Media Network Vintage Vault 2014 (Marks on Mechanics)
Re-live international shortwave radio between 1980-2000 through a radio show that pioneered producing narratives with its listeners. Over 370 complete programmes posted here to enjoy all over again. This is a non-commercial service to media historians done at the initiative of host, Jonathan Marks.

This Media Network is concerned with closedowns rather than sign-ons as we delve back into the archives for a special documentary on offshore radio. Jonathan Marks, Diana Janssen, plus a host of other stars will be tracing one of the most important stages in the development of European Radio.

We now present, “30 years in 30 minutes”.  That’s the voice of the late Paul Kaye, who 30 years ago today made the very last announcement on Radio London, or Big L. Radio London was the most successful of the radio stations which operated from ships and old army forts off the British coast between 1964 and 1967, and which had a major influence on the development of broadcasting in this part of Europe.  A company called East Anglian Productions obtained a so-called Restricted Service Licence, which allowed them to operate the station for one month on mediumwave 1134kHz, using very low power - officially just one watt. 

Back in the 60’s, the original station operated with much higher power and covering a large part of the UK as well as the Benelux countries. To explain how it came to be on the air, we need to go back to Easter 1964.

Direct download: MN.14.08.1998.ThirtyYearsOffshore.mp3
Category:Marks on Mechanics -- posted at: 6:12 PM
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Before Media Network, there was a show on Radio Netherlands (or Radio Nederland as it was called) entitled DX Juke Box. For the period August 1980 until May 1981, Jonathan changed the format of DX Juke Box bit by bitso that it morphed from purely a hobby show into a programme that answered the why of broadcasting rather than just the where and when. In October 1980 we took the show to Brussels for a few days to examine the pirate scene in the Belgian capital. Paul Renard was the DX editor for the RTBF and he introduced us to the pirate stations operating from apartments in the heart of Brussels. By today's standards this programme is rather corny, but it shows how we were trying to push the envelope from very "scripted" shows into something that came from a location. Remember this is 31 years ago!!. Enjoy 

Direct download: MN.16.10.1980.BrusselsSpecial.mp3
Category:Marks on Mechanics -- posted at: 5:26 PM
Comments[2]

In 1993 I made a summer series of five 30 minute programmes on the history of recorded sound. The series was inspired by a visit to the Museum in Utrecht, which then was called From Singing Tower to Street Organs. The museum is still there. I then discovered people who were collecting pianolas, gramophones and jukeboxes. Of course, it wasn't just the devices. It was the stories that went with them. I've re-released them here as high quality MP3's.

Although not a Media Network show, I have had requests from people to put these documentaries into the collection, since they have a connection with communications. This fifth programme explores an unusual hobby in the Netherlands, importing and restoring jukeboxes. I was intrigued at the way they get around the problem of the different phase in the power lines - 60 Hz in North America, 50 Hz in Europe. This was the final and concluding part of the radio series. The earlier episodes are also on line. Let me know what you think!

Direct download: MarksonMechanics5JukeboxesHQ.mp3
Category:Marks on Mechanics -- posted at: 2:00 AM
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In 1993 I made a summer series of five 30 minute programmes on the history of recorded sound. The series was inspired by a visit to the Museum in Utrecht, which then was called From Singing Tower to Street Organs. The museum is still there. I then discovered people who were collecting pianolas, gramophones and jukeboxes. Of course, it wasn't just the devices. It was the stories that went with them. I've re-released them here as high quality MP3's.

Although not a Media Network show, I have had requests from people to put these documentaries into the collection, since they have a connection with communications. This fourth programme examines gramophones and phonographs in the company of a local collector, Fred Haanebeek. The final part of this series is released tomorrow.

Direct download: MarksonMechanics4gramophonesHQ.mp3
Category:Marks on Mechanics -- posted at: 2:00 AM
Comments[0]

In 1993 I made a summer series of five 30 minute programmes on the history of recorded sound. The series was inspired by a visit to the Museum in Utrecht, which then was called From Singing Tower to Street Organs. The museum is still there. I then discovered people who were collecting pianolas, gramophones and jukeboxes. Of course, it wasn't just the devices. It was the stories that went with them. I've re-released them here as high quality MP3's.

Although not a Media Network show, I have had requests from people to put these documentaries into the collection, since they have a connection with communications. This third programme looks at player pianos or pianola's. I was amazed at the number of people in the Netherlands who were collecting at the time. I was particularly impressed by the recordings of Gustav Mahler playing his own compositions. He recorded the rolls in 1908 if I remember correctly. It's obvious that he was a better composer than performer though. Part 4 tomorrow. Enjoy!

Direct download: MarksonMechanics3Pianolas.mp3HQ.mp3
Category:Marks on Mechanics -- posted at: 2:00 AM
Comments[0]

In 1993 I made a summer series of five 30 minute programmes on the history of recorded sound. The series was inspired by a visit to the Museum in Utrecht, which then was called From Singing Tower to Street Organs. The museum is still there. I then discovered people who were collecting pianolas, gramophones and jukeboxes. Of course, it wasn't just the devices. It was the stories that went with them. I've re-released them here as high quality MP3's.

Although not a Media Network show, I have had requests from people to put these documentaries into the collection, since they have a connection with communications. This second programme looks at Bells in the belltower. If you come to the Netherlands you'll still find carillions being played by hand or by machine. Part three released tomorrow. Enjoy.

Direct download: MarksonMechanics2BellsHQ.mp3
Category:Marks on Mechanics -- posted at: 2:00 AM
Comments[0]

In 1993 I made a summer series of five 30 minute programmes on the history of recorded sound. The series was inspired by a visit to the Museum in Utrecht, which then was called From Singing Tower to Street Organs. The museum is still there. I then discovered people who were collecting pianolas, gramophones, phonographs and jukeboxes. Of course, it wasn't just the devices. It was the stories that went with them. I've re-released them here as high quality MP3's.

Although not a Media Network show, I have had requests from people to put these documentaries into the collection, since they have a connection with communications. This first programme looks at all kinds of clocks that perform melodies. Another one all this week to complete the series. Enjoy.

Direct download: MarksonMechanics1ClocksHQ.mp3
Category:Marks on Mechanics -- posted at: 2:00 AM
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