As the 1980s began, and public tastes changed, weekly half-hour musical series on CTV were beginning to lose their ability to draw acceptable audiences. At the same time, CTV was under increasing pressure to add more drama to its Canadian content prime time component. Yet, to their credit, the Network continued to try to showcase high-profile Canadian performers in their own shows.
Rompin’ Ronnie Hawkins was still riding high in the world of country music, and it might have been his appearances as host of CTV’s Honky Tonk series in 1981-82 that helped him to win Canadian music’s Juno Award as Best Country Male Vocalist in 1982.
This lively half-hour series was set in a Western saloon, and had several star guests, but Honky Tonk could only hold down the Friday 7:00pm time period for part of one season before being pulled. It was produced in the studios of CFTO-TV Toronto.
Written by Pip Wedge - February, 2003