HNIC theme - National Treasure Or Just A Song?
Old 06-10-2008, 12:29 PM   #1 (permalink)
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CTV's going to be calling the tune now after composer sells Hockey Night song
PETER CHENEY

June 10, 2008

Like Jennifer Aniston's marriage to Brad Pitt, the relationship between the CBC and Hockey Night in Canada song composer Dolores Claman had problems known to a handful of insiders - fights over money, hurt feelings, a suitor in the wings.

And yesterday, the relationship ended not unlike Ms. Aniston's when the rival CTV network, playing the Angelina Jolie role, swept in to take away Ms. Claman and her song, the iconic dunt-da-DUNT-da-dunt that Canadians have heard for the past 40 years.

"We think it's a tremendous coup," said CTV executive Rick Brace. "This is the hockey anthem."

The stunning business deal, which gives CTV perpetual rights to Ms. Claman's song, marks the end of a bitter backroom feud between the composer and the CBC, which has used the tune on its Hockey Night in Canada broadcast since 1968. Although it has simmered for years, the public learned of the battle only last week, when the CBC announced that it would hold a national contest to choose a new song after failing to come to terms with Ms. Claman.

"We made [what] we consider a fair and respectful offer," CBC executive Scott Moore said. "You have to ask the other side what happened."

Although neither side will disclose how much Ms. Claman's deal with CTV is worth, Mr. Moore said yesterday that the composer had been seeking $2.5-million. (The CBC had reportedly been paying about $500 per broadcast to use the song, and had offered to buy it for an amount "in the high six figures.") Although thousands signed online petitions urging the CBC to keep the song, declaring it a "national treasure" and "Canada's second anthem," Mr. Moore said there were limits to how much the public broadcaster was willing to pay: "What Hockey Night in Canada is really about is hockey," he said. "Everything else is just window dressing."

Although the impact of the deal on the respective networks will not be known for some time, hockey insiders saw CTV as the early winner: "The CBC played chicken and they lost," said one.

CTV's deal-making machinery slipped into gear last Friday afternoon, just moments after the CBC announced that it couldn't make a deal with Ms. Claman. By midnight, CTV executives had reached a verbal agreement with her Toronto agent, John Ciccone of Copyright Music and Visuals. Lawyers drafted agreements over the weekend. They were signed yesterday.

Mr. Brace of CTV said he isn't concerned about a backlash from fans who might perceive him as an interloper who swept in and stole away Ms. Claman and her song from the CBC as their relationship problems played out in the national media: "Just the opposite," he said. "There was a divorce on the table."

Mr. Brace said CTV didn't make any overtures until the CBC announced that it had reached the end of the road with Ms. Claman: "This wasn't poaching. Quite the opposite. This song was dead, and we in fact saved the thing. It would be gone. It would be in an archive somewhere."

Mr. Brace said CTV plans to use the song in several ways. Its most prominent role will be as the theme song for scheduled hockey broadcasts on TSN, which covers about 70 games a season. It will also be featured on CTV's hockey coverage at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics.

Mr. Brace said it's "highly unlikely" that the song would be used in connection with any other sports. "This is the hockey song. It will play the same role here as it did there. It just has a new home."

Although money was important, insiders said the deciding factor in the battle between Ms. Claman and the CBC was emotion - years of wrangling about the song and its value had angered Ms. Claman. "She was hurt," said Ms. Claman's agent. "She loves the song. It's very close to her heart. It's like her baby."

Ms. Claman, now 80 and living in London, England, composed the song in 1968 and licensed it to the CBC for Hockey Night in Canada. Ms. Claman, a commercial jingle writer, retained the copyright. The first real signs of trouble came in 2002, when Ms. Claman protested about some of the ways that CBC was using her song. Two years later, in 2004, she sued the broadcaster, asking for $2.5-million in damages. The lawsuit is still before the courts.

Mr. Brace said he was looking forward to hearing the song on his network when the new hockey season gets under way: "This song is part of the fabric of the country," he said. "It's absolute Canadiana."
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Old 06-10-2008, 12:34 PM   #2 (permalink)
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National treasure and a huge part of Canadian history in my opinion. Its a shame that it won't be on CBC "HNIC" anymore especially for those people who don't have cable television or satellite television ans have access to TSN or RDS, but I'm glad that the song wasn't lost completely all together.
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Old 06-10-2008, 12:36 PM   #3 (permalink)
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They played it last night on TSN while they were doing their news segment and it just wasn't the same. I guess it'll time to get used to. Wow, CBC is cheap. They lose Brian Williams, Chris Cuthbert now the song.
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Old 06-10-2008, 01:52 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Dr. J. Naismith View Post
National treasure and a huge part of Canadian history in my opinion. Its a shame that it won't be on CBC "HNIC" anymore especially for those people who don't have cable television or satellite television ans have access to TSN or RDS, but I'm glad that the song wasn't lost completely all together.
Hold on a sec...
did CBC lose the rights to play hockey games completely?

I thought it was just the song that they lost.

In which case.... who cares. it's a song.
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Old 06-10-2008, 01:58 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Just the song, not the show itself. They'll continue using Nickelback's "Saturday Night's Alright" tune for their theme song.
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Old 06-10-2008, 02:00 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Just the song, not the show itself. They'll continue using Nickelback's "Saturday Night's Alright" tune for their theme song.
seriously??

wow.

They would have been 1 billion gazillion times smarter to use Stompin'Tom's hockey song as the theme. Hell, i would have liked it more than the HNIC theme.

anyways, if they do use any nickelback song, i may have to boycott hockey matches on the CBC out of principle.
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Old 06-10-2008, 02:07 PM   #7 (permalink)
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anyways, if they do use any nickelback song, i may have to boycott hockey matches on the CBC out of principle.
Where have you been for the last couple years then. HNIC has been using both the HNIC theme and as well Nickelback's Elton John cover to open their show on Saturday night for 2 to 3 years now.
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Old 06-10-2008, 02:13 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Where have you been for the last couple years then. HNIC has been using both the HNIC theme and as well Nickelback's Elton John cover to open their show on Saturday night for 2 to 3 years now.
ahahahaha.

i guess that shows how much hockey i actually watch.
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Old 06-10-2008, 02:23 PM   #9 (permalink)
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ahahahaha.

i guess that shows how much hockey i actually watch.
As obnoxious as that Nickelback tune is, the intro is pretty sweet if you ask me.
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Old 06-10-2008, 02:42 PM   #10 (permalink)
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It's been a Canadian institution as long I have been alive. I think it's pretty fuckin' disappointing that this happened. The song is nothing when taken away from HNIC. HNIC obviously goes on, but takes a big hit by not having the song. They have been synonymous for decades. My kids were turned on to hockey in large part because of the aura and mystique of that song. Sounds melodramatic but it's true. There was way more excitement about making sure the TV got switched on by 7PM then there was for the rest of the broadcast.

CTV/TSN wasted their money, IMO..... the song is bordering on meaningless when taken away from HNIC.

Shame on fuckin' CBC. They needed to get this done. When I think of all the bullshit crapass Inquiries that our government wastes our money on.... to see them cheap out on this pisses me off.
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Old 06-10-2008, 03:51 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by fancylad View Post
Hold on a sec...
did CBC lose the rights to play hockey games completely?

I thought it was just the song that they lost.

In which case.... who cares. it's a song.
i couldnt agree more...
its a song that lasts about 30 seconds... big whoop.
omigod... what will i do? theres a different song before HNIC... omigod life is meaningless now!
gimme a break.
who cares....
why the hell should CBC pay millions to some old bag anyways?

tsn grabbed it and wasted their money too.
i saw the segment on sportscenter and it seemed very cheap and rip-off-ish.
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Old 06-10-2008, 03:58 PM   #12 (permalink)
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who cares....
My kids, as an example.




Also, just about everyone that I know. lol.

Not big on tradition, eh Insider?
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Old 06-10-2008, 04:01 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I'm with Wu on this one. As stupid as it may sound, the theme song is a staple for Canadians on Saturday night. It's a shame that CBC didn't keep the rights, but I'm happy it didn't disappear altogether.
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Old 06-10-2008, 04:03 PM   #14 (permalink)
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its overrated XW.
they offered that lady an offer in the 6 figures and she turned it down...
its about pricipal man...
why pay some old bag millions of dollars for a song that will play for just about 4 minutes in total over the entire year?
CBC's cheap, yes we all know that... but how doi you justify paying so much money if you're the CEO of the CBC? tradition is one thing, but i'm pretty sure they wont lose any fans over this.
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Old 06-10-2008, 04:08 PM   #15 (permalink)
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My kids, as an example.




Also, just about everyone that I know. lol.

Not big on tradition, eh Insider?
I guess i'm in the same boat as insider.

I'm really not affected at all by this switch. I'll watch the odd hockey game here and there, but to me it doesn't matter whether it's on NBC, CBC, TSN, etc. I don't even know the theme songs of the other networks... so i really don't care.

And as for how i feel about tradition and hockey: I grew up loving the sport in the late '80's up until the mid '90s. That to me was the glory days of hockey when tradition was actually a part of the NHL. Fast forward to today with teams in the most ridiculous of hockey markets, strikes, missing seasons, small Canadian markets getting fucked over for shittier smaller American markets. aaarrgghhh. I have lost so much respect for the NHL and the sport.

I don't even consider myself a hockey "fan" anymore. just a casual observer.

Last edited by fancylad; 06-10-2008 at 04:12 PM.
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Old 06-10-2008, 04:08 PM   #16 (permalink)
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how do you justify paying so much money if you're the CEO of the CBC?

uhhh.... National Treasure? See above.
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Old 06-10-2008, 04:12 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by fancylad View Post
I guess i'm in the same boat as insider.

I'm really not affected at all by this switch. I'll watch the odd hockey game here and there, but to me it doesn't matter whether it's on NBC, CBC, TSN, etc. I don't even know the theme songs of the other networks... so i really don't care.

And as for high i feel about tradition and hockey: I grew up loving the sport in the late '80's up until the mid '90s. That to me was the glory days of hockey when tradition was actually a part of the NHL. Fast forward to today with teams in the most ridiculous of hockey markets, strikes, missing seasons, small Canadian markets getting fucked over for shittier smaller American markets. aaarrgghhh. I have lost so much respect for the NHL and the sport.

I don't even consider myself a hockey "fan" anymore. just a casual observer.
lol.... Fancy - it's purely because of bullshit corporate moves like this one that you and so many others have been turned off of hockey. You talk about the loss of tradition contributing to your sliding interest.... well hello!! That's what is happening here.

The reason you don't know of any other networks hockey theme songs...... is because they don't have one. That's the point.
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Old 06-10-2008, 04:17 PM   #18 (permalink)
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lol.... Fancy - it's purely because of bullshit corporate moves like this one that you and so many others have been turned off of hockey. You talk about the loss of tradition contributing to your sliding interest.... well hello!! That's what is happening here.

The reason you don't know of any other networks hockey theme songs...... is because they don't have one. That's the point.
yeah.. i get your point XW. You are correct in your thinking.

With me...i HAVE been turned off hockey big time. absolutely. And while i concur that this themesong move is a step in the wrong direction, in my heart, i'm totally indifferent to it.

thanks to Bettman, i'm completely immunized from any hockey-based emotional reaction. It's all his fault.
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Old 06-10-2008, 04:20 PM   #19 (permalink)
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I wish they were still playing in Maple Leaf Gardens....lol
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Old 06-10-2008, 04:31 PM   #20 (permalink)
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i agree with Fancy...
i guess i'm just not the same calibre of hockey fan that you guys are....
to you guys its a tradition, to me; its a song.

i was a big hockey fan growing up... i had every single hockey card imaginable from 1988-1990... i had a few valuable ones too.
i even play hockey once a week too.... every Monday baby!
but i'm just off the whole NHL bandwagon, and the corporation its become.
it actually bores me quite frankly.
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