History of wireless telegraphy and broadcasting in Australia/Topical/Publications/Australian Radio History/The Author
Bruce Carty started his interest in radio at the age of five when he became a member of the “Argonauts” club on A.B.C. radio. By seven his radio interest was listening to A.B.C. news broadcasts. By twelve, Bruce avidly followed the 2UE TOP 40, obtaining their weekly listings from the local music store. At fourteen he became Australia’s youngest commercial radio announcer in 1963 with radio 2KA in Katoomba. Later, in Brisbane, Bruce studied announcing, script writing, and program production with Jim Illiffe’s School of Broadcasting evening classes at 4BC. Bruce then studied for his Broadcast Operators Certificate of Proficiency, with lectures conducted by P.M.G. engineers.
Bruce launched his own closed circuit radio station in his spare time on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, with a studio in the Mooloolaba surf lifesaving club. From here, his SUNRADIO station was relayed via P.M.G. landlines to every Sunshine Coast beach through the public address system at each surf club. The station operated every weekend and public holiday, playing the current Top 40. On the odd occasion, he even announced shark warnings for swimmers.
Bruce moved into television, working for several stations. Locations included Brisbane, Tamworth, Mackay, Darwin, Newcastle, Wagga Wagga, presentation manager at Canberra, station manager at Mount Isa, and general manager at Geraldton. He also worked for NASA at their Honeysuckle Creek tracking station near Canberra, in support of the later Apollo moon missions and all the Skylab missions. While general manager of GTW-11 television in Geraldton, Bruce joined the local Citizens Radio Emergency Service Team as a volunteer. He was eventually elevated to the volunteer position of State Director for C.R.E.S.T. Bruce took his experience overseas, visiting 100 countries. He worked as an announcer in Mexico and Iceland, and held technical positions with television stations in Brazil and London.
Back in Australia, Bruce obtained a Science degree with a Major in Broadcast Communications in 1989. This was followed by an M.B.A. in 1991, and a Ph.D. in 2012. Bruce became a volunteer with community radio station 2CCC in Gosford. While acting as program manager in 1993, he organised a publicity stunt for the station. He attempted to break the world record for the Longest Continuous Broadcast by One Announcer. He reached 121 hours, breaking the world record, which was then recognised and published in the 1995 edition of the Guinness Book of Records.
Bruce was concerned that there was no radio station available that specialised in music for baby boomers on the Central Coast. He organised a group of volunteers and launched a Nostalgia station, concentrating on the bright, popular, well known songs and artists from the 1930s to the 1960s. They were forced to operate on various temporary frequencies due to no permanent frequency being available. They even had to endure long periods off the air while other temporary radio stations were on. In order to keep the station operating, Bruce launched the station on the internet. In 2010, after eighteen years of lobbying the A.C.M.A., they were finally issued with a permanent licence. The lobbying included nearly 2,000 letters of support from listeners, plus a 30,000 signature petition. However, the licence was issued for Lake Macquarie. So as not to disappoint their Central Coast supporters, he bought an “out of band” broadcast licence, requiring a special receiver. He used this licence, broadcasting on 151.625 MHz., to launch Nostalgia Radio, with the help of his supporters. Such was the demand for their music format that nearly 1,000 receivers were sold.
Bruce drives to work six days a week at his job in Sydney, as well as looking after some of the technical requirements for the Nostalgia Radio transmitter near Gosford. He also looks after another station called RAW FM with transmitters at Wyong and Gosford. He often acts as a volunteer consultant for other aspiring community radio stations, and also fills in as a guest speaker at various community group meetings. He lives on the Central Coast of N.S.W. with his wife, Kaye, who he married, after being his main supporter when he achieved the world record at 2CCC. He also shares their house with a dog, five cats, and an errant rat. He survived prostate cancer at 58 and kidney cancer at 62.
A special thankyou to my wife Kaye, who put up with my research trips to Sydney, Canberra, and elsewhere, and my long stints at the computer with my one finger typing. Also Adam and Sue from the Gosford library, and Matthew from the National Film and Sound Archives in Canberra. Garth redesigned and placed some of my research on the internet, and Christine put up with my self-inflicted computer problems. Even my cats helped with my typing by walking all over my keyboard. Radio executive Neville Pellitt, Dr. Adrian Peterson, editor of Adventist World Radio and Wavescan, plus radio historians Sam Dellit (ACMA), Albert Isaacs, and Ron Langhans assisted with proof reading. Albert helped with my Victorian research, and Ron was helpful with dates. Finally, my thanks to Professor Bridget Griffen-Foley (author of “Changing Stations: the story of Australian commercial radio”), Director of the Centre for Media History at Macquarie University for her assistance. She is recognised as ‘Australia’s Leading Media Historian’.