Tag Archives: Radio Prague

Radio Prague: 1965 20th Anniversary of the Liberation of Czechoslakia 7″ record

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Mike Barraclough, who shares the following partially in response to Sam’s search for the Radio Prague’s Forward Left interval signal:


In 1965 on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the liberation of Czechoslovakia Radio Prague offered their listeners a free copy of a 45rpm record they’d produced. There were 5 versions issued with commentaries in German, English, French, Italian and Spanish. Information and images here, at the time of writing there are two copies of the French edition for sale from record dealers.

https://www.discogs.com/artist/463619-Radio-Prague-2

I’ve digitised my copy of the English one I received.

Side One

Side One Recording

Side One has a recording of their interval signal at the time and the Communist Anthem Forward Left it is taken from.

Side Two

Side Two Recording

Side Two The Road to Freedom has an account of the liberation of Czechoslovakia in early May 1945 and the role of Radio Prague during it with recordings of their broadcasts, including one in English, at the time.

I’ll be submitting a slightly expanded account of this to the British DX Club for next month’s bulletin as picking up Radio Prague and other English language stations from abroad on mediumwave such as Radio Moscow was the reason I bought a shortwave receiver. Living on the East Coast of the UK I could pick up AFN Bremerhaven daytime as well as a Dutch station Radio Veronica playing pop records all day as an alternative to the BBC. Radio Luxembourg, which you’ve most likely heard of, for nightime listening. Will check, think it would be early 64 when I bought my first shortwave receiver.

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Sam searches for the Radio Prague Forward Left interval signal

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Sam Ward, who writes:

I am looking for a nice studio version of the old Radio Prague Forward Left interval signal that they used during their communist days. I just like that interval signal very much, and I’d really love to have a nice clean copy of that famous sixties and seventies interval signal.

I know Arthur Cushen had a really nice studio version of that interval signal and I should have asked him for a copy, but we lost touch with each other, and then he passed away. What a truly amazing fellow he was.

Post readers: If you have a nice studio copy of the Radio Prague Forward Left interval signal, please comment. I would be happy to amend this post with the audio, share it with the SRAA, and make sure Sam gets a copy. Thank you!

And, Sam, you’re right: Arthur was an amazing fellow.

UPDATE 19 April 2022: Check out this post and recordings by Mike Barraclough which contain the interval signal.

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Celebrating World Radio Day 2022!

Today is UNESCO World Radio Day and this year the theme of trust highlights the importance of radio as an accessible form of information.

Below are some of the many projects celebrating World Radio Day:


Cities and Memory: Shortwave Transmissions

As mentioned in a previous post, we at the Shortwave Radio Audio Archive are truly honored to have been a resource for this incredible and diverse sound project organized by Cities and Memory.

We encourage you to explore the creative work from over 120 artists and composers.

A great many of these remarkable dynamic works draw on a wide array of recordings from the SRAA; the resulting compositions and soundscapes are rich with sonic textures, evocative collages of sound and memory, which emerge into further sources of inspiration.

Our profound thanks to Cities and Memory––and all of the participating artists––for this truly brilliant collection which you can check out on the Shortwave Transmissions project page.


BBC World Service Documentary: “World Wide Waves ’22: The sounds of community radio”

As we mention in a previous post, this brilliant radio documentary focusing on community radio is available on the BBC World Service website and BBC Sounds

Here’s the description:

For World Radio Day 2022, we tune in to radio stations around the world that connect communities, spark conversations, keep traditions alive and give a voice to their listeners. From Aboriginal Koori Radio in Australia to a community station in India run by rural women from the lowest Dalit caste, the airwaves carry intimate wisdom, vital knowledge, beats and tunes that keep reminding us who we are.

Note that this piece was produced by our friend David Goren, of Shortwaveology fame. Continue reading

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Radio Waves: AIR Doubles Broadcast Times, Radio Prague’s 2022 QSL Cards, Ham On The Moon, and Allouis Transmitter Silenced

Radio Waves:  Stories Making Waves in the World of Radio

Because I keep my ear to the waves, as well as receive many tips from others who do the same, I find myself privy to radio-related stories that might interest SWLing Post readers.  To that end: Welcome to the SWLing Post’s Radio Waves, a collection of links to interesting stories making waves in the world of radio. Enjoy!

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributors David Iurescia, Kris Partridge, and the Southgate ARC for the following tips:


AIR to double broadcast time for programmes in six languages (Deccan Herald)

Starting Monday, All India Radio (AIR) programmes in six neighbourhood languages, including in Dari, Pashto, Baluchi and Mandarin Chinese, will be available to listeners every day in the morning and evening. The AIR’s external services division has doubled the time for the programmes aired in Dari, Pashto, Baluchi, Mandarin Chinese, Nepali and Tibetan languages, the public broadcaster said in a statement on Sunday.

The programmes in these six languages will be aired on shortwave frequency and also live streamed on YouTube, NewonAir App, DD Free Dish, it said.

“The external services division of the All India Radio is expanding its transmission in six neighbourhood languages from January 3, 2022. These languages are Dari, Pashto, Baluchi, Mandarin Chinese, Nepali and Tibetan,” the public broadcaster said. [Continue reading…]

Radio Prague’s QSL Cards (Radio Prague)

The three letters – QSL – constitute one of the codes originally developed in the days of the telegraph. All codes consisted of three letters beginning with “Q”. Later some of these “Q” codes were adopted by radio-telegraphists and radio listeners. QSL means “contact confirmed” or “reception confirmed”. Continue reading

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Radio Prague celebrates 85 years on the air

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Jonathan Marks, who recommends this video tour of the Czech Radio Building from Radio Prague’s Facebook page.

Jonathan notes: “[The video os very] nicely done. It compliments episode 4 of the video I made with Olrich Cip”:

Many thanks for sharing this, Jonathan, and for documenting this important piece of our international broadcasting story.

Post readers: If you’d like more information about the 85th Anniversary of Radio Prague, check out this (and other) stories on the Radio Prague Website:

Radio Prague International celebrates 85 years on the airwaves

Although the origins of foreign language broadcasting on Czech Radio stretch as far back as 1926 – in the form of English and French lectures about Czechoslovakia – the birth of the foreign language service is traditionally dated to August 31, 1936, when the Technical Director of Czechoslovak Radio Eduard Svoboda officially announced the beginning of regular foreign language broadcasting.
Continue reading

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Radio Waves: Radio Prague Special Broadcast, WNP Marks 100 Years, Ham Interference, and RTE on Longwave

Radio Waves:  Stories Making Waves in the World of Radio

Because I keep my ear to the waves, as well as receive many tips from others who do the same, I find myself privy to radio-related stories that might interest SWLing Post readers.  To that end: Welcome to the SWLing Post’s Radio Waves, a collection of links to interesting stories making waves in the world of radio. Enjoy!

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributors David Iurescia, Ronnie Smith, Troy Riedel, Jack Dully, and the Southgate ARC for the following tips:


Radio Prague asks, “Would you like to be featured on our broadcast?” (Radio Prague via Facebook)

Our 85th anniversary is coming up on August 31st! We’re celebrating the occasion with a special broadcast that day and would love to hear from you – our listeners. If you’d like to send us your greetings, please record a message and send an audio file via email (to english@radio.cz) or Facebook. Due to time constraints, your recording should be around 30 seconds long. Please include your first name, where you live, how long you’ve been listening, and what you like most about Radio Prague Int’l.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Sailing Vessel with Ham Radio History Marks 100 Years (ARRL News)

The schooner Bowdoin is a century old this year. Now owned by the Maine Maritime Academy (MMA) as a training vessel, the ham radio history of the 88-foot (LOA) Bowdoin is often neglected. Constructed in Maine specifically for Arctic exploration, the vessel relied on amateur radio for communication during explorer Donald B. MacMillan’s Arctic Expedition of 1923 and on the MacMillan-McDonald-Byrd Expedition of 1925 — thanks in part to ARRL co-founder Hiram Percy Maxim, W1AW. The venerable vessel, the official vessel of the State of Maine and the flagship of Maine Maritime Academy’s Vessel Operations and Technology Program, recently underwent a complete hull restoration and refitting and has done a little touring to mark its centenary. Its home port is Castine, Maine.

The longwave transmitters MacMillan used on his earlier missions had proved “unable to penetrate the screen of the aurora borealis,” then-ARRL historian Michael Marinaro, WN1M (SK), explained in his article, “Polar Exploration,” from the June 2014 issue of QST. In 1923, MacMillan turned to ARRL for help in outfitting his next expedition with better wireless gear. Marinaro recounted, “It was enthusiastically provided.” Maxim and the ARRL Board recruited Donald H. Mix, 1TS, of Bristol, Connecticut, to accompany the crew as its radio operator.

M.B. West, an ARRL Board member, designed the gear, which was then built by amateurs at his firm, Zenith Electronics. The transmitter operated on the medium-wave bands of 185, 220, and 300 meters, running 100 W to a pair of Western Electric “G” tubes. Earlier exploratory missions had used gear that operated on longwave frequencies. The shipboard station on board the Bowdoin was given the call sign WNP — Wireless North Pole. [Continue reading…]

The Machines That Built America (History Channel)

In 1893, sending information across America is a time-consuming process. Letters travel slowly by land, and those who can afford it, send telegrams along a limited network of fixed wires. But two rival inventors have the same idea for improving things: wireless communication. Nikola Tesla is one of the most famous and successful thinkers of his day, single-handedly changing the way electricity is supplied and generated. Guglielmo Marconi is a young, uneducated Italian inventor who ignores scientific consensus and goes with his gut. Both want to rid the world of wires and send messages through the air. With millions of dollars on the line, the two men battle to dominate the new market and bring radio to the masses. [Click here to view episode on the History Channel.]

Woman fights to have ham radio operations banned after potential interference with insulin pump (WFTV)

MARION COUNTY, Fla. — A Marion County woman is taking on her neighborhood association, in a matter she said puts her health at risk.

Michelle Smith, a Type 1 Diabetic, and a consultant determined that her neighbor’s ham radio hobby might have interfered with the doses of insulin being pushed out from her pump.

The 55+ community where she lives hired that consultant and told the neighbor to shut down his amateur radio station.

But a copy of the community’s rules shows a change was put in place that could pave the way for other similar antennas to be installed.

9 Investigates learned that Smith’s complaint went all the way to the state level.

She wants the Florida Commission on Human Relations to make a determination whether the community’s board and management is doing enough to protect her and others with medical devices.[]

RTE on long wave 252 kHz back on air (Southgate ARC)

RTE carried out essential maintenance of the Long Wave transmitter in Clarkstown, Co. Meath for two months during which period RTE Radio 1 was not available on 252 kHz.

This essential maintenance of the transmitter was due to be carried out in 2020, but was postponed due to Covid-19 restrictions. For the health and safety of those carrying out the works, the transmitter had to be switched off for the works period. Any overhaul has to be completed during the summer months when there is good light and weather conditions.

Transmissions commenced once again last Monday with an output of 500 kiloWatt during daytime and 100 kiloWatt at nighttime.

During this shutdown, one could receive Radio Algeria transmitting on the same frequency with 1.5 megaWatt during the day and 750 kiloWatt at night, broadcasting a varied program.


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Radio Prague’s 2021 QSL Cards

(Source: Radio Prague International via David Iurescia)

The three letters – QSL – constitute one of the codes originally developed in the days of the telegraph. All codes consisted of three letters beginning with “Q”. Later some of these “Q” codes were adopted by radio-telegraphists and radio listeners. QSL means “contact confirmed” or “reception confirmed”.

The expression “QSL card” or just “QSL” gradually came to be used among radio-amateurs and then more broadly as radio began to develop as a mass medium. Radio stations were keen to know how well and how far away their programmes could be heard and began to send their listeners “QSL cards” in return for reception reports. The card would include letters making up the “call sign” of the station – the system still used in the United States – or the broadcasting company’s logo or some other illustration. The card would also include a text stating the frequency and the transmitter output power, and a confirmation of when the listener heard the station.

Domestic broadcasters do not tend to use QSL cards these days, but their popularity remains among radio stations broadcasting internationally. They are still keen to know how well they can be heard in the parts of the world to which they broadcast. In the era of shortwave broadcasts Radio Prague sent out QSL cards for reception reports received. Today we also send QSL cards to those who listen to us on the internet.

https://english.radio.cz/reception-report

Click here to view all of the 2021 QSL Cards at Radio Prague International.

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