Radio Presenter

Radio Presenter

As a radio presenter, producer and interviewer I have worked for all the major UK commercial radio groups as well as the BBC.

Here’s some show audio from my time on commercial radio station GEM, a station I loved working on across the East Midlands.

As a BBC Radio Presenter…

… I broadcast shows from the studio, as well as producing reporter packages.

There’s so much variety as a radio presenter with the BBC too. From out and out music presenting…

To shows where you can have a chat with people on the phone at length.

Sherie Dickinson was about to appear on First Dates when I spoke to her here.

The other thing I have found at the BBC is that as a studio presenter, there is an opportunity to just run with a creative idea. Like Pilates live on-air.

Being a broadcaster at the BBC has allowed me to develop my skills as a reporter too, from creating light-hearted content where I can get out and meet people, to the more serious news stories with less-friendly faces.

Now everything that I love about radio I can do with podcasting, with creative writing, and with producing from my home studio.

al booth - broadcaster
Behind the mic at the BBC

I can interview, voice track and pre-record shows, produce audio and podcasts… and I can do it for you if you’d like to get in touch.

NON-EMOTIONAL BACK STORY

On the 9th November 1998 I signed my first ever radio contract. It was at Viking FM in East Yorkshire, the station I’d been listening too since I was a child.

To give some indication of how much I love radio and broadcasting – from being behind the mic, to producing ideas, to editing – 09/11/98 was the date I used as my phone passcode, my bank PIN and general security PIN for about 20 years. Radio has always been that much of a love to me.

(Since the births of my son and daughter the PIN/passcode dates have changed. Also there was an awkward conversation with a US expert at GoDaddy when I had to give my 4-digit PIN and of course, the months and days are swapped in the USA. So my proud 4-digit PIN for November 9th read innocently as 09/11 to the American; that was when I decided to change it…)

Before I signed that first contract I’d been doing the usual keen thing of writing to local radio presenters, sitting in on shows. My first break came when I faxed this joke to the afternoon presenter:

What came first the chicken or the egg?

Neither, it was Trevor McDonald on a flour powered space hopper.

Al Booth, circa 1997

The presenter called me (I’d faxed it over on letterheaded paper from the roofing firm I worked at). He asked me to explain it. I said there was no explanation, it was just a… gag?

After that he asked me to write show content for him and do a daily joke slot feature on the phone. (I was paid with a CD and a photo..).

All this led to me being invited to sit on some shows and eventually I was offered a contract. On 9th November 1998. It was for £10,000 and at the time I felt there was no way I could justify that huge salary!

Over the years the show fees and my skills have grown, as has my love for writing, editing audio, and presenting it all live.

It’s as exciting now as it was when I first pressed play & record doing bedroom radio.

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