other side of the street on Howe that could house a large orchestra. It was used in the 40’s and 50’s.
I remember Dick Diespecker (pronounced Dees-pecker), Doug Gourlay, Gerry Wilmot, Ross Mortimer, Dorwin Baird, Colin Fitzgerald (GG), Laddie Whatkis (house pianist) and Ronnie Mathews, a blind pianist.
I gave Juliette
her stage debut at the Orpheum at the age of 13 in June of 1940 - with “There
will always be an
My orchestra played on both CBC
networks – the Dominion Network and the Trans
Today’s interview took place October 14/04 while Dal was at his desk. Mr. Richards is a very busy man with many calls coming in at the time of our discussion. He said he had 20 gigs lined up in the next month.
Dal was born