Friday night on Waterford’s ABC

Friday night on Waterford's ABC
ABC studio in 1985 (Anoraks Ireland Collection).

This recording of Waterford station ABC was made on a Friday evening in late 1985 and features Roddie Cleere on air. The tape begins with the final section of the Golden Hour and is followed by the start of two hours of love songs. There is a competition for passes to a local disco and plenty of requests from listeners looking forward to the weekend. Roddie also reads news at the top of the hour. He has had a long radio career in the southwest since the pirate era and is currently heard on Kilkenny/Carlow station KCLR FM.

Our tape was recorded on 8th November 1985, presumably from 101 FM, ABC’s Waterford City transmitter. 1026 kHz AM is mentioned on the cassette label but this is a stereo recording. It is from the Anoraks Ireland Tapes Collection, donated to us by Paul Davidson.

Sunday afternoon on Waterford’s ABC

Sunday afternoon on Waterford's ABC
Selection of ABC car stickers (Anoraks Ireland Collection).

Although largely playing chart music, this recording gives a sense of some of the diversity of weekend programming on Waterford station ABC. It includes Russ Padmore presenting the American Top 40 and Billy Power with a country music programme. News at 6pm is also read by Russ Padmore and there are plenty of adverts for local businesses and national brands. Russ is clearly burning the candle at both ends because he is to return at 1am for the night shift. He is now a journalist with BBC World Service. Billy Power went on to present a country show on rival Waterford station Crystal City Sound.

Sunday afternoon on Waterford's ABC
Original label from Anoraks Ireland Collection – note incorrect times and wrong name of country presenter.

Our tape was made from 1026 kHz AM from 1735-1820 on Sunday 5th May 1985 and was recorded in Kilkenny, some distance from the transmitter. It is from the Anoraks Ireland Tapes Collection, donated to us by Paul Davidson.

Breakfast on Waterford’s ABC

Breakfast on Waterford's ABC
Richard Staines (aka Steve Silby) at another Waterford station Suirside Radio (courtesy DX Archive).

By the mid 1980s ABC was well established as one of the leading stations in Waterford and covered the southeast on a network of transmitters on AM and FM. This recording is of the breakfast show hosted by Richard Staines (aka Steve Silby), one of the many English DJs involved in the station. The programme includes the ‘Bits and Pieces’ competition to guess clips from chart hits, the ‘Memory Module’ oldies section and a quiz featuring software transmission sounds made by an early generation of home computers. Among the many adverts is a promotion for the ABC 3rd birthday party and outside broadcast coming up the following weekend. News on the hour is read by Steve himself.

Breakfast on Waterford's ABC
Original cassette label from Anoraks Ireland Collection.

Our tape was made from 101 FM on Wednesday 6th March 1985. Part 1 above runs from 0748-0836 and Part 2 below from 0836-0924.

Part 2 from 0836.

The recording is from the Anoraks Ireland Tapes Collection, donated to us by Paul Davidson.

First birthday of Q102

First birthday of Q102
Q102 Sunday World advert from 1986 (Anoraks Ireland Collection).

This recording of Dublin super-pirate Q102 was made on its first birthday, 23rd January 1986, by which time it was established as one of Dublin’s big three pirate stations. The tape begins with one of the station’s most popular DJs, Jason Maine, who is followed by Gerry Stevens with the afternoon drive. In keeping with the Q102 format, talk is limited and links are short, with the focus firmly on the music. Adverts for local businesses and larger brands are aired.

First birthday of Q102
Original cassette label from Anoraks Ireland Collection.

Part 1 above runs from 1407-1455 and Part 2 below from 1502-1548.

Part 2 from 1502.

The recording was made from 103.5 FM and is from the Anoraks Ireland Collection, donated to us by Paul Davidson.

Westside Radio International returns for New Year’s Eve 1989

Westside Radio International returns for New Year's Eve 1989
Westside operator Prince Terry in May 1983 (Anoraks Ireland Collection).

Westside Radio International was a long-running shortwave pirate broadcasting on Sunday morning from Dublin between 1975 and 1989 with later appearances under different names including Ozone Radio. The station was set up by the late Don Moore and was taken over by Roger Lloyd (Prince Terry on air) in 1977. It was steeped in the pirate spirit and created a real sense of community among free radio enthusiasts in Ireland and abroad. The station closed down on 31st December 1988 along with the vast majority of Irish pirates but returned for a special commemorative broadcast exactly one year later.

This airchecked recording was made between 1123 and 1253 on 31st December 1989 from 6280 kHz shortwave. Prince Terry announces that Westside has returned just for that day to mark the first anniversary of the pirate closedowns and says that it is also broadcasting on FM and medium wave. There are greetings to well-known radio anoraks and news about the small number of remaining pirate stations, including Radio Dublin which is said to have switched back on its AM transmitter.

Audio is fair to poor with deep fading but is an authentic representation of how Westside sounded on shortwave in the west of Ireland at the time. The recording was made in Co. Clare by John Breslin, who we thank for the donation.