The Friday 5×2 (-1): CFNY (102.1 Toronto), 6/12/86

CFNY, according to Wikipedia, “rose to prominence in the 1970s and 1980s due to its freestyle DJing format and unique (at that point) choice to play alternative music.” They had a pretty rough history starting in the ’90’s, when the station changed hands a couple of times, eventually becoming “102.1 The Edge,” playing Top 40 music. Here is their Top 9 (that’s all ARSA has listed) for June 12, 1986.

  1. David Bowie, “Underground” Bowie was interested in scoring a children’s movie, and his chance came with the 1986 Jim Henson film Labyrinth (from which “Underground” was taken), in which he starred with Jennifer Connelly. It was a Top 10 hit in Ireland and The Netherlands, and a Top 20 hit in most of the rest of the world.
  2. a-ha, “Hunting High And Low” Title track from their 1985 album, it reached #10 in their native Norway, #4 in France and IKreland, #9 in The Netherlands, and #5 in the UK. They’ve recorded extensively for the last 30 years, and still can’t get another hit in the US…
  3. Matt Bianco, “Dancing In The Street” You might remember me telling you at some point that one of the original members of Matt Bianco was Barbara Trzetrzelewska, better known (thank heaven) by her mononym Basia. She left Matt Bianco after their first album and went on to solo fame and fortune, so this is without her. You’ll notice almost immediately that this isn’t a cover of Martha and the Vandellas…
  4. Eurythmics, “When Tomorrow Comes” This song wasn’t released in North America as a single, but as CFNY wasn’t restricted to playing only singles, it made their survey. It only reached #30 in the UK, but was a Top 10 it in Australia, Norway and Sweden.
  5. Redskins, “It Can Be Done” Redskins were a British band known for their left-wing politics and skinhead appearance. As a single, it reached #76 in the UK.
  6. Win, “Shampoo Tears” Win were a Scottish pop band known for their song “You’ve Got The Power,” which was used in an ad campaign for the brewery McEwan’s. This song was the follow-up single to “Power.”
  7. Billy Newton-Davis, “Right Beside You” As an alternative station, CFNY placed no time restrictions on song, which is how this could make their list. Billy is originally from Shaker Heights, Ohio, a suburb of Cleveland, and moved to Canada in 1980. This is from his debut album, 1986’s Love Is A Contact Sport, which won the Juno Award for Best R&B/Soul album.
  8. Sandie Shaw, “Are You Ready To Be Heartbroken” Sandie was popular in the UK in the ’60’s, having hits with “(There’s) Always Something There To Remind Me” (1964), “Long Live Love” (1965), and “Puppet On A String” (1967), with which she won the Eurovision Song Contest. After spending the ’70’s without a hit, she returned in 1982 with a cover of “Anyone Who Had A Heart.” “Heartbroken” reached #68 in the UK.
  9. Manfred Mann’s Earth Band, “Going Underground” From their 1986 album Criminal Tango, this was released as a single but didn’t make the official chart, but clearly the CFNY listeners thought it was OK.

And that’s The Friday 5×2 (minus one) for June 14, 2019.

13 thoughts on “The Friday 5×2 (-1): CFNY (102.1 Toronto), 6/12/86

  1. Funny, I don’t know the titles but I know the songs quite well since this was my University days when I was in many clubs dancing away. Fun times for sure!


  2. Nice to see one of our local stations highlighted here. It’s still called The Edge. 🙂 Although I recognized the artists, none of the songs are familiar. I’m more into rock/classic rock (Q107 107.1 and HTZ FM 97.7). Have a good weekend!


    1. As much time as I’ve spent in Toronto (not a whole lot, but a couple of weeks a year for around ten years), I never found a whole lot on the radio, or at least not a lot that I remember. I should give them a listen; I can probably get them through Tune In or one of the radio apps.


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