80s Pirate Radio: Part 2
Posted by kilokat7 on May 24, 2010
Work continues digitizing old cassette tapes of shortwave pirate recordings. It’s a nasty job but someone has to do it. Originally I thought I had about 70 tapes total, but the number is well over 100 as I keep stumbling upon more, not to mention other recorded shortwave oddities. Here are the most recently added recordings with short commentaries:
Action Radio – 7416 Khz – December 25th, 1990 – 2320 UTC
Noted as the last entry in my pirate logbook, Action Radio’s Christmas Eve broadcast started out with a nice clear signal in this recording and gradually faded down by sign-off time (note the Cheers theme song that Action Radio used for a sign-off).
Hope Radio Int’l. & Others – 7415 Khz – December 25th, 1990 – approx 2340 UTC
This clip picks up where Action Radio (transmission above) left off, revealing a weaker station playing music down on 7410. The killer hetrodyne that you’ll hear is coming from Hope Radio Int’l. up on 7415 seeking a two-way pirate QSO and later getting yelled at by another operator for causing QRM to the 7410 station. Note the massive signal from Hope Radio, probably a kilowatt or more. At about minute 7:30 in the clip I start shortwave dial spinning- sort of interesting in itself hearing some of the SW broadcasters from this time. The clip ends with two other pirate ops in a QSO, one possibly CEPR “Experimental Propagation Radio”.
Radio North Coast International – 3445 Khz – November 1st, 1987 – 0520 UTC
Captain Willy’s well polished RNCI shortwave Halloween Special / Phil Spector Special. Classic shortwave pirate parody programming at its finest. Nice signal received.
WYMN Woman’s Radio – 7430 Khz – November 7th, 1987 – 1712 UTC
Probably the world’s first feminist pirate radio station. This short clip contains some local QRN but the ID is clearly heard under the noise.
Radio Mauser Worldwide – 7415 Khz – December 12th, 1987 – 8:05 PM EST
A discombobulated show to say the least during this broadcast. At one point it sounded like a QSO between Mouser and other op, and other times just endless ramblings. I stripped out the IDs and produced a short clip so that I have them “on record”.
The Voice of Free Long Island – 7415 Khz -December 24th, 1987 – 2226 UTC
The VOFLI began operations in 1987 on Long Island, NY. using 100w and described itself as a politically conservative pirate supporting such causes as the Nicaraguan Freedom Fighters and the Afghan Freedom Fighters. Though conservatively focused, the VOFLI also played pop music at times, as in this clip, and took live phone calls from DXers. In this clip you’ll hear the op take a live call from yours truly, though problems with the station’s phone patch prevented the telephone call from being heard over the air. The station’s op went by the handle of “The General” and was a licensed 21 year old ham radio operator at the time of this broadcast. Interestingly, some of the early VOFLI QSL cards were the op’s ARRL sanctioned cards with a label simply stuck over the ham’s call letters!
WGAT – 7415 Khz – December 31st, 1987 – 0202 UTC
From deep in the Dismal Swamp of Eastern Virginia comes WGAT – GATOR RADIO! Though more music based, I always enjoyed hearing Dr. Klystron’s voice coming over the airwaves. The station claimed to be using a 1956 commercial RCA 500 watt transmitter and a half wave dipole supported from two cyprus trees.
WGAT – 7415 Khz – December 31st, 1987 – 0331 UTC
Gator Radio returned later in the evening on New Years Eve for a second broadcast as heard here.
Celtic Nation Radio – 7416 Khz – October 31st, 1988 – 0245 UTC
Hope you like Irish folk songs!
KBFA – 8002 Khz – September 5th, 1987 – 0305 UTC
More KBFA with 80s music “blowing the doors off WRNO”, or so the op claimed. Note the unusual frequency used. I have to admit the signal was pretty strong starting out!