#Open journalism No news is bad news

Your contributions will help us continue to deliver the stories that are important to you

Support The Journal
Dublin: 12°C Friday 23 April 2021

"This is Dave and Leo, rocking it out to you" ... A certain minister spent a night as a classic rock DJ

Apparently, he wanted to “knock one more thing off the bucket list”.

LEO VARADKAR’S MADE a few notable radio appearances in the last year or so.

You may recall the Morning Ireland interview that earned him a public ‘smack-down’ from the Taoiseach.

And, of course, there was a pretty well-publicised chat with Miriam O’Callaghan at the start of the year.

His latest appearance on the airwaves (actually, knowing Leo – he’s probably made a few dozen more since) passed us by, until we stumbled by it on Twitter yesterday.

Turns out, the Fine Gael politician spent an hour blasting out the hits on a community radio classic rock show last Friday night.


Apparently, he wanted to “knock one more thing off the bucket list”.

How did he do?

Not bad. He fluffed the ‘Near FM’ text number a couple of times, and got the names of some Pixies tracks wrong – but otherwise okay.

Sitting in the guest-presenter’s chair alongside part-time DJ Dave O’Connor, he joked about plans to bring the Government down “from the inside” after kicking off his selection with ‘London Calling’ by The Clash.

The show continued with slightly-left-of-centre classics from the likes of The Cure and Nick Cave, with occasional breaks for ‘Morning Zoo’ style DJ banter…

“You’ve a slight kind of Eamon Dunphy twang off you,” Varadkar observed of his co-presenter at one point (unknowingly breaking one of the unwritten rules of radio in the process – once that red light goes on, never slag off a colleague’s ‘BIG DJ VOICE’).

Along the way, there were ‘shout outs’ to the likes of “Declan and Tony W in Castleknock”.

There were also occasional indications the health minister might be taking it a little too seriously. Lines like…

“It’s Dave and Leo calling out to you from Near FM in the heart of Coolock. Hope you’re having a good night.”

And of course…

“This is Dave and Leo, rocking it out to you.”

In terms of insights into the high-flying Fine Gaeler’s personality – they were few and far between.

He likes the Pixies, but apparently not quite enough to nail the names of some of their most famous songs (he got two of them wrong).

He hasn’t been keeping up with the whole Kim Deal soap opera either… Varadkar noted to his co-host at one point that he had gone to see the band play at Marlay Park last summer, and noticed that ”they’d replaced her with somebody else”.

Anyway – the full playlist is below.

Our musical analysis?… It appears to demonstrate that Leo Varadkar is EXACTLY 36 years old.

London Calling – The Clash 

#Open journalism No news is bad news Support The Journal

Your contributions will help us continue to deliver the stories that are important to you

Support us now

In Between Days – The Cure 

Sweet Child o’ Mine – Guns n’Roses 

Rainy Night in Soho – Damien Dempsey (cover version)

Personal Jesus – Depeche Mode 

Where the Wild Roses Grow – Nick Cave & Kylie Minogue 

Both Sides Now – Joni Mitchell 

Brewing up a Storm – The Stunning 

Hey – Pixies 

Pride – U2

Tender – Blur 

1979 – Smashing Pumpkins

Read: Lucinda Creighton is launching her new party on Friday the 13th

Read: The vast majority of staff in Enda Kenny’s office are proud to work there

About the author:

Daragh Brophy

Read next: