Andrew Carter doesn’t remember what day he started as the morning man at CJAD in 2003, but he remembers when he was told he got the job. It was the Thursday before the Super Bowl, he remembered, which would have made it Jan. 23. At the time, he was the afternoon guy at CJAD, which would normally be a pretty decent gig, but was more of a consolation prize after he lost his job doing mornings at CHOM.
“2002 was a near-death career experience,” Carter told me as we sat down for an interview in an unused production studio after his anniversary show on Feb. 13. In early February of that year, Rob Braide, who was the general manager of CJAD, CHOM and what was then Mix 96, made the decision to make big changes at Montreal’s rock station, ending its experiment with “contemporary rock” and replacing its morning team (Carter and Pete Marier) with fan favourites Terry and Ted.
The switch in formats and on-air staff worked for CHOM, which saw big ratings gains very quickly. Everyone was happy. But it didn’t exactly look good for Carter. Nevertheless, he wasn’t about to get thrown under the bus.
“Braide called me into an office,” Carter recalled. “He said ‘Andrew, I have a job for you. I don’t know what it is.'”
That isn’t exactly a good sign.
Later, Carter got a visit from Rick Moffat, who was the program director at CJAD at the time. Moffat offered Carter the afternoon show on CJAD. With DiMonte vacating the seat once held by George Balcan, CJAD afternoon man Ric Peterson moved to mornings, which opened up afternoons for Carter. (Marier went off to Winnipeg, only to come back to CHOM later and eventually get replaced by Terry DiMonte again.)
“Before he finished his sentence I said yes,” Carter told me.
I wish I could link to the stories directly, but The Suburban now distributes online in a rather link-unfriendly virtual newspaper format, so I’ll just have to link to the whole of this week’s issue, which includes praise for having picked up an award for Best Local Editorial from the Canadian Community Newspaper Association’s Better Newspaper Competition (there were actually nine winners in that category, three for each size group, but an award is an award, right?) as well as eight awards from the Quebec Community Newspaper Association.