“The best music is always found on the fringes”: Brad McNally on radio and culture

Staff Writer

Legendary commercial radio announcer Brad McNally isn’t going to let health troubles slow him down.      

In 2016, McNally was forced to retire as content director at Gold Coast’s Hot Tomato after being diagnosed with brain cancer. He underwent successful surgery in July 2017 before returning home to Perth to focus on his health and pursue travel plans.

Growing up in Toronto as a typical Canadian hockey kid and getting into radio as a teenager, McNally enjoyed a distinctive career with Toronto’s CFNY during the 1970s. This was a great phase in music and art, and as McNally says, music and art always drives the culture.

“In the 60s it was free love, and then in 70s the punk scene took over,” McNally told Radio Today. “What’s left of the mainstream always becomes the mainstream. The best music is always found on the fringes.”

The radio veteran has worked in programming across many countries including Finland, Sweden and Ireland and has since adopted Australia as his home.

He continues to live and enjoy his passion of music at thespirit.com. Originally airing in Canada on CFNY, The Spirit of Radio, McNally brought longtime music show McNally Masquerade with him to Australia. The last episode in Canada aired during the month of October 1981.

McNally continues to pursue his passion of finding new music the same way he did 30 years ago. The only difference is the method of discovery: “I spend my mornings sitting on Spotify discovering new music.”

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