Matt Gurney remembers being the only kid who had his clock radio tuned to talk radio instead of rock or Top 40 music.
“I’ve always loved radio and really pushed hard at all my local radio stations to get a chance to go on air,” he said.
Now, a columnist and editor for the National Post in Toronto, Gurney’s dream has come true. He’s the host of National Post Radio, which launched on Sirius XM Canada in May and airs from 6 to 9 a.m. every weekday. Gurney, who’s been with the Post since 2009, covers an array of topics with a focus on news and politics. Material includes aggregated content as well as news stories from the Post and original content.
He said the show has allowed Post reporters to showcase their talents in a different format. But why radio?
“It’s another format to showcase the great work being done by our journalists. But I’m also really hoping it helps expand our profile in a competitive media market and draws some attention to us,” Gurney said.
Gurney’s radio career started as a regular commentator on the Arlene Bynon Show, an afternoon talk show on Sirius XM Canada. After the two became friends, Gurney said Bynon pitched an idea for the Post to have a radio show hosted by Gurney.
“(Bynon) knew her bosses were looking to partner with another organization with an eye to offering some solid, news-driven programming,” Gurney said.
The two then presented the idea to their bosses and a few months later, formal discussion between the companies began. During planning meetings for the show, they focused on the show’s set up, fine-tuning details such as copyright, sharing staff between Sirius XM and the Post, editorial control and how to navigate through radio regulations under the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission, an issue the newspaper had never experienced, Gurney said.
“None of the issues proved particularly challenging or difficult to overcome on their own,” he said. “But there were so many of them, working through them sequentially took a long time.”
Gurney said he hopes the radio show will help the Post stand out in the competitive media market. “It’s a tough time for newspapers.”
He and his team along with the show’s production staff provided by Sirius XM Canada are looking for new ways to package their daily content, and right now they’re focusing on finding a routine and trying new ideas.