Monday, 3 October 2016

Radio Adventures of the MV Communicator

Radio Adventures

 of the 
MV Communicator 

Its over thirty years ago that I wrote the book "Lid off Laser 558", a story about how we set up one of Europe's most successful radio stations, on board a ship! The book was a great success, just like the radio station, Laser 558, which attracted over five million listeners in the UK and a similar number on the continent.

The story of Laser 558 is now being retold, along with ten other stations that broadcast from the same ship over a voyage across the airwaves of Europe lasting 21 years.
Although very successful at getting large audiences, Laser 558 was short lived, thanks to a totally inept New York based management who tried to control the station from the Big Apple. They spent a fortune entertaining prospective advertisers on a series of junkets to Las Vegas but starved the poor DJs out on the ship of food, wages and even water. Eventually the crew mutinied and in true pirate fashion took the ship into port, where creditors waited with writs!

The ship was sold for a pittance to pay her outstanding bills and her next owner put her back to sea as Laser Hot Hits. He was even less successful and soon the Communicator was languishing back in harbour again. Her next owner was Fred Bolland who had run the very successful Radio Monique. He took her to Portugal for a refit as a four station radio giant, but the Dutch secret service got very scared about one of his customers - a fundamental religious organisation called the Underground Church. By spooking the Dutch government's cabinet,  the BVD (Dutch secret police) got permission to take immediate action and mounted an armed raid on the Radio Caroline ship, that crippled the organisation.  They also persuaded the Portuguese to seize the transmitters.       

A few years later the ship was taken to Holland, given a licence and successfully broadcast with a new high power Medium Wave transmitter on 1224AM.  Holland FM, Veronica Hit Radio and Q The Beat were just three of the stations that broadcast from the ship. She broadcast legally in Holland for around eight years during which time she made a fortune for her operators.

 In 2003 she was sold to a British company and taken to Scotland, the Orkney Islands to be exact, and launched a local radio station from there called the Super Station.

Now availabe as HARDBACK
or as a SOFTBACK copy 
This is a collection of stories of those eleven radio stations that were heard transmitting from the Communicator at one time or another. They are all "from the horse's mouth", either the owners, the engineers, the DJs, the suppliers  and, in many cases, my own. I also examine the background into the many other projects that planned to transmit from her.  The midnight raids, the extortion, the takeovers and of course that other big lure of pirate radio - The Loot! 
Among the questions answered are:-
  • Why was it on board a ship?
  • What were the qualifications DJs needed to join the ship?  
  • How did they live and spend their time on board?  
  • What did they eat and drink ? 
  • What did they do for recreation?
  • Who was the ghost who appeared in the transmitter room?

 Its a fun-filled, action-packed tale of 
dramatic events on the High Seas.  
Over 200 pages of swashbuckling excitement!  

To get a copy you can either order it at your local bookshop (ISBNs are below) or order via Amazon, or direct from the publishers who can supply a personally signed copy in either Hardback or Softback with whatever dedication you wish.   Find it at the WorldofPages web site. An excellent idea for a Christmas present perhaps?

Link to  'Radio Adventures of the MV Communicator'
Radio Adventures 
of the MV Communicator
by Paul Alexander Rusling.  
Published by World of Radio Ltd
ISBN   Hardback   978-1-900401-14-2
             Softback   978-1-900401-12-8

The original book about Laser, called The Lid off Laser 558,  is currently being reprinted.  

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