Hans Knot's International Radio Report - June 2004 (2)

 

When you start reading this edition of the international report it s already summer. First let me wish you one of the nicest summers ever with love for you and the family and all the things planned for the holiday seasons as wished.

After last report, which came out in the two first days of June, a lot of e-mails came in from the readers and here are a few to get a name check from me this time:

One of the many readers who s name is Stuart (there are more Stuarts than John s in the massive readers list) sent me the following e-mail: What a great report. It has kept me up very late. With reference to the Caroline Revival Hour over the transmitter of Radio Andorra, I believe Don Allen was the only live voice, and all the other ex Caroline DJ's had made taped messages (some by telephone) which were played from cart machines, or cassette player, following which their personal theme tunes were played. I made a recording of this programme. As you say, the quality is very bad for most part, but some parts are excellent. I could make you an edited version if you want it, or maybe you already did this at the time? 

Thanks for the offer. Indeed I did for a documentary years ago an edited version, but thanks anyway Stuart.

But Stuart went on with: Later on you refer to Mi Amigo (70's) announced frequencies as 259 and 270 Khz. This was surely 259 and 270 metres? Also, when announcing the "crossing the street to another ship", I remember a DJ (possibly Spangles Maldoon) making a reference on RNI to the famous book by John Buchan (Lord Tweedsmuir) called "The 39 Steps" to give a further clue as to what was about to happen. Best wishes Stuart . 

And here s one from Chris Edwards in Hanwell who gives us a marvellous idea to spent some hours on the internet: While searching the net, came across this website : The Impossible Discographies: http://home.swipnet.se/skroff/index.html.
Includes a comprehensive Major Minor records discography, lots more and lots of links, probably of interest to the record / theme collectors among us. Best wishes Chris. 

And from Chris we go to Phil: Hi Hans, Thanks for another great report and thanks for including my Seagull program news. Unfortunately, I was given the wrong info about the program times, it's not 9 CET or 10 GMT, it's 10 GMT, 11 CET. I just accepted the info as it was given to me and being dumb, I didn't know the difference, I'm sure most everyone else worked it out though. So, perhaps this will put the record straight I am on every Tuesday at 10 am GMT with my 60s Jukebox and again at 10 pm with another program called Sex, Drugs and Rock 'n' Roll. If it's not too much trouble, I'd love to get in touch with any of the guys who worked with me in the 70s on Caroline and the Voice of Peace. I can be contacted by email at philmitchell@fsmail.net. Thanks mate, Phil Mitchell . 

So two in one, you all know where Phil can be heard on Seagull as well as for those who have worked on the Peace Ship please contact him and I know that there are some nine or ten former Voice of Peace people in the list who are reading the report, so let your e mails go to Phil please 

And talking about the VOP an answer from the USA on the earlier published photo taken on the Peace ship. The answer comes from Don Stevens who wrote in: Thanks again Hans for the report. Just back from Vegas (again)...will send you more pictures to go with the couple I sent you. Steve Gordon should have recognised the lady with Charly, she is Ronit, an old friend of Steve, Ken Dicken and Phil Brice, she is also the Mother of my daughter Sarit. Everything else is correct. I'll send you some VOP pictures with Steve on the Peace Ship. Peace and Long Life Hans, Don.

Thanks Don, much appreciated. 

Then an e-mail from Ireland: Thanks for your monthly report again - I always look forward to reading it, especially the bits about Veronica. Please let us all know when to look out for the long awaited double cd from de Genootschap Jingles & Tunes talked of bringing out from all the gathered tapes of Veronica masters. Have a good summer, David Wilson. 

I've asked Jelle Boonstra of the Genootschap and he told me that a lot of work has been done on the production. Even the cd sleeve is ready and it's all up to Ad Bouman, one of the people behind the Foundation Norderney, to decide if the production can be brought on the market as the official rights for the material is claimed by this foundation. The people from Genootschap tried several times to get the answer from Bouman but till now he does not succeed in communicating in a proper way. Which is of course a pity for all the collectors of Veronica material. So we still have to wait. 

I want to congratulate Charlie the Seawolf Wolfe with his forthcoming marriage, which will take place in August. I had the chance to meet Charlie a couple of times during his days on Laser 558 and really he s one of the nicest deejays I ve met. And I can tell you that I met hundreds of them during the past 35 years of writing on the subject radio. Charlie came to Europe 20 years ago to be part of the American team to make Laser 558, transmitting from international waters a big success. Even when the DTI tried to hunger out the people on the radio ship Communicator in 1985 they still made a lot of fun with Charlie as the utter front man. Early June Charlie Wolf has presented his last show for Red FM, Ireland. The controversial jock said goodbye to his listeners on this morning's 'Red Rooster' Breakfast Show on the Cork youth station. He announced his departure only a few days earlier. When the Cork station opened 2,5 years earlier Charlie, who went back to his native country America for only a short period in the eighties, was part of the team. Charlie have much pleasure with your woman and enjoy live together.

More names have to be added to the list of people joining in to the class of 73/74, which I mentioned in my last report. Next to the long list of people attending this at the end of the Radio Day on October 2nd in Amsterdam. What about Dick Palmer, Robin Banks and Johnny Jason who have also written to the organisers that they will take part. 

By the way for the foreign readers the Radio Day is cheaper if you take a donation into the Foundation for Media Communication. With a donation of 6 Euro you ve free entrance to the Radio Day. Normally you pay 10 Euro at the entrance of Casa 400, very near to the Amstel Railroad Station. You can sent the donation to PO Box 53121 1007 RC Amsterdam. Just simply write them an e mail asking for more information about a donation share. Write to Rob Olthof of the Foundation in Amsterdam at olt@xs4all.nl

David L wrote in and: Dear Hans, Thank you for yet another great report. I always look forward to it and am never disappointed. Thank you David. 

Then a first from Leicester in the UK. Hello Hans, I have just read my first Report - Excellent. I appreciate the amount of your time this undertaking must take, being in my mid 50's, I remember the events particularly well. Keep up the good work. Kind Regards, Peter Woodford. 

And it s just the many replies I get on the report that keeps me going. Thank you all. 

June the 7th an email came in from Edinburgh in Scotland: Hi Hans, Great info as always - I now have to make more time to read it all! Regarding Offshore Deejays Nicknames, the Radio Scotland 242 deejay Jack McLaughlin often called himself Jack "Macfisheries". MacFisheries was a well known chain of fish shops in Scotland at the time. Actor and former Radio Scotland deejay Paul Young made a guest appearance on the BBC Scotland television programme Still Game , a comedy series about two old men behaving badly. Paul played another old man - he didn't need much make-up! Previously he had his own TV fishing programmes Hooked on Fishing and Hooked on Scotland . With best regards, Bob Baird. 

Thanks a lot Bob and all your and other personal memories are always welcome at HKnot@home.nl

Going from one Bob to another, this time in Kent, where Bob LeRoi is living. He was the guy who organised the Radio Sutch/Radio City reunion at the end of May at the Dickens Inn in St Katherins Dock near the Thames, where 40 years ago the adventures of Lord Sutch and his Radio Sutch started. On Bob his site you can find a nice photo page of that first reunion of the team since 1964. Go to www.bobleroi.co.uk

After enlarging this photo you will see a part of the group which came together for the reunion in London (copyright Bob LeRoi)

June 11th saw e mails coming in from all around the world and again I ll take three of them for the report. First one is from one of the BBC presenters, Chris Baird:

Hi Hans, Many thanks for the regular offshore updates its a welcome read from the tedious onshore news. Cheers Chris. 

Second one is coming in from the West Coast of the USA : Thanks for the reports that you send out. It keeps me in touch with my past!! If you have any e-mail addresses for any of the Caroline people from 87- 88, please forward my e-mail to them, I would love to hear from them. The member that I have lost touch with is Graham from Caroline that went on to work for BBC Kent in the mid-90 s. I visited him in the mid 90 s and I have lost touch with him. If you can help connect us, I would appreciate it. 

Paul Jackson
MV Communicator 87- 88
Now Raleigh, North Carolina USA

Another shipmate responding on the report and in the meantime I've sent him the e mail address of Graham who is better known in offshore radio world as Peter Philips. On board the Ross Revenge his nickname was Mr World Service which he earned with reading the news in a very formal style. Anyone who wants to get in contact with Paul Jackson can write him on 
Pdj_pirate@hotmail.com

Then Rob Olthof of the Foundation for Media Communication sent in an e-mail mentioning me that the third printing of the RNI Memories book, which was edited by yours truly and which came out last October, is now for sale. Anyone who hasn't got a copy of this book, in which memories to Radio Northsea International are coming back and written by several persons, can order their own book. Either sent 10 Pounds or 15 Euro (that s including packing and postage) to SMC, PO Box 53121, 1007 RC Amsterdam in the Netherlands and don t forget to enclose that the money is for your personal copy of the RNI Memories.

Also nice to see how former offshore people remember old colleagues from other stations. Andy Archer wrote me to tell something about a former Veronica technician, Juul Geleick. Last issue had some notes about Juul visiting the REM island for the first time in his life. Here's what Andy wrote about Juul Geleick: Please pass on my best wishes to Juul Geleick when you are next in contact with him. I met him several times at Radio Veronica, a very nice guy who I liked a lot.

And as Juul and I are in regular contact too, I sent him the wishes and he came back with the next: It was very nice from Andy. I also admired (and still do) him a lot. A very professional presenter and one of the best voices ever heard on the Northsea. I remember doing a special program on Veronica where Tom Mulder had invited both Tony Allan and Andy Archer to talk about RNI. At that stage I was producing the program. I still have in my archive the station calls which Andy and Tony did that morning for me and Radio Veronica. And we have to go back to 1971 when this program was recorded. 

I got an e-mail from Eric Jansen who is on the search for people who can tell him anything about his grandpa. I know there are a lot of former people who have worked for RNI in the seventies as a deejays, technician or crewmember and who are reading this international report. Eric is the grandson of Jan Tuinebreyer who worked for the Roos Company from Scheveningen on the Trip Tender as well he worked sometimes as a crewmember on the MEBO II. He lost his granddad when he was very young and would like to know more about Jan Tuinebreyer who can also seen on the photograph (the guy who s half kneeing). So please if you remember Jan take contact with Eric on the following e mail address: ercodi@planet.nl

Robert Stanley Clancy sent in the next message: Monitor Magazine has now got two web sites up and running. The web address has changed slightly from http://www.monitormag.org.uk to http://www.monitor.org.uk and has a e-mail address of monitor@monitor.org.uk a sister site at http://www.guernsey.net/~deejayclancy has been set up as Monitor Web Site No.2 and has a e-mail address of deejayclancy@monitor.org.uk. The two web sites are very different to each other and is worth a look if one is interested in how Monitor looked from inception and has articles by the late Buster Ronald C Pearson and will in time have Monitors issues numbers 1 to 19 on it. Issue number 1 is all ready on the web site along with articles from issues 2,3,4,5,6 & 7. 

Thanks Robert and I do remember myself working for Monitor Magazine in the seventies and eighties as a lot of pleasure and inspiring people to work with. Greetings to Don and Jean by this report, as they re reading it too!

There will be a possibility that Radio Caroline will have a RSL licence later this summer. I read the message which came in from John at Caroline Sales: Hi to you all. As Radio Caroline Sales is the license holder and applicant I can now tell you all that I have today posted off the License Application form and cheque to Ofcom. The RSL will run from *7th August to 3rd September 2004. The Ross Revenge will be moved to the Tilbury Ocean Liner terminal very soon. (* if we are granted a licence). It is hoped that the painting will be completed before she moves, but we desperately need volunteers to de-rust and help paint the ship. If you can help please phone Peter Moore on 02083 403831. Volunteers will be needed onboard during the RSL, if you can help, please email me off list with your name, address and telephone number. We can only make this RSL a success if we get sufficient numbers to help, please don't leave it up to the same few people to do all of the work. Thanks John .

I must say at one point it s good to see that John wants to cooperate with Highgate manager Peter Moore and also it s now clear to me that Mr. Moore is still around. I did asked him a few times to react on the last chapter for the forthcoming book The Wet and wild history of Radio Caroline . After meeting him last February two times I only had one e mail from him which is really a pity as I think he doesn t want to defend himself on the subject Is the Radio Caroline Management still reliable? 

There s an internet site in the USA which I would like you to have a look on. For radio makers it s probably a well known site. The company behind it is a so called syndicator which produces on a weekly basis all kind of radio programs: www.radioexpress.com

Working on a new article about the subject Venus and popmusic my co-editor on Soundscapes Magazine www.soundscapes.info, Ger Tillekens, was searching the web and found a very interesting site about the so called spage age pop. On this site also very interesting words about the link between music and jingles. So he advices us to have a look at: http://www.spaceagepop.com/index.htm

On June 21st it was time for champagne for the people at Radio 538. This station started as a cable radio station only in 1992 and behind were a few people who had formerly worked on Veronica, including Lex Harding. The idea was bringing the youth a new friendly radio station. In 1995 they got a licence for FM broadcasting and a 70% coverage of Holland. Nowadays they have 90% coverage and for the first time the station is number one in the listening figures in Holland with 11.7%. Leaving Sky Radio at number 2 with 11,3%. It s for the first time since 8 years that another station than Sky Radio is at number one. Congratulations to all at Radio 538.

Then e-mail connection with Simon Wally Barrett who worked on Radio Caroline in the seventies and the eighties: An answer for you, better late than never, Hans. Johnny Lewis was known as the herdsman because he once looked after cows. Being a total animal lover myself I remember once having a conversation with Johnny in which he told me of his high opinion of cows and that they were nice animals to work with and that they do indeed respond to affection in a similar way to a dog. Regards from Mallorca. Simon Barrett. 

The next one comes in from the USA: Good morning, Larry Tremaine (Steinman) here enjoying reading your great stories of the pirates and what great stories they are. Meet with Robb Eden in England in March and last month (May) one of my old D.J.'s Mark Wesley from RNI days came to Los Angeles with his wife and we met up with them in Las Vegas and spent a few days with them to catch up on the old times. It was truly wonderful. Great to hear Roger Day is doing well. I still plan to write and give you some great stories and fond memories of the '69-70's days. Please let everyone know that I send my very best regards. We still have art galleries in Beverly Hills, Carol Lawrence Fine Art Galleries, www.art90210.com and love to hear from the guys. Got a great photo of reunion from Roger Day with Ronan, Spangles and lots of old faces with not too much hair.... like me! all my best to you Hans...Larry Tremaine. 

Thanks Larry and hope you ll find some time to write those memories for me and all the thousands of readers.

A new internet station you could tune in is TNI, a station which is run by some people from England but has also a small taste of Dutch presenters who do their utmost to sound like English people. Have a listen at www.tniradio.com

It was Paul de Haan from Marine broadcasters who brought the big news this morning, June 23rd, from his car when he heard for the first time the announcements that Radio 10 Gold will be heading soon for the 1008 kHz mentioning themselves Radio 10 08, which we both think in no good idea. However Talpa International came some hours later with the next official press report:

Talpa Radio International has bought out the license awarded to Radlon Media Ltd for 1008 kHz, and will start broadcasting on 1008 kHz at full power as of 1 July 2004. Radlon will now look for another frequency for its proposed English service to the UK. Erik de Zwart, director of Talpa Radio International, is delighted at the news. "It's simply not imaginable that Radio10 Gold could leave the Dutch radio listening landscape. The listening figures prove that month after month. With the new, very strong frequency we can reach everyone in the Netherlands with a portable radio, in the car, at work or in bed. 1008 kHz is not only the best AM frequency in the Netherlands, but also there are no strong transmitters on that frequency in countries close to the Netherlands, so you can listen to us in the surrounding countries."

Tom Mulder, Programme Director van Radio 10 Gold, is also over the moon: "We've pressed very hard for this. And because of the enormous number of faithful listeners to Radio 10 Gold, we're in a position to greatly improve reception of our station. 1008 is hugely powerful, so you can listen day and a night in the whole of the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, western Germany, eastern England and northern France. And you don't have to tune to
a different frequency for your favorite radio station, it's always there on 1008."

And like the last three issues of the international report I want to have you a pre-read of one of the chapters for the forthcoming book The wet and wild history of Radio Caroline which will be released in autumn of this year. Chapter eight is written by Bob Le Roi:

MEMORIES FROM WHITSTABLE

Next to Radio Caroline there have been a lot of radio stations, transmitting from the international waters. Of course we all know the big ones like Radio Caroline, Radio London, Radio Veronica and Radio Northsea International to mention a few of them. Next to the big ones, where all the stars could be heard on our transistor radio s, there were many more radio stations which didn t get the attention as the big brothers. In my view a pity as they were in their own category also good stations. From the sixties I do remember a few examples of minor radio stations which really felt good in my listening ears. First Radio 355, a very good middle of the road music station, which was only a couple of months on the air in 1967. Then there was Radio 390, which was a very easy listening station. The station did close down in 1967 and now 37 years later it s still great fun to listen to the most relaxing sound Offshore Radio ever had. The last one I like to mention is Radio City, the Tower of Power. Transmitting on 299 the station came in the news as it s director Reginald Calvert had been shot down by a co-director of a competitive station. Lucky enough I did record myself enough hours to listen to Radio City, when I want to listen to good old memories. In 1978 I met Bob LeRoi, originating from Whitstable in Kent, for the very first time at the very first Radio Day at Noordwijkerhout. It was him who worked, as a 15 years old chap, for a few stints on the Shivering Sands Forts. But Bob LeRoi has also good memories to Radio Caroline. Here some of his memories:

My first introduction to Radio Caroline was at the suggestion of John Birch. Birch was at a later stage not only a taxi driver but also an avid Caroline supporter who had is own informative magazine on the radio station. I d been to visit John & his wife Anita in Greys in the county Essex on a couple of occasions and it was John he did promise to put my name forward to people within the Caroline organisation. 

But there was more as one day I suddenly got a call from a girl, called Jenny, from the office who sent me a simple letter; she was more concerned about astrological birth signs than expertise! This was in early 1968 and I hope to go out to the Caroline ship which was off the east coast of Britain. But I was to miss going out to the MV Mi Amigo, as both the Caroline ships were dragged away by the Wijsmuller Salvage Company tugs. This as the bills for tendering were not properly paid and so the ships disappeared into Amsterdam harbour for some years

I crossed paths again with the Caroline Organisation through Robb Eden who I d met at the Caroline Road-shows in the seventies. He worked in the early seventies on the MEBO II for Radio Northsea International but soon after Radio Caroline came back on the air from the MV Mi Amigo he crossed ships and was to be heard on Radio Caroline. Robb asked me if I d make some filler tapes. And so I did, which was in 1979. Andy Oldfield produced the shows that found there way out to the ship with one of the many tenders, to be used on an ad hock basis in their programming.

In the late 70 s I d got involved with local BBC Radio, working freelance at BBC Radio Medway and by 1983 I was under full contract to them. But never the less became involved with supplying the new Radio Caroline ship, the MV Ross Revenge, with Graham on the Henrietta . The bosses at the BBC didn t seam worried with numerous redundant bits of kit, records and carts being given to me to pass to the radio ship.

In 1985 we ran the Euro siege blockade, which was the most memorable period. It was the period that the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) put out a permanent watch on all activities in the Thames Estuary regarding the movements from ships in the neighbourhood of the MV Ross Revenge and the MV Communicator, which was at that stage the radio ship for Laser 558. Graham and I usually took precaution to weight the obvious radio related cartons with concrete to ditch overboard should we have been intercepted. Many times we found ourselves being chased all over the Thames Estuary. It was on one occasion we were told to hold off or be rammed. We often chose periods when we knew anorak boats were around so that the Dioptric Surveyor which was the most important spy ship from the DTI - efforts became diluted. They did though soon recognise the Henrietta , making life difficult for both Graham and me on shore, when enquiries revealed I was at the BBC and Graham was a local port officer. 

We thought the game was up when a guy called Cosmic arrived at 4 am one morning with a van loaded with supplies, records and deejay Tom Anderson. We loaded the Henrietta to the gunwales. Whilst Tom made himself scarce below, we had an impromptu visit from the local authorities, who after a cursory inspection from the quayside wished us happy fishing! This was around the time that John Tyler suggested I try the Overdrive studio. Next it was John Dwyer to set things up for me to record a programme, which I understand was transmitted later that night on Radio Caroline after my BBC programme went out on another frequency!

The Henrietta was a lovely little boat and during the worst weathers I recall clinging to the foredeck ankle deep in heavy swells as we tied up to the ship. I d made provision for a three month break from shore, Mike Barrington, Kevin Turner, Johnny Lewis and others were keen for me to do a stint, but Peter Philips was uncomfortable for me to appear on air whilst under contract to the BBC. We operated from 1983 1987 taking in a just a couple South Falls Head excursions.

Later following working many years in ILR and whilst running my own station, Peter Moore the Caroline station manager since 1987- called out of the blue to invite me to come aboard the radio station. So in 1999 I was heard regularly on satellite. I had many ideas and was keen to increase Radio Caroline s profile. I d commissioned the first new sung jingle package since the sixties, looked at ways the station might become profitable and at other transmission platforms.

By the new Millennium having organised and hosted the Caroline Convention 2000 things came to a head. We d got BBC 1 Television to cover the event. They even came out to the ship the following day and a substantial piece was produced much to the annoyance of factions within the highly political Caroline organisation.

That wasn t to be the end, Sietse Brouwer of Radio Caroline Nederland asked me to start making programmes for the Dutch service. I d worked in Holland during the 70 s, love the Country and it s people so it seamed a nice way of giving something back. I d met Sietse and his pal Adrian Hondema on many occasions and soon warmed to their team, so working with them was a delight. Like so many of these things I found that producing regular programmes demanded time I simply didn t have, so with great regret my last programme was transmitted in March 2003, just a few weeks before the station closed down. 


Thanks to Bob LeRoi for taking part in this massive project too. 

If you want to be on the list for your own copy of the book simply sent an email to Hknot@home.nl and as soon as it s known what the price will be we do sent you info how to order your copy.

And like always this e mail address is also to sent in your memories, photographs and other news. May I wish you a few nice weeks and later in July I will come back to you. 

Greetings

Hans Knot


 

Read Hans Knot's former report