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Al Murdoch

The voice of Rogers Arena

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Story by Joe Leary


In the broadcasting industry, “pipes” is a term applied to those smooth, mellifluous voices that transcend the everyday and transport your mental imagery to another dimension.

Al Murdoch possesses pipes!

You know the voice by heart but may be hard-pressed to identify exactly where you know it from. It’s heard in any number of advertisements promoting everything from Ford, Nike, McDonalds, 7-Eleven and Dunkin Donuts to movie trailers for Universal Pictures; network promos for CBS, Fox and HBO; through to the Bud Light Super Bowl ads.

Then there’s his work as the announcer for the NHL Winter Classic; NHL All-Star Weekend; NHL Stadium Series and Heritage Classic outdoor games over the past four years. He’s the voice of the syndicated “Judy Justice” series, the latest television iteration for “Judge Judy.” Locally, Al Murdoch is most identified as the in-house announcer for the Vancouver Canucks, where his sultry pipes resonate throughout Rogers Arena. There’s also a myriad of other major client contracts.

His path to broadcasting was clearly ingrained early on.


“I remember being about six years old when my Dad brought home a new transistor radio,” he recalls, adding that riding his bike around the neighbourhood with the music blaring became a defining moment when he was a youngster.

“When the DJ came on and I heard his voice, I thought he was speaking directly to me. It was an instant connection and it was at that moment that I knew I wanted to be on the radio.” That dream for Al Murdoch began in high school with an in-house radio station that would broadcast throughout the hallways.

“When I wasn’t in class I was spinning records and sending shout-outs to all my friends.” reads for stations and that gave me an opportunity to work on my craft,” he says.

“I started my own production company in 1997 while still working in radio. “By 2001 I was making more money doing freelance voiceover work and decided to focus on that full-time. Commercials, narration for corporate videos & documentaries, radio & television promo work, movie trailers, video games all followed.”

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His current role as the in-house voice announcer for Rogers Arena began in 2011, when his late friend, the legendary broadcaster John Ashbridge, was in declining health.

“I was asked to fill in during the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs until Ash came back,” he says.

“I had a relationship with the game presentation crew since my earlier days as the public address announcer for the NBA’s Vancouver Grizzlies.”

The two voices would share announcing duties in-house for the next five years until Ashbridge retired in 2016, handing Murdoch the full-time gig. “John Ashbridge was a huge mentor to me,” he says. “We knew each other for over thirty years and worked together in radio.”

“I am grateful for his friendship and guidance, and vowed to continue his legacy behind the mic and in the community—miss that guy big-time.” Residing on Coquitlam’s pastoral Burke Mountain, the Winnipeg-born Murdoch enjoys suburban life with his wife of nearly 30 years, Chantal; daughter Maddie, and dog Harley, who he says was named “because my wife won’t let me get a Harley-Davidson motorcycle.”

With a schedule that has allowed him to participate in ‘Ironman 70.3’ twice, over 15 half-marathons, and pursue his love of travel, it’s no surprise that with a voice that distinguishable, he and his pipes have been identified far and wide over the years. “People recognize my voice in restaurants and grocery stores; mostly for my PA announcer work with the Vancouver Canucks, the NHL, and the Vancouver Grizzlies, back in the day,” he admits. One such international encounter comes to mind:

“I was in Maui and the people sitting next to us on the beach recognized the voice,” says Murdoch. We ended up talking hockey for a couple of hours.”

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“People recognize my voice in restaurants and grocery stores”

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