The Listening List – March 2016

Quite a while since I last wittered about wireless, so let’s give it another go.

PM – BBC Radio 4 (29.02.16)


In the early 90s living in East London, whilst I would be sat at home in front of
Yvette, John and Diane on Blue Peter, my dad would normally be driving home
from his job as a lecturer in Canterbury listening to one of the programme’s
former presenters co-hosting PM on BBC Radio 4.

Both Valerie Singleton, and George Fenton’s theme tune of that era used up to 1997,
were brought back for a leap day special alongside regular host Eddie Mair
and used to almost full effect.

Whilst the theme tune was used to introduce and end the programme, the
sustained sting wasn’t used to introduce the quarter-hour headlines which
was a little bit of a downer, but overall a nostalgic listen.

George Fenton who wrote the theme, was possibly the television equivalent of
Jon Wolfert, as growing up I would hear his musical signatures on television
almost every day, which  like the close-harmonies of JMW,
became the foundations of my obsession with the medium.

Whilst the signature tune of a more serious era of PM has been brought back
for one day, the wit associated with Eddie remains, including near
the end of the programme where Val attempts to undergo
the much derived leap day tradition live on-air.

A radio highlight of the year that won’t be easily forgotten.

Pick Of The Pops – BBC Radio 2 (27.02.16)


Familiarity is a common quality of many a radio listener.

And when repercussions of circumstances break that familiarity,
it can cause a degree of upset.

Not least with the many listeners planning to boycott Radio 2
betweeen the hours of 1 and 3pm on hearing that in place of
a sacked Tony Blackburn on Pick Of The Pops, is veteran
chart counter-downer Mark Goodier.

Some on the other hand were happy to stick with it.

Thankfully free of corny gags but retaining the PAMS jingles,
(the ones that don’t sing Tony Blackburn’s name) Goodybags is a natural fit.

Especially on the second chart on last Saturday’s show from 1988,
which as pointed out in the show was the first chart as counted down
by Goodier on Radio 1.

If anything it’s quite a refreshing listen, where the stand-in host
actually knows a thing or two about the music
played without getting too deep into detail.

Hopefully once free of scuffles from upper management,
Blackburn will be back on what is rightfully his show,
but at least it’s been left in the hands of a more than
qualified stand-in.

And with more years of chart rundown experience at that.

Radio Moments – Conversations – David Lloyd, Audioboom/InRadio (January 2016-)

The British radio industry has a rich history, yet nobody has attempted
to tell the story in great depth, certainly not of UK commercial radio.

Radio historian and overall enthusiast David Lloyd manages to achieve this
in a continuing series on Audioboom interviewing various figures who were there
and “helped make a difference to radio” as stated in the introduction, in this
beautifully produced series, with guests so far including former
Radio Trent MD Ron Coles, Orion colleague Phil Riley, GWR boss
Ralph Bernard, and “Mr Jingles” himself Steve England.

David Lloyd takes a back seat, letting the subjects themselves
do most of the talking, though the anecdotes themselves are very revealing.

One particular standout being John Evington, a presenter/manager
who after 22 years of service was let go from Staffordshire’s
Signal Radio in July 2005.
Just days before the 7/7 attacks, and a time when his expert
knowledge in dealing with such news was needed.

Hopeful future subjects for the series could include John Myers, Trevor Dann,
Richard Park, and maybe David Lloyd himself?

About Robin Blamires

I live in Margate and am interested in radio and music. Bipolar and ASD.
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