Well this is a sudden return, but a special occasion
worthy of doing so.
40 years to the day (if a few weeks out) since the BBC first began airing
JAM jingles, the WRUTSL blog marks the occasion with an interview
recorded in the Spring of 2016 with Johnny Beerling, one of the key figures at the BBC responsible for implementing a station sound
that inspired a generation of radio lovers.
Speaking to Robin Blamires, the former executive producer,
later controller of Radio 1 revisits the many close-harmony IDs
for both Radio 1 and 2 spanning 21 years, and how Radio 1
in particular broke with conventions for their jingles,
adapting an edgier sound as the years went on.
There’s also time for a few laughs, via one or two uncensored send-ups
of Britain’s Favourite Music Station.
Towards the end of this episode we bring things up to date
with the BBC’s senior imaging producer Chris Reay, and how he
brought JAM jingles back to Radio 2, first for the late Terry Wogan’s
new Sunday show, and latterly for Tony Blackburn on Pick Of The Pops.
It’s an enjoyable and affectionate look back at 50 years of jingles
on BBC Radio, and even if you’re not a jingle anorak per se,
hopefully an entertaining insight as a whole.
BBC announcer and overall jingle geek Duncan Newmarch with
a brilliantly assembled look back at his own (and possibly yours)
radio listening experience filled with jingles and audio recordings
from Radio 1 in the 80s and many others.
A possible (no, definite) influence for this very blog.
Before writing these blogs, I felt bad about
not being smart enough to comment about
developments in radio as they happened,
as opposed to writing about them years
Though as with any event, it’s easier to write
from a past perspective as it’s allowed time
for the effects to fall into place.
The fact that very few radio stations
archive their older audio, once past the
record of transmission limit, has always
been a big frustration, and partly why the
same mistakes are made in a recurring cycle
through incoming generations of radio makers.
Whilst my series of Soundcloud selections
have come to an end, radio in the UK as a whole
has continued to evolve.
Not all in a positive way, but in hindsight,
a necessary way, if at the expense of one
or two tough managerial decisions.
The Digital Economy Act of 2010 gave Global
the green light to merge their Heart stations
into regional hubs, and launch Capital FM
as a national platform, via re-branded stations
in Nottingham, Manchester, Newcastle,
Yorkshire, Glasgow, Portsmouth
and South Wales.
And since the GMG/Juice acquisitions, North Wales
and Liverpool as well.
But whilst a necessary move financially,
it was unnecessary of Global to dress up
their downsizing as “improvements to our
Especially when in an interview on the
announcement of Capital going national,
Ashley Tabor came out with this now
“I’m afraid to say there are not 33 good mid-morning
presenters in this country and there are not another
33 good afternoon presenters. I wish there were,
but there aren’t.”
Not just a misinformed assumption, but one
of bloody arrogance.
And one that came back to bite on the
backside four years later, when after GMG
also turned their Smooth stations into a
national platform, the merger with Global
saw three of the stations sold to Communicorp,
and local breakfast and drive brought back to
the regional stations on FM.
No wonder Global have ended up enlisting Chris Moyles
to save their bacon (pardon the pun) when they’ve
barely bothered to develop any unique radio
talent (or indeed radio brands) of their own,
That’s not to say they don’t have any creative on-air
talent full stop, with one example being Jon Holmes,
who in fact has been given more creative freedom
at XFM/Radio X, than allowed at the BBC.
At the time I felt sad, and bitter to a point, at the
prospect of heritage names disappearing.
But I was refusing to ask myself “actually,
how long was it since you last listened to
said stations, if indeed at all?”.
As looked at in the last blog through Jazz FM’s
DAB departure and KMFM’s long awaited
reformatting, it’s a simple case of either 1:
going along with it, and accepting that there is
no alternative, or 2: carrying on as you were
and inevitably ending up with no station.
It’s something in the psyche of radio and
television fans, that heritage brands are a
source of entitlement, and even if they’re
past their prime, knowing that they’re still
there is a personal comfort.
The demise of Top Of The Pops a decade
ago being one example.
For me during this period, it was disillusioning
having finished a radio course at university,
struggling to work out how I would fit in to an
evolving industry, where radio wasn’t exactly
produced (or managed) in the way I’d have
liked it to be.
Attempting to re-ignite that past at a new
community station in Folkestone run by
and ex-lecturer and alumni from uni,
only added to the anxiety.
My mind opened wider via a set of work
placements at independent production
companies including Somethin’Else,
and Folded Wing.
The former continue to produce some of
the best radio programmes by quite a length
every week, and the latter opened a lot of doors
elsewhere, in part due to a podcast I made
with them on a subject very personal to
me, but well-received.
I’ve still yet to find a stable position in the
industry, although it’s enabled me to make
good contacts and friends with many
influential radio peeps.
Though I’ve probably lost a fair number
of them since starting this project, and
bringing back their shameful (but fun)
radio past to all.
The real tipping point came at a pub meet
up organised by the Jinglemad website
four years ago at the George pub in London,
which made me realise that maybe there
was such a thing as getting too
There was an air of bitterness,
and comments such as “oh, there’s
just not a lot of good stuff out there now”.
I knew I had to broaden out, on hearing
members saying that the best thing to
happen to radio in 2011 was the
re-emergence of old Radio Trent Alfasound
jingles from the 80s, reappearing on
“Trent Sound”, a “tribute station” attempting
to fill the gap left by Trent FM in Nottingham,
by going back to how it was 30 years ago,
and broadcasting online only?
That wasn’t the only flaw, as they’d obviously
thought more about the jingles than actual
content, resulting in a station that on tuning in,
you felt as if the last couple of decades never happened.
Which mentally and physically guarantees
an uncomfortable listen.
The jingles themselves (which I believe took
a lot of persuading for Steve England to dig
the tracks out of the vaults) nail the station to a tee.
“The Music Of Your Life”; that is if your watch
got broken in 1985.
Trent Sound prided itself on their selling
point of being local in a jungle of
networked radio brands.
But like many small scale stations of
recent, they failed to grasp that just
because your station is local (even if
broadcasting online only), it doesn’t
guarantee it will be any good.
An onslaught of many other nostalgia
themed online radio stations playing to radio
anoraks, rather than genuine radio listeners
followed suit, prompting a response from
another long-runner, but one with an eye
for the good stuff music-wise in the present day.
That being Peter Young, the man heard right
at the beginning of this series, stating
“the constant rehashing of already tired nostalgia
is not only irritating, it’s positively unhealthy”.
For further reading on that viewpoint, it’s also
worth having a gander at an interview with Eddy Temple-Morris
and his thoughts on Radio X, which more or less says
everything you need to know about the current state
of British radio.
Certain listeners don’t like change, understandably,
and in an accessible online era, they’re not
afraid to make their very strong disapproval public,
as focused on in this blog by Rock FM’s Darryl Morris.
Reading that has me thinking, “thank
goodness I got interested in radio before
Twitter was invented”.
Actually that’s not entirely true as I used
to write a lot of bile, directly towards
radio peeps who I didn’t like, but later
felt really bad for it.
They ought to rename the Radio Festival
as “The Humble Pie Festival”.
Sadly there are many others who simply
don’t get it, and probably never will,
left to relish in pissing people off
via the web, but not to their faces.
The immediacy of Twitter has lead to
mass online-negativity where many
will immediately write down things
they just wouldn’t say in public, as if
whoever has made a product, has
committed a mass-shooting.
(Actually I’d take that back with regards
to football crowds.)
Vile comments can mentally affect those
who have made a product, whether it’s
a musical identity package or a TV show,
due to those with a short mind who get
pleasure out of online-slating.
It’s what’s scared many good contributors
from visiting Jinglemad.com, once my favourite
discussion site, now devolved to a bear pit where
anything not made by JAM will get not just knocked,
but kicked in the head.
Yet this very series gets a lot of traffic when
posted on there, so there must be an appetite
for more recent archive audio.
Picking up on the almost “Fargo” quote
from the last episode “there’s a lot more to
radio than just jingles”
And to be bluntly honest, anyone who believes
that ordinary listeners will tune into a
station, solely because of the jingles
being sung by a 7 voice Dallas harmony
group, is quite frankly, a bloody idiot.
It took me a long time to grow out of
the belief that commercial radio in the
Garden of England was better in the 1990s,
because as is the case with anything nostalgic,
you immediately cut out the crap.
And in that respect, props to Aircheck Downloads,
who in the last five and a half years have given
me many a kick up the bum regarding the fact
that in some cases, radio of the past really
wasn’t as amazing as presumed.
Certainly when you consider audio such as
this, from Metro Radio back in 1986, the bit
at around 2.00, more than just borderline racist…
On a much needed (after that audio…)
forward-looking note, it’s worth finishing
this series with a few present-day viewpoints
from inside the industry,and the jingle industry
First, from the 2014 Jingle Day event in
Portsmouth with KMFM’s Rob Wills and
Simon Prentice from Audio Sweets/S2 Blue,
illustrating the challenges, nay frustrations
faced in both the radio and jingle business,
which as Rob rightly states are getting worse.
I can only apologise for my inane chortling
and asides throughout this video.
If there was a category for “Hardest working
person in commercial radio” at next year’s
Arqiva awards, then Rob would win it
hands down, judging by the amount he
has to deal with, presenting on
and running both KMFM, and overseeing
his imaging outlets.
Then again an induction into 2015’s
Radio Academy 30 Under 30
is probably even better.
The point on “repetition of identity”
is nothing new, as back in the 90s
when Alfasound started selling JAM jingles,
many commercial radio stations fulfilled
the wet dreams of presenters and
programme controllers by getting old
jingles previously heard on Radio 1,
resung for them.
Which is why I admire PDs such as
Paul Chantler, and John Myers for opting
to purchase and oversee the making of
custom packages during their heydays at
Chiltern/Essex FM and Century/Real Radio
Custom ID packages that challenged the
conventions of radio jingles, and still
achieved long-term listener recognition
Nowadays it appears that the jingle makers
themselves have a better idea of how radio
actually flows on-air than most management
figures, as also touched on in the above video.
The second and final observation comes
courtesy of Anthony Gay from Reelworld Europe,
in what could be the best blog written
about radio in the last year or so.
Essentially it’s a wake up call to any
longstanders in (or most likely out of)
the industry, guilty of the many flaws
and objections that have cropped up
in this blog over the last two series.
To add to Gay’s final point or “mistake”,
radio just isn’t going to change back to how
it once was, because real life isn’t going
Working days are longer, wages are smaller,
and the number of content platforms have
increased beyond just radio and television,
a reality that commercial radio in some circles,
is still yet to cotton on to.
With all that in mind, no ordinary listener
is going to be hanging on for a chosen song
to be played in the middle of the day,
in hope of winning an exotic holiday.
A point reflected by another jingle company
also based in Seattle;
“Real Life = Rushed, Attention Spans=Short”.
Especially with younger listening audiences
in decline with many latching onto content,
personalities and Youtube stars with no regard
or care for the brand or station they’re appearing on.
An even bigger worry affecting both BBC
and commercial broadcasters as loyalty to
just one station or brand, I’m afraid, may be
a thing of the past.
Putting these compilations together has
been a therapeutic experience.
There have been positives listening back to
really exciting radio, and it’s good that it
now has a home online for all to hear, but in
no way has this series aimed to give the idea
that it was all rosy, and happy as a whole
fifteen, or even thirty years ago.
It was possible for industry figures on and
off the air to balls it up back then, leading
to repercussions that have shaped the
But now that it’s all online to be heard,
it lifts off weight off one’s shoulders and
allows me to focus more on what radio
can be like in the future, rather than
longing for the days of its past, despite
the BBC’s possible future looking bleak.
Not helped by ongoing frustrations,
such as green-lighting of programmes
to satisfy the wants (and indulgences)
of producers rather than listeners.
Practices that will be unaffordable in years to come,
should John Whittingdale get his way.
Networks need to be more individual,
focusing on what they can do for their
own audiences rather than how they can
cross over with those of other networks.
And that doesn’t mean adapting the current
Radio 1 attitude of pretending the past never
happened by resorting to the tired
and insulting phrase “Ask Your Dad”,
but taking positive things from it,
and making them relevant to today.
One fella who can explain in more detail,
much better than I can is again, David Lloyd
in his brilliant book on “How To Make Great Radio”.
In addition to the blog below, from the same
author whose title I have inadvertently stolen.
That said, it’s also worth hearing those thoughts spoken
by the man himself, as recorded at a Radio Academy event
last September, which in a way, may sum up this whole series.
And beyond commercial radio there is a lot of great content,
whether it be the latest episode of Serial to download,
David Rodigan’s reggae show on 1Xtra, or the ongoing
provider of laughs that is I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue
on BBC Radio 4.
There will still be a lot of great radio in 2016.
The fact is, that it can never all be provided
solely by just a single station.
And on that note, thanks so much for listening,
and sharing your support for both series of WRUTSL .
It means a lot having spent months
compiling and editing it all together,
and writing this blog, which has felt like
assembling a very big jigsaw puzzle.
There’s always the odd missing piece
of audio or information, that when found
can be linked with another that’s seemingly
unrelated, but that I guess is a reflection of
the radio industry as a whole.
Everyone in there, whether working for
the BBC or commercial radio
is aware of what their competitors are
doing, and may well be listening
at any time.
If you’ve been doing so to this series, thank you!
And one last thought, half-inched (almost)
from Big John Myers;
“The most dangerous phrase in the English language is; ‘We’ve Always Done It This Way’
(Grace Hopper, 1987)
Throughout the timespan profiled in this series
of WRUTSL, and indeed the years that have followed,
my thoughts and overall understanding of radio have
changed by quite a length, still wanting to learn more.
As you’ll read in the final blog accompanying
the audio of 08-09, the thoughts and principles
of others in the industry who had been there over
many years, barely changed at all, some believing
there was nothing more they needed to learn whatsoever.
Of course in the end, they didn’t realise the errors of
their longstanding ways until it was too late, with their
complacency (and in some cases, far worse secrets)
finally catching up with them.
In the last in this series of radio reminiscing, we revisit
a rather dark time for radio and broadcasting as a whole,
with the world in recession, and the industry having
to make tough decisions.
We’ll explore the side-effects, and how certain on-air “talent”
weren’t too good at dealing with industry change.
Some of them being former bosses
and programme directors, no longer with the power
to make programming decisions in an era of heavily
defined radio formats, but still under the belief that
they could do so anyway, leading to inevitable
consequences, and a guarantee that a return to radio
may be harder than previously assumed.
Especially when resorting online temper tantrums,
playground name calling, and unnecessary sexism out of spite.
As you’ll soon read in the blog, it’s the sort of
misogyny that can make even a Kanye West album
seem less offensive.
The big story of the year, was radio and television
once again losing its nerve after the half-arsed
handling of prank phone calls made by Russell Brand
and Jonathan Ross, and the over-reaction from
self-righteous tosspots who never even heard
the programme go out.
Although it’s not focused on in this series, it did
knock the industry out for six with regards to on-air
creativity, as the problem was not what they said,
but the fact that no producer behind the scenes
did anything about it.
A problem still prevalent in today’s radio,
if these pearls of ignorance are anything to go by.
Frankly that’s a lot more offensive than
a few four-letter words, and a case of producers
needing to be tougher on lesser informed presenters
regardless of whether or not they’re from other
professions outside of radio.
Fern Britton in that second clip, also heard saying “Welcome Back”,
a grey area succinctly summed up by David Lloyd.
This last episode’s going to be quite a ride, so let’s
start things off in early ’08, inside the Soul Cellar
at the recently departed Time 106.6.
Hosted by the dulcet Scottish tones of Tony Ryan,
the show aired Sundays from 7 until 10pm for
a short period that year, kicking off with an
IQ Beats ramp, resung from their Fox FM custom.
Said it many times this series, they excelled in
Though as you’ll hear in the edit, it was resung
for sister station Time 107.5 in Romford, (home to one
John Leech) whereas Time 106.6 in Slough, had IDs
resung from an IQ Beats package originally made
for the then Wireless Group stations.
The US voiceover also heard is Bob Taylor,
who I used myself on and off
for my own show on student radio.
Though on this station he sounds slightly less out of context.
Tony Ryan was in actual fact a “contractual stage name”
for Stephen Howie, a gig buddy of mine who I’d known
since uni and shared a love of soul and rare groove tunes.
Despite us being a few years apart, what with
Stephen now working as a studio director at CNN,
via a position at BBC Monitoring in Berkshire,
a former haunt of Radio 1’s Comedy Dave.
Steve also had his own show “Grooveline”
which aired on Reading community radio station
Blast 1386 transmitting from the campus of
Thames Valley University.
A station formerly run by Bob Goertz who was
also presenting on Time around this period,
but under the name “Sam Jackson”.
Blast was also a former home of Sam who we
heard in the last episode presenting on Time’s
main competitor in South Bucks, Mix 107.
A rivalry that dated back 15 years when the
stations were otherwise known as Elevenseventy AM,
and “Wonderful” Star FM whose studios
still played host to Time at Slough’s Observatory
Time had upped their guns with ex Capital Gold
jock Keith Butler on breakfast heard at 3.54.
Sadly Keith passed away in December that year.
I made a visit to “The Soul Cellar” in May of ’08
and noticed a remnant of the former UKRD station
on the entrance to the studios, a sign that read
The only “star” remaining from those days was Paul Owens,
who along with the IQ Beats jingles, remained until
the station’s shutdown in October this year.
Moyles returns at 6.34, with yet another jingle laying
into Johnny Vaughan, who in February that year,
resorted to bringing in his former Big Breakfast
(not to mention “Passport To Paradise”) partner
Denise Van Outen as co-presenter of his
Capital breakast show.
The Princess Of Basildon has spoken publicly since,
of how she didn’t enjoy her reunion on the radio
with Vaughan, ending with them no longer
on speaking terms when she left the show after
just six months.
Other changes in London in early ’08 saw Greg Burns
switching from Virgin, to Capital Drivetime,
moving Lucio to evenings filling the space left by
Bam Bam, who was given the boot from Capital
just before Christmas.
The move was under the influence of MD Paul Jackson
who had returned to Capital also from Virgin,
wanting a less anarchic, and more showbiz feel
for Capital’s evenings.
The reasons for dropping “The Hitman” as he was
once known in Kentish surrounds (and in the same
timeslot) were almost identical to that of Hi I’m Wes
at Radio 1 three years earlier.
A case of space, as shown in this interview quote from Media Guardian;
“Bam Bam’s best position historically is breakfast,
and for him to do his thing best he needs a breakfast slot.
He has done nothing wrong, but we have Johnny Vaughan
Not only had Paul Jackson returned, but his father
would also be back at the station within months.
It was ironic that Capital’s jingles in this period
were also by Music 4, even more so with the Moyles
one, as Denise did end up working with him,
as part of the Kilimanjaro climb the following year
for Comic Relief.
Also heard are the recently introduced “1tros”,
the memorable branded song intros with fantastic
use of the Radio 1 instrumental logo, which by now
was 10 years old, having been used (in major)
in Sandy’s Sony award winning imaging package
for Radio 1 in 1998.
The brainchild of composer “Small Paul” at Music 4,
the 1tros were used heavily on Radio 1 towards the
end of the decade, with brilliant instrumental
attention to detail, though Moyles used them raw,
sans voiceover and FX.
The most memorable of the 1tros, was probably
Lady Gaga’s “Just Dance” though I rather liked
the subtlety of the one for “Single Ladies”.
Oh and the one featured at 8.33, based on Madonna
and Justin Timberlake’s “Four Minutes”.
Carpark Catchphrase returns at 8.38, finally brought
back after almost a year off-air, preceded by a
rather amusing song at highlighting the BBC’s
over-reliance on honesty.
The game ran everyday apart from Fridays when
it was The Golden Hour, which also saw the Tedious Link
now just four days a week.
The competition returned a few months after new
BBC guidelines were set, with the first to return
being Match Of The Day’s “Goal Of The Month”
and Ken Bruce’s Popmaster.
The latter had been blessed with a new theme
and underscore, slightly less over-dramatic than the
current one, though they had replaced the 5 second
countdown with the less tense voice of Radio 2
station V/O Carmen Squire announcing from 5-1.
A few years later however, they did bring back
the vocoder countdown.
A final round in this series can be heard at 10.24,
not with Ken asking the questions, but the
other Aled Jones.
Actually just about all the Popmasters in this series
are those which haven’t been hosted by Ken Bruce,
either via holidays or technical mess-ups.
At 14.27, a return to Reading, and 2-Ten FM in August ’08
where Foxy, Guiliano, and Molly Forbes at breakfast
are in hysterics at the discovery of vintage 210 jingles
from both the 1981 Alfasound package and the
Century 21 jingles from 1989.
Molly had just joined the station from Foxy’s
hometown Hull as a journalist at KCFM, so her escape
from hearing similar sounding jingles day-to-day,
had now come back to haunt her.
At a time when the heritage brands were in doubt,
this did no favours with the community on Jinglemad,
who weren’t happy about the tounge-in-cheek manner
in which the jingles were played, in spite of longing
for such a sound to return to radio.
One user commented; “What they probably forget is
that most people in the Thames Valley could probably sing
one of those jingles back to them if asked about 210 but
what’s the betting they could remember a sweeper?
Just another sad indictment of British Radio in the 21st century…”
No, just another bitter sentiment.
And one that’s defeated by the fact there have been
many memorable spoken IDs such as “tune in and
rip the knob off!” or “if it moves, funk it!”. In fairness, heritage melody logos can be brought
back in a present-day context, as proven with the
remixed Invicta FM jingles in episode 8,
and Chris Stevens’ homegrown IDs for Real Radio
in 2010-14, re-instating the Bespoke jingles’ motif
after a well-intended but less than successful ID package from Music 4 in 2009.
But if you’re going to play old jingles on the air
full stop, it’s worth bearing in mind that the listeners
may also be in the same mindset of the presenters,
re: the IDs sounding laughable by today’s standards.
On a wider scale, big changes were taking place
within the OneNetwork as having been purchased
by Global Radio, Gcap were reeling in the OFCOM
ruling that more networked shows could be
broadcast over longer hours.
With former Capital producer Ashley Tabor,
and former station PD Richard Park at the helm,
it was made to sound promising,
but overall it felt rather bleak.
Over at Invicta, The Fridge made it’s final outing
on the 2nd of May, with a surprise appearance
for co-presenter Taz on the phone who hosted
alongside Stephen Sullivan in the show’s early days.
The last song played was Faithless and “Insomnia”.
Kev Hughes’ Music Control took over the following week,
and a month later further changes were afoot for the whole network.
Ali Wheeler also made her depature from
early mornings after three years, leaving
James Heming once again without a co-presenter
until the arrival of Gemma Shepherd in November.
It was in this period that Craig Boddy departed
as programme controller, and Mike Osborne
was brought back to the station after 5 years,
this time as programme director.
Considering the musical direction the station
was going, albeit pretty much back to how it
was at the start of the decade and aiming at
an older audience, the appointment made perfect sense.
At one point you could hear The Ting Tings on BBC Local Radio,
when whichever OneNetwork station was playing Jackie Wilson.
In June, Late Night Love was dropped, and replaced
by “The Wind Down” with Cat James, causing many
Kentish residents to get excited hoping it would be
a direct clone of the similarly titled love songs
show from Invicta in the late 90s.
It came as no real surprise that Graham Torrington
got booted with immediate effect, as he was one of
those on Richard Park’s black list when Capital Radio
bought out BRMB 15 years earlier.
A new schedule was announced for June the 30th
onwards, as the former OneNetwork stations would
start taking a networked mid-morning show on
weekdays from Philippa Collins, and weekends
would be fully networked except for one 4 hour
local breakfast show between 8 and 12.
Initially the networked weekend shows were
hosted by Jeremy Kyle and Jo Russell individually,
but on defecting to talkSPORT and Absolute Radio
respectively, they were soon replaced by Pat Sharp
who was also manning drive at Cambridge’s Q103.
This time no station was exempt, with Party Invicta
ending after many years, and Essex FM broadcasting the final
“Club Essex” and late night shows at the end of June.
The latter thanked the hosts of the both shows
over the past 17 years, but no mention
for John Leech…
Martin Day meanwhile managed to hang onto
his Sunday morning 80s show until Christmas,
allowing the show to hit its ten year mark.
For me as a listener, still literally “The Best 80s Show
In The World Ever!”.
The club shows were replaced by GCap’s Party Anthems
with Gaz Wesley on Friday and Saturday nights,
and Jason Donovan’s show on Sunday evenings,
hinting a changeover to Heart.
That, and most stations renaming their
“guess the year” features as “The Time Tunnel”
and the addition of the much maligned,
“surprised it’s not breached the trade descriptions act”
strapline, “More Music Variety”.
But that’s what’s to be expected from a brand owned
by a company called Global Radio, who even to this day
are yet to expand their radio empire
outside of the United Kingdom.
The industry was put out of its misery in September,
when two months before the takeover was finished,
Global announced they would be rebranding a
number of their OneNetwork stations as Heart
over different phases starting in early 2009.
A few stations were sold off including BRMB,
Mercia, and Wyvern, but Trent, Leicester Sound,
Red Dragon, and Mercury Surrey and Herts
would also be exempt for the time being.
Power FM in Hampshire meanwhile, would just
miss it’s 20 year milestone in December,
by turning into Galaxy just a week before.
Though prior to the announcement, Marcher Sound
celebrated it’s 20th birthday in September with
special shows hosted by Saturday morning
minstrels Trevor and Simon, and Pat Sharp.
An odd choice considering their relevance to
the Chester area, though Pat Sharp did used
to present on another station which
used the same jingle package
as Marcher Sound (Radio Mercury).
As promised earlier in the series, we’re back
at Big L at 22.16, where things are getting worse,
not least with regards to their on-air sound.
Brought to my attention by fellow jingle fan
(and headmaster) Geoff Barton, it’s laughable
just listening to these desperately hacked IDs,
used on-air following the debacle over
the name “Radio London”.
It’s shocking how the station is still on air, free of the ex-Radio 1 relics,
but now with two separate stations?
I’m surprised the backers behind it haven’t been sectioned themselves.
From a station claiming to be “The London Sound”,
but broadcasting further away from the city as possible,
to one that would be taking an almost identical strategy
just over two years later at 24.57.
We’re back at Capital, which by Autumn ’08
changed its visual image back to “95.8 Capital FM”.
As heard in the audio however, still identifying
itself on-air as “Capital 95.8”, with their
Music 4 jingle package introduced that spring,
but retaining the Wise Buddah news and traffic
intros from the 2007 set.
Big changes were taking place behind the scenes,
with Tabor, Park and Global Radio aiming to bring
the station back to the heights of it’s 90s heyday.
Though as we’ll hear later, it sounded as if they were
doing so a little too literally.
Magsy Taylor sails through the hits in her
likeable and professional style, probably the
only presenter surviving at the station
who had been there for over 10 years.
Nearly reaching 15 in fact, and staying for three more
before switching to both Heart and Classic FM.
I suppose her professionalism on whatever station
she presents, makes her the female Mark Goodier.
Having lost Denise as his co-host, Johnny
Vaughan was now joined by Lisa Snowdon,
who around this time was taking to the floor
as a contestant on that year’s Strictly.
The one that was upstaged by John Seargant
dragging his partner across the floor.
Despite being beaten in the contest by Tom Chambers,
Snowdon is still waking up London to this day.
As well as appearing in the rather cringey ads for
Belvita Breakfast Biscuits.
Come Christmas, both Heart and LBC would be
moving to the Death Star in Leicester Square,
where amongst the remnants rescued
from the old Hammersmith studios, was a Sony
entry for Scott Mills, made a few months before
moving to BBC Radio 1.
We head to the Midlands at 32.16 for a short stop off
at Smooth Radio and their IDs as produced
by Bespoke Music.
Smooth had been broadcasting in the Midlands
since late March 2007 on Saga’s old frequencies
following the GMG takeover.
It was nice how they softly changed the strapline
to “Love Life Love Music” and adapted it into the
jingles (with a few new additions) resulting in an
improved sound than when it used the original
strapline inherited from Saga.
That said, I can remember hearing the news intro
in a newsagent in North London shortly after
the name change, and it had quite an authority about it.
At it’s launch in ’07, one of the presenters in the
East Midlands on 106.6 was a radio veteran of the area,
Len Groat returning after over 10 years
off the air with a “Seventies Sunday” show
on Sunday afternoons.
Though rather than use the Bespoke Music IDs,
Len opted for his own “mini-jingle package”
made up of JAM IDs.
Surely that’s the radio equivalent of smuggling
your own alcohol into a pub.
Unsurprisingly this didn’t go down well with
higher management, and Len resigned from
Smooth after only four months on-air,
the details as documented in a thread
from Jinglemad, from a year ago.
To pick up on a few observations, it’s simply not a question of
whether the Dallas jingles are better than the Bespoke ones.
The latter were designed as part of mood station
as rightly pointed out, which other presenters
regardless of their status all blended into.
Going back to episode 1, when Peter Young
re-joined Jazz FM in 2003, he didn’t feel as if
the new jingles (also by Bespoke) held him back,
despite PY being a central part of the older Jazz FM.
He did slip in a few occasional drop ins such as “The Sound Of Soul City”
but again, that’s a little different.
The then GMG CEO Big John Myers also a massive
jingle fan, had his reasons for going with Bespoke Music
as pointed out in a comment on his blog back in 2012.
“My view should not suggest that I am always right. If it was my own station, owned 100% by Myers
Media, I could do what I wanted – just for me.
However, like most things in life, I have come to the conclusion that there are a lot more talented people than me deciding station output. It’s best to let them get on with it and opinions will always be there.”
And maybe the reason why Chris Evans, Steve Wright,
and Chris Moyles are all blessed with their own
custom-made jingle packages for their shows,
is down to the fact that they actually have
the talent to warrant what many view
as a radio luxury.
A trait that (maybe with one or two exceptions) is unfeasible
in the present day climate of commercial radio.
You could argue this is just a bitter old man out of touch
with today’s radio, but that just isn’t the case.
Now, I’ve tried my very best throughout
this series to retain a diplomatic approach when
commenting on industry setbacks and objections,
but on this occasion, I’m afraid I have to make
What a twat.
If the blog was about nepotism in radio
on its own, then it may be more acceptable,
an ongoing frustration of many, fair enough.
Instead, it turns into a toy-throwing tantrum
about women in radio, because they’re women.
It’s as if the last few decades of dispelling industry prejudice
had never happened.
When it was published, another presenter
suggested that with views like that, the author
would be better off broadcasting to the Taliban.
Not just a “lazy Buggles headline” in the words of
radio futurologist James Cridland, but a nasty,
misogynistic load of complete bollocks.
Maybe that’s the wrong description, as it accidentally
defines the radio trollumnist’s literal ideology
of the medium in a bygone era…
It’s a shame that the greatest broadcast platform
still has a great number of figures who are yet
to adapt to the 21st century, clinging on to their
long-held principles that are not just dated,
but also very dangerous.
Further pearls of tripe can be read here, and if
the title enough isn’t offensive, then take note of
the equally pathetic footnote, that’s the equivalent
of a racist desperately claiming that some of
their friends are black.
But at the same time, sexist sentiments
aren’t limited to just radio, as illustrated
by this laughable post from an Arsenal FC
Facebook fanpage earlier in the year.
Anyway, where were we again?
Ah yes, the slightly less offensive, but just as
awkward issue in radio of vanity jingle packages
(which I have been guilty of a few times, admittedly).
Around that time in August ’07 I may have been
going bonkers myself, but even in hypomanic
mode, I thought it was stupid for a presenter
to resign, because of a row over a few jingles.
At the risk of sounding like Frances McDormand in “Fargo”,
“There’s a lot more to radio than just a few jingles”.
An equally depressing departure, but in this case,
one of being pushed, was that of Peter Young,
who on the 7th of June 2008 hosted his
final Soul Cellar on Smooth Radio London
after 18 years on and off at the station on 102.2.
Though his on-air departure was far more
dignified than others in this position
after many years of service.
PY’s show was dropped to make way for a
networked soul show hosted by Andy Peebles
(using a resing one of the Jazz FM Bespoke
jingles from 2003!).
It’s understandable as to why they brought in Peebles to host the soul show, as he was more well-known on a national level.
This in spite of the fact that PY’s was one of
Smooth’s most listened to shows in London by
“an alarming extent” according to station
management, as all the other shows outside
of breakfast were trailing behind by a very long way.
Sadly the new offering was a dull listen, too downbeat for a Saturday night, and a heavy reliance on older, “better known” soul tunes.
As PY stated not long after his departure,
it was patronising to assume that anyone
hitting the age 40 would immediately stop
being interested in newer soul releases,
only wanting to hear familiar favourites.
Smooth were wanting to be a strong commercial
rival to BBC Radio 2, and here they were, dropping
their most listened to show in London down to an
assumption that their audience were not interested
in the unfamiliar.
Whilst Radio 2’s most listened to show on Saturdays,
“Sounds Of The Sixties” continues to delight listeners
with a wide selection of lesser-heard but great songs
from said decade, as well as one or two favourites.
It’s another frustration that commercial radio
have long struggled to make sight of, RE:
their fear of the “positively obscure”.
As we’ll hear later, the Rocking Rabbi wouldn’t be
away from the airwaves for too long, with a few
more shows on Solar Radio to keep him busy
over the summer months before in the words
of Mel Torme, “coming home”.
Networking was spreading about on Smooth
already with Mark Goodier’s mid morning show,
and by June ’08 Tony Blackburn’s weekend breakfast
having previously only been in London since
February that year.
This coincided with a change to Blackburn’s show
on BBC London, moved to Sunday lunchtimes
from Saturdays, and dropping the soul for an
oldies format, only to switch back to soul a year later
after listener protests.
To deprive a broadcaster from what he was best known for on
BBC Radio London going back over 25 years, was a ridiculous decision.
Also at Smooth there was the addition of a
Saturday morning show hosted by Chris Tarrant
possibly designed to steal listeners
from Jonathan Ross on Radio 2.
But not even a 12 week suspension towards
the end of 2008 caused by foul-mouthed phone calls,
could heighten Tarrant’s stint at Smooth/Real Radio,
with the show disappearing from the line up
after a year, when the sponsor Nissan Micra’s
contract ran out.
At 34.52, it’s a surprise return for the station
that Smooth Radio relinquished.
Jazz FM returned on DAB in October 2008,
with many of their treasured presenters,
the chameleon logo, and the welcome return
of the David Arnold ID package with the motif
that bears no resemblance whatsoever
to “A Taste Of Honey”.
GMG initially saw forth the plans to resurrect
the station on DAB in hope of ditching their jazz
commitments still sufficing on Smooth Radio, but
sold the station to The Local Radio Company
on a three year licensing deal, as they knew
they’d put more love into it.
Not least because TLRC were owned by a former
Jazz FM CEO, the late Richard Wheatley heard at 36.24,
who later quit and purchased Jazz FM himself
for the sum of just £1.
In spite of that, GMG’s request to remove
jazz output from Smooth was rejected, with
Tony Myatt continuing to present a jazzy overnight
show on the network for a few more years.
Classic FM for a short period in ’08 also broadcast
a late night jazz show on weeknights with Helen Mayhew,
not long after theJazz demise.
They wouldn’t have had a problem with jingles,
as the ones for theJazz shared the same motif
as Classic FM, if not as good as those for Jazz FM,
where Mayhew eventually returned in mid 2009.
As a whole, it was a pleasant surprise to hear
news of the Jazz FM’s return, via this preview,
posted on the station’s website in September ’08.
The new schedule would see the return of shows
such as Mike Chadwick’s “Cutting Edge”,
Peter Young’s “Soul Cellar” as mentioned,
Sarah Ward returning with “Dinner Jazz”
and the biggest surprise of all was Robbie Vincent,
returning to host a Sunday morning soul show.
More on that as we go along.
New shows were on offer as well such as Paul Ruiz’s “Jazz House”
and Mike Vitti’s “Jazz Funk Party”.
Being in London on my final year at university, it felt good
to have one of the city’s treasured radio stations back on the air.
At 44.57, a trail for Robbie Vincent’s “Sunday Morning Soul”
which is sort of undersold with the dreary sounding
Bobby Caldwell tune.
Mainly because the Roy Ayers version is better.
That aside it was a show I made an appointment
to listen every Sunday, and loved the fusiony tracks
from performers such as Azymuth, The Yellowjackets,
and Spyro Gyra.
“The Sunday Long One” feature that would
play three extended synthy jazz tunes,
was always a highlight.
After about a year however, I grew tired of Robbie’s
irritating mannerisms such as “warming up the
communication module” and “all the other radio
stations are raising their white flags”.
That and a reduction of fusion tunes, in favour of a lot of Philly.
Many other listeners seemed to enjoy it, and
were up in their droves when in November 2013,
Robbie not only resigned from the station,
but was denied recording a final show.
The latter consequence wasn’t surprising as
he had a history of leaving radio stations under
a cloud, including the original Jazz FM.
Robbie’s reasons for leaving were due to
the station leaving its national DAB platform
from January 2014, and the fear of “a radio armageddon”.
A radio armageddon that turned out to be as
plausible as the constant suggestion that his
picture on the Jazz FM website was of his dad.
Despite the DAB departure outside of London,
there were no drastic changes as such to Jazz FM
in 2014 onwards, certainly nowhere near as bad
as the period before the original changed to Smooth.
Granted they had lost presenters such as Steve Quirk
(40.53), Ralph Tee and Mike Vitti in the last year
due to the reduction of soul in the schedule,
and the daytime playlist had become
a little more mainstream.
That aside, other presenters/curators such as PY,
and Robbie’s replacement Jeff Young (heard plugging
the Soul Lounge CD at 42.11) still had their own shows,
with free reign on what they played.
From what I’ve heard, they weren’t too happy
over how Robbie Vincent went about his departure
and I felt for Jeff Young especially, RE: the OTT reaction
on social media from diehard fans of Robbie
saying they would never listen to the station again.
The national DAB departure was the result of
a quandary, of either facing no alternative,
or no station, and it was a brave gamble of Jazz FM
in 2011 to make the move to national digital
radio in tough economic times.
That and the fact that the audio quality on the internet stream
was of a much higher standard than the 80k mono output on DAB.
In an interview with Radio Today shortly after
his departure, Robbie mentioned that had he
been given a final show, he would have been gracious
about it, acknowledging his fellow presenters
in good stead.
In actual fact, the unprofessionalism was
more than evident on Facebook, as Robbie
had seemingly turned into Jon Gaunt.
“James Torment”, oh come on.
A presenter/jazz singer that’s a chip off the old block,
following on from a presenter with a massive chip on his shoulder.
Overall this was a case of a broadcaster complaining
for no good reason, despite being in a privileged
position that’s hard to come by in present day radio,
and one which many other presenters would long for.
After an example of mismatched voice-tracking at 43.33,
a traffic report retaining the bed from the 1998 add-ons
when introducing the “Smooth Jazz” format.
The rather striking news intro from the original 1997 package
however was replaced by a slinky stager as heard at 46.06.
A nice addition, even if the beginning did sound a bit “Seinfeld”.
Around a year after launching however,
the top of hour was shortened, removing the bass
intro and replacing it with a pre-recorded
announcement by whoever was presenting the
show airing at the same time.
Such as the one below, by guess who?
Though post “radio armageddon”, Jazz FM in 2014
switched to the news intro as heard below which
sounds less “Seinfeld” and more Dixieland.
A reflection that the Jazz FM of 2008 may have
been trying too hard to regain its “smooth jazz”
heyday, with too much soul as a result, whilst
the station’s current state has settled down
to more traditional but accessible jazz.
How GMG themselves may have envisaged the station, had they not
lost the Midlands regional license bid to Kerrang in 2003.
Having already covered behind-the-mic sexism,
this incident at 46.45 from Wish FM in St Helens,
proves that even in the presence of a red light, such crass
behaviour knew no bounds on certain stations in 2008.
I’m not sure whether the audio was recorded as
a pisstake, but it spread fast around the web
at the time, and could be a reason why on-air
handovers with newsreaders are a thing
of the past on many stations.
Chris Moyles is back at 47.49, celebrating five years
on breakfast with a new set of jingles, and a few changes
from the previous set.
Under the name “Big Rock” these brought back
the punch of the ones circa 2006, but were played
two semitones lower in minor, with no key changes,
in tandem with the instrumental Radio 1 logo
from the “1tros”.
The ending was also changed to sing “BBC Radio 1”
later in the year as the station had finally realised
that they needed to follow Radio 2’s lead of many
years, informing listeners what was BBC
and what wasn’t.
The Golden Hour on Fridays also got a new intro,
leaning towards the more traditional sounding
Moyles jingles, though that didn’t mean Moyles
wouldn’t be playing the old R1 JAM IDs in the
feature’s long-standing manner.
I probably stand alone in saying that the
2009 jingles were really good, taking a
departure from the original theme melodically,
but retaining elements, and making the show
sound fresh on it’s 5th birthday.
That said, the IDs didn’t last long, and were
replaced the following year by the orchestral
sounding ones, lasting right up to the final show
Other changes to the show saw the dropping of
the Half-Time Ramble (though only by name)
but Rachel, and later Aled would still read out
the day’s Radio 1 line-up over the outro-bed.
The Tedious Link on the other hand remained
in place, only this time with its own custom
made theme and talkover bed replacing
the remix of “Last Night” that had been
used for almost a decade.
The “cheesy song” at the start of the show was also re-arranged, with the drums rather
too high in the mix, lacking the build of
the original, and it was no longer “brand new”
as the song now reflected the day of the week.
Which caused amusement when they played
the wrong day on one occasion, followed by the
correct one played all the way though!
Running late but sounding not-so-great…
The remixed news intro for Radio 1 as a whole at 48.43, was a bit over the top, was Moyles branding it
on air as “laser news!”.
Slightly more kinder than his critique of the 2011 news themes
making use of the infamous slogan “Listen, Watch, Share”.
Moyles’ constant pisstaking (alluding to the singer Cher),
didn’t go down well with recently appointed controller
Ben Cooper who implemented the slogan/strategy,
but Cooper had the last laugh.
In a period of no university lectures for the
rest of my time in London, I regained the habit
of listening to Moyles on a daily basis in early ’09,
right from the first week when they were
supported by live video streaming.
As well as a fair number of non-visual funny bits,
and worthy highlights.
One such moment being on the 20th of April,
when Moyles gave a surprisingly calm and
dignified comeback to a newspaper article
that shared none of those traits whatsoever,
written the previous Saturday in The Sun by
Gordon Smart, claiming the show would be
dropped by Radio 1.
Not to mention adding to the misinformed pile of shit,
with an unnecessary personal attack on producer Aled.
The only way the above clip could have been better,
would be if Moyles finished his statement by playing
the song “And I Am Telling You” which by now was
becoming a popular “save me song” on The X Factor.
Or even better, the chorus of P Diddy’s “Bad Boy For Life”.
It was such a lazy and ill-informed article, ignoring
factual statements from the BBC, but as stated
by Moyles, it probably was a desperate
publicity stunt for the launch of Sun Talk.
An online radio station that for most of it’s
short timespan on air, had only one presenter
in the form of the childish, oafish, twattish,
A broadcaster who can dish it out, but can’t take
it thrown back at him.
Maybe Gaunt would be taken more seriously if he
gave in and took the peg off his nose before speaking.
(A trait shared by a long-serving breakfast host
in my neck of the woods.)
Towards the end of its reign, the station had
also gained Terry Christian, and Ron Atkinson
to its on-air roster to give analysis on the 2010
World Cup in South Africa.
Quite frankly, many would rather subject
themselves to the rasp of vuvuzelas, than listen
to the ramblings of that ignorant twazzock.
Returning to Moyles, and a slightly funnier
moment from earlier in April can be heard at 50.36,
when the show broadcast from Moyles’s old
radio haunt of Milton Keynes, the night after
one of their many Karaoke Nights.
A night so chaotic, one assistant producer Matt Fincham,
forgets that a of the clip due to be played out on
the show that morning has an un-bleeped expletive.
Which when heard in context with the music, makes it even funnier.
That aside, the karaoke blunder may explain how
the man responsible for the swear going to air,
ended up producing something even more embarrassing,
in the form of Moyles’ Radio 1 successor on breakfast.
A new competition was introduced for the end
of the show in January ’09 “Cheggers Pop Quiz”
replacing Roy Walker with pre-recorded clips of
Keith Chegwin, in an attempt to recreate his
popular 80s TV series.
Of which the catchy jingle for the feature is based
on, causing studio guest Jimmy Carr to break
into his infamous laugh at 52.12.
And maybe he’s right. The theme tune was more
memorable than the item.
That said, it was always amusing to hear Dave
“loading the questions up” every morning,
which would normally include one along the lines
of “Do you like Nickelback?” to which the correct
answer was always “No”.
The only time it was “Yes”, was when the artist was Royksopp.
Whilst fun to start with, and lasting far longer
on air than Beep Beep Busters, Cheggers was
dropped midway through the year, and if this more
recent clip from Radio X is anything to go by, well,
Cheggers appears to have transformed Jon Gaunt as well…
Carpark Catchphrase returned in August,
staying until the show’s demise,
but soon grew tired due to contestants staying
on for days on end, and the item devoting
more time Roy Walker’s singing abilities,
as later plugged by a certain Goodybags.
Not good, and certainly not “Riiiiiiiiight!”
We finish our last segment proper featuring Moyles
in this series, with a handover to Jo Whiley at 1:00:29
and another, slightly rushed game of
Celebrity Two Word Tango.
Even though there’s only two seconds of it,
also worth mentioning the Kings Of Leon song
near the end, which the show later parodied
as “Dreaming Of Debbie McGee”.
To which the band’s record company
refused to give permission for it to appear
on Moyles’ parody album released later in the year.
Save for the Kilimanjaro climb in March, it was
the Chris Moyles Show’s longest continuous stint
without a holiday between January and May 2009.
By the time I returned to Canterbury around June
however, the show started to wear thin, not helped
by it becoming a daily love-in for John Barrowman.
More specifically his cover of Barry Manilow’s
“I Made It Through The Rain” which the show
managed to get into the charts at number 14.
Moyles in spite of The Sun’s speculation, survived
the schedule changes of Autumn ’09 which finally
saw Edith Bowman and Jo Whiley removed from
daytimes (and eventually Radio 1 as a whole).
They were replaced by the questionable arrival
of Fearne Cotton on mid-mornings, and the more
welcome promotion of Greg James to afternoons.
Fearne’s mid-morning slot meant Reggie began
flying solo on the chart (not that anyone noticed
the difference), leading to the odd hilarious
moment such as this;
To be fair, not an inaccurate statement, as Radio 1
was filled with a load of….
We board a boat to the early days of British
pop radio at 1:03:50, with “Pirate Johnnie Walker”
an eight week series from February ’09
filling the space left on Saturdays on Radio 2
at 9pm by a fella who seemingly dressed
like a pirate…
It’s nice to hear it preceded by the Radio 2
rarity of the newsreader announcing the
programme, in this case Andrea Simmons,
making good use of the craft as honed at LWT,
save for a little stumble.
Having long associated the broadcaster as
a laid back “cruisin” album rock connoisseur
of the Roger Scott variety, it was odd hearing
Walker as a lively sounding pirate jock,
and a very slick one at that.
Some would believe that he’d journeyed again
to San Francisco to get back his personality,
at KSAN in fact…
The ex Radio Caroline DJ is heard with a number
of doctored PAMS jingles, probably their first BBC
outing since heard on one of Radio 1’s
most underrated shows “Radio Tip Top”.
Of which Pirate Johnnie Walker shared
a similar premise, only with fewer
Though in their place, Walker’s blessed with
some rather impressive custom jingles
by Wise Buddah, though they didn’t go
down to well with the “oh they should have
gone to JAM” crowd online.
They were later satisfied with the
compromise of UK-sung PAMS resings
from Steve England, of Series 27, as used
on aptly enough, Walker’s subsequent pirate
vessel “Swinging Radio England“.
The Wise Buddah jingles however are for their
worth, in an identical style to the ones the
company made for the film “The Boat That Rocked”
not long after.
The one at 1:06:50, reminds me of New York folk
trio The Roches, no stranger to radio jingles
themselves as back in the 80s Gary Davies
used their version of “The Hallelujah Chorus”
to denote a right answer on his “Day To Day Challenge”.
Though the sonovox one at 1:06:08, sounds less like
Dan Alexander who performed Walker’s most
famous jingle, and more like Herbie Hancock.
At least, I thought it was him…
It’s the last episode, I had to get one in at least.
I bet Chris Moyles on hearing the WB-made
year acapellas at 1:07:33 was thinking “Crap, I’ve
missed a trick here” as Music 4 could have
done year identifiers of his own for The Golden Hour,
in a similar style to his “Good Morning”
and day-of-the-week acapellas.
The latter he was still using every day after
the first link of his show, along with the clip of
Davina’s daughter Holly Willow singing
“# International Radio 1!” (10.16).
Anyway, the year feature itself, and contrary to
Walker’s words The Rolling Stones were in fact
the first band to perform on Top Of The Pops
back in 1964, even though Dusty appeared on
the same show, since wiped by the BBC.
Expect to find similar examples of historical
inaccuracy at the same timeslot currently on
Radio 2, if you’ve ever heard “Sounds Of The 80s”.
Though in light of recent events, it was the show’s
original host who was quoted saying The Stones
was TOTP’s first band, so we may as well take
Johnnie Walker’s words as gospel.
The show took a knowing pretence of being
broadcast on board the good ship “Rock And Roll”,
with a rebellious nature, even to the point
of not announcing the news with the right wording.
They’d been using the “This Is BBC Radio 2,
Online, On Digital” etc since autumn 2007,
replacing the long standing “On 88-91 FM
this is Radio 2 from the BBC!” used since
the news jingle no longer sang the name
of the station from 1992.
We couldn’t leave Wolfman Jack out of the
final show, as heard at 1:10:56 possibly from
a recording released on one of the “Cruisin” records
of mocked up radio shows released on vinyl.
One stolen by Simon Mayo for his “Good Morning
From All Of The Crew!” jingle during his 5 years
on the Radio 1 breakfast show.
A trail for for RadMac is heard at 1:11:33,
with the oxymoron involving the words “Morrissey”
and “charismatic” in the same 30 seconds.
A fantastic segue follows, using a doctored cut
from PAMS series 16 into The Beach Boys.
The best use of that cut was a few years
previously on Solar Radio, when presenter
Chrissy J segued it into Natalie Cole’s “La Costa”.
Before anyone lashes out at me regarding the
earlier paragraph on bespoke jingles for
individual shows, again, Walker’s another
presenter who has the talent to justify it.
Both him, and Tony Blackburn to this day
on Pick Of The Pops, proving there is room for
nostalgia on the radio, if done in small measures,
therefore adding to the excitement
when it airs every week.
Walker also used a few UK-sung PAMS
and JAM resings on his new “Sounds Of The Seventies”
show from April, handing his 5pm slot over to
the blunt but warm charm of Paul O’Grady.
Other changes to the schedule that spring
saw Alan Carr with a new Saturday evening
show co-hosted by Emma Forbes who
also took over on early weekend breakfast
from the ever stilted Mo Dutta.
Though in her usual radio manner, Forbes
moved on rather swiftly, replaced on Carr’s
show by Melanie Sykes, and elsewhere
in the schedule by her Live and Kicking
successor Zoe Ball.
At 01:15.22, one last visit to a previous haunt of
Andrea Simmons, the start and end of the final
IRN bulletin from ITN as broadcast on Tuesday
the 4th of March 2009.
From 2pm that day, all bulletins would be
broadcast from Sky News, already broadcasting
to a select number of ILR stations, with Moira Alderson
giving just a taste of the stuttering
and stumbling to come from her successors.
There would also only be a single bulletin
lasting two minutes, as opposed to the option
of either 3 minutes or 90 seconds
in the later days of ITN’s reign at IRN.
Richard Bacon returns at 01:16:00, 18 months into
his late night Monday to Thursday slot on
BBC 5 Live, having re-joined the station
in October 2007, after two years at
I can remember hearing the trail for the
new show, still in recovery, which unbeknownst
at the time had the unfortunate premise
of a Jim’ll Fix It parody.
More than ironic as we hear a short feature
from April ’09 “Presenters From The Past”
complete with it’s own barbershop style jingle.
Vintage television and radio presenters such
as Johnny Ball, Andy Crane, Jim Bowen,
and Sally James featured in this item,
though in this instance we hear the reminiscences
of Radio 1 alumni Bruno Brookes, and Gary Davies.
Already, DLT had been interviewed in this series,
which I’ve spared you from hearing, not because
of the recent sex allegations, but because he’s just
a nasty rotter outright, refusing to answer Bacon’s
questions head-on, or indeed being able to
keep his mouth shut.
Traits that he couldn’t even keep hidden in the courtroom.
Bruno Brookes is not shy of telling it straight
about his Radio 1 colleague’s on-air resignation
back in 1993, and I must say, my respect for Bruno
went up by quite a length after hearing this interview.
Many other Radio 1 staff that I’ve spoken to,
who were also there at the time, more or less
share the same opinion on the hairy c***flap.
Bruno can also be heard in this interview extract
from a year later via the RadioTalent website,
giving his honest thoughts on the state of commercial radio,
which again is absolutely nailed.
We’ll hear the evidence shortly.
It’s rare to hear an interview from an industry
longstander, giving frank, but not bitter
“it was better in my day” views on the
Medallion man “Wooh!” Gary Davies whilst
also diplomatic, shares his thoughts on the
future of his former station, which in all fairness
had reached another cycle where many of its
presenters had been there for too long.
Some, without naming names, still remain
on the station to this day.
Though before you ask, Annie Nightingale
in no way falls into that category.
Being at a radio station for a lengthy period,
does not equate to refusing to evolve during
that time, and Annie has to be admired for being
a rare breed of music broadcaster in the world,
in continuing to do just that.
The newly rebranded Capital FM from March ’09
can be heard at 01:21:20, with new jingles from IQ Beats.
Ashley Tabor clearly taking heavy influence from
his Stateside holidays, with the addition of
a “Pays Your Bills” competition, of which
one of my classmates at uni loved the rather
cliched and much parodied competition winner
Presenter: “Who pays your bills?!”
Caller: “95.8 Capital FM!”
…and hitting the vocal bang on.
It puts the “I’m A Real Winner!” heard
all the way back in episode 1
In the 80s, without the luxury of internet radio,
it was harder for an ordinary listener to work out
that Steve Wright was blatantly copying his act
from Rick Dees at KIIS FM Los Angeles.
(as written by the blog author copying his jingles
from that same station…)
Nowadays, other stations in foreign territories
don’t even attempt to hide that fact, if Brisbane’s
Hit 105 and their “Innuendo Bingo” debacle from
earlier this year is anything to go by.
Maybe the city’s new arrival James Cridland will
be able to give them a hand on making more
The 2009 relaunch of Capital in the eyes of Global
was a success, if rather dated in sound, desperately
trying to rekindle the halcyon days of the 90s.
Only that they were missing the on-air talent.
Tabor later mentioned in a rare public appearance
at the 2009 Student Radio Conference in Leeds,
that on purchasing the GCap network
“Capital was so fucked”
But obviously hungry for more it seemed.
The jingles were also resung for Trent FM,
Leicester Sound, and as heard at 01.23.23,
Red Dragon FM, all of which became Capital FM
from early 2011 along with the Galaxy stations.
The on-air imaging has improved over the years
however, gradually ditching the sung jingles,
in favour of tightly-branded intros and
big event promos, from the imaging eye
of New Zealand born producer and all-round
nice guy “Chrus Nucoll”.
(Again, I’m sorry…)
Last in this series, we finish almost
where we started 10 years earlier
and the dying days of Invicta FM.
At the announcement of the Heart rebrand,
rumours of James Heming being axed from
breakfast were floating, with Radio City’s Louis Hurst
being lined up to take over, but it later emerged
Heming would be staying put, working up
to 10 (later 15) years on breakfast.
Hurst switched to KMFM hosting “The Evening Republic”
from October ’08, with some witty jingles.
One of them openly taking the mickey
out of Caesar the Boogieman.
Afternoon presenter Andy Walker had also
left the station in early ’09, moving after 8 years,
to breakfast on KMFM Maidstone.
James Heming can be heard at 1:25:24, with the OneNetwork
top of hour still in place, but features significant
of the Heart Network gradually introduced
including the Time Tunnel.
Also making a return appearance, Claire Lawson at 1.25.03,
returning in January from maternity leave,
as local weekend breakfast presenter.
The launch of Heart Kent from the 22nd of June 2009,
is heard at 01:26:42 commencing in the same way
as the others earlier in the year and across
the network, with Luther and Janet as the first record.
KMFM that same day were relishing
the changes with Bob Mower in Canterbury
reflecting on when Invicta Supergold
disappeared from the dial, with replacement
Capital Gold losing many listeners they
never got back, and hoping for similar
repercussions on FM eleven years on.
Alas, Heart Kent ended up gaining more listeners
and it has to be said that for all its faults,
it has retained a more consistent on-air sound
and presenter line-up than Invicta FM ever did
in their last 10 years on air.
And with the station not being in a positive
light throughout early ’09 with one former presenter
sadly passed away, and another in prison,
it was an ideal time for change and rebranding.
Something KMFM were slow to come to terms with,
the fact that it was pointless competing with
a similar music format of their own,
but on a smaller scale.
It certainly wasn’t enough for them to simply
drop their not at all similar sounding strapline
“The Best Music Variety”.
To reiterate a quote from the Bruno Brookes interview;
“What choice of listening?”
Following the loss of Richard Walters to XFM
London in January that year, the rock show
was axed, as was the Saturday night chill out
show, not helped with the reduction of local
output to just weekday breakfast
from Autumn ’09.
Though according to Group PD Steve Fountain,
interviewed on a live listener phone in, there was
a high demand for more 80s tunes, and listeners
were rewarded with 80s themed bank holidays
and so on.
With that in mind, another newspaper spread,
reflecting the then line up at the time, and Rob Wills
looks so much younger.
(Sorry Rob if you’re reading, and possibly cringing…)
By now the Canterbury studios had been shut down,
with their’s and Shepway’s breakfast show
broadcast from Ashford, and the Medway studios
also providing for Tonbridge and Maidstone.
Only Thanet breakfast broadcast from it’s
own studios in Cliftonville with Johnny Lewis,
who also hosted “The Vinyl Years” on Sunday nights
after Tony Blackburn.
The shying away from one’s comfort zone
continued until early 2012, when KM finally
started leaning towards a younger sounding
CHR format, and with OFCOM granting them
permission, breakfast went county wide
from the 12th of March that year.
This was at the expense of 6 local breakfast shows
disappearing abruptly the previous Friday without
being given a chance to say a proper goodbye
to their listeners.
At the time I thought it was a bit heavy handed,
but looking at how strong the station sounds now,
it was entirely necessary.
Some took their “letting-gos” personally,
but on reflection, misgivings were made
rather openly in the weeks leading up
to the upcoming format changes.
That may explain the reasoning for the
abrupt change, preventing any potential
on-air outbursts that may end up
overshadowing the relaunch.
Seriously, keeping your dignity,
keeping out complacency, and leaving
a negative attitude by the door is crucial in
today’s industry, especially when there
are fewer jobs available.
It’s an issue that many find frustrating,
and have had to deal with myself;
RE: People in radio publicly complaining
about their jobs for petty reasons, when there
are many who dream of being in their position.
Thankfully, most of those types are out of
the door before too long.
On a present day perspective, the shape of
independent radio in Kent is healthy, still
with challenges, but at least KMFM has
managed to find its own identity by sounding
young without pandering, but with
a wide audience appeal.
They’re not afraid either, to invest in
really good on-air features, with Rob Wills’
drivetime competition “Gone In 60”
being one such highlight.
A feature that if heard by former KM MD
Gavin De Carle, he’d smash up his radio
in disgust, due to it’s high entertainment value.
Having spoken to many of the current team
at KMFM, a sense of perspective is vital,
with many of them not expecting to be
in radio forever, and the possibility of
having to get ordinary day jobs hanging
at any time.
Therefore making the most out of what
they have now in this industry rather than
leaving in a fit of pique like others
had done previously.
We finish this series proper at 01:31:31
with another departure of a long-standing
much-treasured broadcaster, only this time,
one leaving with a sense of dignity.
The final moments of Wake up To Wogan
on December 19th 2009, ahead of Chris Evans
moving to his slot from Drivetime in the new year,
and Wogan given a show on Sunday mornings
from February 2010.
Wogan himself, preceded by Chris Moyles
and the team giving their well-wishes on Radio 1
that same day, which for all the stick given
from their part over the last 7 years,
is more than humble.
“No To Wogan” anyone?
Ideally Moyles should have finished around
this time as well, having just broken Tony
Blackburn’s record as Radio 1’s longest-running
But save for 2011’s 52 hour marathon,
and the final three weeks in September 2012,
the show had now reached a point where it
just couldn’t recover from a low period any more.
Not that Moyles has regained any at Radio X, where
it was exciting at first to hear his return to radio,
but has quickly become a reminder of why his act
got stale at Radio 1.
Back on track, Sir Terry was meant to have retired
from breakfast at the end of 2008, with Chris Evans
taking over the following January, but as pointed
out in Evans’ second autobiography,
Russell Brand screwed that all up.
Not to mention Andrew Sachs’ granddaughter…
The leaving speech itself, simply a masterclass
in how to talk to the listener.
Even if reading from a script, it’s not impossible
for every word to sound sincere, and be delivered
with a great warmth.
I’d never been a massive TYG myself,
but Wogan’s authority as a broadcaster
on television and radio has long been
a presence for as long as I can remember.
It genuinely felt like the end of an era,
and although the Sunday show eventually
recovered from it’s false start as an OAP’s
Radio 1 Roadshow, it hasn’t really managed
to attract the same following as his breakfast show,
with my Mum still opting for the Archers
omnibus on Sundays, and enjoying Chris Evans.
Well, when he’s not talking about cars, that is.
That aside, Evans has managed to give Radio 2’s
breakfast show a much needed kick up the bum,
and for it’s consistency and team effort,
it still cannot be faulted.
Most of the time…
And we’ve made it.
Thanks very much for listening and reading,
and indeed well done for being able to sail
through some very honest, but much needed
airings of radio reflections of in many cases,
the most ridiculous order.
Hope you’ve had a good Christmas,
and my present to you, an extra long episode
of WRUTSL, reflecting a rather tricky period
on a personal level from mid to late 2007.
Well, in the months just before I was sectioned,
I thought it was the best period of my life,
and over-optimistic radio listening habits
were partly to blame.
After being given recovery meds, I realised
that things were not all rosy, and my manic state
meant I had to spend one more year at university,
having been taken ill for the first semester
in late ’07.
Which wasn’t a bad thing in hindsight,
but when you’re on a massive low,
it’s hard to see any positives.
This is also the only episode this series where
we’ll be heading North so enjoy it for what it’s worth.
Anyway, let’s begin our festive flow through
the radio of almost ten years ago.
(Goodness it’s shot by…)
Starting off in Sheffield and Hallam FM’s
“School Years” introduced with the
Natasha Bedingfield inspired ID from the
Reelworld custom that had been airing
for a couple of years.
Swiftly followed by a clever sounding sweeper
involving one of the JAM “Metroline” resings
from over a decade earlier.
The use of old jingles prompted a chat on
Jinglemad, which in turn lead to the discussion
of a short lived jingle package for Hallam FM
in mid 1999 by Jonathan Colling’s Octagon Music,
as heard below.
Yep, just the right amount of EQ and modulation
on those vocals.
Replacing a TM Century package, the brief was
to fit in better with the music played, but the
presenters hated it, and even Colling himself
thought the melody logo sounded like a football chant.
Still, at least the then programme controller
Anthony Gay learned from it, as he’s now
running Reelworld Europe in Salford.
Reelworld back in ’07 had recently resung the
Hallam package for Essex FM, their first proper
jingle package since the days of ALFA’s
“Power Positive” custom, which in turn
happens to be my most-searched-for
holy grail jingle package.
Which is interesting as the man behind that,
former Essex Radio PD Paul Chantler, made
a surprise visit back to Essex FM, (now in
Chelmsford) in August that year, to surprise
Martin Day and his “Random iPod” for a BBC 2 “Lakesiders” reunion series, transmitted almost
exactly a year after it was filmed.
And filmed exactly a week before I was sectioned.
I wouldn’t like to think “The Boss” was
part-responsible for my over-optimistic
radio thoughts around this time, but we’ll
go onto that later in the blog when he tipped
me off to a happy place in Hull…
You could suggest that Martin’s “Random iPod”
was the first of the many “lets play random old songs
because it’s Friday!” strands now commonplace
on radio, predating Moyles’ Golden Hour, the Nixtape,
and not forgetting Steve Wright’s “Serious Jockin”.
Not matter how hard we try to do so.
At 2.35, a Saturday afternoon with Sam (Impey)
at Mix 107 in South Bucks, a presenter whose
love of radio started after being driven to school
in a 2-Ten FM Black Thunder.
Mix 107 the station, started off on AM,
literally called ElevenSeventy AM.
Attempting to borrow a cue from 210, let’s say
they ended up the same way as the Reading station’s
present state on 210 meters.
You have to love The Local Radio Company’s
“Big Fun Weekend” branding exercise, which
sounds like something Chris Moyles would have
made a spoof trailer for in his drivetime days
at Radio 1, devoting a whole weekend to the hits
of Mark, Jason and Phil.
Wait, they had more than one?
I’ve broken my own rule in this episodes of
not including my own on-air mentions though
there’s a good reason in this case.
Sam happened to be another element of my
“happy summer” as she was a radio student
in the year below me, and in the last week of
broadcasting before Summer, I asked if she wanted
to help co-host my summer soul special, as she
was stuck in a day-job during the rest of the week.
At the time I thought it was the best radio I had ever made.
Though as you’ll hear above, it’s probably
no surprise as to why I later got sectioned…
I was longing for the “magic” to return, confident
it would rekindle again back at uni in September
but it wasn’t to be.
The fortunes of Mix 107 fared even worse,
with Sam losing her show to networked TLRC
programming the following year, (defeating the
purpose of the company name) and the station
shutting down altogether on July 1st 2009.
The rather swift exit can be heard here, and
OFCOM weren’t in a rush to push the off switch,
It meant Jazz FM had to find new studios, as on
being sold from GMG, they broadcast from
Mix 107’s High-Wycombe building.
Though that’s something we’ll cover
in greater detail in episode 12.
Save for a brief return in front of the mic
at Folkestone’s Academy FM in 2011, Sam’s
now switched to working behind the scenes
at the rather swish sounding Monocle 24
online radio station.
Wednesday the 18th of July 2007 saw BBC staff
get a massive bollocking from Director General
Mark Thompson over their competition cover ups,
which from midnight that night saw all of them
suspended, pending a “strategic review”.
Shows ranging from Jo Whiley on Radio 1,
Liz Kershaw (who was treated horribly following
the debacle) on 6 Music, and as revealed later on,
even Tony Blackburn’s show on BBC London had
been caught out deceiving listeners, by faking
winners, and running supposedly live competitions
in pre-recorded shows.
And this was just the radio side of the deception.
My first immediate thoughts were
“well Steve Wright’s fucked then…”,
and 8 years on “The Big Quiz” still hasn’t
made a return to the airwaves.
If anyone was being punished it was the
viewers/listeners, subjected to poor substitutes
and compromises such as “Celebrity Popmaster”
as mentioned in the last blog.
With regards to Radio 1, it came at very bad timing,
midway into the 2007 “Six Weeks Of Summer”
promotion, which carried on as normal but with
the DJs themselves undertaking the tasks as mentioned
at 7.12, over the impressive “Fresh Prince” inspired bed, from a set of six (one per destination) from Music 4.
(You’ve got to also love the Radio 1 sonic logo
played by ice cream chimes)
Even worse timing when taking into account
this, from that very morning’s “Carpark Catchphrase”.
Famous last words and so on.
Luckily for Moyles, him and the team would be
heading off on their two week summer holiday
that Friday, where on return they would be
introducing a few new features, much needed
what with the inadvertent suspension of Roy Walker.
One of them trailed at 9.35 over the rather cute
sounding theme tune to the CBeebies series
“Charlie And Lola”, being another feature
seemingly “borrowed” from the channel,
As you’ll hear later on, the theme for
Birthday Corner itself was just as cute.
It’s rather amusing, knowing that later in
the year, one of the team would star in a show
on CBeebies himself, with newsreader Dom
playing the voice of traffic reporter “Zorst”
on the Saturday morning series “Space Pirates”.
Which had an even better theme tune, as penned
and sung by Busted keyboard player Chris Banks,
and released as a Christmas single championed
by Moyles, but to little chart success.
Though it did spawn a rather impressive remix
from Chris Banks himself, showing off the endless
possibilities of Pro Tools in action.
The nautical theme, must have been what lead
Banks to c0-re-arranging (twice) the theme tune
to Blue Peter in 2008, which turned “Barnacle Bill”
into what sounded like the Fratellis covering
I rather liked it myself.
Dom’s own feature bows out after
just over three years, the final “One Road Travel”
Shortly followed by the rarely used (moreso after
the Golden Hour started) “Back in two weeks!”
show closer, and it must be said that Jo Whiley’s
“Helloooo!” at 13.49 although not as regular an occurrence,
was far less painful than Fearne Cotton’s “Mooorniiiing!“.
One of many reasons I went off the show
around 2010, not to mention Tina Daheley
screaming “It’s McFlyDaaaaayyyy!”.
I happened to be at Yalding House myself on that
very wet July Friday, observing behind the scenes
of Newsbeat where the mood was still upbeat and
the team, especially Georgina Bowman and
studio manager Derek Knight were really delightful.
Dominic Byrne was nice too, but sadly the
then editor Rod McKenzie was missing in action
I’d no idea I’d be working with one of their
former staff Micky Curling 6 years later,
though it’s worrying, knowing that I may be
a worse radio anorak than he is.
If you’re reading this Micky, we’ll be heading
to one of your old radio haunts in Reading shortly.
Before that, a brief stopover North once again,
and BBC Radio York’s Friday night Soul Show
hosted by Jamie Wilkinson at 13.58.
Deprived of such a show on BBC Radio Kent,
this was an enjoyable listen, of which I was tipped
off by a mate at uni who was a producer at
Radio York, nowadays producing Jo Whiley
on BBC Radio 2.
The jingles are by Maximum Production who at the time
also produced IDs for BBC Radio Lincolnshire,
and BBC Radio Gloucestershire amongst others.
2007 also saw the evolution (in loose terms)
of GCap’s “OneNetwork” with new station logos
that bore the slogan “Haven’t You Heard?”
and what was quite an oddity for many ex GWR
stations, a sung jingle package produced by
Music 4 that began airing from the 1st of August.
Both those subject areas are talked about
in detail in this blog, though there is audio in this
episode of the jingles being used on Reading’s
2-Ten FM at 17.15, which fitted well into the name,
despite the logo sounding identical to that
of Real Radio.
Though in fairness to Sandy, the logo did
also appear years earlier, on the Vibe custom
package for Bradford’s “The Pulse”.
The news and traffic intros oddly enough weren’t
adapted to fit each station, with all of them
keeping the same three note logo.
The package itself was co-written by Dave Bethell,
who also became the OneNetwork male imaging
voice, replacing Dave Kelly after 7 years.
Though the voice of Flynn on CBBC’s “50/50”
did occasionally re-appear on some stations.
Hosting breakfast during this period were
Foxy and Tom, AKA John Fox and Tom Rhys,
poached from Viking FM the year before after
a four year stint at breakfast in Hull where they
took over from “Hirsty’s Morning Glory”.
It’s a good thing they didn’t join GCap two years
earlier when Neil Fox was still present, as he
supposedly had a thing about people within the
Capital Group sharing his surname, with Mark Fox
at Invicta FM having to change his on-air name
to the even more ironic Mark Anthony.
In November that year Tom parted company,
and eventually newsreader Guiliano Casadei
became Foxy’s right hand man, with the duo
nowadays heard on breakfast at Birmingham’s
On-air promotions for the “Fugitive” competition
can be heard at 20.42, a much reprised competition
throughout the decade even heard on EMAP
and UKRD stations at one time.
At 23.40, a station that became a trigger in the
ongoing build of my over-optimism, the newly
launched KCFM for Hull and East Yorkshire
broadcasting on 99.8, and online, going on air
fittingly enough on Yorkshire Day,
the 1st of August 2007.
The station named after Kingston Communications,
one of the backers and telecom providers
to the Hull area.
I was told about the station via Paul Chantler,
a shareholder who knew too well that I loved jingles,
and in the same way as his station in Southend did
7 summers earlier, they were an entrance to
a radio station that felt equally amazing to
listen to, and feel involved with.
Despite being as far away as possible from the broadcast area.
They’d followed the lead from Viking Radio
23 years earlier by launching with a really strong
ID package, though rather than nip down
to nearby Selby, they went to Dallas and the
TM Studios (or JonesTM as they were in 2007)
purchasing a resing of “KVIL Signature”
written a couple of years earlier for
the station in Dallas, Texas.
Viking FM at the same time were airing
a custom package also from TM,that
later ended up near my neck of the woods
resung on KMFM, and fitting in well.
Back on subject and the KCFM jingles were
a very good set of IDs filled with transitions,
solos, real instruments, fantastic chord progressions,
and a warmth throughout.
Not to mention the inclusion of jock cuts.
KCFM made prominent use of sung jingles on air,
even to segue two songs together, especially as
there were no sweepers or voiced IDs.
I initially thought that Chantler had an influence
on the jingles though as pointed out by TM’s then
head honcho Chris Stevens it was Station Manager
Tim Jibson, and Head Of Presentation Al Dupres
who chose the jingles and wrote the lyrics,
which apparently took four months to do so!
The one that went on air, being a prime example of
a great news intro.
Though when I did get sectioned, I was woken up
by subconsciously hearing the KCFM news intro
in my sleep, even though I didn’t have
any internet access.
That aside, it may be my favourite TM Century
jingle package resung for a UK station, apart from
of course Invicta FM’s “Steamroller” IDs.
As mentioned a few times in this blog, the jingles
are just part of what adds up to a really good
radio station, and KCFM seemed to have it all on launch.
What some viewed as maybe too ambitious
and too big judging by how the station fared over
the years to come.
These included a 24 hour local news service,
(which itself was scaled down by December ’07),
and sports commentaries of Hull City football,
and Hull FC Super League rugby matches from the
KC Stadium as well as Hull Kingston Rovers over
at the KC Lightstream Stadium.
That and a very wide selection of music
throughout the day containing lesser
heard surprises from all decades.
At the time it became pretty much my
go-to station, choosing to listen to little else,
which at the time felt very out of character.
The first of the presenters heard is Steve Jordan,
poached from Magic 1161 to host breakfast,
and the Thursday night 80s show
which we’ll hear later on.
A sort of old-school sounding breakfast show
with sound effects a-plenty (28.08), which
when listening post-meds, isn’t too comfortable
Prior to sectioning however, it sounded like
the best radio ever.
Steve at 25.00 presides over an interview with
Jon Culshaw, a veteran of Viking FM along with
many other KC presenters, who comes across
ever warm, even if the impressions lacked wit.
At the time, “Dead Ringers” had finished
it’s television run in a not untimely manner.
It was funny to start with on the radio, but it
soon became a case of too many sketches
stating the obvious, as ridiculed brilliantly
by Richard Herring in his “Menage A Un” stand-up.
Not to mention a reliance on “If in doubt,
throw in some random song lyrics“.
Traits still prevailing in the revived series
on BBC Radio 4.
As well as Culshaw, the then England football
manager and utter twazzock (“wally with the brolly”
is far too kind) Steve McClaren was one of the special
guests on launch, officially opening
the station’s studios.
He was probably stopping off in Hull, before
getting a ferry to Holland in order to brush up
on his Dutch accent.
At 31.07, we hear from mid-morning presenter
Clare Westwood formerly of Stray FM and TFM.
She reminded me of former CBBC presenter
Kirsten O’Brien, and it was nice to hear a
female presenter on mid-mornings
with the warmth that Jo Whiley and
Edith Bowman could only dream of.
Although the audio was recorded on a Friday,
Clare would soon be hosting a shorter show
on that day of the week, owing to a syndicated show
from Dave Lee Travis.
Thankfully, his slot was taken over by
Tony Blackburn the following January.
Around the same time, Clare was moved
from the rather lengthy 10am-2pm slot to
a 1-4pM afternoon show before departing
the station altogether one year to the day
it launched, in August 2008.
I’ve still got the rather nice e-mail
she sent me, on the day of her departure.
Other presenters on launch included
“Crown Jules” with the Rock Show and
newcomer Rosie Madison, now co-hosting
The Danny Mylo Show on Pulse 1 in Bradford.
A trail for Al Dupres’s show can be heard at 33.29,
where to start with the station used the promo
theme from the jingle package a bit too literally,
as it’s also heard to trail both Steve Jordan’s show
at 46.19 and future KCFM programme
controller Shaun Tilley’s Sunday evening
retro chart show at 44.17.
They didn’t even attach the end tag to them,
though it was used as a stand-alone jingle.
They did start airing more individual sounding
trails within a few months, with a very funky
sounding one for Claire’s All-Request Lunch,
which itself can be heard taking place at 38.54.
After overnight and sports presenter
Matthew Rudd says goodbye on his nightly
mid-evening sports phone-in at, Steve Jordan’s
back at 48.58 with his first “Night At The 80s”.
I bet Rudd at the time was thinking
“it should have been my show”…
(Do give his “Forgotten 80s” show a listen
on Absolute 80s on Sundays if you get the chance.)
This show was one of the most popular
on KCFM, with lots of e-mail and phone requests,
for lesser heard 80s tunes.
I got a few on myself, including on the first
show Level 42, though we’ve already had one
on-air mention this episode.
One caller heard at 51.26, asks for a spinning of Journey,
which had quite a following in Hull, years before
its resurgence at the end of the decade.
The heightened excitement of listening to KCFM
as a standalone station did become too big a cause
of what lead to me going really bonkers
later on that August.
After coming out of hospital I started listening
more moderately and in my comedown state
I realised that maybe it wasn’t all that exciting
in rainy autumnal conditions.
Which may have been a real reflection of
what Hull was like.
I seem to remember them playing Mika’s
“Happy Ending” a fair number of times,
which added to the unsettled feeling.
It was to get worse in 2009, as in June that year,
the station was bought out by the Lincs FM group
in a rich twist of irony, as they’d failed to win
the Hull license with their own bid “White Rose Radio”.
Although the name didn’t transfer, many
hallmarks of the group did over the course
of a year with Steve Jordan being the
first casualty, departing breakfast (and the
80s show) after two years in August 2009.
The music policy was tightened, live sports
coverage and specialist shows were ditched,
and by 2010 the superb TM jingles were replaced
by a package from S2 Blue, not the same one
as their sister stations, but retaining
the same melody logo.
All traces of individuality were removed,
in spite of Lincs FM’s policy of no networked
programmes, a trait that someday
they’ll finally have to admit defeat.
Especially as they’re a shadow of the entertaining
stations they once were, when Duncan Newmarch
and Maria Richmond were on there.
No wonder they’re now at the BBC.
8 years on, only one presenter from the original
line-up remains at KCFM, proof overall that
good things never stand still in radio.
But would they still be good if they did?
Just look at Chris Moyles.
Whilst everything was happy in Hull back in
August ’07, further down South, Capital Gold
and Classic Gold were to merge together as “Gold”
following Gcap’s purchase of the former GWR
AM stations from Unique.
The on-air changeover was presided with
not too much fanfare, at 7pm on Friday
the 2nd of August.
The launch itself with Greg Edwards is heard at 56.20,
and to start with little change on-air was made
to the Gold brand, even retaining the Music 4
Capital Gold news intro.
Greg lasted for about another year, before
being dropped in Autumn ’08 eventually
reappearing on Jazz FM for a short period
in 2010 standing in for Robbie Vincent on
Sunday mornings whilst he was ill.
Nowadays Greg can be found on DAB station Mi-Soul.
The biggest changes to the network were
at breakfast, with the local breakfast shows
on the former Capital Gold stations dropped
in favour of local voice-tracked afternoon shows ,
which themselves were eventually dropped by 2010.
This was in favour of a networked breakfast show
from Kid Jensen and Erika North, the female half
retained from Classic Gold whilst Tony Blackburn
was given his marching orders.
Blackburn still had his Saturday lunchtime
soul show on BBC London but also managed to
find a new radio home, and within my reach
which we’ll hear shortly.
The knowing jokes towards his former station
of residence may explain why he didn’t transfer
over to Gold.
As for Gambo’s little quip, I’m guessing “Sexyback”
was the song he would be singing this year
if anyone’s speeches dragged on.
Chris Moyles is back from holiday at 57.13, with a
new set of jingles, introduced to coincide with
a new set of features.
I wasn’t a big fan of the “Morning Rock” IDs used
from August ’07 to December ’08, as they sounded
rather pub-rock, and lacked the anticipatory
builds from the last set as heard at 8.56.
Though maybe that was the intention, as the
bigger suits at Radio 1 had an influence on the
musical direction of the IDs, possibly wanting
a more raw, rocky, and less showbiz feel
to the new jingles.
The first show back from holiday was a rather
unusual set up, with Comedy Dave on a live
link up from home, as his soon to be second
wife Jayne had given birth to little Nicole,
with more jingles specially made
for the occasion at 1:03:43.
Nicely timed too, for the arrival at 58.40 of
“Birthday Corner”, of which the jingle shares
musical similarities to the old Aquafresh
ad from the late 80s (as resurrected 20 years later)
and a certain window advertisement that we’ll
be hearing later on…
This item was supposedly introduced as
a response to “market research” that the show
wasn’t appealing enough to young mothers
with toddlers, so the rather cute (if not tongue
in cheek) feel to it, hopefully pleased all.
It was rather odd that in the post-phone in
competition suspension, Moyles now encouraged
listeners to send in birthday cards that wouldn’t
even be seen, let alone not getting read out on air.
The feature was dropped in early 2008,
though made a one off return in the run up
to the final show, five years later.
Though regarding it’s resemblance to CBeebies,
it would be a taster of what was to come when
sectioned, as watching the channel was my
one way other than radio, of staying calm.
Along with CBBC which just four days before
I was let out, changed their idents, and saw
the departure of another crush from that era,
Gemma Hunt, who herself is now on
“Swashbuckling” on CBeebies.
If you’ve never seen it, imagine a pirate
themed “Fun House” for pre-school children
with Melanie and Martina replaced by
pirate pantomime vilains “Cook”,
“Line” and “Sinker”.
Funny how along with “Space Pirates“, two of
CBeebies best ever shows are of a nautical theme.
Which I suppose is ironic, considering the
time period of this episode is almost 40 years
to the day when the Marine Offences Act
went into place.
Also heard at 1.01.22, another new item of which
the jingle was better than the feature itself,
“Who Knows Dom”.
The short-lived replacement for
“One Road Travel” later resurfaced as
“Just Ask Dom” when the show moved
to it’s 6:30am start time in October.
At 1.07.05 Tony Blackburn’s back, with a new show
at KMFM on Sunday afternoons between
4 and 7pm, pre-recced but not voice-tracked.
KM were quick to promote Blackburn for
all his worth, as shown below in this
backpage article from the Extra newspaper.
Preceding him is Spencer James with the
weekend request slot “The KMFM Takeover”
later borrowing a cue from Corinne Bailey-Rae
and renamed “Put My Record On!”.
The nature of the preceding show and Blackburn’s
being pre-recorded means it’s entirely fine that
The Style Council’s “Long Hot Summer” got played
twice within 20 minutes that afternoon.
Not so good if you’re one of those types who
loved Paul Weller in The Jam and as a solo
artist, but not the sophisto-pop in between.
Tony’s show took over from the “A List” chart
which was abandoned altogether by the end
of 2007, partly due to the loss of Bailey’s as
sponsor, and Global Radio who had just brought
the Chrysalis network having their own
Listening to the first show that weekend felt
even better, with the weather holding a rare
spell of bright sunshine for that summer,
not least with high temperature tunes
to match, where as well as the Style Council,
there was also that of Bobby Goldsboro’s
ever-saucy “Summer The First Time”.
Having previously hosted a breakfast show
sponsored by Danish Bacon, Blackburn’s vegetarian
principles wouldn’t have been hurt by the Britelite
Windows ad at 01.10.10, and the return of the Wurzels,
with the infamous 3 Little Pigs song, now adapted
for the Kent-based window outlet.
Another West Country accented ad can be
heard at 01.16.42, and to hear them again only
heightened my daze of believing radio of
a golden age was back.
I would use the term “radio like it used to be”
but we all know that’s a ridiculous concept altogether.
Mainly because radio didn’t used to
be voice tracked all the time…
The new show was sponsored by P&O Ferries,
which still remains the case 8 years on, as
Tony still hosts Sunday afternoons on KMFM,
though the show’s format has changed to
one of number ones from over the last 30 years.
In 2007, Blackburn’s Sunday show was more of
a freewheeling affair, “opening up his record box”
and repeatedly going on in his usual manner
over how “we don’t play all the same songs
like all the other stations!”.
He’s also heard speaking over his music bed,
still used to this day on his BBC London and
various shows, “Soul Brothers” from the Bruton
music library, as penned by Jean Pierre-Fabien.
In an interview with the Radio Magazine in 2008,
Blackburn spoke about his frustration of radio
stations repeatedly playing the one ABBA song,
As he didn’t play that song to death every week,
oh no, he played “Knowing Me Knowing You”
every week, as heard at 01.11.24.
A classic case of “Pot Kettle Blackburn”.
Seriously though, as with KCFM, listening to
the show after coming out of sectioning, didn’t
feel as exciting as when it started that August,
and it did get repetitive.
But a presenter who’s still a good listen now
and again, especially when hosting Pick Of
The Pops, where it’s safe to say that Fluff’s
famous theme tune has now become Tony’s
He won’t be escaping easily from this episode.
KMFM in ’07 as a whole was getting better,
with specialist music shows at weekends
such as Richard Walters Rock Show on Fridays,
and Chris Finn’s chillout show on Saturday nights.
There was also the arrival of new jingles in October
from TM Studios, resung from “PLJ ’07”.
The original custom was a good package,
taking a heritage melody logo dating back over
45 years, and making it relevant to present day
music, with the IDs themselves written
by Barry Young.
In addition to the PLJ cuts, were a couple of
more traditional sounding IDs for Tony Blackburn,
resung from a package penned by jingle veteran
Bruce Upchurch called “Miami’s Coast”.
The same man behind the KVIL package
as used by KCFM.
Station PD Rik Scott (who also c0-produced the rather
crazy sweepers with vintage Blackburn JAM acapellas
in this selection) can be heard showing off
the jingles below.
The new jingles showed signs of a better sounding station,
if a bit rocky for the format, first airing not long after
arriving in Maidstone.
Having taken over what used to be CTR 106.5
that September, KMFM was indeed everywhere.
A year later the jingles switched to a more
consistent sounding resing of Viking FM ’06
as written by Dave Bethell, who penned a few
additional cuts for KMFM during his short stint
as a presenter in 2009.
And credit to both Rik and Rob, two people who
to this day are of a rare breed in radio, with an
understanding of really good on-air identification.
Not least as Rik has been voicing the intro jingles
for this very series.
Back in ’07 Kirstyn Read can be heard at 01.17.13,
in her long running Sunday evening show.
She shortly moved to the Friday night 80s Show
as well as co-hosting KMFM Ashford’s Breakfast
show with John “Webbo” Webster.
At 1.18.18, a brief illustration of what radio genuinely
sounded like whilst I was recovering in hospital
James Waters (ex SGR Colchester in the 90s) making
a farewell speech from Sheppey community radio
station BR-FM , a station that he helped launch
less than a year earlier.
Accompanied by the theme tune to a TV show,
that many radio presenters can only dream
I’m no one to talk, as the key cause of me
going bonkers, was trying to find the sound effect
adapted for the gunge tank, from the BBC Sound
I’ve managed to find it in the clear since, and at one time it used to be
the alarm clock on my smartphone.
A bit too effective maybe?
That said, there are many other audio rarities
from radio which were also part of the cause,
that I am still yet to find…
I later ended up working alongside Waters
for a few years at my current station CSR FM
in Canterbury, where it’s fair to say it was
rather raucous, and at times a little too hard
Something both of us have realised in hindsight.
Though from the Sheppey station just over
five years later, this on-air resignation
is even worse, with another Edmonds influence
at the beginning, as also heard in episode 2.
The only tears I’m getting when listening to it
are those of hysterics.
As of typing, Waters has relocated back not too
far from Sheppey, on Sittingbourne
community station SFM.
One month later and it’s 40th birthday
celebrations galore at BBC Radio 1 and 2.
Starting off at 1.19.19 with JK and Joel, followed by
a few trails for Radio 2’s special day, this should have
been something I was supposed to get excited about,
but in my post-med comedown, listening felt like
a chore in itself.
Tony Blackburn joins Moyles live in the studio at 1.22.00,
where for the first half hour they attempted to
recreate the first show by playing all the records
in exactly the same order, but settled down
shortly afterwards into general anoraking.
And with no better person, than Tony’s first producer
and eventual controller of Radio 1, Johnny Beerling,
(1.30.10) the man who wrote the lyrics to many
of Radio 1’s Dallas sung jingles including
the infamous “Glasgow Square” from the 1984 package,
resung from “The Best Show” originally written
for Denver’s KIMN.
It’s weird with Tony in the studio, as they
introduced the “Best Sound” jingles on-air
a week after he departed Radio 1.
Just two days after the broadcast, I met Blackburn
in person, at a book signing at Bluewater, in spite
of the side effects of my illness rendering me
unable to stay still for more than 10 seconds.
Moyles wasn’t happy on joining Radio 1
ten years earlier, at the lack of on-air
celebrations for the station’s 30th birthday,
but having adapted a more mainstream
approach than in 1997, they were more than
happy to include a few remixed jingles
in their 40th anniversary imaging.
It was also around the same time that Moyles
resurrected “The Golden Hour” having done so
two years previously out of pure indulgence
on a canal boat outside broadcast.
From mid-October onwards the item, and it’s
many vintage Radio 1 jingles became a Friday
fixture of his breakfast show, as well as the
show as a whole given an extra half-hour,
starting at 6:30am.
The day I was let out of hospital happened
to be the same day that the schedule changes
for Autumn ’07 were announced at Radio 1,
with the surprise departure of JK and Joel
after three years at the station.
They would be replaced on early breakfast
by newcomer Greg James fresh from student
radio at just 21 years old, who won best male
at 2005’s Student Radio Awards.
Taking over from them on the chart
were Fearne Cotton and Reggie Yates,
or more realistically, Reggie Yates,
and Fearne, sometimes…
They were possibly brought in as the warm up
for Radio 1’s contribution to what ended up
being the BBC’s stillborn strand aimed
at teenagers “BBC Switch” which featured
the questionable choice of Kelly Osborne
as the new host of the Sunday Surgery.
Switch was eventually dropped altogether in 2010
amid the cuts in the BBC’s “Delivering Quality First”
plan, though the departure of Switch prompted
no mass protests outside of Broadcasting House
to save it.
Further changes at weekends from October ’07
included Vernon Kay reduced to one show on
Saturday mornings, and Dick And Dom
taking over the Sunday morning “lie-in” slot
where they always seemed to be playing “Gipsy Woman”
by Crystal Waters.
The duo from Da Bungalow were to radio presenting
what JK and Joel were to children’s television presenting.
Not as good at it, as they were (and still are)
in their main professions.
JK and Joel can be heard in snippets from their
final show at 1.33.04, which I can remember listening to,
and desperately trying to stay still in my
recovering manic state.
Although the whole day had been video-streamed
from breakfast the live stream was stopped after
4pm which even the pair themselves questioned on-air.
Whilst Moyles had been blessed with Tony Blackburn
in the studio, and Zoe Ball and Sara Cox hosted a
double-header before them, JK and Joel had to make do
with pre-recorded interviews of Bruno Brookes
and Mark Goodier reminiscing on their respective
memories of hosting the chart in a special edition
of “The Retro”.
It wasn’t as entertainingly nostalgic as it
could have been, though maybe the bosses
wanted the duo’s departure not to be too indulgent,
as Moyles had done more than his fair share
of wallowing in Radio 1’s past.
JK and Joel later mentioned in an interview
in the Guardian that their departure came
as a result of over-ambition, as due to their
hectic TV filming schedule, they wanted out
from earlies, with sights set on Edith Bowman’s
In an ideal world, it would have been a return
to the whimsy provided by the Dundee woman
and Colin Murray, but it wasn’t to be,
with Edith and her movie babble languishing
for two more years.
The chart itself that week saw the usual array
of odd entries, including Phil Collins’
“In The Air Tonight” after its performance
by the drumming gorilla in the Cadbury’s ad,
and Jonny Trunk and Wiseby’s “The Lady’s Bras”.
A 30 second song championed by Scott Mills,
based melodically around the library track “The Gonk”.
Do give the album “Dirty Fan Male” a listen
if you get a chance.
The duo’s final moments, were rather poignant
especially with the farewell link done dry, and Joel’s final words
paying homage to Bruno Brookes, (and possibly former
on-air rival Simon Hirst during his stint on Hit 40 UK).
It felt like a moment where a public figure had
died, and sort of put a downer on the birthday celebrations,
that day, despite being followed by Annie Nightingale,
and Annie Mac immediately after.
JK and Joel would return to the radio in 2008 when
the ever delightful David Lloyd snapped them up at
Virgin Radio where they spent just over half a year
on weekend mid-mornings.
As for the chart as a whole, Radio 1 not only
ushered in new presenters, but a new imaging
package for the show, made by IQ Beats in Seattle,
lasting for over four years on air.
So that rounds off a rather bonkers selection
of radio, from what was a bonkers period in life.
The final episode and blog in this series
(and possibly forever) will be up before 2015 is out,
and it’s going to be more than a little honest.
Double figures, and dial twiddling as per usual
as we enter the 10th episode of WRUTSL
looking back at the radio of the “innocent”
half of 2007.
Before radio got caught misbehaving itself
and deceiving listeners who in actual fact,
were gullible enough to enter the competitions
they had very little chance of winning even if
their entries were counted.
And on a personal level, it was the period
before I went bonkers.
We start off with a station that has resulted
in many people feeling as if they’re trapped
in 1987 when listening.
A top of hour junction at London’s Heart
which by now was sharing shows bar breakfast
and drive with the Midlands stations.
Hence the launch of a network-wide ID package
from IQ Beats, containing a series of themes
building up to those three immortal words
“This Is Heart”.
And I must say, I really liked this ID package and
the station as of then, as it represented the busy
but lively mood of London.
“Club Classics” was always a listening staple in halls,
or at mates’ houses via their Sky box before
a Friday night out in Central.
By the end of ’07 Heart would be owned by
a different company altogether, not that you’d
hear a difference on air, unlike at sister station LBC.
A new news jingle for 2007 at Radio 1 at 2.12
retaining the melody logo, but sounding
less lively and more authoritative than the last.
This lasted 4 and a half years on the station albeit
with a few (slightly unecessary) remixes.
Entering his fourth year at Breakfast at 2.54,
Chris Moyles with the first airing
of “The Brand New Cheesy Song” recorded
along with all the other new jingles at Abbey Road.
The song may have been introduced as a holding
device, as Moyles had a habit of arriving in the studio
seconds, or quite often minutes, after the show
It became hard to envisage the show starting
without it, even if earlier audio in this series
And still to this day on Radio X, well, the first
thirty seconds anyway, as part of a gag that they
supposedly forgot to drop after the first show.
And the lyrics over the years would become
even more ridiculous than, “# Hull, birthplace
of Amy Johnson“.
New talkover beds were introduced including the
swing sounding one at 4.39, and another more upbeat
“retro” theme, that was later adapted for Moyles’
Channel 4 “Quiz Night” series in 2009.
The show’s closing theme (12.53) was also updated
with the addition of strings, so stirring, it was
enough for Moyles to play them solo, the day
after recording them in November ’06 as heard below.
You can’t help but just weep on hearing them.
The new year saw the much awaited return
of Carpark Catchphrase heard at 6.21, this round
left on tenterhooks due to running short of time
as often became the case.
This was probably the early origins of “The Quiz Elephant”
noise as stolen from another show.
Though like the “Cheesy Song” it’s hard to imagine
a time when Carpark Catchphrase was played
on a Friday, as the Golden Hour was brought back
not long after this period.
At 3.59 we hear a cleverly constructed/gritty sounding
trail for Colin Murray’s late night show.
Most of the tunes in there as you’d guess
have a theme of “Movin” apart from the one
at the end, Evening Session favourite “AM 180”
by Grandadddy which by now was used as the
theme for Charlie Brooker’s “Screenwipe”.
With Radio 1 increasing its specialist output
from late 2006, Murray, since September was
cast away from the shackles of afternoons
(much to the disappointment of many
listeners), and now hosting the late evening
Monday to Thursday slot.
Thus meaning the end of Lamacq Live, but
the host stayed at Radio 1 for a couple
I still can’t think of that show without visualizing
the BBC TV trail for it on launch 8 years earlier,
accompanied by the Verve’s “Lucky Man”.
Lammo, also a regular contributor to the Murray
hosted Fighting Talk on 5 Live, having recently
taken over from Christian O’Connell who had
joined Virgin Radio’s breakfast show after
5 years on XFM’s.
With Murray being Radio 1’s first regular late night
host since the death of John Peel, each night took
a different agenda with Wednesdays being
As I was taking a university module in radio
documentaries and assembled features
around the time of the show’s launch,
I listened to the first one in that slot about
illegal raves, and it sounded as if Radio 1 were
afraid the mere mention of the word
“documentary” would be a big turn off
for its audience.
To the point that it was split into two halves
where at the end of the first, Murray was heard
exclaiming with excitement; “On what sort of
documentary would you hear “Loaded”
by Primal Scream?”
It wasn’t all bad, as Tuesday nights saw the
much treasured “Black Hole Of Radio 1”
later renamed “Audio Bully”
A listener suggested soundscape (or mash up)
of songs blended with speech from films and
TV shows as well as the occasional theme tune,
perfectly suited for that time of night.
Shortly before leaving the BBC for talkSPORT
in 2013, Colin hosted a similar series on 6 Music
with themed soundscapes, the highlight being
a 30 minute journey from love to hate, starting
off with The Divine Comedy’s “Songs Of Love”
and finishing with Napalm Death’s “You Suffer”.
Mick Brown and the Capital Gold London
breakfast show is heard at 13.59.
A show and station that at the time I was
heavily analysing as part of a practical radio module
at uni, where I was the host of a two hour assessed
oldies show, presented as if it was broadcast
on the soon to be twilight-destined Capital Gold.
Only that within the team, we had to make
our own jingles rather than simply half-inch the
ones by Vibe that were still being used.
I’ll spare you from hearing the show itself,
but here’s one of the ads which at the end sounds
like a bollocking from the headmaster.
Split into two groups, the other opted for
a soul format to be broadcast on Smooth FM,
a station which was also in transition mode.
As I was hosting a show of the same genre on the
student radio station at the same time, it was fun
to observe, and difficult to avoid helping out
the music team, when given a spare moment.
That, in spite of the group being marked down
for leaning too close to Smooth’s station-wide
music policy, with the lecturer confused as to
why The Crystals, and The Drifters would be
played on a soul/funk show.
The module was of such a high, that the one in
the latter half of the semester on podcasting
felt like a comedown, the stresses of it lead
to me having to go home for a weekend,
in what unbeknownst at the time, was
my “first mental outburst” that year.
One of which a very tiny low, ignited
the fuse of what soon became a gradually
A nice twist on the “guess the year” competition
at 22.33, ditching the whole premise with
“Play Your Charts Right”.
An item later “borrowed” by Radio 1’s
Matt Edmondson, though to be fair
the game itself was loosely adapted from
the British version of the gameshow “Card Sharks”.
This edition recorded on the 79th birthday
of the show’s host with an impression to boot.
The music bed spoken over by Brown at 25.09 is
the rare-groover “Six Million Steps” by Rhanni Harris,
and it’s fair to say that Mick had a fair few cool-sounding
speaking-over tracks, including at one time “Chime”
by The Orbital.
Sadly, Brown was to be a victim of the merger
with Classic Gold to “Gold” in August ’07,
losing his breakfast show to one that was networked.
The host made a statement on his final show,
reflecting on how Capital’s original studios on
Euston Road felt like a radio station, whereas the
current Leicester Square location (on the verge
of becoming “The Death Star”) resembled an
Though the shorter-haired half of Pat And Mick,
did find a radio refuge, back at Radio Brick Lane.
No he didn’t, he moved to Solar Radio indulging
in his love of soul music, eventually resurfacing
on Radio Jackie in South London.
Dean Martin, heard at 27.25, survived the shake-up
at Gold continuing to host the evening request
show up to 2014, when Gold became an jock-free
station apart from at breakfast, and disappeared
from AM apart from in London, switching to
At 32.55, a technical cock-up, handled with the
most well-thought back-up plan.
Ken Bruce in early May that year, presenting
his show live from a cruise liner alongside
the winning bidders of a prize in the 2006
Children In Need auction.
The O/B equipment had a tendency to repeatedly
drop out after a certain length of time,
though luckily, newsreader Charles Nove is
on hand with a spare copy of the questions
to keep the game going.
And fair dos on both the sporting contestants
winning the DAB radio.
I could sympathise with the whole situation,
as at uni we’d been blessed with our own O/B device
“Scoopy”, a provider of similar frustrating unreliability,
and labelled by many students as “a piece of shit” .
It could have been that very device Ken Bruce was using.
Elsewhere at BBC Radio 2, Chris Evans by now had
settled into Drivetime where after a shaky start
in April ’06, just six months after joining the
station on Saturday afternoons, he had managed
to make the slot his own, and was a far more
likeable character on air, than the laddish one
at Virgin 5 years prior.
Johnnie Walker meanwhile was moved to
a Sunday teatime slot replacing a pensioned-off
Ed Stewart, though Walker would still be Wogan’s
first choice of stand-in over his many holidays
for the next three years.
Further changes to the weekday schedule came
in April ’07 when Mark Radcliffe and Stuart Maconie
were joined together with a nightly show from
Oxford Road on Mondays to Thursdays, introducing
features such as “The Chain” introduced by
the voice of Gordon Burns, and still running
to this day on their BBC 6 Music show.
It’s surprising how they haven’t been sued
for the feature by Comedy Dave…
The new show meant certain Radio 2 specialist
shows were either moved, shortened, or in some
cases dropped altogether with Nick Barraclough
departing Radio 2 and moving to the new
Smooth Radio at GMG to host their new country show,
which lasted just over a year.
Simon Mayo’s Monday night album chart,
also bid farewell that month.
As for Ken Bruce, if that trip to sea wasn’t
embarrassing enough, Popmaster fell victim
in July to the BBC’s suspension of competitions.
It was swiftly replaced by “Celebrity Popmaster”
where for the rest of ’07, Bruce spent 20 minutes
every morning trying to control two over-excited
celebrity contestants who knew very little about music.
Not helped that they weren’t even given
the “5-4-3-2-1” if strapped for an answer.
It was a situation more awkward, than the
short-lived premise of getting the two callers
head to head with each other at the same time,
but due to the BBC’s “strategic review” of competitions,
they couldn’t abandon the celeb premise as quickly.
Bruce even admitted his frustration surrounding
the item in his “Tracks Of My Years” autobiography
published two years later.
We finish our first spell in ’07 with another
10 Hour Takeover, recorded from Whit Week
and four days before leaving uni in London
for a second summer, this time on a high.
Probably too big a high by this stage.
Radio 1’s latest arrivals Dick and Dom kick it all off
at 42.54, who at the time filled the Friday
early breakfast slot for JK and Joel.
Who in turn were in Dick and Dom’s old television haunt
of Saturday mornings, but with an hour long show
“Hider In The House“.
A series involving children trying to dupe
their parents by smuggling a celebrity (loosely)
into their house, and attempting 8 messy challenges
over two days without getting caught.
Seeing that show later in the year whilst
recovering from hypomania was a harsh reminder
of how in the two years I was caught up in
the university bubble, Saturday morning television
as a generation once knew it, had disappeared.
A situation that took quite a while to accept,
but after writing a nostalgic lookback,
charting the genre’s 30 year history, I moved on from it.
Maybe there’s hope for my radio obsession
becoming less so, when this series has finished.
The 2007 Takeover saw Chappers and Dave
holding the fort from 10am until 1, Edith Bowman
in her usual afternoon slot at 45.37, and
the Chuckle Brothers themselves rounding
it off from 4 until 7pm.
JK and Joel were in their element hosting the
takeover, but due to circumstances that we’ll
focus on in more detail in the next episode,
Radio 1’s 5th outing would be their last.
And there’s a good chance that by September ’07,
the station-wide trail finishing this episode at 47.13
as soundtracked by Reverend and the Makers
would be put out to pasture.
It’s only going to get more chaotic, and in the
case of my own listening habits of the time,
unrealistic, as you’ll hear from the latter half of ’07,
in the penultimate episode of WRUTSL.