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Gaydio Breakfast presenter Dean McCullou…

The radiator day programme with broadcast bionics created of the bionic studio the smarter way to make radio welcome to the radio Today programme this week.

We have Darryl Morris back in the hot seat he had such a good reaction from his interview at last week that he's back on and he's talking to somebody different.

He's talking to Dean from the Radio breakfast show at which is on FM in various places around to places Manchester Brighton and then I'm Derby load is around the UK and he's talking to him about hosting a breakfast show of the last 12-months during the pandemic serving the lgbtq plus community during a time of crisis growing up gay Northern Ireland and then landing his dream job on BBC Radio 1 Daryl the second time.

It's all yours.

Thank you very much to find radio today for letting me hide.

Broadcast again this time to have a conversation with somebody who I wanted to talk to you for a couple of reasons d McCulloch to host the breakfast Sean gaydio a national radio station in the lgbtq community who also did his first show on BBC Radio 1 over Christmas as part of a Slate of new presenters who were given the chance to do shows on a massive network and support so the first two goals is to ask her head it feel to fulfill a dream to live a dream in that kind of away bro, so Dean finds himself in an interesting dinosaur that a piece on my talk radio show a couple of months ago.

We were talking about the impact of lockdown on the lgbtq plus community particularly people who are out find themselves trapped at home living with people who don't really know who they are they have not been able to be out to and what kind of told that takes of them being is on the Frontline of off.

Portman entertainment since escapism and all of that sort of stuff on a radio station that is effectively and print Square the others can people and that must be waiting a while about that is also for example.

I think of the power and importance of radio with a time like this.

We got into that also grown up getting Northern Ireland and getting into radio through Northern Ireland as well the radius of the world is really personal and Powerful story this and I really enjoyed spending time with Dean I hope that you enjoy it to of find it in sight full so tough the tough time I started off by asking how you to know what Before Christmas I was drowning I was going to pack it all in because I just thought I can't do this.

I really can't do this.

I lost my co-host in July because her sister and wasn't very well and so because of covered as well.

I don't have any producers or tech support or anything like that everything's.

So it was a real struggle and I was just like every day.

You know that alarm goes off at 5:15 and you like the best of times and like during during this lockdown was just really really hard and it got the Christmas and I was just sauce to look at my boss on like the 23rd of December and I was like tears in my eyes.

I was like I need some help because as broadcasters.

We take on so like we listen to the news every Junction we're obviously I've been all that information and one living it and we're trying to broadcast at the time so everybody else gets to go and hide your head under the duvet but every day.

We've gotta get up and we've got it a try to entertain the nation keeping is engaged.

Keep them company and also report what's going on.

So that's been tricky however the radio one thing came along at just the right time and actually when Aled rang me to tell me I first light.

Because I was like you don't know how much I need this right now for like my myself and and a killer came along at the most beautiful time and of course gone from like having no no co-host know what produces tech support to be at radio on over Christmas for you've got everything you want everything you need you've got them for the team.

You've got your producing your IP and just all these people around it doesn't want you to do really well.

I'm not saying that I don't get that gave you if I didn't get it.

I gave you I wouldn't be there for 3 years, but it was just that nice bit of sunshine that I needed in a really really dark time your job is as a breakfast presenter particularly on gaydio is reduce a kind of human because you need to be across what's going on you need to the top of the stuff but also your contract with your audience.

I suppose if they come to you for a certain type of a positive entertainments right.

That's a weird subcontractor stick to you when you're not feeling great yourself.

I was needed or not.

Just me personally but that show because I've had came from dry which is completely different offering a gaydio because it's really up be every day's a party at gala in the dance music is there two can uplift you make you feel good but in the morning.

We're still providing that party at my butter to have to be that one-to-one relationship with our community which is it's different like you say because the LGBT community are so dispersed and they're so segregated generally and what I noticed really early on actually when I went on breakfast with high much people just needed a friend listening company.

They just need to know that they can turn the radio 1 every morning and somebody's going to be that doesn't judge them if that's me taking them into work and then they turned it off.

When the workpiece 12 or they're leaving their home where they can't be themselves and they just have me on just for that break in their mind what I can just be who they want to be and I don't wanna on about being LGBT plus the whole time at all.

That's almost like a by-product were all the same but I was getting so many messages.

I mean I actually got I got two or three messages within the first lock down of people saying that if it wasn't for that show that they would have taken their life and I got a message from somebody and this was like in the height of black lives matter as well and you know how difficult that was because we're white men on the radio trying to talk about issues that we got no clear by so it was my dad, but I got this message from this one listener.

Who is entitled to their family and they message me on the Friday 10 and they said thank you.

I really need your company this week was ready dark for me.

I didn't want to be here anymore.

I had been up all night and I had the tablets at out ready to do it and my alarm went off.

You are my alarm and because I heard your voice it stop me from doing it.

So just want to say thank you.

I had to read my boss.

I was like what do I do with that information like you underestimate the power of radio and it doesn't feel feed my eGo at all if anything it breaks my heart.

You know what do you do with that? How do you process like? I actually said to my boss.

I can I mean I need to switch off for the weekend.

I need to get myself together because it has been a crazy week and I just checked them with that person over the weekend and Cassie like how you doing like sent him a little post a little inspirational posts and I was like you know let me know if you want a song played on Monday little my god really and I think they request a Little Mix so I think it was.

Song I wanted to put a Little Mix and a lesson every single day and that's a beautiful thing by our community as well and the radio listeners who he also engaged because they they really enjoy just been able to come along and just a chat and do you want to see them? I've never experienced anything like they are to each other I can see it coming in the air box for the Royal sweets around like hello.

I like chatting about the weekend, but that's exactly that's exactly what we want and this year.

I'm approaching things a little bit differently to and I'm trying to look after my own self to you know what it's like you have to switch off even though I'm never do always thinking about radio but just trying to think about things and healthier when it's made me a better broadcaster definitely ok, so my mind thinks that is that you could either be spurred on by knowing the importance of what you do and I can be a real motivating Factor or it could also be quite a paralyzing.

Now that somebody is putting so much of them in your hands are themselves in your hands really.

It's true.

I was actually Daphne during the first lockdown.

I would come home from work and it's like 10:15 but because it was funny.

I was like I can have a vodka so it's like having a little vodka.

Have a little cocktail and or having a glass of wine and then I will just drink all weekend or week.

I didn't realise I would look up to work on Monday and I will be like my head wasn't wasn't in the game because I didn't I didn't want to be in the game because I couldn't cope with what we was going on.

It was just crazy and and this pattern.

I was thinking this isn't quite right you know but it shouldn't be like this at the tweet crystal coming in the messages were still coming in and I was going and I was almost like it was all happening with me.

So it's amazing how these really strange messages come in the street, and just ways you know I was seeing all the messages coming in boxes.

I wasn't connecting with them.

I was playing music I was very much.

Play job and the shows were the gas were amazing, but I my body my body was out of my mind wasn't there you know what I mean and I went know I can be the person that I want to be as a broadcaster if I'm not 100-percent in the game, but it's made little changes and and it's definitely paid off, but yeah, it was really hard on my mind if I didn't have the friends.

I had it.

I didn't have the family that I had I think that so many broadcasters out there in the last 12-months have been completely if we take a look at it all in every facet of it all you know and how we apply ourselves to our job to get the best out of the shower get the best out of a list of the best out of our content and that shows coming to price you quite a bit of yourself in that because being present and Being Yourself is the most important thing that we do but at the same time a lot of that gets kicked away, when.

Under that kind of pressure on about a decade ago now.

Where are we? Where are we about how impacted the LGBT G+ community are by lock dance and actually does people particularly who you are now out don't have a good so strong support network around them who are perhaps stuck at home with people who don't really know who they are you know they can't be who they are in front of people around us people and you're kind of Honor Frontline of being there accident their safety before we've got is to be able to click you on as a huge amount of pressure for you, but it's also privileged and I can take it for granted at all tonight and I tried really carefully whenever I'm picking content whenever I'm collecting guests.

Trying to measure the temperature of the room because if we did a it's really hard because you there was statistics side and often I get 27 free from all of these charities that are people in their liking o63 for toxic theoretically toxic 63% of LGBT Muslims are not like to the family lockdown is increased.

There are calls to guess that and I'm like what do I do with this information do I take this and do this is a piece as a conversation please? Do I do it as a story will I get somebody on or do I get a picture on a social media connectable to the support? They need and carry on with an entertaining to show for these people because I know what it's like and the last thing that I want when you're like this when you're feeling rubbish should be your good work.

It will talk about coronavirus.

You go get.

Innova hear people talking about about the reason why we turn on radio is to escape so if I'm talking too much about these really important subjects the LGBT people say Mike switch off and they might not it may trigger then you know you've got to be very careful.

I still which content we use and which promises they haven't but I always know where is Al I'll hear it's in the news and Report the back of the news and throw something out and it if it gets picked up then.

I'm like this is a conversation that we need to have today, but sometimes it's presenter later unless it's something really important like we did a piece and it could have been a decade ago and but we did at least recently at about LGBT Muslims and and I won chap had killed himself because his family just wouldn't accept his his sexuality was against a religion.

And I did a turkey with the hotel that we did it.

We did it as a full show and the response was remarkable because LGBT people are in there are minorities within the Communities they really react when I come together really well, and I just peppered at 3 with amazing Music and the odd little bit of fun stuff in there, but I sent the whole show was about that.

So it's really hard to try and to try and find out balance, but I hope and I've heard from from those groups in front of minority or minority ethnic groups as well when we talked about.

Thank you for broadcasted in this way and you sort of go, are you sure like? What would you like me to have done differently because I don't know sometimes you know you cannot wake up in the morning you like to talk about this today.

Let's just try and see how we can best serve the listener and give the listener what they want and you always want to get it right and I think Dana was well.

They're very forgiving.

You know the

Uksm all sorts of news, so I think whenever you're talking about LGBT issues, specifically and I know my work within the community aside from broadcasting.

So they know that I believe they know that I've got the back and can a champion name as well and I get them or whenever they want to talk to so it's it's cheesy but we're family you know when someone's got an issue with all got an issue.

Talk about it until we done talking about it and then we'll play song about radio is Discovery as much as it is reflection right that you was at Hurst can kind of reflect your life and they will stop it's that they they can identify with but equally your kind of you can have to learn a bit about them as well.

Which is true for all radio but more suffer what you do your Irish your Northern Ireland whereabouts are you from originally from Belfast in Belfast so in the second option is?

That is needed to grow up gay.

No not at all even recently so I moved out when I was 17.

I moved to London to go to drama school the grown-up it was it was really really really tough like really tough because not only was I balance my trying to work out who I was going up in Belfast but Belfast was going through its own stuff and the Politics of Northern Ireland is just fascinating but living it is quite scary like the amount of my birthday is on the 9th of July and March in season in Northern Ireland is the 11th and 12th of July and year after year my birthday is just getting cancelled because they were cars burnt at the bottom of the street.

Somebody's cousin had been shot.

There was a funeral that that was going on instead.

You know it's the celebration of the Battle of the Somme so it's

Play it's that whole united Ireland starting 4 for Ireland to be Northern Ireland and they marched they match across the country to kind of show there.

I just took my head in pop music and dancing with all this was going on but I didn't realise psychologically how much of an effect it was having on me so trying to pick up flights to tell your mum and dad or your friends that you might like boys amongst all of that being bullied in school.

It was never the right time.

There was never the right time in Catholic and Protestant or Catholic some of my family or Protestant kind of we weren't really ever anything so I was going to both sides of Belfast don't know whether you know but it's big wall in the middle of Belfast Straits once I've got friends on both so what the weekend it was like it was weird because you think cars getting Joyride cars getting burnt people people being killed.

You know when.

And my cousin was murdered by the paramilitaries in Northern Ireland so it's really that fears with the included in our family and I've got an amazing family, but I just never do it was never the right time for me to say look guys.

I'm gay my mummy had to drag it out of me when I was 16.

She was like she sat me down and she was like so is there anything that you need to tell me and I was like no I'm partying from 15 so I thought she'd like find text messages if something something something to tell me and like I know that you know that you don't like girls and you might you might like boys instead and I was like no no no and I completely tried to pull the wool over eyes and she just grab me and hugged me and said shut up.

Give me a hug and and and yeah and that's how that happened really weird night because I can't I like it never even said the words.

I'm going as a game and you have that free is running over and over it keeps you awake at night when a conversation is going that way and

You know you can see that so that fear was I was holding all that in and it's so weird now that I say gaydio about 1000 times a week.

I say I champion my sexuality even though it's really really small part of me.

I tried being a community like I say those words in enjoy that conversation you know as much as anybody who is anybody in the community in but the time you would never catch me saying those words but I think about it too literally saying it everyday on the radio.

Did you unset yeah? I mean yeah, the thing is I was more afraid of being I was more afraid of the paramilitaries the gangs.

It would be sorted like the gang that you hear about that documented in in dramas and stuff in in places like new Peaky Blinders can imagine that but a paramilitary organisation that works with the police and then.

Punishment beatings where they get your knees done in that I was more worried about that and being gay at the time but because but then I also thought because of the kind of school.

I went to that those boys who believe me so badly that that was done would have been something that would have happened to me.

You know it wasn't like oh you are going out we're going to find out that you're gay and then we're going to any social media name but you know we're gonna tell everybody and it will be a massive no actually find out that you're gay there might be a bread pizza your front window you might find yourself in a hip at the bottom of an alleyway.

Cos I walked home a certain way to a Catholic estate in my uniform is all those kinds of things but I am so grateful of all of that experience because I have my eyes opened.

You know my 7th birthday.

You know mum.

Why can't we go and see Shrek

Because there's been such and such as happened in the roads are closed ok.

Where we going instead.

I still need something was going wrong.

I remember it's like 4 and 5 going on a black taxi in the Belfast black taxi the windows all folk'd up because it was raining but I remember the hole in the window and and wiping away the fucking look at night and seeing all the cars burnt out along with straight and I went to my mum in this pack black taxi the rain has made those cars rusty and she was like yeah the rusty cars but accident Oldenburg doubt you know so it's all those that you can sort of great stories and will be a fantastic couple of chapters in my book, but it just realise me to connect with people morning.

I went to the LGBT asylum seekers have came from the country from where or when I hear about those people who someone who's been up for something that was killed for being gay.

I'm like I've got no idea how that things but I have a pretty good idea.

Yeah, absolutely you you can empathize with the risk involved in that carry into your performance.

Do you think you know we've been talking about the situation in Northern Ireland for quite some time I get you in fact.

I think my anniversary is this weekend, so I've been exactly 3 years and the very first show ever did which was actually a pilot with the day after st.

Patrick's Day so I think I put the makeup and began to talk about this link and I remember because I'm in because I'm in England and I'm in Manchester again.

He was based trying to explain to people what the beautiful country of Ireland is like the rich culture the long history of of writers and performers and singers and terrorists and all the bar.

And then try to say ok night.

It's all well and good that you're arguing because your there's a straight in your local guy villains.

That is going to be closed for a couple of months and that's your headline for listeners.


I need to tell you that there are still people know that it can't get married so it's hard to try and not be so boxy and still relate to everybody but just having a fight in the race small way that I could on my show and seeing all of my friends on social media and his weddings and he just want to get married and it was ok to be and I'm trying to explain the kids to go to be burning in Orlando it's hard but I always I always say it doesn't matter what we're talking about when it comes to Belfast I will always be proud of Belfast and I want to make it my mission I for as long as my broadcasting career mode last to poop Belfast on the map to because it does get a bit of a rabbit.

In the LGBT community and in in news as well people starting their Islands fully bombs and and people are killing each other and they are but I suppose it's just it runs in my blood.

I never forget that I'm from Belfast and I'm I never will you know I'm not going to send off my accent around off my personality or you know make Manchester my home.

I live in London 3 years.

It was never my home.

Belfast as my home in the people of Belfast or crying out for somebody on the radio to connect with because I saw it Radio 1.

They saw it a Radio 1 and it's important that we don't forget that we can't see that makes up quite a strong strong.

What's the words like strong relative to the United Kingdom got a lot to forget that what's a piece of our identity as

it's not always the easiest relationship, but it's it is a strong part of Ireland you talk there about about burying your head in pop music and popular culture when growing up gay Northern Ireland and you kind of sort of Full Circle going on there because the other people who have reached out to you similar station in this lockdown who had to bury their head in in your offering of Pop Culture and music by Dean FM was born in bedroom like I'm sure you had your own radio station to build yourself and I think I was I just been given a a karaoke machine and I worked out that I could record on and I could record music and my voice back into I think I was probably about 10 or 11:00 and steps were dominating the child Spice Girls wear doing nothing and and I just

Used to do that because I couldn't always go out.

I didn't have a massive group of friends on the street, because I was different and I wasn't going to play football with the days.

I didn't want to be seen with the girls so I spent my time sometimes in my bedroom doing dinner FM which is a great radio station.

So so so I am aware, but I just wish I could have just turned on the radio and unheard gaydio to be honest.

I really do and I Polly with a chapter secret like a lots of my listeners.

Do too and I know someone I left those that have the everyday because I don't want people to see it on the phone.

You know so it is my head into my dancing into my singing into my acting and it definitely save me and save me from potentially being involved with crime potentially getting swept up and just not really caring about life which is what happens to a lot of young people in order.

The mental health statistics in Men in Northern Ireland are the worst in the United Kingdom I could have been one of those people it's statistically and by the look of everything that is very much kind of happy the odds definitely save me definitely I always say that and I'm having radio haven't Chris Moyles on my ear every day when I was going to High School and just knowing that he was there in Oliver was he was there listening and sugar they put on kept me company every day when I had no one to walk to school which gives you and you have given people I guess we'll talk about sense of purpose as much as much as the entertainment Factor you want giving people a sense of purpose which we know radio does it does well, you know it's such an important part of what we do then going to school with Chris Moyles on Radio 1 in your ear.

And you said he really good really at home really natural it was the best my life, but I've had a great life if this was I felt like everything happened even up to that point all of the learning all of the people all of my all of my gross and my want to to be on the radio it all that up to that one point.

I'm still processing what happened and when I feel a bit I feel about rubbish, so if I need to pick me up.

I will go back BBC listen to my showing it really does it really just it takes me by surprise because I was in the moment and I was enjoyed every single second about but it's only when you left them.

This is this is insane.

This is staying but being there the studio it did feel like home actually at really did not like in a copy wear anything like that, but I really work really hard for I really really want it and I was so grateful for like from the pit of my stomach.

I was grateful so I just when I remember when I was walking up to Broadcasting House to do my rehearsals today before and I took this picture and I just looked and I went this is this is it and even if I just did this week and I enjoy all of this this is so perfect so perfect it was magical and the people that I met and the listeners.

Oh my god bless him before but that need for communication and there has never been so many people from now.

Text in the radio one ever was in the show it was like I was eating with Filipinos Northern Ireland so that was magical you know just a think because I think as presenters.

We kind of we know the people that listen we have these spaces in our head when I like you no listen the tube people lesson on the tram Bilston taxis listen here there and everywhere but then you don't think of like most places in Belfast those doctors waiting rooms those those places that the I know I've heard Radio 1 on and I'm like I was on that that was me for 2-days in Belfast in my home country and then the rest of the UK you know that reach you know you don't want to think of the millions of people that are listening, but it's really nice to reflect on that as well and think you know we did.

Alright never get old people on on tv and stuff like that.

We get a bad reputation for signs in a bit annoying you know we get a lot of memes a lot of viral videos of like people of Northern Ireland accent and I was worried that was thankfully it didn't anyway on the media in the United Kingdom well in the in the media there's no there's no young person coming up you know because of reality TV you've got all your love Island stars.

He kinda.

Have a personality you know getting their breaks in ended up posting spinoffs and hosting podcast like that and I love that I say well.

Done you because it's brilliant your capitalised on something you're going to make some money and

If you're good for the job then why wouldn't you do it but people in Northern Ireland for some reason don't get on that shows so for young people who like I sort of like 14/15 16-year olds that tune Radio 1.

They don't have that voice.

They don't know that person exists and they don't get that part of that cultural that kind of that voice.

So there's no one like that coming up coming up the ranks which is why I think this project that they've done at Radio One is fantastic, because it's a lion people from all over the country to get involved.

It's like everybody who's got a wee bit loads of experience to have their voice hard because of the fact that you got such a flood of people particularly from the specifically for Northern Ireland get in touch when I get to hearing one of their own on Radio 1 suggests to me that there is probably probably kind of where I was maybe maybe like a decade ago.

That's a bit longer than that really into Radio 1.

Feeling like the world a handful of a really northern voices you know the real Peter Kay and Vernon Kay Sara Cox and that was kind of it really only got like this is the last we've got Patrick's Day he doesn't really do much anyway, but I remember watching have you got have you got Eamonn Holmes have got Christine Christine on Loose Women that's it.

I mean do you know any other Northern Irish presenters on the video Connor Phillips all area Northern Ireland used to be just he left there.

Just before Christmas he's been messaging me.

He's a great guy but on Radio 1.

There's no other there's two new presenters specialist in which is just brilliant to say in the whites in the widespread media.

I don't know Jenny I don't hear them.

To break into the industry in Northern Ireland is very very slim and you got Stephen Nolan of course, but you know that is Tiny it's a bit stopping.

It doesn't it doesn't represent the youth at all in fact reports on the youth as you know in a negative way and that like if I'm going up in Northern Ireland and I don't something do a spider be on the TV on the radio.

I'm just you know how do I can get it comes in mind and you don't have those agents in or around you don't have that richness of producing quality content that goes across the country.

It's right internal to what I gotta and and I think that's the reason that's the reason why you know but there's

Because Northern Irish people are great storytellers and they're great the listen to and their trust where they and they don't take no rubbish.

You know you're gonna get what you're gonna get most of the time.

You know people need that they need that style of broadcasting migrate.

I think it's warm as real as It Gets in that my girlfriend's family from from Belfast from Northern Ireland and they are there great company the great entertainers great storytellers people have also by the way is it because because of the story of the life experiences of the people that live there.

They are ripe for for being told and for being heard well.

You can't get away from northern the radio the meaning of these days, so I'm hoping for a flood of people from other Alexa

To get as much out of being on a very important Breakfast Show with a very important moment in history.

I hope you continue to get as much out of that is you put in I feel so lucky like I can't tell you.

How lucky I feel it's it's so it was such an opportunity for me.

I knocked on his door 3 years ago and I force them to give me a job and I volunteered every show for 4 months and I've I've learnt so much from the guys there so much and I've met incredible people and I'm a very small part of them is of a big great serving family and it's it's remarkable.

It's really really remarkable and and the listeners are next level next level dedicated dedicated as well.

Yeah, it's really great and I'm glad that you've reminded me of this today because I think we get so caught up in creating content finding interviews sorting out socials and doing all the things that we have to do.

Sometimes we lose sight of just high pivotal best moment is in broadcasting history, you know there's no such thing as a slow news day anymore and particularly in the LGBT community.

We need to keep everybody going keep everybody together and remind people that does light at the end of it and reminded me about today so the media industry in SE20 15 late 2015 and early 2016.

He will have no idea.

What it what it means to try and find something to fill radio news filling story looks like a real pleasure.

Thank you.

The radiator day programme with broadcast bionics creators of The Bionic studio listening watching reacting to and learning from every spoken word caller and SMS to a mix unlock the bionic studio transforms everything about radio except the way you make it like a barrel and thank you and thank you for your ears as well next week.

We'll have something a little bit different but completely the same and a bonus for you next week as well, because this week taking place online as a virtual event everything is these days there's a Radio Academy women in radio and audio event at taking place either now as you listen to this or yesterday or the idea is fantastic Laura Clarke Rebecca Frank and Melanie Dawes Helen Thomas roof fixings and Siobhan Kenny as well all talking about women in radio and audio on will have a package for.

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