Billboard Canada FYI Bulletin: David Farrell's Lifetime Achievement Award Acceptance Speech at Radiodays North America

The co-founder of FYI Music News (now Billboard Canada FYI) reflects on a longstanding career as a journalist and broadcaster covering the music and broadcast industry for more than 50 years.

From left: Neill Dixon, David Farrell, Gary Slaight, Derrick Ross

From left: Neill Dixon, David Farrell, Gary Slaight, Derrick Ross

Bill King Photography

On Tuesday, June 4 at the Westin Harbour Castle hotel, Gary Slaight presented me with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Radiodays North America Awards Luncheon as part of Canadian Music Week. What follows is my acceptance speech.

I consider myself fortunate to have had the luxury of working in a sector of the Arts that has attracted so many bright, imaginative, driven and generous individuals.

I say fortunate, but I have seized opportunity when it presented itself and this allowed me to carve out a career few independent journalists in this country have had the luxury of having had.


I don’t have much time here on stage to reminisce, but there are a few people I simply must acknowledge.

Among them, Neil Young’s father, Scott, who pointed me True North when I was a greenhorn at the dawn of my journalism career.

Joey Cee, who gave me my first job as desk-editor at Record Week.

Patricia Dunn, my partner in The Record and in those early conventions — and mother to our three lads.

Neill Dixon who picked up the mantle and made CMW into a Michelin-starred event on the global music industry calendar.

Randy Lennox, the new CMW ringmaster, who has always been a great sounding board when difficult decisions needed to be made.

Cliff Hunt who unhesitatingly provided seed money and access to Yangaroo’s IT department at the start of FYI Music News.

The Slaight Music team, and in particular Derrick Ross, for giving me a home away from home, sound advice when asked for, and Barnaby Marshall who was always there to unscramble technical issues that confounded me.

Gary Slaight, a guiding light in my career since we first met in our early 20s. Gary is known for his generosity, business acumen and unwavering support of Canada’s music scene and its practitioners.


He is also an incredibly honest and loyal ally to those who haven’t tried to take advantage of him, and he’s a keen a judge of character as I’ve ever known. There is also the fact that he has opened doors for many upstarts and provided them with just enough rope to prove themselves and become successful.

Gary, you have been a godsend to me, and your patronage over the past 15 or so years is beyond anything I could have imagined or hoped to have.

There must also be acknowledgement of the many writer friends whom I have worked with over the years. Among them, here today, are Kerry Doole, Nick Krewen, and Bill King. Other notables must include Ritchie Yorke, Richard Flohil, Martin Melhuish and Karen Bliss.

One other notable here today is my brother Dominic who has become a successful independent book editor who has turned many an exhausting text into readable books.

Finally, to Mo [Ghoneim], Amanda [Dorenberg] and my new bud Richard [Trapunski] at team Billboard Canada for giving FYI and its considerable archive of stories a new home.

It’s been a ride the likes of which I could never have imagined.


With humility and gratitude, I thank you all!

Billboard Japan


Music News

Japan’s MILLENNIUM PARADE Coming to Toronto on 2024 Global Tour: See the Schedule

The band, led by Daiki Tsuneta of King Gnu, will kick off the trek on Nov. 2 in Mexico City.

MILLENNIUM PARADE is set to launch its first-ever global tour called the WHO AND HOW TOUR 2024 in November, traveling to nine cities around the world for 10 shows.

The band, led by Daiki Tsuneta of King Gnu, will kick off the trek in Mexico City, then hit Los Angeles, New York, Toronto, Berlin, Paris, London, Utrecht, and Tokyo. The Tokyo shows will take place at Tokyo Garden Theater on Dec. 19 and 20. The tour will mark the first time in three years that the band performs live.

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