I have always been a natural yapper. I grew up with three boisterous brothers, two older and one younger, there are only seven years between us.
I was a bit of a tom boy, probably the loudest in the house.
My parents had a stainless steel business in Castlebar, two of my brothers work there now, and we grew up in Crossmolina. I get home to Mayo about once a month.
I set off for Dublin after my Leaving Cert to do media at DIT. I was eager to get going. I always thought I may like to do law, so I tried it for a while after DIT but quickly realised it wasn’t for me.
Growing up, I wanted to be a news reader. My mum brought me a Fisher Price recorder when I was just a kid and I used to make my own little radio shows, taping music and adding in the speaking parts myself.
It was a few years before I knew that autocue existed, so I tried to memorise all my lines.
I have always loved fashion. I worked in loads of shops on Grafton Street during college.
Then I worked in marketing and PR. I have certainly had jobs where I hated going in on Monday mornings so much that Sundays became miserable.
My big break was doing AA Roadwatch on Ian Dempsey’s breakfast show on Today FM. He wants whoever is on air with him to come out of themselves and have fun, so I was very lucky to get to work on that show.
I was nervous on day one but then I thought —‘hey its five in the morning, how many people are actually listening’? I was more self conscious about sounding like an eegit talking to myself in-front of the tech guy in studio with me.
I’ve always been a lark. I used to be up at 7am on the weekends even as a child. Which is just as well as for three years I had to get up at 4am. I’d start getting ready for bed at 8pm and hit the cot by 10pm latest.
I’d go home for a snooze after work ’til midday but I became so conscious of sleep it was ridiculous. It was not a healthy way to live. I’d be home alone when all my friends were at work.
I’ve just signed for two years with Today FM. I have the 2.30 pm- 4.30pm programme, Tony Fenton’s slot, and I try every day to be as good as he was. Everyone felt a huge loss at his death. His are huge shoes for me to fill.
There mightn’t be much security in the career I have chosen, but you have to weigh things up. I love doing it so much and am so grateful when I come in to work, that it certainly counter balances the lack of security.
I’m conscious of keeping physically fit, I jog for 5km most mornings and I like to swim.
I stick to a routine and am in work at the same time every day. I’m a bit of a home bird in the evenings. Myself and my fiance Paul (Galvin), like having people over.
We met when I was home in Mayo one weekend and he came up for a work gig. Mutual friends introduced us. We’re getting married later this year. There is no chance that I could ever tell him what to wear. Anyway, I love the way he dresses.
I’m a great one for lists and I do try to be organised. I can confine most of my job to the working day -—I have a great team and my producer Ann Gleeson is now also my friend.
But, by its nature, this job means that you are constantly looking for content — stories, new bands to feature, anecdotes -— but I enjoy all of those things and it doesn’t feel like work.
I don’t know that I believe in fate. Why should something work out for me and not another? I more believe in luck. I believe it’s important to be positive and to put positive vibes out there.
I come from a Catholic household and although I’m not a regular mass goer I do believe there is a God.
The best advice I ever got was from Willie O’Reilly who hired me for Today FM — to make sure I was completely true to myself on air, not to even say I liked something if I didn’t - because you can’t maintain a pretense.
My biggest fault is living a pretty selfish life. Maybe it’s the superficiality of the industry I’m in — I’m 30 and I don’t have kids yet — and I find it’s easy to become a bit over concerned with yourself.
So far I’ve learnt from life — both professionally and personally — that there is always a reason why people act in a certain way. So, if someone’s being an asshole, it’s best to try to be tolerant and kind.
* The Louise Duffy Show. Weekdays 2.30-4.30pm on Today FM.
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