Open Letter to Jian Ghomeshi

Hey Jian, it’s me! Lisa!  We did a radio show together many, many moons ago and you and the other members of Moxy Fruvous were hilarious, as usual. You borrowed a trophy from the control room and on live, national radio, you awarded it to me as your favourite radio host…of that evening!  I think it was a soccer trophy.  Anyway, there have been a lot of kilometres and lots of radio programs since then so I don’t really expect you to remember.  But I do.

Now you’re a CBC staple, one of the hand-picked “chosen ones” who is paid by the rest of us to entertain us.  You’ve got the personality for it.  I get a kick out of a lot of what you do.  But I don’t know if CBC brass are afraid to critique you or if the rule is that it’s just hands-off the talent at the Mother Corp in general but since this is part of what I do for a living right now (critique radio talent with an aim of improving it) I thought I’d toss you a freebie regarding your work on Q.  You’re welcome!

Great show by the way! Really, I love it.  But you need to do us all a favour and ask your engineer to turn down the bass on your mic processing.  Either that or your technical producer needs to ride the levels lower.  Maybe you think it makes you sound ballsy and authoritative to boost the low end but it’s really just an annoying, mushifying cloak for what is otherwise a pleasant voice.  We listened to your show yesterday again, just to see if things had changed and your voice quality was so irritating that we turned you off.  I’ve tried you on several receivers – in the house, in the truck – and it’s all the same.  It’s not at my end, is what I’m saying. It really is you!

The days of everyone needing to sound like James Earl Jones ended long ago.  Just sound like yourself with all of the delightful quirks and pitchy qualities that go along with possessing a  set of human vocal cords.   The effect the effects are having on your voice make you as grating to listen to as a radio station that’s tuned slightly off the exact frequency.

I didn’t get to keep the trophy you gave me, of course, because it didn’t belong to you. But it was one of those spontaneous magic moments that sticks out for me over the ebb and flow of a long career.  I hope you get to enjoy lots of magic moments and I hope that those in authority over you value you enough to give you little bits of advice, as I have done today.  it comes with the greatest respect and admiration.  Rock on!


PS. Excellent job stick-handling that egomaniacal grump Billy Bob Thornton a while back!