Robbie Robinson closes 3rd Sunshine charity auction

Robbie Robinson closes 3rd Sunshine charity auction
Letter from Valerie Goulding of the CRC in the 1985 Sunshine Review (courtesy DX Archive).

This is the final section of the 3rd annual Sunshine Radio charity auction in aid of the Central Remedial Clinic (CRC). Station owner Robbie Robinson (RIP) auctions one of that year’s big prizes, a holiday to Portugal donated by Joe Walsh Tours. He then calls the founder of the CRC Lady Valerie Goulding to tell her that Sunshine has raised over £22,000 that year. As the letter above indicates, by 1985 the auction had brought in over £100,000 for the CRC, a considerable amount for the time and evidence of Sunshine’s commitment to charitable causes.

Another item of interest in this recording is a advert placed by the Association of Independent Broadcasters in Ireland, a group formed by some of the commercial pirate stations to represent the sector. News at 9pm is read by Caroline Callaghan.

This recording was made from 2054-2132 on 11th April 1983. It is from the Leon Tipler Tapes Collection, donated by Steve England.

Live on-air bidding at Sunshine’s 3rd charity auction

Live on-air bidding at Sunshine's 3rd charity auction
Sunshine Radio CRC badge (courtesy DX Archive).

The third Sunshine Radio charity auction for the Central Remedial Clinic (CRC) was held in 1983 and continued to build on the success of earlier years. This is the final part of the first day’s 12-hour auction programme, presented by the late Robbie Robinson. There is live on-air bidding for the Sunshine Extravaganza, an evening gala concert with music, food and drink, all profits from which went to the CRC. News is read by Emer Dolan (Woodfull). Within a month, Sunshine would be put off the air when the station was raided by the authorities in a crackdown on pirate radio.

The recording was made from 2053-2139 on 9th April 1983. It is from the Leon Tipler Tapes Collection, donated to us by Steve England.

Irish language show on KISS FM

Irish language show on KISS FM
KISS FM flyer (courtesy of Ian Biggar).

The Irish language was marginal on most of Irish pirate radio, although there were notable exceptions such as Saor-Radio Chonamara (1970), which led to the establishment of RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta. The Irish language body Conradh na Gaeilge set up its own station Raidió an Phobail in Dublin in 1979, but it was short-lived and beset with technical problems. In the 1980s, Conradh na Gaeilge collaborated with community stations such as North Dublin Community Radio (NDCR), Bray Local Broadcasting (BLB) and Kilkenny Community Radio (KCR), which had Irish programmes. Belfast’s licensed Irish language community station, Raidió Fáilte, has its roots in a pirate dating back to the 1980s. Other niche stations featured some Irish, such as Radio na nGael in Swords in north Co. Dublin, and Irish was used occasionally on the irregular stations run by republican groups.

Bhí an Ghaeilge imeallach ar an raidió bradach den chuid is mó, cé go raibh eisceachtaí ann ar nós Saor-Radio Chonamara a spreag bunú RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta. In 1979, bhí stáisiún dá chuid féin ag Conradh na Gaeilge, Raidió an Phobail ach bhí fadhbanna teicniúla aige. Ina dhiaidh sin, thacaigh an Conradh le cláracha Gaeilge ar na stáisiúin bhradacha phobail ar fud na tíre. Ba mar stáisiún bradach a thosaigh Raidió Fáilte i mBéal Feirste. Bhíodh roinnt Gaeilge ar shainstáisiúin eile ar nós Radio na nGael agus stáisiúin ócáideacha á rith ag poblachtánaigh.

Irish was notably absent on commercial radio, although some stations offered discounts to advertisers using Irish. This is a rare recording of an Irish programme on none other than the Radio Nova offshoot, KISS FM. It was made from 1005-1112 on Sunday 3rd April 1983 and the presenter is Jim Cotter. Most notable is the use of Irish to present the chart hits, something that was unheard of in Irish radio at the time. Presenting contemporary pop music in Irish was very far-sighted of Chris Cary and was an approach that would be adopted by the licensed station Raidió na Life in Dublin from 1993. RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta banned songs with English lyrics until 2005, and even then only after 9pm. There has been an online Irish language chart music station, Raidió Rí-Rá, since 2008.

Bhí an Ghaeilge in easnamh ar fad, nach mór, ar an raidió tráchtála, cé gur thairg stáisiúin áirithe lascaine d’fhógraí Gaeilge. Seo taifeadadh neamhchoitianta de chlár Gaeilge ar KISS FM, fostáisiún de chuid Radio Nova. Údar suntais is ea an Ghaeilge a úsáid chun popcheol comhaimseartha a chur i láthair, rud nach ndéantaí ar an raidió in Éirinn ag an am. Ghlacfadh sé deich mbliana eile go dtí go ndéanfaí a leithéid go rialta nuair a bunaíodh Raidió na Life i mBaile Átha Cliath in 1993. Bhí cosc ar liricí Béarla ar RnaG go dtí 2005. Tá an stáisiún popcheoil Raidió Rí-Rá ag sruthú ar líne ó 2008.

This recording is courtesy of Ian Biggar and DX Archive.

Radio Amore from Portlaoise

Radio Amore from Portlaoise

Radio Amore was a shortlived station broadcasting from Portlaoise, Co. Laois in 1982 and 1983. It was logged by DX Archive on 1143 kHz (announcing 263 metres) in December 1982 but there is no mention of it in their April 1983 list. The arrival of Laois Community Radio in Mountrath around this time probably contributed to Radio Amore’s demise.

This recording is from 104.5 FM of Francis McNally at 9pm on Saturday 26th of February 1983, so Radio Amore must have disappeared soon after that date. There are requests from Portlaoise itself and Ballybrophy over 30 km away. Audio quality is poor with variable levels and due to the bad condition of the cassette, it was necessary to aircheck the recording. The incorrect spelling “Radio A’Moore” is on the cassette label, but in fairness to whoever typed it, Radio Amore was a strange choice of name for a station broadcasting from Portlaoise.

This recording is from the Leon Tipler Tapes Collection, donated to us by Steve England.

Laois Community Radio from Mountrath

Laois Community Radio from Mountrath
LCR logo (courtesy of Ian Biggar).

Laois Community Radio (LCR) broadcast from the town of Mountrath in Co. Laois from 1982 to 1988. It was first logged by DX Archive in April 1982 on 1160 kHz, slightly off-channel. It later moved to 1170 kHz before settling on 1242 kHz from late 1986 onwards, where it remained until the closedowns at the end of 1988. LCR was one of a small number of pirates that broadcast right up to the midnight deadline on December 31st. FM frequencies logged over the years included 88.8, 102.3 and 102.8 FM. This short recording of LCR was made on 26th February 1983 from 1306-1320. The DJ is unidentified.

Laois Community Radio from Mountrath
A view of Mountrath today (photo by John Walsh).

The recording of LCR is from the Leon Tipler Tapes Collection, donated to us by Steve England.