Sunday, October 07, 2007

UK Radio Debut

I arrived in Withernsea at 8:30AM, Saturday. As I rode the bus from Hull, I started seeing signs advertising the radio station. Seaside Radio is one block from the bus stop. It didn't take me long to walk the distance. The door was locked, but the Station Manager, Justin, let me in. Because I arrived 15 hours earlier than my show's starting time, the manager said, "you must be keen."
"Actually, it was the cheapest connection I could get," I clarified. He led me upstairs to where the new studio is located and his office. I set my heavy shoulder bag down, happy to stop lugging the thing around. I relaxed and we chatted away, Justin was playing music on the station. He advised that some presenter wasn't available. Whenever there's no one else to cover a shift, Justin does it himself. He was waiting for a female presenter, who was due to go on air at 10AM. 10AM came and no sign of her. She hadn't called, either. Justin turned to me and said, "you're here early, you can cover." I thought he was kidding, but he wasn't. He expected me to jump in immediately and take over the airwaves.
After a little hesitation, I agreed to do it. I wanted the boss to think of me as someone who's willing to help in a crisis. I sat behind the board and took survey of all I needed to do. Before I got to it, I asked a few questions. Nothing major, just "how do I do" this and "what does that button, there, do?" In the beginning, I kept things simple. Just played music. That came almost naturally to me, given that I was a club DJ, over 27 years ago. From music, I moved on to talking. By the second hour, I was feeling more confident. Just when I was beginning to relax and enjoy myself, the next DJ turned up. All too soon, it was over.
Justin said, "good, now I don't have to stay with you during the first hour of your show, tonight." I worried that he still hadn't shown me how to take callers on the air. I'd just done a two hour radio shift. Ahead of me lay a marathon, seven hour shift, starting at midnight. 27 years and 9 months later, and 3,500 miles from where I started, I was back on the airwaves. D J Joey B is back. Will the world ever be the same?

Labels: , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home