Tuesday 26 September 2017

Money Talks: 'Rare Gallagher album was my dearest musical buy'

Money talks... Marcus Connaughton
Marcus Connaughton
Marcus Connaughton
Louise McBride

Louise McBride

Marcus Connaughton, a veteran of the Irish record industry, has been an RTE radio producer for over 20 years. Connaughton, who presents and produces RTE Radio 1's maritime programme, Seascapes, lives in the Blackwater Valley in Waterford - not far from Fermoy.

The 64-year-old will retire this June. His book Rory Gallagher: His Life and Times is now out in a new paperback format.

This biography tells the story of the Irish blues and rock musician - from his rise in the late 1960s with his band, Taste, to his remarkable solo career.

What is the most important lesson about money which your career in radio has taught you?

Only spend what you have and try and keep to a budget. I learnt that before my radio career began almost 30 years ago.

What's your favourite song or tune about money - and why?

Shake Your Moneymaker by Peter Green and the original Fleetwood Mac. I saw them play it in Dublin's National Boxing Stadium in the 1960s. That's the only venue you could see people play in back then.

What's the most expensive piece of music you have ever bought?

About 20 to 25 years ago, I spent the equivalent of about IR£35 on a rare double album from Polydor Germany.

The album, which I bought in Monastiraki in Athens, twinned Rory's band, Taste, and Jimi Hendrix.

At the time, Polydor in Germany matched up different artists to maximise the market for them - so in this album, Taste and Jimi Hendrix were put together.

What's your favourite Irish coin?

The old three penny bit - the 3d. It's also known as the leath reul featuring the hare.

Are you better off than your parents?

Comfortably. They made many sacrifices in difficult times.

Your health is your wealth if you'll pardon the cliche - my father died when I was 19 and my mother lived to the age of 94.

Apart from property, what's the most expensive thing you have ever bought?

Our family car - an imported Skoda Superb. It's still going strong.

What was your worst job?

A kitchen porter in the Cumberland Hotel in Westland Row in 1968.

What was your biggest financial mistake?

Many - I'm not too good with profit and loss.

Android or iPhone?

Android.

Do you know how much is in your current account?

Yes, or I can check online.

iTunes or Spotify?

iTunes. I still use CDs and vinyl though - they outshine iTunes for me. I don't listen to music on my phone.

What was the last thing you bought online?

A Spanish language course - to help with my retirement in Spain. I'll be retiring in June.

Do you have a mortgage? Is it fixed, variable or tracker?

Yes and it's a mixture of fixed and variable.

Cash or card?

A combination of both - though I'm more into cash because of the generation I'm in. I'm just beginning to get used to the contactless cards. I nearly scratch my head every time I use them.

Would you buy Irish property now?

No as I'll be retiring to the south of Spain soon - for its fine weather, gentle pace and easy access to the rest of Europe.

What's the most expensive country you ever visited?

Britain can be expensive to visit - depending on the exchange rate you get when you're there.

Do you ever haggle?

Always. If I buy a pair of shoes, I'll always try to get the best deal possible - even if there's a marked price.

In the same way, if I buy socks, I'll buy six to 10 pairs at the same time - and expect to get a deal on them.

If you go into smaller stores instead of the larger ones, they're more likely to facilitate you when haggling.

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