More shortwave DXing on Galway’s KFM

More shortwave DXing on Galway's KFM
KFM rate card from 1988 (courtesy of Ian Biggar).

This is another selection of undated excerpts from the DXers’ programme on Galway pirate KFM in the final months of 1988. Presenter Shane Keating chats to contributor John Breslin from north Co. Clare about shortwave DXing. John lists DX clubs and shortwave stations he has heard recently including Radio Budapest, Transworld Radio, Voice of Ethiopia and Radio Finland. Shane provides addresses of European stations so that listeners can request QSLs.

Shane Keating also presented a Saturday morning children’s programme on KFM and there are excerpts of this including phone calls from young listeners. The recording ends with Shane signing off for the last time on 31st December 1988, the day that KFM closed and the Irish airwaves fell largely silent.

We thank John Breslin for his donation of this recording, which was made from 95.99 FM in north Clare. Reception is variable as it outside the core KFM coverage area.

DXers’ programme on Galway’s KFM

DXers' programme on Galway's KFM
KFM flyer (courtesy of Ian Biggar).

Programmes for radio anoraks or DXers were a feature of some Irish pirates during their 1980s heyday. One such station was KFM, which broadcast from 1986-1988 from a village near Galway before moving into the city itself. In the last few months of its existence from October to December 1988, KFM broadcast a weekly programme for DXers with a focus on the shortwave band.

This is a selection of airchecked undated excerpts from the DXers’ programme from that period, presented by Shane Keating. The programme is aimed at listeners new to the band and there are explanations of shortwave propagation, QSL cards and SINPO codes. A regular contributor to the programme was John Breslin, who is heard describing his experience of shortwave DXing during a phone-in to the show. There is also a recording supplied by John of Radio Berlin International from East Germany.

We thank John for donating this recording, which he made in north Co. Clare from 95.99 FM. Reception is fair because of the distance from the transmitter.

Independent Radio Mayo as heard in Scotland

Independent Radio Mayo as heard in Scotland
IRM flyer from 1987 (courtesy of Ian Biggar).

This is a recording of Independent Radio Mayo (IRM) as received in Scotland from 1525-1720 on Friday 25th July 1988 on 738 kHz AM. IRM was in fact heard by accident when Dublin station Q102, broadcasting on the same frequency, went off the air for approximately two hours. The recording begins with adverts on Q102 and a relatively strong signal due to the geography, followed by the weaker signal of IRM when the Dublin station goes off.¬†However IRM’s 1kW professional transmitter, used originally by Radio Leinster in Dublin, was very effective and as can be heard, the signal travelled well as far as Scotland.

There follows almost two hours of IRM, including the afternoon show of one of the founders Gerry Delaney with plenty of community announcements, requests, the Golden Hour and a sports round-up. Joe Finnegan takes over at 5pm with his teatime programme and news is read on the hour by Chris Clesham. Of note are the long ad breaks featuring businesses from across Mayo and occasionally Sligo. At the end Q102 returns to the frequency, blocking out IRM.

This recording was made by Ken Baird and we thank Ian Biggar for sharing it with us. Reception is fair to poor but perfectly listenable for DXers.

Roland Burke on Radio Leinster

Roland Burke on Radio Leinster
Radio Leinster logo (courtesy of David Baker)

This is an early recording of Radio Leinster made from 1722-1809 on 28th May 1981 from its AM frequency of 738 kHz (406 metres). Roland Burke (RIP) is on air with what he admits himself is a musical mixture, ranging from current pop artists such as Kim Wilde and Toyah Wilcox to the Eagles, Manhattan Transfer and Linda Ronstadt. it’s all a bit confusing and clearly Leinster was still finding its niche and was yet to become the easy listening station which became its hallmark in later times.

Surprisingly there are no ads to be heard in this 45-minute recording even though Radio Leinster was on air for a month at this stage. There’s no sign either of the news service that was promised when the station launched.

Reception is fair as the recording was made in Scotland. We thank Ken Baird for this donation.

Steve Gordon on Radio Leinster

Steve Gordon on Radio Leinster
Radio Leinster logo (based on poster in DX Archive).

This is another early recording of Radio Leinster made just a few days after the station’s launch in 1981. The presenter is the late Steve Gordon who had come from Radio Tees in England and worked in Dublin in the 1980s as a jingle and commercial producer for most stations. The recording was made from 1725-1810 on Friday 1st May 1981. Steve is standing in for another deceased DJ of the era, Roland Burke. As this was recorded just two days after Radio Leinster’s launch, presumably Roland wasn’t available at the very start of the station.

The music is eclectic including MOR, oldies, disco and pop and clearly Radio Leinster’s easy listening policy was still in gestation. The recording was made in Scotland by Ken Baird and there is severe interference at times. We thank Ian Biggar for the donation.