This morning, RTE announced the death of former Irish commentator, Larry Gogan. Larry commentated on television four times – 1978, 1980, 1981 and 1982. Larry was also Ireland’s longest serving radio commentator – between 1984 and 2001, as well as 2008.
RTE put out the following statement:
The man with the golden voice, Larry Gogan was at the very heart of 2fm – and RTÉ – for over 50 years. Part of the original line-up for Radio 2 in 1979, Larry began with RTÉ Radio in the 1960’s, latterly presenting for RTÉ Gold.
Dee Forbes, Director General, RTÉ said: “Larry Gogan was a legend, and a genuine national institution. He transcended generations – whether it was a hilarious moment on the Just a Minute Quiz, the breakneck countdown of the weekly top 40, or the first play of a Christmas song – Larry didn’t just preserve these traditions, he created them.
Legendary, cross-generational, universally popular: The Golden Hour and the “Just a Minute Quiz” were national institutions, just the like the man himself.
He returns now to his beloved Florrie – we are the poorer for his loss, but the richer for having known this gentleman of the airwaves.”
Dan Healy, Head of RTÉ 2FM said, “Larry was a huge part of the foundation on which 2FM was built – he was, arguably, the greatest music DJ in Irish broadcasting history; that gorgeous voice; that genius with a link; that love for the music. Larry won all the major radio awards in Ireland but over and above them all he had the one that mattered most: universal popularity. Everyone loved Larry, and we’ll all miss him deeply.”
Jim Jennings, Director of Content, RTÉ said: “Larry Gogan defined the Irish popular music scene for decades; he advocated for Irish artists and Irish music throughout his career, meaning he was respected not only by audiences, but by musicians too. This, in many ways, was his unique quality: he was loved by the listener, and loved by the artist. Larry’s legacy will endure in popular culture and the popular imagination for decades to come.”
Lorcan ‘Larry’ Gogan (born 1938) broadcast his first radio programme on RTÉ Radio 1, and was in the original line-up in 1979 of RTÉ Radio 2 (which later became RTÉ 2fm), where he spun the first disc. He presented a regular show there until 2019.
Larry presented The Golden Hour up until February 2014. Famous for his “Just a Minute Quiz”, his catchphrases are universally recalled (“They didn’t really suit you”).
Larry also presented a variety of television programmes including Pickin’ The Pops, Go 2 Show and The Golden Hour. He commentated frequently on the Eurovision Song Contest. On 8 January 2019, he moved from 2FM to RTÉ Gold – he presented his last programme on 2FM on Thursday 31 January.
Larry met his wife Florrie when she was 15. Both their fathers ran newspaper shops in Dublin. They were engaged two years later and married when she was 21. He is survived by his five children – Gerard, Orla, Grainne, David and Sinead – and 12 grandchildren. Florrie died in January 2002.
Larry won many awards. A Jacob’s winner, he was also awarded the IRMA Honours Award “in recognition of his outstanding contribution to Irish music”, and the Industry Award at the 2007 Meteor Awards.
Author: Richard Taylor