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Geets Gets The Boot

April 1, 2009 @ 17:37

It's with heavy heart that I received the news today that David Haydu has become one of the latest victims of cutbacks at CTV Globemedia.

He was chief engineer for the entire radio division.

For those of you who don't know the name David Haydu, you might know the name Geets Romo. He was the Geets part of the Pete and Geets Show which graced the Toronto radio airwaves from the mid-70s to 1987 when it all came to an abrupt end at CFNY-FM.

They started at CHUM-FM in the late 60s and in the mid 70s they became Canada's very first comedic FM morning team. In 1980 they moved to The Spirit Of Radio.

Pete and Geets mean a lot to me because it was on this show that I got my first taste of morning radio. Just 18 months out of college, through a wonderful series of events, I became Sports Director at CFNY and shortly after that I became part of the Pete and Geets Show.

I did sports and the marvelous Mike Stafford, just 19 years old at the time, did news.

Working under the direction of David Marsden there were no rules, no parameters and no limits, just the constant encouragement to be creative and have fun on the radio, and believe me, we had a lot of fun.

Following is a piece from something I've been working on for a couple of years now:

A RADIO STORY by Fred Patterson.

"Let me tell you, the years between 1980 and 1987 were fabulous and Pete and Geets deserve a lot of credit for trail-blazing, their style of morning show was way ahead of its time.

They were Howard Stern without all the tits and ass. Pete and Geets rarely went there. They did clever bits that always had a beginning, middle and end. They pushed the envelope in an intellectual way. They didn't have to bring a woman into the control room and have her masturbate to get a reaction.

They'd just say or do something funny.

And to continue the Stern comparison, Pete and Geets did irreverent contests, games and parodies while Stern was still in college. In fact I'll take it this far, early Howard Stern was nothing more than a weak Pete and Geets imitation with a naked chick thrown in.

I take nothing away from Howard Stern. He is a legend, and will go down in history as probably the greatest ever, but give credit where credit is due.

There were hundreds of Howard Sterns out there, but every time somebody tried to exercise the shock-jock angle, they were snuffed, so was Stern the first few times.

The person who deserves credit is the guy who made the decision to take the shackles off Stern, let him go and see where it led.

The rest is history.

I just happen to be under the impression that if not Stern, it would have been somebody else, maybe somebody more talented and funnier, it just happened to be Stern, and he was the first, so he gets all the credit.

Pete and Geets will never get that kind of credit in Canada. They should. Every year during something called "Canadian Music Week", the radio industry falls all over itself handing out cheesy awards and recognizing industry achievement and contributions to the business.

If they really wanted to do something worthwhile, they would recognize Pete and Geets, two pioneers of Canadian radio.

Pete and Geets were loved. They created an atmosphere of fun and warmth and it worked extremely well for CFNY, a station that was more down to earth and personal than anything else on the dial."

After Pete and Geets broke up as a radio team in 1987 Geets stayed on as chief engineer at CFNY until 2001.

Pete lives in Ottawa where he does a lot of gardening and fixin' shit.

Here's an interview I did with Pete last year, I'll try and catch up with Geets in the next little while and do one with him.

Category: Radio

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113 Responses to "Geets Gets The Boot"

Phil Evans
April 1, 2009 / 19:36

Innovative, legendary and laugh out loud funny. The real last pioneers (oxymoron?)of personality based radio without the shock.

And two real gentlemen.

When I was out of a job a few years ago, Geets's was the first e-mail I got - along with personal reference letters from him to CHUM Radio GM's across the country.

You're right - they deserve Hall of Fame Awards. I will lobby.

April 2, 2009 / 09:31

Many a morning I laughed myself silly to those guys. Always remember Beans Rontosh, "I'm an engineer but I don't drive a train".

Robbie J
April 2, 2009 / 10:13

Didn't have the opportunity to work with Pete but certainly did work with Geets for many years.

David is hands down the most genuine and honest person I've ever met in the business. It was fantastic to have worked and learned from him when I was first got my feet wet in the 'biz.
It was sad around here when he left here for was like the end of an era... but a great opportunity for David.

He...and Pete...both deserve recognition from the industry.

Good luck David! Now, take the time to do some travelling my friend.


James Edgar
April 2, 2009 / 10:38

Loved them when they were on NY . My favourites after H&F although I guess many of your best bits were inspired by them.

April 2, 2009 / 10:58

You are right Freddie... Pete and Geets should have some recognition for their greatness in morning radio.

I had the pleasure of getting to know them through their time at CFNY and besides Pete being one of the funniest people I have ever known, Geets was hilarious with his characters.

With this entry being about Geets, I can say that in my office we still talk about and laugh to this day, the things that Geets used to do...

To name a few, this time of year he always played H&R Romo and he wanted to do your taxes, his moto was "When you go downtown, I go out of town".

When Geets did the traffic as Worn Down he would always make crazy comments, and one time the traffic had the sponsor Mott's Clamato and Worn Down used to make up his own tag line for the spot. He was supposed to say "Great in a drink or as a drink"... I recall him saying "Great in a drink or in a drunk", "Great in a drink or as an eye drop". After a few of own lines, it was obvious that the sponsor complained because he was back to the script soon enough. His way obviously better and because of Geets' humour the spot is remembered 25 years later.

In December there was always Santa Geets who always "Slung his bag over his shoulder and brought a tear to his eye" comment... and remember he always had his Santa Geets is leaving town parade, after Christmas.

The great Lardette will always be his best... always wanting to plant the big wet kiss on Pete. She was such a tramp.

There are many others Geets, this just reminds us of your genius.

I have seen David a few times over the years, always good to talk to him.

Good luck David.

April 2, 2009 / 11:01

Ahhh... Lardette and freddie with the sports...bringing back lots of memories from grades 12 & 13 and my brampton days

April 2, 2009 / 11:25

Without sounding too melodramatic, CFNY, Pete n Geets and a few other on air folks there shaped my burgeoning teenaged personality and musical preferences in the early 80's.

It was truly freeform radio and was instrumental in making me want to get into the radio and tv business, and today i work in television largely because of CFNY.

One morning as i hung out at my high school's student council office, i called in to P & G to request a Propaganda song. Minutes later it was on the air. Think that would happen nowadays?

April 2, 2009 / 13:14

They shaped me too, Ryan. The impact they had was immeasurable.

Good Luck Geets! Hope all goes well.

Kevin O'Leary
April 2, 2009 / 15:29

Hey Geets...getting whacked from the mother corp myself...lets grab a beer! Hope you are well!

April 2, 2009 / 15:35

Will the Dragon's be back next year?

April 2, 2009 / 16:56

I met Geets for the first time at CHUM FM when I was about to move to Calgary. Geets showed me the new Energy Studios in an album he had prepared even before I started there. What can I say? Guy gets it. Finally a studio that was built with the jock in mind! He also hides a mickey mouse in every studio he builds. Ours is between the glass of CITY TV and the energy studios. Best of luck to him. Lots of respect for his work on and off the air!

April 2, 2009 / 17:03

Fred, I will give 1 million dollars to the charity of your choice if you can go 12 months without telling this tired old story about the early years of CFNY......dude its 2009! It was a short period of time a long time theory or move on dude.

April 2, 2009 / 17:22

That's therapy...dude

Freddie P.
April 2, 2009 / 17:29

Hey Morris

Nobody forces you to read this shit.

April 2, 2009 / 18:21

I think it should be Morris/Irvine

Neil O
April 4, 2009 / 10:39

Are there not charges still pending from the terrorist incident when Pete & Geets took over the station for the day?
Who was the day time host that couldn’t do his shift cause of these shinagians? Still remember his parting comment after being refused entry into the studio… “fine then I’m going home and listen to Betty Kennedy”…LMAO

the brother
April 6, 2009 / 17:03

Don't worry David, No matter where the road takes you, you will always have Martin Streek over your shoulder goin' full tilt!

Ivar Hamilton
April 8, 2009 / 18:24

Sorry to hear about what's happened to my good pal Geets. Both Pete and Geets were great to work with and I am happy to say I was there during their entire time at CFNY. Some of my fondest days in radio to be sure. Geets and I shared many lunches over the years.
Always sharp with the pocket book too, I fondly remember him at the 2003 re-union jokingly saying to our former accountant, "Mary, where's my godamn cheque"!
Hope something turns up for Geets, he's one of the best.

Scott Heywood
December 8, 2009 / 09:07

I used to listen to you guys every morning. Hey, whatever happened to Lardette? ;)
Thanks for the great memories, guys.

December 19, 2009 / 17:32

Those were good years when Pete and Geets were on CHUM FM and later with CFNY. Always enjoyed their shows. Not sure if anyone remembers David doing the overnight weekend spots on CHUM FM as Phil In (guess they couldn't afford a regular DJ for that time slot).

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