Remedial Media: Corpse’s Marjetti goes Black, Back

Now that CBC has put Shad out of his misery, can Susan Marjetti be far behind?

Shad has been on life support at Q since last year and this week Marjetti pulled the plug.

Shad, aka Shadrach Kabango, was named to replace Jian Ghomeshi in March 2015, and Q’s ratings soon began circling the bowl. From 282,000 listeners in September 2014, Q dropped to 220,400 in June 2015. They were off the cliff last June, down to 168,000 listeners.

Shad was a rarity in the broadcast biz, modest and self- effacing – the obverse of Ghomeshi’s gold-standard narcissism.

But that decency turned out to be his undoing. He never found his own identity, allowing himself to be jerked around by a variety of producers, most of them clueless.

The high staff turnover at Q also meant that low-grade writing was making it to air. A stronger host would change his scripts, but Shad trusted his team more than himself.

And Q had been molded to fit Ghomeshi’s strengths, while Shad was squeezed to fit the demands of management.

Speaking of Susan Marjetti, now what?

The Corpse radio supremo finds herself in an awkward position, since sacking Shad has pissed off all the BFFs she’s cultivated in Toronto’s racial minority communities.

Marjetti’s entire leadership identity is wrapped around diversity. As champion of downtrodden minorities, she’s often been feted for her work as a “trailblazer,” from the likes of the Black Business and Professionals Association, which presented her with their National Diversity Award in 2014.

But in dumping Shad, Marjetti alienated some of her black supporters, who note that with Shad’s exit, the number of black hosts on CBC network radio comes to a grand total of, er, none.

To mollify them, Marjetti announced that the Corpse is “exploring a new show with Shad that plays to his strengths and passion for music. Shad remains part of our CBC family.”

Huh? Develop a new show just for Shad? Why not make Q work for him in the first place? (Frank prediction: Sometime in the next six months, Shad will disappear from CBC, without a trace.)

Susan’s diversity cred. took a further hit with her decision to replace Shad with Tom Power, a sometime folk singer from Newfoundland and the whitest man in Christendom.

Beige lives matter.


  1. I had Elwood Glover’s Luncheon Date on the Admiral last week. Well, I think it was last week. His interview with Juliette was okay but I enjoyed his tete-a-tete with Olive Diefenbaker much more. Next week he’s got this hot new act from Cape Breton -Marg Osborne and Charlie Chamberlain. That’s why I love the CBC -always on the cutting edge.

  2. Have these people never heard of a “backup plan?” A “fallback position?”

    Isn’t that what Management is for? Since the Ghomeshi business these people
    seem to be in a state of perpetual desperation.

    What an inspiration – to change the name of the show from “Q” to “q”.

  3. Meanwhile, CBC’s crack team of bio-engineering boffins work feverishly to clone Peter Gzowski.

  4. Elwood Glover. There was a mensch.
    Is young Mr. Powers part of the Crosbie-Powers political/wealth tribe in Newfoundland?

  5. The CBC way. Keep someone until they learn how to do the job, then fire them. This is what happens when public servants run the media.

  6. Candyland is revealing the diversity numbers, widely ignored by self-reporters, (see the term ” self-identified”) for blank spaces on the forms [“race has nothing to do with it” ], and fearfully worried by HR personal [“Why can’t we call out someone as ‘heavily tanned, please?” ] in the Corp in just-white-cbc/ scribd.com CBC-HR-diversity-survey.

    If it worked for anyone’s benefit, more would fill it in.

  7. “Susan Marjetti is the winner of the 2017 Rosalie award which annually recognizes a woman who has blazed new trails in radio. Marjetti was appointed executive director of CBC Radio and Audio in June 2015 and has been with the public broadcaster in various roles over the past three decades, including serving as senior managing director of CBC Toronto and the Ontario Region. The Rosalie award, to be presented during Canadian Music Week, was inspired by the legendary Rosalie Trombley who, between 1967 and 1984, was one of the most powerful women in North American radio as music director of the legendary Big 8 (CKLW-AM) Windsor.”
    Susan Marjetti is the winner of the 2017 Rosalie Award. By Broadcast Dialogue-March 16, 2017

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