Hans Knot's International Radio Report - August 2007 (1)
Welcome to this long
edition of the Hans Knot International Radio Report. Not only a lot of
the readers have written to me to say ‘thank you’ but again also many
have thought about adding some news, memories or others in their mail.
Everyone who responded a big thank you too. This month it’s 40 years ago
that the MOA was brought in by the British Government. A lot of memories
were brought back at a special radio reunion, which was held in London.
More about that later in this report. While writing this part of the
report I’m listening to the first broadcast day of
Pirate BBC Essex. 6 Days
long the radio ship LV 18 is the base for the station to think back 40
years in date. Programming is sounding nice with a lot of music, or must
I say only music from the First Offshore Period, 1964-1967. Of course
photos of this happening can be seen soon on sites like the one of
Pirate Hall of Fame and Radio London. I won’t be over as I had to choose
rather between the reunion or the Essex broadcasts.
Also BBC Radio Today paid attention this morning, Thursday August 9th, when interviewing Peter Moore and Johnny Walker. The latter one could also be heard as well Gordon Cruse in another interview on BBC Radio. Rosko made the headlines this morning when appearing in BBC TV News and a lot of other media will of course pay attention to the transmissions from the LV8 as well as the special exhibition in Harwich harbour.
Let’s start off with two nicknames we didn’t hear before while listening to old recordings. From 1986 it was a program from Radio Monique in which Tony Berk was named ‘Tony van de muziek’. (Tony from the music). Johan Visser, and than we talk about 1978, was mentioned by his colleague Ferry Eden ‘het trouwe vissertje’ which stands for ‘Faithful fisherman’.
It was in the International Times in July 1969 that an article was printed under the title: ‘Radio Andorra, the blueprint in action’. Seeing back the article it comes to mind that this must have been a pre publishing of a project that later became known as Radio Geronimo. Let’s see what was written: ‘The programmes of Radio Andorra will be handled in England by Japonica Sound Productions, which is a company owned by Terry Yason, Hugh Nolan, Geoffrey Bass and Bill Hayes. The first programmes are hoped to get together in the first week of August so that they can be heard on August 15th onwards, which is the third anniversary of the closedown of the pirates’ .
Indeed Hugh Nolan was with Radio Geronimo, as far as my memories go, and later he worked shortly for the offshore station Radio Seagull. The writer of the article had no clear memories as it was only two years ago in 1969. The station’s spokesman promised the reader a lot as he stated that the station would be on the air for seven days a week. First from 1 till 2 AM and later extended until 6AM. The article went on with: ‘ When japonica gets the advertising together, it will be the first underground rock station in England and apart from that Terry Yason and Hugh Nolan, some programmes will be got together by John Peel and Mick Farren’.
The station spokesman promised a format called ‘From Bach to Beefheart or Burroughs to the Beatles’. Also they wanted to get the listener to make their own programs as they stated that anyone who gets together a program for the station would have a licence ‘ to do anything he wants to do’. Or as Telly said in his own words: “ Our policy realy is that we just want to put a bit of f..k into radio and turn radio from the sopa propaganda that we’re used to into a living communications system.’
The Blueprint also mentioned that both Telly and Hugh would become program director and were responsible for getting the radio programmes together and were responsible for getting the programmes run smoothly. Just before the planned new station Hugh Nolan left another job, that of sub editor of ‘ Disc and Music Echo’. Terry Yason was a freelance publicist of avant garde and underground music and also did the publicity for the Blackhill Rolling Stones Concert in the park. Earlier mentioned Bill Hayes was founder and editor of Opus Magazine and Opus News Service.’
As Radio Andorra transmitted on 428 metres on the medium wave the organisers thought that the station would have a slightly better reception in Great Britain than Radio Luxembourg had in those days. Even reception without any of the fading ‘ 208’ brought was certainly the case. I only remember that there was just one test program from Radio Andorra with Hugh Nolan, on a station called ‘Radio Rupert’. The reception on 701 kHz was however very poor in England and so it was the only time it was on the air from Andorra. Later on, in 1970, transmitting time was hired from Radio Monte Carlo, whereby the name Radio Geronimo was used for the first time.
Barry Everrit nowadays runs the Geronimo Society which you can find on the internet: email@example.com
As we mentioned a few times on forehand Red Sands Radio was on the air in July with a temporary licence from Red Sands, the former base for Radio 390 in the sixties. Rob Ashard was one of the visitors and did also some programs as well as making wonderful pictures. His story is at: www.offshore-radio.de
Later in the report you’ll find a special from Bob LeRoi about the programmes from Red Sands.
Next e mail comes from Peter van den Berg in Amsterdam: ‘Once again I did enjoy a lot reading the report. What a lot of memories. Saturday November 10th is in my mind. 40 years ago we we’re in our high days (San Francisco?) but then we dropped in a unfathomable depth, surely after March 3rd 1968. Are you also inviting those gangsters from Wijsmuller to the Radio Day so they can finally tell us the reasons why both Caroline ships were taken away from us? It took up until February 1970 before we scrawled up a bit. (RNI makes you happy). Well is still keeps us busy after all those years.’
Thanks Peter for your comments and no we won’t offer them a microphone to tell the truth. Anyway good to hear you’ll be joining us too on the Radio Day on November 10th in Amsterdam.
On the next internetsite many nice tunes can be found as used on German Radio and Radio Luxembourg: http://freenet-homepage.de/phranc/trailer.htm
Another internet site is mentioned by Alan Bailey: ‘Hi Guys. Just in case you’re interested I’ve added some new audio to the website www.208itwasgreatradioluxembourg.co.uk
Hope you’re keeping well. Cheers. Alan.
As promised here the official report from Bob LeRoi about Red Sands Radio 2007.
’Red Sands Radio was brainchild of Bob Le-Roi (Radio City) who with Robin Banks (Caroline & RNI) set about organising a trial broadcast on air from the 14th-23rd of July on 1278kHz. Despite skeptics it did actually broadcast from the same Fort that Radio Invicta launched from in June 1964. The concept was to both commemorate the anniversary of the last broadcast from Red Sands by Radio 390 in July 1967, and to promote the hugely popular Whitstable Oyster Festival
Black Printz Photo Hans Knot
The antenna was designed by Peter Chicago (Caroline and RNI) and erected with Tony Pine (Radio City) and Robin Banks, transmission/processing equipment was provided by Chicago, the desk and audio gear by Dave Foster & Rob Ashard. Bob Le-Roi as Programme Director programmed the music was responsible for the image and sound of the station, its presenters and output, provided PC and associated software for studio and newsroom. Contributors were: Ian MacRae, Printz and Bob Le-Roi (Radio City) Kevin Turner, Rob Ashard, Doug Wood, Tony Christian, Dave Foster (Radio Caroline) John Ross-Barnard, John Aston, Vic Davies (Radio KING and 390) Bill Rollins (Radio Tower) Sietse Brouwer (Radio Seagull) Stephen Wright, Ray Copeland and Tony James with Chicago and Robin badgered into a Q and A session. Local bands were highlighted in the mid-morning programme & the final day included a live performance by Mandy Kewley and percussionist Animal Dave
Poor weather throughout the broadcast almost delayed the launch & limited tender visits, but having erected the antenna twice! The whole story will be told over the coming weeks Red Sands Radio began testing on at midnight on 13th July 2007 Reaction to the station was incredible, playing across the whole region in factories, offices, shops, clubs, pubs and to listeners on-line, it received 100’s & 100’s of text messages often jamming the line. Similarly 100’s of emails arrived daily, dozens of letters of support have subsequently arrived at our office it’s apparent that a there’s a need and potential future for Red Sands Radio whose broadcast was dedicated to the memory of Tony Allan.’
Thanks Bob for the report and also thanks to Cornelia van den Berg who did some informative info about the project to me.
From Henk in Dokkum an e mail with an internet address, where you can find some news about the Radio Waddenzee ship and studio’s www.radiowaddenzee.nl/?pag_id=7313&site_id=86&toon=sel&news_id=4469
Next an e mail from Belgium: Dear Hans, The first link in your report does not work. It is missing an hyphen. The correct link is :
Interesting report... as usual ;-) The Emperor rocks! Kind regards, Luc Masuy Namur, Belgium
Let’s now go to a longer contribution, in which a reader gives his thoughts on a certain subject. Of course you can reflect on this one to by writing to Hknot@home.nl
‘Dear Hans. To begin with I note your list of readers is growing and may I thank you for that. Recently your list resulted in a very good friend getting in touch with me, again thank you. The above prompts me to ask - what will happen in, say, 40 years time? Who or where is the new Hans? Next, what will be in the history books about radio - will it read 'Radio was a medium of entertainment which eventually ended when citizens world wide could access audio from Warner/Sony/EMI/Universal and the Association of Independent Music...'. Or will it read 'Radio has returned to the entertainment medium it was always thought to be. It now boasts thousands of stations combining music of all formats, some stations narrowcast others broadcast, with the most successful being broadcast stations with entertaining DJs (DJ being Digital Jock)? (I hope the last will happen HK)
For anyone interested in Net things - I have now had a chance to test the TechniSat InternetRadio - A fabulous device. Turning it on is easy as is the very limited set up - it offers language options etc. The test unit I have works well via a secure Wi-Fi as well as the increasing open Wi-Fi outlets. I have listened to a station close to my heart in many locations without the need for a long antenna, a big YAGI or 1,000 Euro receiver. It gives me thousands of stations to choose from and no need to remember the URL of the station. You simply scroll down a list of stations, via the on-screen display, and select the station you want. If you like the station that much you simply add it to the favorites menu.
The link above tells you more and the claims made are all real.
This prompts major question number three - Is this the future of radio as we know it? When Wi-Fi becomes as commonplace as it surely will be, will we need wasteful carbon fuel burning transmitters as we do now? Will these products encourage a return to real choice in radio? After all, that's why we children of the sixties are still talking about ships – what it really gave us was choice! You can forget all the politics and so-called freedom issues, what listeners had (I was one ) was choice. I could write to a station and they would play a track for me or at least say hello - the important thing was that they would interact with me. Actually, that prompts me to suggest that really the majority of the offshore stations became popular because they were interactive, that's many years ahead of the term being used in the modern world.
This leads me to say, there are still many lessons that radio people can learn from the offshore stations - or at least be reminded of the things offshore did for its listeners. Offshore radio gave listeners real choice - there were ranges of broadcast programmes being aired. Lots of shows had GREAT presenters who entertained the listeners - I often wonder how much more those presenters could have given us with the help of computers. Equally, how many would have been horrified at the thought of today's stations claiming it's better to have non-stop music and no DJs. Actually, I think the pioneering DJ would laugh at people saying non-stop music is best. Those pioneering DJs knew that the reason a station was a winner was due to there hard work entertaining the audience linking the music and of greater importance making sure the audience stayed during the ad-break.
As we approach 14 August 2007, I know there will be programmes being made, Internet radio stations appearing, other radio services being planned and what will they achieve? Nothing unless they can entertain millions of people in the same way the 1960s stations entertained people.
Have a great August 14 everyone - and let's not forget we are now in "The Digital Decade". People making a difference today do it using zeros and ones, ask Bono! Regards Eric N Wiltsher
Thanks Eric for this wonderful contribution and hopefully others will reflect on it by writing to Hknot@home.nl
Next issue will bring a long contribution again from Geoffrey Baldwin.
Another email comes from England : ‘Hi Hans. Thanks as always for your fascinating radio report. I too wonder why Radio Britannia rarely gets mentioned, I was a regular listener when I lived in Surrey, near Coulsdon, and remember well the professional programming and the signal was strong and crystal clear. I would love to hear a recording of the station, maybe someone can help please? Regards Mike Terry (now in Bournemouth) Miketerry73@btinternet.com
The foundation for Media communications from Amsterdam, the financial organisation behind the Radio Days, has asked me to write to the readers who want to attend and want to have paid their contribution to SMC (FMC) not to sent in the money by cheques. Please don’t as the exchange costs are 50% for such a low donation. Just sent the Supporter fee to SMC PO Box 53121 1007 RC in Amsterdam.
More information on the Radio Day can be found at: http://www.offshore-radio.de/radioday/
Another mail from former Radio Luxembourg technician Alan Bailey: ‘Hi Hans, Thank you for your latest report. I don't know if I sent you this or whether you may be interested for your news letter. I was on John Peels' BBC programme 'Home Truths' just before his demise talking about the submariner mentioned in the chapter 'The highlight of my career' from my book and I thought you may be interested to hear part of that wartime interview and if you click on http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/hometruths/20040816_nazi_78_rpm.shtml you'll be able to hear it if you go to the top centre of the page and click on ' Listen to the item'. Kind Regards, Alan Bailey.’
Well thanks a lot Alan and I thought to share it with the readers too.
From Belgium we have an e mail from Alex Bervoets: ‘Hello Hans, Hope all is well with you. During the past weeks I’ve been on my bike a few times to the Kempsich Dok (the harbour part in Antwerp where the former Veronica vessel Norderney is docked since a couple of years. They are very busy repainting the old vessel and really looks very good now. It’s painted in a combination from white, black and blue. It looks like a brand new vessel, although we know better. A pity that the ship will leave Antwerp in September. That is what the painters told me. Todays place for the ship is not interesting at all as no normal tourist visit that part of Antwerp.´
Thanks Alex and hopefully I can tell in one of the next report where the former Veronica ship is going to. It’s this month 33 years ago the station was heard for the last time from the Norderney off the Dutch coast.
MV Norderney in 1973 picture Ronald Atema
Next one comes from Rob Veld in Holland: ‘Dear Hans Let's start with: ‘Hans you done it again, a very interesting letter!!!!!’ I don't know how you do this every time (With a little help from your friends ??) From this way, thanks to Phil Crosby for his contribution about Thames Radio and Radio Britannia, that's what I mend with my question about land-based pirates and the MOA.
Then I read also the question from Erik van der Pol about the signal strength in the Netherlands from different kind of radio ships and forts and even land-based. It depends on a lot of things. If your living near the coast I think you have no difficulty. The sea water is very friendly for signals in medium wave. If you live however in the southern province Limburg, you have a problem. That problem is a good ground. Of course you have different kind of receivers, good and bad ones, and also very important is your receiving antenna. On the other side there is the transmitting station. Very important are ground and the antenna. Then secondly the power of your transmitter and the modulation power. And at last, if you're on 538 meter you have a long "ground wave", if you're on 192 meter it's a lot shorter. Reception by daylight is only by ground wave. During the evening and the night the "air wave" is much stronger. If you receive them both you've got "fading", that's a signal which is going up and down.
A good example for a (compromise) antenna is from "Red Sands Radio" (I've seen the photo's of the antenna, but how did you do that exactly Peter? (Please will you write me about that: firstname.lastname@example.org). With just 1 Watt Effective Radiated Power (ERP) I received them on a Philips 444 with only the ferrite antenna 25 km north of Amsterdam. Another guy in the same place has reception on a vintage tube receiver, with 75% on the "magic eye" and yes, again only with the ferrite antenna. They were also heard in Dokkum, Noordwijk (5-9+40) and Rotterdam, this is of course possible with a good receiver en a good antenna.
It's no secret that Radio Noordzee (RNI) had a stronger signal then Radio Veronica (on 192 meter), even Radio Caroline (on 199 meter) had a stronger signal then Radio Veronica (on 192 meter). The explanation is simple, Noordzee and Caroline had a better antenna and more power. I don't say that the Veronica Antenna was bad. There was not enough room for 1/4 wave antenna so a good compromise was born, they made a T-Antenna. The same problem was there with Capital Radio. They used a DDRR antenna (DDRR stands for: Directional Discontinuity Ring Radiator). Normally not a too bad antenna, but in combination with seawater and storm, a bad choice, cause the isolation of the antenna and the tuning system. So no 1 till 10 for the mentioned radiostations, but a technical explanation, sorry about that. Rob Veld.
Thanks Rob to answer the question which was published in last issue. Older issues of the Hans Knot International Radio Report can be read back at www.hansknot.com with of course thanks to the great help of my webmaster Martin van der Ven.
Well some of his former offshore colleagues did already play a little roll-film or in a television series. Almost on the age of 63 Bert van Rheenen has been asked to play the roll of a police chief in a movie called ‘ I love Dries’. The movie comes out in spring next year. Bert van Rheenen is to us better known under his deejay name Chiel Montagne. He worked in the sixties and seventies for Radio Veronica. He has also a very popular television program on TROS TV many years.
Some weeks ago a lot of photos were rescued from the cellar of the Foundation for Media Communication. Photos taken during three decades. 75% of them were traced or, in other words, had a name of the maker of the photographs. The other ones I've tried to get a name of the maker. But not all were found. You'll find some exclusive photo's never been published before, which have been taken in 1977 when the MEBO II, former radioship of RNI, finally left Slikkerveer harbour, heading for a new position off the Libyan coast. When finding this photos it occurred to me that there was a familiar face. With new scanning techniques it was possible to enlarge the person. Well I thought I was right and sent her an e-mail with the question if she was there in Rotterdam in 1977. She wrote me back she was and so on one of the photographs you'll see the woman with the long hair which is the former Radio Caroline secretary in the early seventies in Scheveningen and the Hague, Elija or Cornelia van den Berg.
if you think you've also some unique photo's never published before, let me know at email@example.com The complete serie can be found at www.hansknot.com
MEBO II leaves for Libya 1977
Next e mail comes from the UK: ‘ Here’ s a site you may wish to link to http://beehivecandy.blogspot.com
It includes a regular feature called anorak corner, with lots of mp3 downloads of 'offshore radio' musical gems. These are music and artists easily associated with offshore radio, rather than just theme tunes or air checks. Thanks, Mike Heath
On the day I’m writing the next item it’s not too many days as it will be 40 odd years ago that the Marine Offences etc Bill became Act in Great Britain. Most of our favourite offshore radio stations had left or left the airwaves on August 14th 1967. Some of you all remember the words spoken out by deejays, artists and director at Big L aka Wonderful Radio London. Others do remind what Robbie Dale told his listeners just after three o'clock on Black Monday. It was then already more than 7 years ago I started collection newspaper cuttings. Also was writing a lot to my favourite jocks on Caroline, London and Radio England. With the Act becoming nearer I recorded more and more programs. But also got in contact with several people who had the same opinion: The British Government went too far with introducing the MOB etc.
I got from several people leaflets and letters and a few of them were put in my archive at that time. One of them I will now, 40 years after I got it from England, officially open for all the people who stayed with offshore radio and the good memories we have. The leaflet enclosed came to me late August 1967 and I think it was Nick Oakly who sent it, but I'm not sure. Anyway you will see that she or whoever did already made on the form some official protest lines against the odd decisions of the British Government. That it took 40 years to publish is in one way a shame, on the other hand I must say a big congratulations to anyone involved who kept our radio dream alive during 4 long decades.
As usual we have in
this report our regular plugs for befriended site holders, the first
this month is Bob LeRoi:
‘Welcome to the August Update. With the prospect of an Indian summer?
More Barge Sailing Dates added to our diary, join us it's great fun. In
this months Scrapbook we continue the scene setting feature in the build
up to the broadcasts of Red Sands Radio with some more Fort history.
Ahead of the story of how Red Sands Radio came about which begins next
month. Plus crash bang wallop oops as a radio car goes up in flames in
Hot FM. In "One Subject One Link" a contribution an alternative view of
Terry Wogan's Radio 2 Breakfast Show. We've a nice patch bay up for sale,
more Books, Records and CD's too all at great prices Enjoy your visits:
Bob is followed by Jon at the Pirate Hall of Fame: ‘Hi, I have just updated The Pirate Radio Hall of Fame. With the fortieth anniversary of the Marine Offences Act looming:
I have added twenty pages of press cuttings from before and immediately after 14th August 1967; there is a page dedicated to that dreadful day when Radios 270, Scotland and London shut down forever; there is a second page of photos from Robbie Dale's collection; we have news of Pirate BBC Essex, two offshore documentaries, the temporary return of Swinging Radio England / Britain Radio and an on-line offshore nostalgia-fest; and news of an offshore DJ's autobiography due to be published in September. www.offshoreradio.co.uk
I also can tell you that Mary and Chris Payne have a wonderful update on their Radio London site. And surely they will bring much more after the BBC Pirate Radio Essex transmissions as they’re in Harwich all those days too. Give a look at www.radiolondon.co.uk
Rob from Amsterdam suggest you the reader to have a listen to a golden oldie webstation: www.radiobelinda.be
Very sad news came in from Canada for Mick Luvzitt had a heart attack late July. Mick is not only a reader to the Knot International Report for many years but was also the only offshore deejay ever married aboard a radioship. Way back in 1966 he married the sister of colleague Ray Terret. I wish Mick all the best and hopefully a complete recovery for him too.
Another e mail from England, this time Mike Barraclough: ‘ Four and a half minute report broadcast last night, old footage and interviews with Johnnie Walker, Roger Day, Dave Cash and Peter Moore: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LkHj7hJoWfY. Mike Barraclough
From Belgium the advice from Herman to have a look in the following discussion group: http://ukonair.com/forums/
But there are more internet sites sent in to plug: The next one is a special one for vinyl lovers: http://www.slsknet.org/
I go to France and this e mail: ‘Hello Hans, Have you info about the stream of Radio North Sea Gold on the WEB? http://www.radionorthseagold.com
The website has disappeared. Best regards Gilbert from La Chapelle d'Armentières in France.’
Thanks Gilbert. Radio NorthSeaGold closed down The First casualty to closedown was due to the New PPL licensing laws with Internet radio, from the UK and the USA, As with the Station Format it was modelled on Offshore Radio Stations from the 60s up till the 80s with a mix off music to cover the mentioned period. As with all Internet Based Radio Stations the cost
for a small operation runs into many hundreds of pounds a month so with this new ruling will put many Internet Stations off the Air. I personally think the warning from the PPL searching the web instantly for small internet radiostation so they can get a lot of money out of them is the main reason for radiostations like Radio NorthSeaGold to disappear from the net. A pity as once again some kind of Free Radio is followed, how small the stations are, by the authorities.
In this issue also a youtube tip from reader Oeds Jan Koster: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OIJtKxdRQzY
and what about next one? It show the start of Radio Caroline, way back in 1964: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v0r5RsZxTVk
Next e mail comes from the guy who I met for the very first time on August 4th 2007. Ian Damon. Listened a lot to him in London days and I exchanged some photos of the Radio Academy day in London and he came back to me with:
‘Here's some my son took thought you might enjoy looking at them. http://www.flickr.com/photos/anderidamedia/sets/72157601288721453/
Cheers Ian Wombat Damon.’ Thanks a lot Ian and hope to see you in Amsterdam too in November.
Via Martin van der Ven I received the next e mail from the USA: ‘As of this writing, I am still downloading and listening to the various mp3's that have recently appeared on your site. These stations all have a distinctive sound, and have been a real treat to hear. Please pass along my thanks to all who have contributed to this. You are probably aware of Radio New York International, the U.S.' attempt at an offshore radio station in 1987. This is the 20'th anniversary of its beginning, and its shutdown (27 July 1987). There is a website that features a history and air-checks of the station (as well as land-based unlicensed WHOT New York). Here are the links I have found:
As I have mentioned
before, my favourite offshore station was Radio Caroline, in its 1970's
Album Rock era. While radio has gone corporate in recent years, there
were radio stations in the past that had the same spirit of hat Caroline
sounded like here. If you ever get the opportunity, you might want to
listen to air-checks of these stations:
KAAY--1090 kHz Little Rock, AR. From the late 1960's to 1977, this 50 kW AM station had an overnight progressive rock show called ‘ Bakerstreet.’ The show was run directly from their transmitter (as opposed to the studio), and was quite a bit different from their standard Top-40 format. The original host of the show still does this show weekly on a local Little Rock FM station and you can hear this show online, and download older shows at http://www.beakerstreet.com
WLAC--1510 kHz Nashville, TN. In years past, this station was a legendary R&B station that had a sound and feel all its own. It's 50 kW signal blanketed the U.S. south and Midwest, and served an audience that did not have a local R&B station. KTNN--660 kHz Window Rock, AZ. This was the last clear channel AM radio station granted by the U.S. Government. It serves the Navajo Indian Nation. The ‘ official’ format is Country, but it also includes American Indian chanting, and regional musicians. Its 50 kW signal at night has a much larger reach than the state of Arizona, and it is online as well. KMET--94.7 MHz Los Angeles, CA. While corporate owned, this station was a leader in progressive rock radio into the early 1980's.
KSAN-- San Francisco, CA. Like KMET, KSAN had a major impact on progressive/AOR radio until 1980. They have a tribute website: http://www.jive95.com and features a number of unscoped air-checks (streamed--not downloaded). Best Wishes Paul Harner.’
Thanks Poul and welcome to the Hans Knot International Radio Report too!
From three sources I got the next contribution so I think those who sent it in all thought ‘ wooww this must get to be published in the report.’
‘LORD SUTCH STATUE PETITION’
It's been nearly ten years since the sad demise of the late great, Screaming Lord Sutch, a man who inspired many people, and even more so made a lot of people smile in what can be a very sad world. Could you please support this petition. Whitstable in Kent would be the ideal place for a Lord Sutch statue, Lord Sutch operated Radio Sutch from the Shivering Sands forts here in 1964. It was one of the UK'S first pirate radio stations.
With Looniest Thanks LORD TOBY JUG THE OFFICIAL MONSTER RAVING LOONY PARTY’.
David Lord Sutch (Freewave Archive)
Of course I advise you to go to the internetsite and fill it in. It brought back directly many memories of my regular visits to my good old friend Chris Cortez in Cambridge. In the eighties and early nineties we met up in a pub in Gwyder Street in Cambridge and there was the official pub for the Monster Raving Loony Party. A pity was that not only the pub closed in the early nineties but also David died some years later.
Well important news for Caroline followers: Radio Caroline on FM in central Europe. Radio Tatras International commemorating an International Day in Radio
14 August 2007 RTI joins forces with Radio Caroline. London: RTI, Radio Tatras International, the leading pan-European English/Slovak radio station, will be airing special programming during it's English service on 14 August to commemorate the 40th Anniversary of the passing of the Marine Offences Act.
Jan Telensky, owner of RTI, said, "May I begin with a quote from the Radio Caroline web site 'August 14th 1967 has gone down in history as 'the day the music died'. "That may have been the case had it not been for so many people who have striven to retain and keep alive the spirit of those pioneering broadcasters. "Many said that RTI would never get off the ground and as is the case with Radio Caroline "we refused to go quietly! Therefore, we felt that a demonstration of solidarity with the station that inspired so many should take place on RTI. Personally, Radio Caroline gave me a great deal when I first came to the UK and in a small way we hope that more people find out, via RTI, that a lot of the quality radio available today is based on or around those pioneering broadcasters of the 1960's"
Eric Wiltsher, Director RTI, said: "Some will say it is strange that a pan-European station such as RTI has such an interest in a law passed by the then UK government of 1967. However, that is best answered by sharing the following; in Slovak the conversation started 'Ano, Ano, Radio Carolina - byt volným (Yes, Yes, Radio Caroline - to be free). Both Caroline and RTI are considered to be free spirited stations by listeners. Therefore, this act of solidarity between free spirited broadcasters is the only option for August 14 2007. I am very much looking forward to hearing these special programmes, for which I thank Peter Moore and the team of Radio Caroline for making them available to RTI, on FM whilst parked on the top of the beautiful High Tatras Mountains in Slovakia - I may even drive across the border to Poland whilst listening."
The relay of Radio Caroline via Radio Tatras International will commence at 7.00pm CET on 14th August and continue through to 7.00am the following morning. The RTI FM service can be received in a number of European countries, as well as via the Eurobird satellite, Sky Digital and online at www.rti.fm
And now to the Celebration of Offsore Radio of the sixties deejays and staff members in the Sugar Reef, in Great Windmill Street in London. A street well known for many people as the Mouse Trap from Agatha Christie played there more than 40 years. Well 40 years? Yes the same amount of years as the MOA is now officially. The Sugar Reef and August 4th will remembered in 40 years by our grandchildren as their granddads brought back the memories of real radio days. I attended the event together with Martin van der Ven and Rob Olthof.
Arriving around 11.45 it was Jon Myer and Chris Payne, later followed with Mary to shake hands with. The three of them have done a very good job in organising this event for the Radio Academy and thanks also for the invitation to join the gang.
The first hour was one of ‘greet and meet’ and it was very kindly to see people who’ve been in contact with me for many years and also those who I met before and gave me another change to renew contacts. But also there were a lot of people coming to me to give me compliments on my work, who I never met before. Thanks all and hope you all will enjoy my work in the years to come. Next to the deejays also Offshore Radio Fans came to the event and some took with them some photos they shot in the sixties. I think it was Vivian who showed me the next photos:
I personally did not stay too long in the session room. I wear hearing aids since a couple of years (Yes I listened too much to the radio on High Volume and so you are all responsible for it!). So I tried to chat a lot with many people in the entrance of the building as well as outside the building. But I would like to go to an informative part of the Steve Szmidt bulletin about the content of the program, which he sent in on August 8th. (thanks a lot Steve)
'The first session was entitled “The Sound of the Nation” and was a celebration of Radio Caroline, still broadcasting 40 years after Johnnie Walker vowed that the station would continue and never be taken away. The panel, Chaired by Mark Story (Head of Radio, Emap) consisted of Keith Skues, Bryan Vaughan, Nick Bailey, a very vocal Roger “Twiggy” Day and Graham Webb. Each session started with related audio visual clips and additional ones were sometimes used during and at the end of the presentations. One point that came over very strongly, was an opinion first voiced by Roger, is how bad UK radio is today. This is because the accountants have been allowed to take control from those who had and/or still have a passion and love for radio. The music and DJ’s are too tightly controlled and radio has consequently become boring and is no longer “fun”. This is why iPods and internet radio may end up winning the battle for listeners and normal radio stations will become extinct. To reverse this trend, action is required now! I wonder if the Radio Academy has a plan of action.
Next up was “Station on Sticks”, Chaired by Ralf Bernard CBE (Chief Executive of GCap Media plc), with a panel of ex Fort based DJ’s, namely David Allan (Radio 390), Brian Cullingford (King Radio and Radio 390), Guy Hamilton (Radio Essex) and standing in for Tom Edwards was Mark Wesley (West). There were also guest speakers Prince Bates (son of Roy), Bob Le-Roi and Candy Calvert (daughter of Reg). Mark Wesley presented a graphics virtual tour of one of the gun tower forts, which was produced by his own company.
The next session, “The Jocks Who Rocked the Ocean” took us on a journey to the North West, with Radio Caroline North, then across to Radio 270 in the North East and finally Northwards up to Radio Scotland. At the helm was Tony Currie (BBC Scotland) with shipmates Jack McLaughlin and Ben Healy (both Radio Scotland), Mike Ahern (Caroline North) and Ned Miller (Radio 270), who stood in for the ‘sea sick’ Paul Burnett. What was interesting to hear was the contrast in quality of the living conditions on the different ships and even the different forts in the preceding session. For example Radio Scotland was sparse (no swimming pools etc. as promised!) compared to the luxurious life on Caroline North. According to one recollection, even the Mi Amigo (Caroline South) was inferior.
The first session in part two was “It’s Smooth Sailing with the Highly Successful Sound of Wonderful Radio London”. We all had to sing this famous and much loved jingle at the request of Tony Currie before we had tea! Asking the questions this time was Trevor Dann, Director of the Radio Academy, whilst the interviewees, all former Radio London DJ’s, were Tony Blackburn, freshly axed from his breakfast show on Classic Gold, Norman St. John, Ed ‘Stewpot’ Stewart and Duncan Johnson. It was felt by the panellists that Radio London was the best and most professional of the Offshore Radio stations and it was also strongly believed by one that if the station came back today, even with the same jingles package, it would be successful. I wonder how Ray Anderson felt about hearing this claim! Maurice Cole (Kenny Everett), my favourite DJ of all time was fondly remembered, as was the late John Peel.
Finally, “No Man Will Ever Forget” was a fitting end to the proceedings. Phil Martin chaired the smallest panel of the day, which was Johnnie Walker and Robbie Dale, for many the two heroes of the day, and an unbilled Mark Sloane, a former Caroline North DJ. Unfortunately, Ronan O’Rahilly, who more than anyone should have also been up on stage, preferred to stay quietly in the wings of the room, nearest to the exit. However, when given recognition from the stage, he did give the fans a wave to signify his presence and whereabouts. Johnnie not only spoke out against the Government taking control of Radio, but also on how today it is turning the UK into a “Nanny State”.‘
Thanks Steve and it was very nice from Robbie Dale thanking the organising party as well as Mary and Chris Payne and Martin and myself for the many work we do to keep the dream alive. I thanked Robbie some 20 minutes later personally for this nice gesture. He told me he felt so sorry he forgot to mention Jon Myer. I think Jon will understand it Robbie.
Photos of the event, made by Martin van der Ven and a guy called Hans Knot, are on www.offshore-radio.de as well on www.hansknot.com
Hans Knot and Ronan O`Rahilly snapped by Robbie Dale
As we all know Ronan tried all those years to be in the background, only appearing when hugh promotion in radio or television was needed. Is was in the hall when he entered in the afternoon the building. When he saw the crowd inside he didn’t even say ´hello´ but ´its too heavy crowded here´. He then disappeared for a while to get in later. Above a photo taken by Robbie Dale and when Robbie asked Ronan if he knew how important I was in the Fight For Free Radio Ronan responded by saying: ‘ Of course I know but I more like the women’.
For as complete list of people who attended the Radio Academy Event Martin van der Ven has made a rundown at his pages: http://www.offshore-radio.de/london2007/listing.htm
It was lovely to see a lot of the old deejays and crewmembers back on this special event and talking to a lot. Also very nice to see and speak to some people who are readers for years, but who I met for the very first time including Ian Damon, Tony Meehan, Ben Healy, Norman St. John, David Allen and many more. But also people who I didn’t see for ages. It was twenty years ago when I had an interview at Zeezenders 20 in Noordwijkerhout with CNBC deejay Paul Hollingdale. And at the Sugar Reef someone caught my eyes at the same time as he spotted me. Wonderful to see him back
Cathy Spence, Bud Bullou, Paul Hollingdale ,Graham Gill, Tony Meehan and Ben Healy (Photo Hans Knot)
Some months ago Colin Nichol in Australia and myself tried to track down Paul Hollingdale as we wanted to republish an eighties interview with Paul done by Colin. The later one liked to refresh the interview before publication but we didn’t find Paul as he was not reacting on an e mail address I had from years ago. So I could tell Paul that it was published (to be found at www.hansknot.com).
On Saturday August 4th
2007 there was a gathering of deejays of the sixties' offshore stations.
The stations based on the forts, Radio Caroline, Radio London and the
smaller stations. A remarkable event. SMC filmed it (duration 90
You can obtain the DVD for 5 pounds sterling or € 8,-- No cheques please. Send it to:
PO BOX 53121
1007 RC AMSTERDAM
The next e mail came in three days after the event: ‘Hi Hans, It was a pleasure meeting you last weekend at the Radio Academy Pirate Convention. It was so well organized and amazing to see so many familiar faces there. Many thanks for sending the photos and I was pleased to read again the interview I did a long time ago with Colin Nichol re CNBC. I am busy right now getting ready to return to BBC Radio 2 for their 40th Anniversary programmes next month. I am starting to get a lot of publicity in the English Press. I am so lucky to be still around doing things. I have had an incredible life in Radio and TV. Please keep in touch. Best Paul Hollingdale
Paul friendly added this article from the Daily Mail.
But there were other people who were introduced by others to me on the event. Nigel Harris (Stuart Russell) and Don Stevens for instant (both ex Caroline and VOP) introduced me to someone who has a pirate radio background and loves to get into radio again.
‘Hello Hans. It was a pleasure to meet you at the Radio Academy event last Saturday. I have often read your Radio pages website and found your reports most interesting. Maybe I will visit Amsterdam in November for this years for the Radio Day event. I did not know it will be the 29th year Of Radio Day in Amsterdam, Time goes so quickly, It is 30 years since I started listening to Radio Caroline.
I have worked as a radio DJ in the past at United Biscuit Network just before they closed down and helping out at Radio Medway. Also Radio Jackie where I have many happy memories of taped transmissions, from fields around the Surrey area, powered by car batteries, with handles, for a quick getaway if the GPO turned up. I even got together with some guys to start my own land based Pirate station. I have had a nice conversation with Peter Moore and will be down at the Radio Caroline studio's next Friday.
I moved away from Radio when I started working with pop groups in the 80s as a singer/dancer and also dancing on TV on many pop videos . Although Radio and especially Free Radio has always remained a great passion of mine. I listened to both the English and Dutch programmes on Caroline and Radio Mi Amigo. I enclose some photos from the Radio Academy that I hope you will find of interest. Do keep in touch. Best wishes Mandy (Susie) Marton'
Don Stevens, Hans Knot and Mandy
After the photos of the event were put on the web by Martin one of the first e mails, which came in, was from our ‘ Scotchman’ Dave Burke: ‘Oh Hans, I wish I'd known that you were there too. I was going to go with my friend Mike (who I've been trying to introduce you to for years! He's a big anorak - now works for Emap Radio), but he had already booked a holiday in......Amsterdam! :-) I would have enjoyed it most with him, and I didn't think any of my other radio friends would really be there - but I already know that wasn't true! Excuse me if you did say you'd be there in the report or something. One day we'll meet again maybe if I don't make any more cock-ups! Best wishes, Dave.
Well Dave surely there will be a moment we’ll meet again as already two other travels to Britain are planned later this year and in March 2008. Dave was in the early days of the internet there with some pages on Radio Scotland. I hope one day you will find time to sent some of the material to republish in the Hans Knot International Radio Report.
Radio Netherlands has a special on Offshore Radio on their site which is written by Andy Sennit, which can be listened to on line too: http://www.radionetherlands.nl/features/media/med070809
Let’s not forget that next Thursday August 16th it’s 30 years ago Elvis Presley died. On Radio 227 a day earlier (15th) a two hour shows with memories will be transmitted presented by Peter van Velzen. Starnight is on the air from 20-22 hrs Dutch time. http://www.radio227.nl
Also a day earlier, August 14th, Radio 227 will be paying attention the days of 40 years ago, when British Government brought us probably the most bespoken Act, the MOA. Former Radio Dolfijn and Radio 227 (from the sixties) deejay Look Boden, who now runs the Radio 227 station in Holland, is on the air 20-22 hrs Dutch time to look back in memories as well as music and air-checks from 40 years ago. www.radio227.nl
Last e mail to mention comes from Scotland: ‘If it’ s of any interest for you to download, Next Thursday, August 16th, Smooth Radio Glasgow has DJ Tony Prince as guest talking about the pirates, Luxembourg and the death of Elvis anniversary. He will be on Dave Marshall' s mid-morning show. I would have recorded it for you but am in London all next week, including a day back in BBC Archives at Caversham, and a day listening to old VOA tapes in the British Library archives. Cheers from a very wet morning in Scotland! Graeme Stevenson.’
Well Graham have fun and enjoy listening and researching the archives. On the next internet address Tony Prince can be heard. http://www.smoothradioglasgow.com
Of course a lot more could be to told in this issue of the report, which is by the way the longest in the history of the Hans Knot International Report. But more next month. So don’t think your e mail was not of interest but time tells me to end this edition. All photos please to Hans.Knot@gmail.com and the memories and news please to Hknot@home.nl
Next month more with greetings from Groningen in the Netherlands,
Offshore Deejays' Nicknames
Female Offshore Radio Deejays
Radio London Commercials
Offshore Radio Programme Names - Programmanamen Zeezenders 1958-1990
Read Hans Knot's former report