I must have spent an unfathomable amount of time listening to the wireless. Wasn’t the walkman the most wonderful of inventions. I remember my sister returning from a weekend in London with all the usual presents for my younger brothers …shoes, sweets, second hand stuff from my grand Auntie Sarah….but hidden amongst all these throwaway tokens was a contraption the size of a cigarrette box and a white headset….it was one of those Sony walkmans …just radio…..but when I put these headphones into my ears for the very first time in my life
to listen to what was on the other end…..the hiss of the FM and MW bands and the intersection of different radio stations….slowly tuning to each station…..I think my initial view of the world just changed at that moment. A whole world opened up before me without me leaving the safety of my home. Radio stations with all kinds of music…..talk…new wave…competitions ….these were the days when there was an insurmountable amount of pirates on the airwaves. Then on those late nights under the covers trying to tune into those MW stations in France and Germany not knowing why this was possible…how could this be…was it magic.?? Maybe there were millions of other kids just like me under the covers trying the same unreachable frequencies and being dissappointed when they lost the signal……
The early 80’s heralded all this new technology for us to embrace and it probably ruined me forever. In the most wonderful of ways. This revelation helped millions to be heard at the turn of the century….how must Marconi have felt when he got that first message back form the Queens ship all those years ago….pure elation!!! ‘Magnifico, Signor!”
It has come to the stage at this point in my life where I can’t get enough of the bloody stuff. Can you imagine the joy when the internet opened up the whole medium for me…..worldwide radio!!
I would probably have been a Doctor or have invented some for of something like……um I dunno….why this passed me by??? I was listening to the radio when I should have been studying for my exams!!! ? But boy what wonderful music these ears have listened to…falling asleep with headphones in my ears became a regular occurence during those leaving cert years!! For God’s sake I was only 16 or 17 years old. No regrets at all….not for me. That stuff shaped me….it shaped us all and I am eternally thankful to my sister for introducing me to what was to become the Sony walkman. A fella at work recently brought me back in time with the observation of the days when our combats were full of tapes or cds and an extra few batteries thrown in just in case they ran dead….no more those days…..no more searching for inlay cards or rewinding of tapes tofavourite songs with bic biros to save the battery or no more listening to tapes at slower than normal speed as the battery slowly died a death!!! No more exchange of tapes or CDs with classmates…trying to impress them with your knowledge of new music and old!! No more a lot of things you could say but one thing that hasn’t changed one bit is the music….this has remained the same….There will always be different styles…a variation of old mixed with new but somehow the tune is always there for us to appreciate!!! It will always keep us interested and help us in our way. I wish I was young again so I could start over again…..not really!!!