Do you remember Video Killed the Radio Star by The Buggles? There’s wisdom in them there lyrics. Technology’s fab and groovy, but sometimes it lacks romance. When I was a lad we would sometimes go to a caravan park in Essex (a trailer park for the weekend, for our transatlantic cousins).
I used to lie awake in the dark, a transistor radio wedged against my face, listening to faraway lands. Sometimes I’d catch French programmes or lose myself in the magic of big band music. I didn’t know Glenn Miller by name but I recognised his music the first time I was formally introduced to it. The signal would ebb and flow like the tide on the nearby River Blackwater. It’s also where I first heard the haunting and poetically beautiful Shipping Forecast. (Made more beautiful now that I know Dogger hides a hidden land.)
I’ve had minor flirtations with radio over the years. I wrote some gags for the late, lamented (by me because the money was okay!) Channel 4 Radio, plus a couple of gags that made it on to BBC Radio.
My most enduring association with a radio station was as a foreign correspondent for KBRW, Alaska. My buddy, Earl Finkler, would ring me from Barrow in Alaska every month or so and we’d chat on air about European news, plus anything topical in the US. The show reached part of the USA, Canada and Russia.
In the UK I was interviewed on The Source FM about writing fiction and shared a microphone on BBC Radio Cornwall, a few years back, to talk about comedy writing.
Yesterday I renewed my romance with local radio by joining Tiffany Truscott on BBC Radio Cornwall, talking about the joy ebooks, blogging and my thrillers, Standpoint and Line of Sight. We also touched upon writing groups and the fine art of receiving difficult feedback.
If you fancy listening to the 10 minute segment, you’ll need to be quick, as I believe it’s only available for 28 days. The show is two hours long and my bit is at around 1hr 30 mins. Let me know what you think!
Maybe, like the great humorist Fred Allen, I do have a face for radio.