I have a confession to make. Even though I live in a country awash with fantastic radio stations, where internet radio has exploded over the last few years, while writing blog posts on an evening I still tend to look up a friend from the internet, broadcasting from a station in middle America – the other side of the world.
I love radio. I always have. When I was about 11 years old my Grandfather gave me a radiogram. I can probably imagine my Mum and Dad rolling their eyes, and struggling to fit it in the back of the car, while listening to my endless claims that it would fit in my room. It did fit in my room – as long as you walked past the bed sideways.
I never bought any vinyl records for it, mainly because the record deck was shot to pieces. It had an old 45 of Rhinestone Cowboy on it’s turntable – that had most likely been there since it was bought in the mid 1970s. When you first switched it on, the speed would vary all over the place, causing no end of amusement – singing along with Glenn Campbell who varied between sounding like a Smurf, and James Earl Jones as the speed stabilised.
That old radiogram had by far the best sounding radio I have ever heard though. I imagine the cavernous wooden exterior would have been filled with the valves that audiophiles now spend a small fortune on. A huge silver knob tuned the FM stations in, moving a paper marker up and down a glass strip in it’s facia. Over time I came to know where each station lived, and spent hours on evenings listening to all manner of music, and talk radio stations.
The love of radio has never left me. The first thing I do on a morning after getting up is walk into the kitchen and switch the radio on – invariably the local radio, or one of the bigger commercial stations. On an evening though, I gravitate towards music, and the internet.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have coffee to drink, chocolate biscuits to eat, and the radio to listen to.