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Wonderful Radio London Desk Wonderful Radio London Desk Courtesy "Beat Wave" Magazine.

Tribute to Wonderful Radio London

By Published April 01, 2019

Well did you wonder what was going on on Monday 1st April between 7 and 10am? Did you hear strange sounds coming from your wireless? 

Well it was all a bit of fun, when Red Kite Radio made a tribute to Wonderful Radio London, a Pirate radio station from the 1960's and one that helped give rise to the sound of pop radio we all loved back then. Many of today's "Old Hands" began their lives on Pirate Radio, and our little Pirate breakfast show took to the airwaves. Here's Steve Fox, the programme presenter to tell how it all began.

This started as a simple email exchange between Howard and myself on what we could do for April Fool’s Day…… and then Chris jumped in with an idea. “Why don’t we recreate a pirate radio station from the sixties?”

So first we got agreement from the directors to have a bit of fun.

I was up for it not realising how much work goes into creating a brand new show for a one-off. It’s tremendous.

First you have to alter the show clock – obviously radio stations in the sixties were completely different – so our normal timings went by the board.

Then Chris had loads of work to do changing the clock (show layout), sourcing the 1960’s jingles (yes that’s what we called them), checking that Radio London were happy for us to use their copyright material. He then had to ‘manufacture’ new versions of our standard news, weather, sport and travel to include the BIG L branding but also keep our sponsors happy.

At the same time I was sourcing the tracks we were going to use – I had to make sure that none of them had a release date after April 1 1967 (The last year of the pirate radio stations) and also get a copy of the charts that Radio London used that week in 1967 to add to the authenticity.

We knew we needed to tighten the show as much as we could and ideally we would have done it live from HGC so that we could be fading tracks in and out as we used to do in the good old days and unfortunately this isn’t really possible with SPL remote and so in some places we had to trick the system by making the ramps a lot shorter than normal to ensure that I was talking over as much music as possible.
In terms of links, I averaged 12 per hour which compared to the normal 4 we do on a standard show keeps you on your toes. The biggest problem here was that my mind kept me wanting to say You’re listening to the Red Kite Breakfast here on – it’s amazing how quickly that gets ingrained!
So we had the tracks, we had the ‘jingles’. We decided we wanted to do a phone call – which was Chas’s baby – he scripted it – recorded his bits and then I added mine – we then spent the next couple of hours passing that across the internet so that we could polish that – but it was well worth it.
I then had to place the tracks into the correct spaces in the clock so that Chris could then come back and place the ‘jingles’ in the right space – to make sure they matched the music.
Now I had to record my voice links and ensure that the ramps would play under me whilst I was taking – some of them had to be edited in Cool Edit with a bed running underneath to make it sound like I was talking over the music – that was fun.
And then Chris had to tighten everything up and make sure we were still running to time.
Yes we had problems on the morning – a couple of things didn’t play because SPL can be a cow sometimes but overall it was great fun and something the station can be proud of.

Thanks to Chas & Chris for their sterling efforts – my bit was probably the easiest of the three of us.

Kind Regards

So here for your enjoyment is that great show for you to hear all over again.

 Red Kite Radio meets the Pirates.

Read 169 times Last modified on Wednesday, 11 September 2019 19:41


Red Kite Radio meets the Pirates Steve Fox on Mixcloud

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  • We are the community radio station for Thame, Haddenham and the surrounding villages...

    Based in the grounds of Haddenham Garden Centre, we've been on air since June 2017. A not-for-profit organisation, our remit is to serve the community with Classic Hits from the 60’s to today, News and Information. We are funded by Advertising, Sponsorship and Grants from supporting organisations.


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Red Kite Radio. c/o Haddenham Garden Centre, 121 Stanbridge Road, Haddenham,
01844 299107
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