Gaywaves by Gaywaves Collective: Gay Liberation Quire Interview

Gaywaves by Gaywaves Collective: Gay Liberation Quire Interview
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Gaywaves was Sydney’s first gay and lesbian radio program.

It was considered groundbreaking when it went to air on 2SER FM in November 1979, at a time when homosexual acts between consenting adults were still illegal in New South Wales.

This clip features an interview with members of the then newly-formed Gay Liberation Quire on 28 May 1981 and extracts from their song, 'Hark the Herald Fairies Shout'. The clip was re-broadcast as part of a Stonewall Day radio special on 3CR on 28 June 1988.

Initially broadcast as a half-hour pre-recorded program on Wednesday evenings, Gaywaves shifted to Thursdays in early 1980 and was soon extended to a three-hour live weekly broadcast.

The program covered everything from HIV/AIDS rallies, Mardi Gras festivals and drama serials to the Australian Transsexual Association program, with a mix of music, talkback, news and event and group listing.

At a time when mainstream media rarely covered LGBT issues positively, and when LGBT print media was mostly published monthly, programs like Gaywaves were a vital news source for the Sydney LGBT community.

Unusually for community radio, significant holdings of Gaywaves are held by the NFSA, State Library of NSW and the Australian Queer Archives.

Cover image: Neil Fitzgerald and Phil Stevenson at the launch of Hormones or Jeans, the Gay Liberation Quire EP, 1983. Photograph by Paul van Reyk from the Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives.