July 10, 2018 1:49 pm
Updated: July 10, 2018 2:30 pm

Legendary Montreal radio host Tommy Schnurmacher rewires in retirement

WATCH ABOVE: Former colleague, mentor and friend Tommy Schnurmacher joined Global's Laura Casella to talk about his memoir.


After 15 years of writing for the Montreal Gazette, Tommy Schnurmacher brought his storytelling, commentary and political analysis as a daytime talk radio host to Montreal’s airwaves for over two decades.

When he retired from broadcast media in November 2017, Schnurmacher returned to his roots and started a written memoir through Facebook posts shared to his private network.

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The memoir is self-described as “written in a way that’s never been done before,” and has been stirring buzz proven through feedback shared on his blog.

His storytelling gives the audience a look at certain points in his life where he learned an important lesson or two, delivered in the Schnurmacher flavour that many Montrealers have been missing since his retirement.

Schnurmacher’s tales range from his adventures covering the Oscars in Hollywood to a time when he snuck himself and a friend into John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s infamous Montreal bed-in where he befriended the mega pop-cultural icon.

READ MORE: Yoko Ono uses video of Montreal bed-in with John Lennon to promote peace

Global’s Laura Casella was a producer on Schnurmacher’s radio show early in her career and the two have remained friends ever since.

Schnurmacher invited Casella into his home where he opened up about his motives and the process of writing.

“This material has been sitting in my mind for years, I’ve always wanted to write novels, write a memoir,” said Schnurmacher leading up to an epiphany while sitting in Montreal’s Argo Bookshop.

“Do it instantly and give it away… Two or three pages a day every weekday by noon on Facebook.”

Schnurmacher says he asks his social network to hold him accountable for his self-imposed deadlines, just as if he was still working for one of his previous broadcast employers.

“The most difficult part of writing for me is sitting down in front of the computer and actually doing it,” admitted Schnurmacher about the process.

“To talk about it, do interviews about it, all of that is fun and easy — but actually sitting down and looking at a blank screen is pretty scary.”

The memoir titled, Makeup Tips from Auschwitz: How Vanity Saved my Mother’s Life, is also publicly accessible on his personal blog.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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