Radio is a powerful medium, it lets us, the listeners, imagine the pictures; it’s great company; it taps into something deeper in us, the storytelling part, the essence of us, from before we were distracted by flatscreens, smart phones, and selfies; it connects people all around the world, from a woman in a hut in the Okovanga Delta to a high-flying investment banker in Beijing to a sheep farmer on the hills in West Kerry.
I love this connection, this paring back, this return to ourselves. I feel compelled to create, to connect and to change something in the process. And radio is the perfect platform to do this.
I vaguely remember a big radio we had when I was small. There was a record player on top as well. It was in the corner beside Daddy’s armchair. We had some records, one with a cross-looking man who stared out from the cover all dressed in black, who I figured out years later was the legendary Johnny Cash.
I used to have my little radio on under the blankets (the ones with the pink stripes) that were scratchy against my face when I held the radio to my ear on the lowest volume possible, trying not to be heard. I didn’t want the valuable equipment to be confiscated so I’d get a good night’s sleep.
I spent my first big money from strawberry picking on a digital walkman with a radio. I remember thinking long and hard about parting with the cash and I finally did. I loved the screen with the squarish numbers that showed the frequency and the modern beep that sounded when the automatic programming found another station. Most of all, the voices of DJs, somewhere I imagined far away in fancy studios, introducing songs I’d never heard before, was enough to convince me I’d done the right thing. To this day, I still feel the same draw to radio.
I am passionate about the voice; I love the purity that comes across, the details, pictures and truth that it conveys. When creating, I am driven to seek out the heart of a story, to make an impression, to make something that lasts and that forges a connection with people.
Here’s to each of us finding our voice.
For info on radio documentaries I have made click here