Written by Karim Mosna and submitted by Canoe FM Manager Roxanne Casey
It is with heavy hearts that all of us at 100.9 Canoe FM mourn the loss of Patrick Monaghan. Patrick, the host of the multi-award winning Buckslide Blues Cruise, passed away peacefully in his sleep on Tuesday night.
Patrick went far above and beyond just playing the songs. He was an ambassador and champion of the blues, promoting up-and-coming musicians, particularly Canadian artists. He traveled to blues festivals across Ontario to discover new artists, interview and spotlight their music on the show.
He took over the blues program from former Canoe FM host Lee MacLean in 2016. Pat recalls he had just five hours training. The first song he played on the show was his favourite song, the classic “Green Onions” by Booker T. & The MGs, which is the song still heard on the Canoe FM radio ad that promotes his show. He credited the opportunity to produce David Mair’s Tuesday Night Sessions for two and a half years as an invaluable opportunity to gain comfort with the equipment.
Patrick was a lifelong fan of the blues though initially he didn’t realize it. Growing up, he loved bands like ZZ Top, The Rolling Stones and Ten Years After, later realizing all these rock bands were heavily inspired by the blues greats. The Buckslide Blues Cruise reflected his vast music knowledge and appreciation, playing everything from Lead Belly to Led Zeppelin. Pat also loved to share interesting backstories about the musicians.
He was recognized nationally, winning three Best Blues Show Of The Year awards from the National Campus and Community Radio Association (NCRA). He also received the Toronto Maple Blues Society Award for Best Blues Booster Of The Year in Canada for 2022.
Pat battled pancreatic cancer over the last several years, but continuing to run the radio show became his purpose in life.
“I truly love what I am doing…When I push the button on the board, and the light turns green, I’m not sick anymore,” Monaghan told station colleagues. “I always use the motto ‘I keep the blues alive, but the last few years the blues has been keeping me alive.’”
The Buckslide Blues Cruise listenership extended well beyond Haliburton County, with regular texts coming into the station from fans across the country. Tributes have poured in over social media, including from musicians and other community radio stations.
“We have lost a great supporter of live music. He was truly a thumbs-up guy. As Stevie Ray Vaughan said, The Sky Is Crying. Gonna miss you pal,” said Ken Wallis, host of the syndicated radio shows Blues Source Canada and Blues Source International.
“The Blues world has lost a good one. This gentleman has done so much for the advocacy of Blues music; a bigger booster you will never find,” added Dwayne Blackburn from the band Heartless Saints. “His radio show not only showcased the stars; it gave airtime to anyone trying to earn a spot in the Blues fraternity. Always upbeat, encouraging…and willing to lend an ear. He met his illness head-on, with a positivity that I could only dream of having. Rest easy, Pat. I’m sure you’re already lining up a ton of shows to watch. You will be missed.”
Patrick Monaghan was simply the best.