Jingles: County Sound (Galway)

Jingles: County Sound (Galway)
County Sound logo courtesy of DX Archive. Thanks to Shane Martin for the enhancement.

County Sound was among the most successful of the Galway pirates, launched on St. Patrick’s Day 1987 in Tuam, 30 kilometres north of the city. It moved into the city centre in January 1988, just across the road from its main competitor, Coast 103. County Sound continued until the 31st of December 1988 and was an unsuccessful applicant for the Co. Galway licence in 1989. We’ll bring you recordings of County Sound over the coming days.

The County Sound jingle package was the same as that of the commercial station of the same name based in Guildford, Surrey, near London. The County Sound theme was written by Les Reed, who as well as being a board member, also wrote ‘Man Of Action’ which offshore radio fans will remember from RNI or Radio Nordsee International in the 1970s. The jingles were produced in Manchester by Steve England, himself an ex-offshore radio DJ, and Alan Fawkes. One of the jingles heard in this clip features Trella Hart, who sang on many of the famous PAMS jingles heard on US and European radio stations in the 1960s and 1970s. We thank Steve Marshall for sharing these jingles with us.

Jingles: Emerald Radio (Galway)

Jingles: Emerald Radio (Galway)
Shantalla near Galway city centre from where Emerald Radio broadcast (photo by John Walsh).

Emerald Radio was a part-time hobby station broadcasting on 97.5 FM from the Shantalla area of Galway City in 1986 and 1987. It came on the air in June 1986 and was run by the 20-year-old Dónal Mahon. According to the Anoraks UK Weekly Report, Emerald was a summer operation running from June to September and closed down at the end of the school holidays. It described Emerald Radio as ‘surprisingly professional’ with ‘nice equipment and pleasant audio’. Emerald FM was included as an irregular operator by Anoraks Ireland in their listing of November 1986, with a plan to return at Christmas.

In February 1987, the Galway City Tribune reported that Dónal Mahon (named in the report as Dónal Murphy) intended to relaunch Emerald commercially following the success of the previous summer, but that 97.5 FM was being used by a country music pirate called WMAQ. When Emerald moved to other frequencies, Mahon complained that they were followed each time and jammed by WMAQ. According to the Tribune, he traced the offending signal to the address of the main Galway pirate WLS but the owner denied any involvement.

These jingles for Emerald Radio were unusual in that they were professionally produced by Alfasound with specific reference to the west of Ireland. There are also some generic jingles and idents for presenters including Gary Hardiman, one of the founders of Radio Renmore, and Dónal Mahon himself. We thank Brendan Mee for donating these jingles to the archive.

Jingles: Radio Annabel (Dublin)

Jingles: Radio Annabel (Dublin)
An advert for Radio Annabel listing its own advertisers, Sunday World, 6th January 1985. Annabel would be gone within two months (Alan MacSimoin collection).

Here are some jingles and idents for Radio Annabel, recorded from a scratchy 1323 kHz AM in 1984. They include a characteristically dramatic advertising promo voiced by the great Tony Allan. Radio Annabel ran into financial problems in early 1985 and was unable to compete in the tighter market brought about by the arrival of another super-pirate Q102. You can hear more from Radio Annabel here.

This recording is from the Skywave Tapes Collection. Skywave Radio International broadcast a shortwave station in the 1980s from Baldoyle in northeast Dublin.

Jingles: Dublin Community Radio

Jingles: Dublin Community Radio

Dublin Community Radio (DCR) was set up as Downtown Community Radio by long-time radio enthusiast Joe King in 1979 in the YMCA hall in Ringsend, Dublin 4. It moved to a shed at the back of his house in Lower Grand Canal Street where it was renamed Dublin Community Radio and later switched to a larger premises in Gardner Street in the city centre. Radiowaves.fm reports that it was the first true community radio station in Dublin. DCR dealt with issues in various communities, recorded programmes around the city and did live broadcasts from community events. According to Joe King, the station had specialist shows including one presented by the Dublin historian Éamonn Mac Thomáis. Some of the early voices included Bernie Jameson and her brother (DJ name Graham Talbot), Paul Caffrey, Paul Doyle (RIP) and Niall McGowan. DCR broadcast on 963 kHz, announcing as 312 metres.

Joe King’s DCR closed in 1982 but a second, unconnected Dublin Community Radio began broadcasting in 1984 and became KISS FM in 1985. Both these stations’ idents feature the voice of Tony Allan. The announcement of 105 FM at the end of the recording is from the second DCR. Tony’s voice was everywhere during these years and the fact that he spans the two separate DCRs is as confusing as it is interesting. This 1982 recording is from the Skywave Tapes Collection. Skywave Radio International broadcast a shortwave station in the 1980s from Baldoyle in northeast Dublin.

Jingles: Radio Leinster (Dublin)

Jingles: Radio Leinster (Dublin)
A flyer advertising Radio Leinster from c. 1983. This was donated by Alan McSimoin (RIP).

Here is a selection of jingles, promos and idents from Radio Leinster in 1983. The sound quality isn’t great as the recording is from AM (738 kHz) but it gives a flavour of the station in its heyday. Radio Leinster was one of the easy listening and talk-based stations serving Dublin in the 1980s. It closed suddenly on the 19th of March 1983 as panic spread among the pirates following raids on the bigger stations. You can hear a recording from that day here.

This recording is from the Skywave Tapes Collection. Skywave Radio International broadcast a shortwave station in the 1980s from Baldoyle in northeast Dublin.