Canada's Storyteller: A Tribute to Stuart McLean

Stuart McLean, bestselling author, humorist and host of CBC Radio's The Vinyl Cafe, has died at the age of 68, just over a year after his skin cancer diagnosis.

Stuart McLean, a longtime CBC producer and host of The Vinyl Cafe, was one of our country's great storytellers.

That voice is silent now, the man himself is gone.

Stuart McLean passed away on February 15. He was 68 years old.

This one-hour CBC Radio special broadcast, hosted by Michael Enright, celebrates both Stuart and his wonderful legacy, with selections from the many great radio programmes he made over the years.

In his 40-year broadcasting career, Stuart McLean dazzled Canadian radio listeners with his many gifts: journalist, documentary maker, radio show host, and most of all, storyteller.

Born in Montreal, Stuart started out in radio freelancing for the local CBC station. By the mid-1970s he had moved to Toronto to work for the program Sunday Morning.

Years later, he would became famous for The Vinyl Cafe, a long-running variety program featuring live music and stories that entertained the country for over 20 years.

His monologues on the show held up a mirror to the country; when we looked into that radio mirror and heard him talking, we recognised ourselves. And most of the time we were laughing—laughing at ourselves. Stuart was so funny, in fact, he won the Stephen Leacock award for humour—three times.

This special broadcast revisits and remembers one of the great voices in Canadian broadcasting, celebrating him in the best way we can—by listening to bits of some of the 422 radio programmes we found in the CBC radio archives.

The one-hour special tribute will air on CBC Radio One at 1 p.m. local time across the country (1:30 NT) on Thursday, February 16, 2017.