The radio book, A Century of Irish Radio 1900-2000, has been included in the acclaimed Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers 2019 Radio Books of the Year.
It tells the story of how a medium with much of its early history centered in Ireland has revolutionised and changed Irish society more than any other medium.
The story begins when Ireland became the first nation in the world to be declared by radio during the events of the 1916 Easter Rising. It charts the birth of legal radio in 1926 which is shrouded in scandal and reports of corruption with fatal consequences.
“This is a substantial resource, which will be essential to anyone with an interest in Irish radio. It can be recommended for both radio enthusiasts and those interested in wider radio history” The Radio User Magazine November 2019
“Eddie’s magnus opus is the most comprehensive work on the history and evolution of radio in Ireland. Historically important record” Eoin Morgan News4 Newspaper
“If you have an interest in broadcasting, this book is for you. Well worth the money”, Aidan Cooney Q102 Presenter and former Ireland AM (TV3) host
“An excellent work, this book is a must”, Ian Biggar, The DX Archive (Scotland)
“An excellent read”, Amazon 5* review by Premier Radio
“A great book”, Ralph McGarry radio presenter
“A superb read” E. Burbage on Goodreads
“A great read” Rob Allen 96FM Cork
“I’ve not read it, but it looks great!” Roy Martin, RadioToday
Irish radio, while born in the twenties, the evolutionary 1930s would change how the Irish listener consumed and interacted with the wireless. The book tells why Radio Eireann’s revenue in 1932 was £220 but a year later they reported revenues of £22,000. In the 1930’s you could learn to swim on the radio or listen to commentaries on the International Fishing competitions held on the rivers and lakes of Ireland. You can read about an anti-Jazz movement whose legal ramifications are still felt today and how the Church and State battled both for and on the airwaves. We unravel an urban myth that the first ever radio broadcast of ‘The Saint’ was on Radio Eireann in 1940. The book tells the story of the first man in the world to die on hunger strike, Sean McNeela having been convicted of pirate radio broadcasting. The book acknowledges the real success of Radio Eireann as it transformed rural Ireland on limited resources and offered women a new independence and perspective.
The Irish language was relegated to third place for a time on the official airwaves but the radio battle for our native language to have access to the ether has been long, protracted and eventful. Irish radio has been a conduit for propaganda and has become Americanised with men like Bill Cunningham changing how we consume radio, the giveaways, the profits and even the success and failure of Atlantic 252. The book tells how this nation interacts with the rest of the world through radio and how ironically it was two Englishmen Leonard Plugge and Chris Cary who revolutionised radio in Ireland.
For the first time ever, the book lists and offers station histories of over one thousand illegal pirate radio stations from the first conviction of Michael Madden in 1935 to the commercial successes of the so-called super pirates. The book examines the impact of political pirate radio in Northern Ireland at the beginning of the troubles and how paramilitary pirate stations brought down a Government and accelerated the end of a major political career. It documents how pirate radio and TV both threatened Government policy and led to dramatic change. As an avalanche of pirate radio stations across the country forced new legislation creating legal independent radio and television, commercial interests would dominate and cause further controversy with stories of fraud and corruption.
Learn about the good and evil within pirate radio, how this illegal activity created a radio industry. The border blasters, the innovators, the urban myths, the characters and the presenters from Michael O’Hehir and Larry Gogan to Dave Fanning and Andy Preston are all covered within the 595 pages.