Tuesday, September 26

Pepe Domingo Castaño: “I don’t like that they televise the radio, it loses its charm”

Hearing his voice is like teleporting to “Playtime” on the radio. Pepe Domingo Castano, famous for his way of advertising and one of the key figures in the history of radio in Spain, is promoting his book Until I run out of words. In it, he unravels all his memories, adds anecdotes and recounts multiple experiences.

Write the prologue for Until I run out of words, Julio Iglesias, neither more nor less. Tell me about it.

The prologue was born from my friendship with Julio, which dates back to the year he won the Benidorm festival, in 1968. One day his record company called me to go to the studio to lend him a hand with a song in Galician. From there we became friends. When he read that I was going to publish a book, he asked me: “Are you talking about me?” And I told him: «How can I not talk about you, I dedicate a chapter to you». I sent it to him, he loved it and then I took the opportunity and asked him to write me the foreword. He immediately said yes and the following week he sent it to me.

The book is divided into two parts. In the first he talks about his childhood. A boy who was going to be a friar, but ended up as an announcer. What was it about the radio that called him so much from such a young age?

The radio was the sound of life that we lived in the village. My childhood memory is having the windows of the house open, my mother working and the radio playing inside the house, but also on the street. One day I heard Bobby Deglané do «Cabalgata fin de semana», which was a radio show. And I knew I wanted to be like him. When Bobby left, another phenomenon appeared, Joaquín Prat. For me he is the God of radio in this country. It combines everything it has to have: joy, information, fun, spontaneity, improvisation… And I wanted to be Joaquín Prat. When Joaquín gave me the opportunity in «Carrusel Deportivo» he only told me one thing: «Don’t be me, always be you». That stuck with me.

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«The prologue by Julio Iglesias was born of friendship, which dates back to 1968, the year he won the Benidorm festival»


In the book he also talks about that contract with “Carrusel Deportivo”, which he says was the best of his life. The thing ended up regular, that also explains it, but how do you remember that time?

The most beautiful of my life. I started with Joaquín Durán, then Antonio Martín Valbuena and then Paco González, who turned “Carrusel Deportivo” upside down and turned it into a number one program by adding new ingredients, agility, relying on advertising… I remember it as an explosion of joy.

He also talks about the changes that radio has undergone as a medium in the last 50 years. What future does it predict?

Splendid. Radio has the same future it had when TV was invented. In a battle between the image, the one that they say is worth a thousand words, on the opposite side is the imagination, and the radio has that wonderful thing that is the imagination. That’s why I don’t like it too much that now they are televising us while we do the program, because it loses the charm of the imaginative. The YouTube thing is very good, but I don’t agree with it. Radio is radio and TV is TV.

But it is being seen how perhaps the future of radio is going that way…

Yes, unfortunately it’s going to go that way, and I don’t like that. In any case, I believe that radio is so powerful that, in time, it will return to being that imaginative radio that we all believe in, and not that radio of total exposure that takes away the charm that it should have.

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«Joaquín Prat gave me the opportunity at Carrusel Deportivo and he only told me one thing: ‘Don’t be me, always be you’»


Returning to the book, he wrote it twice, with many years in between.

I wrote the first part, by hand, out of necessity. I put it in a drawer with no intention of publishing it. Years later I was asked about her in an interview. Juan Luis Miravet asked me to read it, and told me it was a best seller. To publish it I had to write the second part. I wrote the first chapter in one morning, and from then on I couldn’t stop writing, everything came out on my own. And on a computer!

Do you plan to write another?

No. There is a life worth telling, my adventures, my friends, my travels… but I think I’m done with this.


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