An interesting review of a decent piece of DAB kit. More intriguing is the state of DAB radio in the UK and the dire audio quality so many use. DAB+ doesn't appear to be the solution either, rather the multiplex has even more stations crammed in at even worse audio levels. So what is your favorite radio station doing regarding DAB? Why not ask them? Quality or pointless coverage, sometimes less really is more.
Or which one really is the joke board... Over time trends emerge that show patterns of activity, engagement and also on just how strange people can be.
For example there are some men (well predominately men) who are clearly past their mid-life crisis point and yet behave like children when anything critical, analytical or different is written about their beloved radio station. We are taking about Radio Caroline of course. Now some of the more vocal supporters of Caroline today have made their way over to the Joke board as Garry has previously described it. OK, I will call it by it's proper title The Free Radio Forum, and in fairness pirate radio of days gone by is discussed there albeit often quite slowly so that hours and even days can go by without activity, but so what, it is of course a fairly niche subject these days.
The irony is the obsession these individuals still have with Uncle Mervyn. Although Mervyn was unceremoniously booted off of the Pirate/Free radio board and now presents his thoughts and knowledge on his own Offshore & Cross Border Forum a place that we are reliably told has no interest for lovers of Caroline. So these travelers of boards leave Garry's place and move to calmer waters, but who can blame them for taking a peek back to the old place now and then. Now that Mervyn is no longer their some even voice their opinions in both places, but that's OK, there is nothing to trigger them except anyone who dares to blink at the lady, but then they can quickly scarper back to the Free radio Forum and complain just how bad Garry's board still is.
Now here's the thing. Somebody called Admin brings up the subject of a new book called the Radio Caroline Bible, written by Paul Rusling. It is apparently yet another book detailing the bulk standard Caroline owners version of events down the years. No problem here then. Well except that Mervyn is credited in the book and wants nothing to do with it. Now as these Caroline fans have got their way, Mervyn is no more on their boards, then they need not even know this. BUT and it is a big but, they do know and what's more for some strange reason some are going loco, because their version of events that is now even becoming a bible, still doesn't sit well with Mr Hagger. So the Free Radio Forum springs back into life with the usual trolls venting their spleens and even moving on to attacking the old board and Garry.
Well then, what's this really all about. It is becoming pretty clear that many of these vocal Caroline fans clearly are interested in what Mervyn has to say, almost obsessed in some cases. Some say Denial is a river in Africa. However is that denial of Caroline's early history being rather different to the unrevised bible version soon to be published, starting to cause a few "what if's". Time will tell, but without doubt the line that "nobody is interested in this old stuff" has warn rather thin, as even the most devoted church members are obviously keeping a watching brief on the 'third' board.
Still on a lighter note it's good to see that everyone is agreed that Radio Caroline has got it just right with today's musical format! You What? They are What? Where? Oh over on Garry's board. Well I am sure Now & Then can add some words of wisdom to that debate (coming soon)....
Knowing your history regarding the UK Royals.
We hear all about the death of Diana in hushed conspiracy, was it possible she was murdered, surely not. If you dump Google and use a search engine like Duck duck go for example, then the results can be quite different, but for a change let's go back a little further in time to Princess Margaret. An individual that in recent times has been related to the beginnings of Radio Caroline by... well me of course, because my real name is Mike Malcolm Dave Mervyn Ronan Garry Smith, and I am the all seeing eye.
Seriously though, take a gander at this.
Less than three years after the original pirates had closed, BBC presented The Disc Jockeys, from that seasons Man Alive series. In a reasonably short period of time many of the original offshore radio DJ's had been assimilated into London's pop music culture and industry. It is interesting that for these recently acquired BBC employees, the past is so clearly of no significance. Money, fame and for some plenty of young ladies seemed preferable to living a pirates life.
So why do I say "words of warning"? Well it seems that some old anoraks still wear their rose tinted memories of the past selectively, or in chosen ignorance, and perhaps with a version of history that clearly was not how it happened. Plenty of former offshore presenters never got a gig with the BBC back then, others had to serve a little penance for daring to carry on until 1968, however all in all, the BBC hand picked the best, one or two went to Radio Luxembourg, the rest got proper jobs or went back home to radio in other lands.
The reality that what happened in the sixties is somehow linked with any UK radio today is at best laughable. Those from this era are now quite old and sadly in some cases past away, a few far too young. For any radio station to claim a legacy back to the 1960's pirates, is a stretch to far. Put simply the original stations shut down, or were shut down and their employees moved on, some presenters to much better paid work, even for just two or three hours a week, indeed they did pretty well compared to your average anorak.
So remember, your heroes of yesteryear may have a different view of the past, and not one that on reflection they have only just arrived at.
Well it's finally happened. The censorship has paid off and Anorak Land has gone back to sleep, well almost.
One brave freedom fighter has kept the battle going. last time we mentioned him we had some concern that he might be receiving incoming at such a hostile rate, surely a piece of shrapnel would take him out at some point. But no! this guy is Teflon coated, no amount of verbal from the man with the Doc Marten's bothers him, he doesn't even sense the simmering frustration from the congregation of The Lady, he just plows on firing off hobby radio in all directions, gate crashing threads and taking out anyone who dares to step out of the correctly allocated parts of the broadcast spectrum (he's even laid mines there, so beware).
As an agent provocateur you have a professional on your hands here. Just read this salvo fired off earlier today - "It's an interesting mixture of Amateur / Hobby / Music Radio, very much like the old Sunday mornings here on MW, where we would take turns to play our music on home brew rigs, ending up with QSO's (there was no web or emails then). Summer evenings had regular slots to (when Eric Gotts was not lurking). The operators were the listeners!! Some were licenced Amateurs, who enjoyed an extended Top Band!! Something like this will return in the UK on MW, but it won't be the kids. It will be us old timers messing around for nostalgia reasons. The kids do their own piracy online, hacking into YouTube and Spotify etc., with a totally different agenda. Even the VHF band 2 city block pirates are all in their 50's and 60's now!!"
Wonderful stuff! Grime fans in London have aged a bit, and I'm not sure how you hack Youtube and Spottydog, but by and large this chap is firing from both barrels. The question is how long can he survive? It's almost as if he is a member of their admin team the way all his posts get in, hmmm.
Mind you the other part of Anorak Land, that is the Joke Board to quote a pirate radio leg end really has reverted to normal. It's a bit like a communal room in an old folks rest home. Occasionally someone wakes from their slumber and rambles off an anecdote from fifty years ago, someone else might hear them and reply and then the snoring continues. For example: Ron farts loudly enough to wake Alf in the next chair, Alf slowly leans forward shedding the last few seconds of his lucid dream off and asks "Does anyone remember Radio Free Bognor, you know they were on for an hour every third Sunday in March 1972 or was it 1973/4/5"... No answer, but never mind Alf's snoring again.
Radio Now & Then
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