SERVICE IN REMEMBRANCE OF MR. ROBERT HILARY TOMALSKI
Roger Tate on Radio Invicta, Bob Tomalski on LBC, The Gadget Show, BBC Radio 4, etc.
(7th February 1953 - 13th January 2001) 2nd February 2001 at 1PM
Speech by John Briggs
I should start by saying I didn't know Bob for long - and I didn't know Bob
the man either - I'm not sure that many of us did. But I did know Bob the
broadcaster, Bob the encyclopedia, Bob the patient problem solver and Bob the
smiling genial gentle giant.
For me and thousands of LBC
listeners, Bob was Inspector Gadget. With a familiar cry of 'Greetings' he
bounced into the studio, normally accompanied by a large suitcase with the
latest silver or black box stuffed full of circuit boards and silicon
chips - and a team of wild software engineers couldn't have restrained
him from explaining the benefits and pitfalls of this latest offering. I took
over the Saturday morning show, where Bob was already resident, in January last
year. Bob's section was just 30 minutes long - but it was clear that with my
love of gadgets and Bob's pure and unadulterated enthusiasm for his subject we
had to extend it to an hour, which we did almost immediately.
a world that is pushing us all headlong into the network, wired, digitised and
pervasive world of technology - Bob was there to make sense of it all. He
truly enjoyed teaching people how to understand the intricacies of his work.
His wealth of knowledge solved hundreds of problems for listeners with modems
that wouldn't connect or videos that wouldn't tune - and even the simplest
problem was handled with care and consideration for those people for whom
technospeak was not their first language.
We rarely clashed. In
fact our major disagreement was his belief in Windows and PCs and my love of
Apple Macintosh. Bob would sit and listen patiently while I attempted to
defend the Mac in a PC dominated world - happy to give me my two penny worth.
Bob was generous to a fault as a broadcaster - and never ever corrected me -
at least not so as the audience could tell - but when he thought I was talking
completely out of the back of my hat - which is not unusual - he would raise
his eyebrows in surprise as if to say - 'are you sure about that?' - but we were
always on the same team on air. I say team - let's be honest - this was Bob's
hour. I'd introduce each caller by name as in - 'so Fred you're live on LBC -
what can we do for you' - and the caller would reply - 'Hello Bob' - and who
could blame them. Bob's breadth of knowledge was staggering - and I should add
I should add that Bob was not of course purely
defined by his knowledge of things technical - he loved music - and had
managed to recreate his large collection of vinyl albums digitally - how else
but by downloading them over the net. He would often enter the studio and
comment on one of the previous musical guests that he'd heard on the show as
he was driving in to join us.
I'm not an especially religious
man - and I'm not sure I know where we end up on the next stage of our voyage
- but wherever it is I have a sneaking suspicion that Bob is able to watch
down on us today. And I am pretty certain that he has a broad smile on his
face - for two reasons. The first one is that he would smile to see so many
people here today. He might even be faintly embarrassed - Bob was not a man to
make a fuss on his own account. I'm not sure he ever knew how many people
thought of him as a friend and how many people wanted to pay their respects to
him today. And secondly, because wherever it is he is watching from - for all
my protestations to him that it should be run by Apple Macintosh - I bet you
he's found out that it's run by Windows on a PC... and he knows he was right
and I was wrong.
Speech by Trevor Brook
Bob. What was all this radio stuff about then?
Most of us here know that Bob had his tangles with the authorities,
like almost anyone in this country who tried to do something creative
that involved using the highly government-regulated radio spectrum. What
was going on here? What made a well brought up young lad in South London
get involved in activities like this? What was it that Bob
believed in, and what were the changes that he wanted to see?
Well, Bob was interested in gadgets. He was interested in
bits of technology from an early age, and one of the few pieces of electronics
around in a 1950's and 1960's household was a radio set. Most people pay
little more than passing attention to a radio; they quickly fiddle with it
until they hear something they like and then leave it alone. But Bob
was more curious than that. What he did was to spend hours tuning around
carefully in the gaps between the big stations that everyone listened to.
He found the foreign stations. He found the Welsh service. He
found the Scottish service. But most strikingly of all he found Radio
Jackie and one or two other pirate stations which appeared on the airwaves on
Sundays. These were exciting. For one thing, the people on them were
little older than Bob himself. But that wasn't the only attraction.
Can you imagine what was happening when each presenter had just a single
one-hour programme each week? An entire week's events, news, jokes and so
on were packed into that hour. Terrific energy and production effort
went into every one of those programmes. This stuff was radio that you 'listened
to', not radio that you 'had on'. Quite a different thing from most of
today's music stations, where people have to do a four-hour programme
stint every day of the week.
So, one thing led to another, and Bob met some other locals who
happened to be keen on soul music. In fact, so keen on soul music that
they wanted to broadcast it around London, so that everybody else could hear
it. And that is exactly what they did. It broke the law of course.
People who went on to the tops of tower blocks with transmitters did rather tend
to be pursued by the radio investigation service. The government told the
story that there were no frequencies available. Now Bob was not stupid.
He had enough technical knowledge to know that this was simply not
true. So, either government officials were too dim to realise the truth of the
situation... or they were just lying. Nowadays we have 300
independent transmitters operating in those same wavebands, so you can probably
work out which it was. Anyway, in Britain, the result was that any proper
public debate about the possible merits of more radio listening
choice was sabotaged by this perpetual claim that it was impossible anyway.
So, we had pirates. Other countries which had not
liberalised the airwaves had pirates as well, but some of them took the
refreshingly realistic approach that no harm was being caused and they permitted
unlicensed operations to continue until they got round to regularising the
situation. Ambulances still reached their destinations and no
aeroplanes fell out of the sky. Not so in this country though.
The enforcement services here were too well funded and the established orthodoxy too
well entrenched. That 'frequency cupboard' was going to be kept well
and truly locked!
Bob had thrown himself into running a regular soul station, Radio
Invicta. He built a studio, tore it apart and built a better one. He eventually
sectioned off part of the flat as a separate soundproofed area. He built
transmitters - and got them working. But Bob was nothing if not
multi-skilled and he excelled in producing the programmes themselves.
Using nothing more impressive than an old four track reel to reel tape recorder
Bob would create highly polished jingles and station identifications. "Roger
Tate, super soul DJ". Other stations, both official and unofficial,
listened to what Bob and his colleagues did and their ideas were copied or
Faced with the authorities Bob was remarkable, because he
was absolutely fearless. He was certain they were in the wrong and, given
enough time, were going to lose the battle. It was a war of attrition and
only perpetual piracy was ever going to bring about change. And
he was quite right about that. The government kept winning the battle
in the courts but began to lose the moral one. Eventually the law was
Do we have free radio now? In the sense that anybody
can decide to start up a new magazine, find the finance and get on
with it, no, we don't have that for radio. The process is bound up with a
long winded regulation and approval process involving a statutory body
which has had its fingers burnt in the past by the odd bankruptcy and
the odd scandal. So they play safe and issue more licences to those
who already have stations. The consequence is that originality and
creativity get crushed into blandness and mediocrity. My
own teenagers constantly flip between stations in the car, but they don't care
enough about any of them to listen indoors. Fresh people don't get to
control stations. Behind boardroom doors they might think it privately,
but in what other industry would the chairman of the largest conglomerate
in the market dare to say publicly that even the present regime was too open
and, I quote, "was out of date and was letting inexperienced players into
the market"?* That is a disgraceful statement. Where would
television, theatre, comedy, the arts, and so on be, if new and by
definition inexperienced people didn't get lots of exposure? The
industry is stale, complacent and rotten. Bob, there are more battles out
there and we needed you here.
For several years Bob worked for a hi fi retail
business and that was during a period of dramatic changes in technology. A whole
range of developments occurred and digital systems began creeping into the
consumer world with the invention of the compact disc. Bob was in a place
where he could get his hands on new products before most people in the
country. That enthusiasm and understanding of what was coming next is what
developed into Bob's work in broadcasting and journalism. His experience
and ease behind the microphone, combined with the skill that he had learnt in
the hi fi world of explaining complex technical matters to the layman,
meant that he was regularly called on by producers and researchers of radio and
television programmes. You never knew when Bob's voice would pop out of
the loudspeakers as you were driving around the country.
Despite a quite frantic pace of working though, Bob always had
time to help people. He was ready to teach complete
strangers about some piece of equipment they had or give them guidance
for getting the best out of it.
The magazine work Bob did over the past ten years gave him many
opportunities to travel abroad and meet the designers and manufacturers themselves. Bob thoroughly
enjoyed all of that. He was always fascinated and enthused about
new ideas and new products. In fact, when you think of Bob, you just think
'cheerful'. I cannot ever remember Bob getting seriously narked or
stressed about something. Cheerful it is. That has to be the keynote
Bob often surprised me by ringing from a mobile for a
detailed engineering assessment of some manufacturer's technology or
claims for a product. And then, after a half-hour long
conversation, he would announce that he was in Tokyo, or somewhere equally
outrageous... and had better go. There was no one like Bob and I shall
certainly miss that cheerful, ebullient and irrepressible personality.
As someone has already said: I hope that wherever you have gone
Bob, they have lots of gadgets.
Other reports and tributes
Voice of America: Communications World Script, 20 January 2001, presenter: Kim Andrew Elliott.
Finally, sad news again this week about the untimely death of someone known to the Dxing community. U.K. journalist and broadcaster Bob Tomalski died last Saturday at the age of 47. Bob's specialty was new technical gadgets, and you may have heard his reports about these on Radio Netherlands' Media Network. Bob was also heard regularly on the BBC and other British domestic radio services. Communications World Webmaster Tom Sundstrom prepared a Web page about Bob's life and career, with tributes from many sources: I have a link to it on today's script. Thanks to Tom [Sundstrom] and to Trevor Brook in the U.K. for sending this news.
Radio Nederlands Wereldomroep: Media Network, In Memoriam: Bob Tomalski.
We've just been advised that a great friend of Radio Netherlands and Media Network passed away on Saturday 13th of January. British 'techno-journalist' Bob Tomalski had been writing and contributing to our output since August 1980. He started off in the camera trade, but quickly decided he wanted to write about cameras instead of just selling them. He was passionately interested in new trends and had a great memory for what was right and wrong with the global electronics industry. He always had inside news about what was coming next and could explain it in such a way that everyone understood.
In the 1970's he was involved with many of the London free radio stations, putting pressure on the British government to open up the airwaves. As this gradually happened, Bob was a regular guest "guru" on the new stations such as GLR, Capital Radio and LBC. He broke several technical scoops on UK television and lately was a regular guest on Sky News.
Bob made regular contributions to Radio Netherlands, first about changes in the radio scene. He later answered hundreds of listener questions which came in from all over the world concerning digital radio, digital TV and the revolution in the recording world (DVD, MP3 etc). Bob died of a heart attack aged just 47. He will certainly be missed by this crew.
Jonathan Marks, Director of Programmes, Radio Netherlands
From broadcast engineer Pyers Easton, 19 January 2001
I am both shocked and saddened to hear of the sudden death of Bob Tomalski. I first met Bob when he was managing a branch of Unilet HiFi in Bute Street, South Kensington, just round the corner from my my school. It was about 1979 and I was a fourteen year old spotty faced 'anorak' who used to bunk lessons to go and chat with Bob about HiFi, electronics and, most importantly, transmitters.
It was clear then that Bob was not just another HiFi salesman. Here was a driven man with a fascination for the cutting edge of technology - something that would characterise his later work on radio and television. He was also a brilliant engineer, his construction (and plumbing) skills involved in the taming of the QQV06-40 valve fascinated me and were pivotal in my decision to make a career out of broadcast transmission.
I am sure I am not alone in feeling a tremendous loss of a man whose enthusiasm and knowledge have inspired many.
Britain has been robbed of it's most entertaining, informed and above all colourful technology broadcaster.
Pyers J P Easton, Founder & CEO, Sound Broadcast Services Ltd, sbs.
Waveguide Television and Radio News, Friday, 19 January 2001
Self-confessed gadget man Bob Tomalski died suddenly of a heart attack at his London home last Saturday.
Mr Tomalski failed to arrive for his regular Technofile programme on Sky and then for an appearance on London's LBC Radio. When he failed to turn up for an appointment with a friend on Monday, the alarm was raised.
A well respected technical expert, Mr Tomalski had a long history of heart problems.
Waveguide's John Cull said: "I hadn't seen Bob for a few years, but for a time we had regular get togethers at a pub in Hammersmith when Waveguide was on Prestel. He was always happy and cheery and a good mate always happy to help with any technical problems."
Amateur radio trader Martin Lynch, 24 July 2001
Just to say that I knew Bob for ten years supplying him with various "toys" from the Ham Radio world. In that time Bob gave me much advice on another hobby of mine, Home Entertainment.
Today, 24th July 2001, I thought about buying a new piece of kit and instantly thought of Bob as the only source of authority. Then I remembered.
Hope your having a good time up there Bob. See you soon. Not too soon you'll understand.
Martin Lynch G4HKS.
From What Video & TV, Home Cinema and other magazines, 12 December 2002
I had the pleasure, as MD at WV Publications, to employ Bob for many years - his technical knowledge was unbelievable - whatever the product, whatever the problem, Bob always knew the solution.
But more than that he was such a well respected and well loved man - always willing to help, to go the extra mile to assist one and all.
Bob was an institution at WV and will always be greatly missed by all who knew him.
Rob Lehmann, WV Publications 1981-2002
Voice of America: Musings by Tom Sundstrom, 18 January 2001
Obituary - Bob Tomalski, RIP
We learned of the sudden death of Bob Tomalski through one of his close personal friends in the UK. Details are sketchy and more information will be forthcoming in the days ahead. Watch this page for updates.
On January 13, 2001, Bob Tomalski, journalist and broadcaster and Contributing Editor to Radio Netherlands' Media Network, passed away at the age of 47. The cause was attributed to a heart attack.
One report indicates that he had been complaining of a chest infection for a number of weeks.
Of Tomalski's writings and gadget research around the world, his findings were also heard on Radio Netherlands' Media Network. Jonathan Marks, Director of Programmes, wrote an "In Memoriam" piece upon learning of this tragic event.
Bob and I became good friends through our common association with Media Network, and we often chatted on ICQ about the latest toys and gadgets. This news was a complete shock to me, and it is just so very hard to believe that he is gone. Rest in peace, Bob.
As written by Bob Tomalski three years ago , appearing on his Web site:
"BIOGRAPHY: Bob Tomalski - Journalist and Broadcaster
"Bob Tomalski is a technology journalist and Group Technical Editor at WV Publications. WV Titles include What Video & TV, What Satellite, What Cellphone, Camcorder User, Computer Video, Video Camera, and Home Cinema Choice magazines.
"Aged 44, Bob is also a familiar voice on broadcast media. Since 1988 he has been a freelance commentator on technology issues and has been heard on all the national BBC networks. Programme credits include 'You & Yours' on R4, 'The Big Byte' on R5, 'The Debbie Thrower Show' on R2 and 'Music Into The Millennium' on R3. He has also been a contributor to BBC News & Current Affairs - both for radio and TV- and a is a regular face on 'BBC Breakfast News' . He has just finished a series entitled 'Wired For A Week' for BBC Radio 4.
"Commercial radio experience includes many years as a regular phone-in 'expert' for LBC in London, as well as contributing to Radio Mercury and Thames Valley FM. Since the launch of Talk Radio he has been heard on programmes hosted by Moz Dee, Sean Bolger and Michael Van Straten. Currently he presents a technology slot for that station each Saturday morning.
"Bob Tomalski is a self-confessed 'early adopter'. "Whether its recordable CD, a digital camera or a DVD player, I'm a sucker for buying them first" he says. "I frequently buy gadgets when I am off on my travels to Japan and Hong Kong". I often have samples of equipment, long before UK distributors. It's the only way to stay ahead in the competitive world of consumer electronics"."
Writing on Radio Invicta in 2011, Grant Goddard quoted Trevor Brook's eulogy for Bob Tomalski:
Grant Goddard : radio broadcasting expert
Consultant with lengthy track record of creating successful, innovative radio stations & programmes in UK & internationally
Radio Invicta: the genesis of black music radio in London …. still unfulfilled
I only knew Roger Tate through listening to his programmes on the radio. He was a DJ on Radio Invicta, London’s first soul music radio station, launched in 1970. Invicta was a pirate radio station. Back then, there were no legal radio stations in the UK other than the BBC.
The notion of a campaign for a soul music radio station for London had been a little premature, given that no kind of commercial radio had yet existed in Britain. But that is exactly what Radio Invicta did. As Roger Tate explained on-air in 1974:
“Who are Radio Invicta? You may well be asking. Well, we’re an all-soul music radio station. We’re more of a campaign than a radio station, I suppose. We believe in featuring more good soul music on the radio.”
By 1982, Black Echoes music paper reported that Radio Invicta was attracting 26,000 listeners each weekend for its broadcasts. By 1983, Radio Invicta had collected a petition of 20,000 signatures in support of its campaign for a legal radio licence. There was sufficient space on the FM band for London to have dozens more radio stations. By then, local commercial radio had existed in the UK for a decade. But nobody in power wanted to receive the station’s petition and Invicta’s Mike Strawson commented:
“I have tried to speak to the Home Office about it, but it shuts the door.”
Radio Invicta eventually closed for good on 15 July 1984, the date that the new Telecommunications Act had dramatically increased the penalties for getting caught doing pirate radio to a £2,000 fine and/or three months in jail. By then, Capital Radio had enjoyed its licence as London’s only commercial radio music station for eleven years. Its monopoly reign was still to run for a further six years.
It might have seemed in 1984 that Radio Invicta’s fourteen-year struggle to play soul music on the radio in London had come to absolutely nothing. The Invicta team went their separate ways after the pirate station’s closure. Roger Tate continued his career as a successful technology journalist. After his death in 2001, aged only 47, one of his friends, Trevor Brook, spoke of Tate’s determination to play soul music on the radio in the face of opposition from the government and the radio ‘establishment.’ His eulogy at the funeral of his friend ‘Bob Tomalski’ (Tate's real name) included these comments:
“The government told the story that there were no frequencies available. Now Bob was not stupid. He had enough technical knowledge to know that this was simply not true. So, either government officials were too dim to realise the truth of the situation... or they were just lying. Nowadays, we have 300 independent transmitters operating in those same wavebands, so you can probably work out which it was. Anyway, in Britain, the result was that any proper public debate about the possible merits of more radio listening choice was sabotaged by this perpetual claim that it was impossible anyway.
So, we had pirates. Other countries which had not liberalised the airwaves had pirates as well, but some of them took the refreshingly realistic approach that no harm was being caused, and they permitted unlicensed operations to continue until they got round to regularising the situation. Ambulances still reached their destinations and no aeroplanes fell out of the sky. Not so in this country though. The enforcement services here were too well funded and the established orthodoxy too well entrenched. That 'frequency cupboard' was going to be kept well and truly locked!
Bob had thrown himself into running a regular soul station, Radio Invicta. He built a studio, tore it apart and built a better one. He eventually sectioned off part of the flat as a separate soundproofed area. He built transmitters – and got them working. But Bob was nothing if not multi-skilled, and he excelled in producing the programmes themselves. Using nothing more impressive than an old four track reel to reel tape recorder, Bob would create highly polished jingles and station identifications. ‘Roger Tate, super soul DJ.’ Other stations, both official and unofficial, listened to what Bob and his colleagues did and their ideas were copied or imitated.
Faced with the authorities, Bob was remarkable, because he was absolutely fearless. He was certain they were in the wrong and, given enough time, were going to lose the battle. It was a war of attrition and only perpetual piracy was ever going to bring about change. And he was quite right about that. The government kept winning the battle in the courts but began to lose the moral one. Eventually the law was changed.
Do we have free radio now? In the sense that anybody can decide to start up a new magazine, find the finance and get on with it, no, we don't have that for radio. The process is bound up with a long winded regulation and approval process involving a statutory body which has had its fingers burnt in the past by the odd bankruptcy and the odd scandal. So they play safe and issue more licences to those who already have stations. The consequence is that originality and creativity get crushed into blandness and mediocrity. My own teenagers constantly flip between stations in the car, but they don't care enough about any of them to listen indoors. Fresh people don't get to control stations. Behind boardroom doors, they might think it privately, but in what other industry would the chairman of the largest conglomerate in the market dare to say publicly that even the present regime was too open and, I quote, ‘was out of date and was letting inexperienced players into the market’? That is a disgraceful statement. Where would television, theatre, comedy, the arts, and so on be, if new and, by definition, inexperienced people didn't get lots of exposure? The industry is stale, complacent and rotten. Bob, there are more battles out there and we needed you here.”
Ten years later, these words are just as pertinent. It is hard to believe that a bunch of enthusiastic soul music fans who wanted to play their favourite music to their mates could have posed such a threat to the established order. But the history of radio broadcasting in the UK has demonstrated repeatedly that ‘the great and the good’ consider the medium far too important to let control fall out of their hands. Their arguments, however ridiculous, were taken completely seriously because they were the establishment.
Peter Baldwin, deputy director of radio at the Independent Broadcasting Authority, said in 1985: “We wouldn’t want to be dealing with two current local stations [in one area]. If it’s Radio Yeovil [operating as the only commercial station in Yeovil], well, that’s okay … But we couldn’t subscribe to competition [for existing local commercial pop music station Swansea Sound] from Radio Swansea, unless it was in Welsh or concentrated on jazz – and there probably wouldn’t be sufficient demand for that kind of service.”
James Gordon (now Lord Gordon), then managing director of Radio Clyde, wrote in The Independent newspaper in 1989: “It has to be asked whether there is really evidence of pent-up demand from listeners for more localised neighbourhood stations … Eight to ten London-wide stations would be enough to cater for most tastes.”
David Mellor MP told the House of Commons in 1984: “The government do not believe that it would be sensible or fair to issue pirate broadcasters with licences to broadcast. To do so, on the basis suggested by the pirate broadcasters, would be progressively to undermine the broadcasting structure that has evolved over the years.”
However, within five years, the government did indeed license a pirate radio station to broadcast in London. Once Invicta had disappeared in 1984, it was superseded by newer, more commercially minded, more entrepreneurial pirate radio stations – JFM, LWR, Horizon – that played black music for Londoners. In 1985, a new pirate station called KISS FM started, quite hesitantly at first. Its reign as a London pirate proved to be much shorter than Invicta’s but, by the time KISS closed in 1988, it was probably already better known than Invicta.
KISS FM went on to win a London radio licence in 1989 and re-launched legally in 1990. It carried with it the debt of a twenty-year history of black music pirate radio in London started by Radio Invicta and then pushed forward by hundreds of DJs who had worked on dozens of London black music stations. KISS FM would never have existed or won its licence without those pirate pioneers.
Sadly, the importance of KISS FM’s licence as the outcome of a twenty-year campaign seemed to be quickly forgotten by its owners and shareholders. The lure of big bucks quickly replaced pirate ideology during a period of history when ‘get rich quick’ was peddled by government as the legitimate prevailing economic philosophy. KISS FM lost the plot rapidly and soon became no more than a money-making machine for a faceless multimedia corporation.
Right now, there remains as big a gap between pirate radio and the licensed radio broadcasters as existed twenty years ago or even forty years ago. London’s supposedly ‘black music’ stations, KISS FM and Choice FM, now sound too much of the time like parodies of what they could be. Whereas, pirate radio in London still sounds remarkably alive, unconventional and creative. More importantly, only the pirates play the ‘tunes’ that many of us like to hear.
The issue of how black music was ignored by legal radio in London, and then betrayed by newly licensed black music radio stations, is on my mind because of my new book ‘KISS FM: From Radical Radio To Big Business’. It documents a small part of the history of black music pirate radio in London, and it charts the transformation of KISS FM from a rag tag group of black music fanatics into a corporate horror story. I was on the inside of that metamorphosis and it was an experience that, even twenty years later, remains a sad and terrible time to recall.
In 1974, Roger Tate had wanted more black music to be heard on the radio in London. Ostensibly, that objective has been achieved. But the black music I hear played on white-owned stations in London (there is no black-owned station) is a kind of vanilla K-Tel ‘black music’ that is inoffensive and unchallenging.
If Croydon is the dubstep capital of the world, how come there is no FM radio station playing dubstep in Croydon, or even in London? How come I never hear reggae on the radio when London is one of the world cities for reggae? How come I had to turn to speech station BBC Radio Four to hear anything about the death of Gil Scott-Heron in May? Why is that Jean Adebambo’s suicide went completely unremarked by radio two years ago?
Legitimate radio in London seems just as scared of contemporary cutting-edge black music as it was in the 1970s when Roger Tate was trying to fill the gaping hole with Radio Invicta. Nothing has really changed. Except now there exists the internet to fill that gaping hole. And FM pirate radio in London continues to satisfy demands from an audience that legitimate radio has demonstrated time and time again that it doesn’t give a shit about. Is it any surprise that young people are deserting broadcast radio?
Forty years ago, I listened to Roger Tate and London pirates like Radio Invicta because they played the music I wanted to hear. Forty years later, I find it absolutely ridiculous that I am still listening to a new generation of London pirates because they still play the music I want to hear. As Trevor Brook suggested at Roger’s funeral, our radio system is so consumed by “blandness and mediocrity” that “the industry is stale, complacent and rotten.”
Roger Tate R.I.P. You may be gone, but you and your campaign at Radio Invicta are as necessary as ever today. Sad but true.
Grant Goddard, 1 July 2011.
Bob Tomalski - Broadcaster and journalist, 1953-2001 - bobtomalski.com
More photos of Bob Tomalski