Doug Mulray, Broadcaster / Announcer: Breakfast from
The Basement (Music Max) : 18th June 2003
Mulray is an Australian radio icon, and an exceptionally
snappy dresser. In the past he has worked under the
names Dave Davidson, Pete Peterson, John Johnson,
Boutros Boutroson and Liberace. Doug started radio
broadcasting in a frustrated attempt to make the world
a better, kinder, gentler place, and by reasoning
that it would be an effective way to attract easily
impressed young women. He was correct, of course,
and for the first ten years of his professional broadcasting
career Doug managed to date more than three different
women (not at the same time.)
days, Doug is often called Uncle Doug, Doctor Dougie,
the Reverend Doctor Doug, and The Prong. Actually,
no-one calls him The Prong - he just wishes they would.
above wording came directly from The official Basement
website. We are attempting to get the interview live
in a hurry). Full credit to the Basement.
would like to give a big public thank you to Doug
and the entire Basement team for making this historic
via telephone (listen here) : 18th June 2003
months of planning, and a few years of the idea manifesting,
Greg Tingle interviews Doug Mulray!
Doug How are you?
so much for making the time to do this. I really appreciate
at all. Where are you?
actually at good old Coogee
mate , I've been all over the place. I normally live
at Maroubra, but I've actually got a mate who's got
a bit of a sound studio at Coogee, The Media Game,
and I've just been over Balmain, I've been all over
the place. I was actually watching you on the FOX
this morning as well.
been having a few laughs?
let's swing into it
did you get your break Doug?
.I had been traveling around Europe
doing the Great Aussie Trek, actually in a Coma' van.
I was in the front while I was driving and in the
back while I was sleeping and came back without much
idea of what I was going to do with my life. I was
in my early twenties. I'd sort of been a retail salesperson
after being expelled from school. Australia's worst
student. So, I sent back tapes cause I didn't have
very good writing. My father who was a lawyer used
to send my letters back with red lines, cause I misspelt
words and marks out of a hundred, so I sent tapes
back 'cause I couldn't stand that level of abuse anymore!
He played them to a few friends in the advertising
radio industry, and they said "Doug's pretty
articulate and reasonable eloquent, has he ever thought
a bout a job in broadcasting"? Within a week
of the comment - the broadcasting suggestion, I heard
an ad for the broadcasting school - the
Digger May Radio School, on 2SM
back in the mid-70s, so I thought hello, that's fate,
the windows opened, so I rang em up, and went and
did the audition, and they said, "congratulations,
your good enough to do the course". I later discovered
that there were people in there with speech impediments,
being good enough meant that you had to have $300
bucks, but that was me, and they did some audition
tapes, and I got a gig at 2RD Armidale.
Sort of reminds me of me with my small amount of involvement
with community TV and community radio in Sydney.
it would be the same kind of thing.
its kinda like who's got money to pay the membership
fee and can you come in on a Saturday, and all of
a sudden an opportunity opens up
I'm a broadcaster"
right, you've got to be there. Someone doesn't turn
up for work
it's sort of cut-throat at times
tell me, what are you most well known for?
I think being sacked by Kerry Packer.
is a lot of misunderstanding about it, 'cause it was
only ever to be one program. It wasn't meant to be
a series. They did intend that it ran all the way
through thought I got to admit and it was ratified
by the Channel 9 censors
before it went to air and by the Australian
Broadcasting Tribunal. The last decision they
made before they became the Australian Broadcasting
Authority. They all agreed it was innocuous, and moreover
it was rating 36ers when Mr
Packer took the show off the air, which made
it the highest rating show of the year, no, 2nd highest
behind Elle MacPheresons's Swimsuit
Special, but certainly that made me a household
name in states that had never heard of Doug Mulray
that's what they say in the broadcasting industry
know you haven't really made it until you've been
sacked 1 or 2 times, and your name ends up in all
the papers and your mug shots are out wherever.
remember that Paul Dainty
rang me afterwards. They were doing a production of
the Rocky Horror Show,
in Sydney, at the Theatre Royal and he said, "mate
I want you to be the narrator, and I said, "I
haven't done much stage work, and I don't really have
time, because I'm doing the radio thing, and that's
an early start and 5 days a week, and I don't want
to do 8 shows and a Saturday matinee
to do it, you got to do it, I'll pay you a lot of
money. I said, "why would you do that".
He said "This press that's been generated by
Kerry Packer sacking
you has got to be worth about 2 million dollars. It
would be a fantastic profile for someone doing the
show, and I hadn't thought of it in those terms. It
reminds me of the old adage that there's no such thing
as bad publicity.
that's right. I remember one time, I didn't realise..I
was just getting started in the media business, but
I called up
.can I mention a radio station
called up 2UE at the time and I was doing Olympic
volunteering at the technology section and I called
John Laws just to talk about reality TV, and I didn't
realize at the time, but John Mansfield from Telstra
was on before, and I said nice man, smart man da da
da, and all of a sudden I get quoted in the newspaper
that Greg say's he prefers Telstra over Optus, in
the newspaper, because I worked for both companies,
but what the newspaper failed to realise, was the
face that I worked for both companies, and I'd actually
called up to discuss reality TV. I guess that's the
media for us, isn't it.
They pick what they want
they certainly do, and they do it time and time again.
tell me, how did The Basement deal come about Doug?
I'd had a vision after I retiring from radio the first
time at Triple M, I'd
had a vibe on creating a studio, that would create
product that would be viable on radio and television
similtainsly. It came about after doing an interview
with Kerrie Anne Kennerly
and one of her cohorts, Gordon
Elliot I think, so they were in the studio
at Channel 10, sitting
on the obligatory leather lounge with the 2 pottered
palms, and I was in the Triple M studio whipping carts
in and out and sound effects, it was all kind of frenetic
and attempting in the middle of that that chaos to
talk to them about something I can't ever remember
what the issue was. I think we had a number one survey
or something and they wanted to do the interview and
Hamish Cameron, who is
my now my CEO, was the director of the radio end...the
stuff that was being beamed from the Triple M studio
back to Channel 10, and he rang me up and said have
a look at the tape of this interview, so we sort of
sat down over a couple of beers and looked at a video
tape of the interview, and it was quite astonishing
to cross from the radio studio to the television studio
and back again and notice, and I mean no disrespect
to Kerry Anne or Gordon Elliott, but just the difference
in energy levels.
Tingle is currently also writing a feature article
on Doug Mulray.
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Man Australia interviews Reverend Bob Levy, Broadcaster
& Comedian, WJSE - 30th July 2003
interviews Bessie Bardot, Body Model & Broadcaster
and Triple M - 21st March 2003