CMT (Canada)

CMT (Canada)
Country Music Television (CMT)
CMT Canada 2010.png
CMT logo
Launched January 1, 1995
Owned by Corus Entertainment (90% &
managing partner)
Viacom (10%)
Picture format 480i (SDTV)
Country Canada
Broadcast area National
Headquarters Toronto, Ontario
Formerly called New Country Network (NCN) (1995-1996)
Website CMT
Bell TV Channel 575
Shaw Direct Channel 583
Available on most Canadian cable systems Check local listings, channels may vary
Bell Aliant TV Channel 216
Bell Fibe TV Channel 575
MTS Channel 109
Optik TV Channel 258
SaskTel Channel 14

CMT is a Canadian English language Category A specialty channel which airs country music and family-orientated general entertainment programs in the form of music videos, award shows, concerts, sitcoms and more. CMT is owned by Corus Entertainment (90%) and Viacom (10%).



Prior to the launch of CMT Canada, the American-based country television network, Country Music Television, was available in Canada since 1984.[1]

In June 1994, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) licensed a series of new Canadian specialty television channels and among them was The Country Network, licensed to primarily feature country music videos (a minimum of 90%). The licence was granted to the partnership of Maclean-Hunter (60%) and Rawlco Communications (40%).[2]

At this time, the CRTC had a policy where if a Canadian specialty service is licensed and that service's format is competitive with a foreign service's format that is licensed to operate in Canada, the foreign service may be terminated from operating in Canada.[2] Due to Country Music Television's competitive format, the CRTC terminated Country Music Television's broadcasting rights in Canada on June 6, 1994. Television distributors such as cable and satellite television operators could continue distributing Country Music Television until the day that The Country Network began operation.[2]

Before the channel's launch, Maclean-Hunter had been purchased by Rogers Communications.[3]

On January 1, 1995 the Canadian channel launched under the name New Country Network (NCN). On that date, Canadian television service providers were no longer allowed to offer Country Music Television.[4]

In retaliation to it being barred from Canada, the American service launched a complaint under the North American Free Trade Agreement and ceased carriage of videos by Canadian artists without major U.S. record deals.[5]

After months of negotiations, the matter was settled when it was announced that CMT would purchase a minority stake in the service. NCN relaunched as CMT Canada on October 31, 1996 with a similar format to the American service.[5] The majority interest was acquired by Shaw Communications at the same time; Shaw subsequently transferred its ownership stake to Corus Entertainment, a separate company owned by the same shareholders, in 1999.

The controversy also resulted in an effective change to CRTC policy — if a foreign channel is already available in Canada and a new Canadian equivalent is subsequently licensed, cable companies are no longer required to drop the foreign service.


When CMT launched as NCN on January 1, 1995, the CRTC required that 90% of the station's programming consist of music videos.[6] The CRTC dropped that requirement to 70% on February 28, 2001.[7] The percentage was further reduced to 50% on February 28, 2006.[8]

Currently, CMT airs music videos throughout the day in blocks titled My CMT Morning, CMT Music, Love & Tears, CMT Rewind, Old School, Wide Open and CMT Spotlight, along with the weekly programs Kortney & Dave by Request and the Chevrolet Cross Canada Countdown. In the evening, CMT airs the syndicated TV series' Just For Laughs Gags, America's Funniest Home Videos, According to Jim, and Reba along with country music-related series such as Pick a Puppy, Pet Heroes and ER Vets. Like its American counterpart, CMT also airs country/rural lifestyle movies on the weekend.


Current hosts

Past hosts

  • Cliff Dumas (Now hosting the Weekly Country Countdown)
  • Shannon Gaye
  • Gnarley Charley (Now at Kiss Country 93.7 FM in Fresno)
  • Stu Jeffries (Now at boom 97.3 FM in Toronto)
  • Nicola Jones (Now at CHCH in Hamilton)
  • Ashley Kranz (winner of CMT Canada's "CMT Casting Call 2007" competition)
  • Elissa Lansdell (Now hosting My Rona Home)
  • Melissa Parrott (winner of CMT Canada's "CMT Casting Call 2009" competition)
  • Hal Roberts (Now with DailyWebTV Torstar Communications)
  • Colleen Rusholme
  • Greg Shannon (Now at KG Country 95.5 FM in Alberta)
  • Nancy Sinclair
  • Brian "Hurricane" Smith
  • Tamara Stanners
  • Lindsay Stone


CMT old logo.svg CMT TV 1.png CMT logo.svg CMT Canada.svg CMT Canada 2010.png
1996–2000 2000–2006 2006–2008 2008–2010 2010–present

See also

  • CMT (US)


External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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