It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these.
Though there’s a fair bit of really good radio that’s just itching to be written about.
Desert Island Discs – Noel Gallagher – BBC Radio 4, 19th July
The arguably more talented member off of Oasis has always been a funny one.
Whilst less of a twazzock than his brother, it’s still hard for me to forgive the
High Flying Birds frontman for causing the Radio 2 schedule to run 6 minutes
late in November 2011 (including the first episode of Gloria Estefan’s Latin music
series) due to an indulgent encore of “Don’t Look Back In Anger” in the preceding
“In Concert” programme.
A song that in his interview with Kirsty Young, Gallagher claims took 15 minutes
to write, which is weird considering listening to the song feels a lot longer.
In all seriousness, it’s an enjoyable and revealing interview with a little bit
of confrontation between Gallagher and Young over the issue of domestic
abuse being common in working class families, and some really good record
choices, namely A Guy Called Gerald’s 1989 hit “Voodoo Ray”.
A tune that many will associate with ecstasy-filled nights at Manchester’s
Hacienda, though in my case, it transports me to a house in East London
seeing it on television on a Saturday morning with CGI dodgems and aeroplanes
overlaying the video.
It goes without saying that with the possible exception of “Wittertainment”
Desert Island Discs may be the best of the BBC’s podcasts, with the only
possible improvement being the inclusion of interview extracts that weren’t
heard on the radio to make up for the shortening of songs.
Stephanie Hirst’s “Nothing But The 90s” – BBC Radio Manchester, 4th-18th July
It’s hard to make sense of all the negative comments this show has been getting,
on the basis that it’s the right presenter but the wrong show, or the right show
but the wrong station.
Great radio is great radio, regardless of what station or platform it’s broadcast on,
and Stephanie Hirst is in her element with her fantastic musical knowledge
providing great anecdotes in between the records.
Add to that, the really good and well-written imaging as voiced by ex LWT announcer
Trish Bertram (also known for her lines on the Daily Dose) and 90s radio voiceover icons
John B Wells and Pamela Steele.
The show gets better every week, with an interview with “Mark Goodybags”
on the second show (1.23.06), nicely timed to coincide with the chart show switch
to Fridays, and asking “the man who’s got the best music” how he really felt
at having to announce Bryan Adams at the top spot for 16 weeks.
(Well, 14, as Tommy Vance stood in for two weeks in September that year).
It’s also good to hear kudos to Ric Blaxill, the last great producer
of Top Of The Pops.
If there are reasons for defending the BBC in these tough times,
this is definitely one of them.