Mike Brill

 Interview by Roland Beaney.

 

MIKE BRILL – INTERVIEW  24.3.15  

Where and when were you born? –

I was born in a British military hospital in Moascar, Egypt, at the time of the looming Suez Crisis. My father was an officer in the Royal Artillery, stationed there with my mother, sister and older brother. When the situation began to seriously deteriorate, our family, now including six month old baby me, were immediately repatriated on a cruise ship.

Where do you live now? –

We live in a small picturesque Kent village with a parish church, pub, shop and a green where cricket and football are played. We are fortunate to have a long garden with three sheds and a large outbuilding, where I have my radio studio.

What is your favourite part of the Country? –

The Gower Peninsular in South Wales, where we used to spend family holidays.

How did you get into Radio? –

Initially I trained as a broadcast engineer with the BBC, after a year working at Television Centre in VT operations, moved to local radio in Chatham. As well as my engineering duties, I began to get more involved with programme production and ended up presenting a long running weekly rock show ‘Kent Rocks’ featuring new album tracks and local unsigned bands.

When did you first join Caroline? –

IIn 2002 I was invited, by my good friend and fellow Caroline DJ Jerry Wright, to the Maidstone Studios. I was suitably impressed and soon after started my own regular show.

What other Radio stations have you been involved with? –

Radio Medway which later became Radio Kent

What are your earliest memories of Caroline? –

Listening to Radio Caroline North during school holidays. My brother and I were permitted to use a vacant army billet hut, near to our house. Here we could listen to radio all day and experiment with our home made Hi-Fi equipment and play our favourite pop music very loud!

What's your favourite station other than Caroline? –

When out and about driving, I usually listen to Radio Two, unless the ‘show business name’ presenter starts to annoy me. In which case, I switch to Absolute Radio.  

Who is the most famous person that you have met? -

After the Queen, Rod Hull and Emu!

What's the most embarrassing or funny thing that's happened to you? -

Being physically attacked by Rod Hull’s Emu during a ‘live’ outside broadcast in a shopping centre, similar to Michael Parkinson’s encounter.

What do you do for your day job and relaxation? -

For 12 years I have been self-employed as an IT consultant, working for a handful of local business customers.  My paid work is mostly indistinguishable from my hobbies.

To relax I have taken to listening to audio books. Great if you are short sighted like me and often find small printed text challenging. 

WWhat's your favourite food? -

Mild chicken kurma curry with poppadoms.

What do you dislike doing the most? -

Filling in long complicated forms and ticking boxes

Who would you like to get stuck with on a desert Island?-

Johnnie Walker

What was the first record you bought?-

Just Like a Woman (Manfred Mann) Fontana July 1966

What are your favourite bands and who is your hero? -

Beatles, Stones, Beach Boys etc.  Radio hero is Johnnie Walker MBE

When did you last go on board the Ross Revenge? -

Can’t recall exact date, but remember being alone on board, waiting for someone to turn up to start the generator. There must have been a Bank Holiday weekend of broadcasting coming up and I had to test the Internet connection and setup a streaming PC.

What plans have you for the future?

In the summer of 2014, during our 50th anniversary year, I would love to tour the Southeast in my restored VW Campervan, fully fitted out as a mobile streaming radio studio. Bit like the Olympic torch relay, but without a torch or runners! Well at least it would be a good excuse to visit some fine pubs and coastal resorts!  Just my crazy idea for now, I have not asked the boss yet!

As Ronan once said “Caroline can be anywhere

Top