Dublin: 12 °C Friday 24 May, 2024

Sunday morning memories: 12 great things about The Beatbox

Barry Lang, Iam Dempsey, missing it because of mass…

SUNDAY MORNINGS ROUND our way used to be dominated by three things:

  1. Frantic peeling of spuds in preparation for The Dinner
  2. Frantic attempts to get out of going to mass
  3. The Beatbox/2TV

The Beatbox (later rebranded as 2TV) was simulcast on Network 2 and 2FM and it was THE place to see the latest music videos, and maybe win a t-shirt from Smiley Bolger.

Here are 11 things that made The Beatbox great…

1. Simon Young’s moustache, and Peter Collins

2. Barry Lang

Barry Lang was the first presenter of The Beatbox. He left broadcasting to become a full time pilot, and that’s what he’s still doing today.

He’s on Twitter if you want to chat to him.

Here’s Barry and Ian Dempsey reunited a few years back:

Image: TodayFM

3. The simulcast

In a work of music wizardry The Beatbox was broadcast simulataneously on Network 2 and 2FM.

As well as being somewhat mind boggling at the time, it was very useful in terms of not missing a thing when following orders from your mother to set the table, get ready for mass etc.

There was also some sport to be had in keeping tabs on if they managed to keep the ad breaks the same length on TV and radio. Wizardry. Pure wizardry!

4. The competitions

There were bags of Wet Wet Wet albums, Bon Jovi posters and Lir tickets to be won on The Beatbox, and there was none of your fancy emails or texting either.

You could either ring up or send a letter.

This example from the early nineties involved guessing which musician this baby was representing. Anyone? Anyone?…

Image: YouTube/TrevThomas

5. Ian Dempsey

Iano presented The Beatbox after Peter Collins and Simon Young and before Dave Fanning took it over as 2TV…

6. Taping it so you could watch it after mass

You could tape it onto a video (with DO NOT TAPE OVER written on it, of course) or you could tape it off the radio, or you could do both.

No amount of begging was getting you out of mass though.

There are unsubstantiated reports that Arthur Murphy’s Mailbag regularly received letters asking for The Beatbox to be moved to a more mass-friendly time. It never happened.

Image: Mathieu Viennet/

7. The news bulletins

Image: YouTube/TrevThomas

8. Bizarre band interviews

Like this one with defunct Irish dance act The 4th Dimension


9. Dave Fanning on 2TV

Talking at a mile a minute, Dave Fanning took over from Ian Dempsey and the show became 2TV in 1995…


10. Bianca Luykx

Bianca was Dave Fanning’s sidekick on 2TV, and the reason many young men (and women) got out of bed on a Sunday morning…

There’s Bianca with Irish band Relish (Photocall Ireland)

12. Electric Eddie

Electric Eddie (real name Doug Murray) was a sometime presenter on The Beatbox, as well as a 2FM DJ and a regular at the Beat in the Streets around the country.

You might also remember him from 2FM’s Eye in the Sky:


Got any more memories from The Beatbox or 2TV, or Sunday mornings in general? Let us know in the comments section below…

Are you a child of the 1990s? Here are 26 ways to tell>

Macaroons, Klipsos, Mint Crisps… back in stock>

15 things that everybody did in primary school>

Your Voice
Readers Comments
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.