Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Podcast: Interview with Poet Al Purdy (1986)

Canadian Poet Al Purdy, 1918-2000. (Photo: John Reeves)

From 1981 to 1989, I was assistant producer and co-host of the radio show On the Arts, at CJRT-FM (today Jazz 91.1) in Toronto. With the late Tom Fulton, who was the show's prime host and producer, we did a half-hour interview program where we talked to writers and artists from all fields. In 1986, I sat down with Canadian poet Al Purdy.

At the time of our conversation, McClelland & Stewart had just released The Collected Poems of Al Purdy, which collected Purdy's best work from the previous 25 years. A published poet since 1944, Purdy published 39 books of poetry in his lifetime and is one of Canada's most celebrated poets. His numerous prizes and honours include the Order of Canada in 1982, the Order of Ontario in 1987, and the Governor General's Award for Poetry for the 1986 volume. Al Purdy passed away in 2000 at the age of 81.

– Kevin Courrier.

Here is the full interview with Al Purdy as it aired on CJRT-FM in 1986.


 Kevin Courrier is a freelance writer/broadcaster, film critic and author (Dangerous Kitchen: The Subversive World of Zappa, Randy Newman's American Dreams33 1/3 Captain Beefheart's Trout Mask ReplicaArtificial Paradise: The Dark Side of The Beatles Utopian Dream). Courrier teaches part-time film courses to seniors through the LIFE Institute at Ryerson University in Toronto and other venues. His forthcoming book is Talking Out of Turn: A Collection of Reviews, Interviews and Remembrances currently being assembled on Blogger. 

Tom Fulton was the host and producer of On the Arts for CJRT-FM in Toronto for 23 years, beginning in 1975.

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