July/Aug/Sept is here
Campaigns to save more shows
For some weeks, we have been publicising the campaign to save Roger Day's BBC Kent programme from the chop, now another has been launched to save Steve Scruton's show on BBC Essex. Steve is the man behind the idea for the station to turn itself for short periods into Pirate BBC Essex and broadcast from the LV18. Tony O'Neil of the Pharos Trust, the charity that owns the vessel, has launched this latest campaign.
(Left) Publicity from the Harwich and Manningtree Standard.
Sadly, many favourite BBC local radio DJs' jobs are threatened and loyal listeners throughout the country will be trying to save them. The best way to protest is to respond to the BBC Consultation. (Thanks to Mike Terry)
Anorak Francis inspired by Radio 270 hero
Congratulations to self-confessed Anorak, Francis Klonowski, who is celebrating 30 years' service to hospital radio. Francis joined Yorkshire's Radio Allerton originally because the station's co-founder was an offshore hero of his – the late Mike Barron of Radio 270.
In a novel twist on the pirate radio theme, on Astronomy FM, you can "Join Captains Marty and Diane as they share tall tales of the High Space Seas, on Space Pirate Radio."
Piracy on the NY Subway
A mobile network described as "a digital experiment/stunt/art project from the creative agency WeMakeCoolSh.it" is being tested on trendier routes of the New York City subway. The team behind it named it pirate radio, "in homage to the old British pirate radio stations that had a similar DIY, under-the-radar vibe." We hope they're talking ships and forts, rather than towerblocks.
'Sound of the Nation' supports Festival Launch
Caroline 199 was delighted to play at the John Hulley Olympic Festival Launch 2012 at Liverpool's Adelphi Hotel on October 29th. The band performed two sets. In the first, they were honoured to back well-known singer and Fab Forty artist, Beryl Marsden in her special guest slot; the second was a revised version of the 'Sound of the Nation' show. Both sets went down a storm with the black tie crowd, who enjoyed dancing the night away.
The gala dinner, organised by Liverpool Heartbeat, raised a substantial amount of money for the John Hulley appeal, the aim of which is 'Inspiring, motivating and exciting young people to lead healthy lifestyles'.
Right: Beryl Marsden
Far right: Cousin Moosie, Superstar, (poised on the mic stand, almost out of shot), Keith Gunson and Ian Forshaw.
Ebony and IvoryThe Detroit News reports that when Sir Paul McCartney visited the Motown Historical Museum for the first time this year, his chief objective was to visit Studio A. It was here that the Funk Brothers backed the likes of Smokey Robinson and Stevie Wonder, producing the Beatles' favourite Motown recordings.
Sir Paul was particularly keen to tinkle the ivories of the 1877 Steinway grand piano that had featured on so many hits. He was disappointed to learn that the instrument no longer played and offered to fund its restoration.
The piano has now been transported to Steinway & Sons in New York for work expected to take up to five months.
Steinway & Sons President of Americas, Ron Losby, told the newspaper his company was especially proud to be involved in restoring the historic piano in the New York factory where it was originally built.
(Thanks to Alan Hardy)
Baby You're a Rich Man
I've Just Seen a Face
A wealthy Canadian dentist has bought one of John Lennon's teeth for £19,500 at an auction in Stockport.
A Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band sleeve which has been changed to feature the faces of music executives in place of the Fab Four has been named the world's rarest album cover
BBC Essex Silver Anniversary
John Sales reports that his local station, BBC Essex, was 25 years old on Saturday 5th November 2011.
As part of the celebrations a special programme was aired at 1100, commemorating the station's first 25 years, including a number of early recording clips and a mention of Pirate BBC Essex.
"It was written and produced by Ray Clark," says John, "As are all the best radio documentaries."
Tuesday November 8th saw the station visit Pitsea market, where Ray told John that he was looking forward to attending the Amsterdam Radio Day and would be travelling to Amsterdam with Kevin Turner and Bill Rollins.
Pirate Radio Song
Ole Brinck Toxvaerd in Denmark has written and recorded a song dedicated to his favourite offshore stations.
Restoring ancient tellies
Rob Howard in Norwich has a successful business converting old black-and-white TV sets to be able to receive digital transmissions.
Ramsey Bay Manx Marine Reserve
Following the recent discovery of the painting featuring the Caroline North tender Essex Girl (see story below) we are now pleased to report that Ramsey Bay, where the ship was anchored, has just been designated the Isle of Man's first Marine Nature Reserve.
Essex Girl tender immortalised in Manx painting
"When I was in the Isle of Man recently, I photographed the painting that hangs prominently in the Creek Inn on the harbour, in my birthplace of Peel.
I suddenly realised that one of the fishing boats featured is the famous Caroline North tender Essex Girl, which was skippered by the well-remembered Peel seaman Harry Maddrell. I'm not sure who painted the picture, or when, but the view it depicts (with a Viking longboat and Peel Castle in the background) is about 50 yards up the harbour from the pub."
John Bennett, who runs the Radio Caroline North Triple F Facebook pages, discovered that Essex Girl can today be found in Fleetwood Docks. She's been converted to a house-boat (left) and renamed 'The Roving Swan'. (Photo: Trawler Photos)
Keith Milborrow writes:
"I was interested to read about Essex Girl, the Caroline North tender, and that Chris saw the painting at the Creek Inn 'in my birthplace of Peel'. I visited the pub earlier this year and did not realise the significance of the picture.
I also did not appreciate Chris had Manx connections. I discovered the IOM only recently and have visited the Island annually for the past three years – it is a lovely place. During my 2009 visit, I recall seeing somebody in the Terminus Tavern (or possibly the Queens Hotel) in Douglas and thinking 'he looks a bit like Chris Payne'. I had no reason then to think that person was Chris, but now I wonder if maybe it was. My visit was around May 2009 and I remember going past 'Chris' and humming 'Wonderful Radio London'. That that did not elicit any reaction, so either it wasn’t Chris or he did not hear my tuneful(?) rendition of the WRL jingle over the noise of the pub!"
We believe the person in question was Chris, as he was on the island in May 2009.
Battles of the Giants – The Rock 'n' Pop Years
For the past couple of years, as well as running the Official Elvis Presley Fan Club, Todd Slaughter has been working on a new comedy musical based on programmes heard on Radio Luxembourg.
The show had a celebrity premiere at the London Shaw Theatre on Wednesday, 2nd November 2011 and will be embarking on a UK tour in 2012. Former Radio Caroline and Radio Luxembourg DJs and staff attended and co-author Tony Prince introduced the show with a special tribute to the recently-departed Jimmy Saville.
'Battle of the Giants - The Rock 'n' Pop Years' is a musical comedy based around the iconic 208 programme, putting a radio show on the stage, complete with jingles, commercials and 46 songs, all 'Revived 45s', 'Golden Classics' and 'Blasts from the Past', performed by our exciting young cast and live musicians. Radio Luxembourg was the station that taught the nation how to spell K-E-Y-N-S-H-A-M, whilst we listened under the bedclothes, as we enjoyed our cups of Ovaltine.
'Battle of the Giants' is an interactive audience participation show with our visitors choosing the winning act from each performance. We will even include the news of the day and the 'Weather Word' – tongue-in-cheek of course. There will be local content for each location and on-screen vignettes from television archives with an amazing variety of personalities on our big screen including Cliff Richard and Tim Rice, talking about the great 208 and what the radio station did for their careers.
The show features pre-recorded links from Tony Prince, Emperor Rosko, Paul Burnett, Bob Stewart, and off-air spurts from the legendary Kenny Everett. This is the nostalgic 60s show with attitude, written by Todd Slaughter and former Radio Caroline and Luxembourg presenter, Your Royal Ruler, Tony Prince, with Paul Burnett providing the funny one-liners.
Tour dates for the show for 2012, starting in February, are now on the battleofthegiants.co.uk website.
A Daily Mail article about Tony Booth's 80th birthday party, hosted by his daughter Cherie Blair, refers to the snubbing of Lucy Thomas, one of the actor's eight daughters by five different mothers. The ex-Prime Minister's wife was unaware of her half-sister Lucy's existence until 2002. Lucy's mother Annie Gannon worked at 17 Curzon Street for Radlon Sales and was there at the Radio London closedown in 1967, but we have heard nothing of her since. Lucy, who was born around that time (when her mother was aged 23) had until fairly recently been living in Australia.
The only clue we have ever had to Annie's whereabouts was in 2005, when we learnt that her name was then Lavers and she lived in London, but no information has been forthcoming since.
People who worked with Annie at Radio London are very interested to know what became of her, but Annie's current whereabouts are not mentioned in the feature. An attempt to contact Paul Scott, who wrote the Birthday Party feature, has not received a response.
Anyone with news of Annie, please get in touch
(Thanks to Jon Myer)
The Caroline Story – The 1980s
Chris Edwards reports
Offshore Echoes' Caroline story continues through 1985, with the station celebrating her 21st birthday.
Offshore radio was enjoying a popular revival, since Laser 558 had arrived the previous year. The UK authorities and UK commercial stations were unhappy with the situation, and Summer 1985 saw a siege against the offshore stations. By the end of the year, Laser had lost the battle, but Radio Caroline survived and continued.
Twenty-four more pages have been added to the story, complete with photos, press reports and audio and video, in what was an eventful year for offshore radio.
Visit the offshore themes web pages.
The Animals' friend Steve
Radio London webmaster and Chief Engineer, Chris Payne was delighted to meet a long-time hero at the Stables theatre, Wavendon recently, when Stax legend Steve Cropper appeared as a guest of the Animals and Friends. Steve happily chatted to fans and signed autographs after the show.
Chris wore a special teeshirt for the occasion, which had been given to him on a visit to Memphis by famous radio station WDIA.
|'Are We Still Rolling'?
Phill Brown has been a Sound Recording Engineer/Producer for the past 40 years. He worked at the Olympic and Island Studios with stars such as Jimi Hendrix, Bob Marley, Led Zeppelin, Roxy Music and not forgetting Knees Club members David Bowie, Jeff Beck, Brian Parrish, Paul Gurvitz and Jess Roden!
He has recently released 'Are We Still Rolling?' – a book published by Tape Op Books, (it has no less than eight five-star reviews on Amazon) and covers sessions from 1967 - 2010, the changing face of the music business, drug abuse, technology, and the reality of working 100-hour weeks.
Robert Palmer says in his introduction, "In the past thirty years recording studios have moved from the engine room of a submarine to the bridge of a starship - baffling the outsider. What Phill Brown has written is an adventure story."
Visit Phill's website for a more detailed artist list, and more information on the book.
Reykjavík Peace Tower relit
On October 9th, to commemorate John Lennon's birthdate, his widow Yoko Ono Lennon relit the Imagine Peace Tower in Reykjavík, Iceland. On the Peace Tower website, she writes:
Please ask all your friends to join us by Tweeting wishes to IMAGINE PEACE TOWER (@IPTower). You can also send wishes by post, email & Facebook.
Tell all your friends. Spread the word!
I hope the IMAGINE PEACE TOWER will give light to the strong wishes of World Peace from all corners of the planet and give encouragement, inspiration and a sense of solidarity in a world now filled with fear and confusion. Let us come together to realise a peaceful world.
Love is our energy.
Wisdom is our power.
It’s time to shed light to all corners of the world.
Enjoy the trip we make together.
Yoko Ono Lennon
October 2011 The tower will now remain lit until Dec 8, then from Dec 21-28, Dec 31, 2011 and then March 21-28, 2012. (Right: commemorative stamp.)
Asked about his intended audience in an interview with the Edmonton Journal about his new film 'Campus Radio', director and producer Aaron James Sorenson says:
"I guess I now realize it's for people who have that deep relationship with music where it's their best friend. This is a guy who, when the going gets tough, he turns to his vinyl record collection. He doesn't really have any close friends; he goes to his music. There are a few of us like that."
Ray Clark from BBC Essex says: "You might like to have a bit of fun with these two pictures of pirate ships entering Bridlington harbour: A black-and-white one from 1966 and one from this summer! The boat moored on the left of the colour photo is the Yorkshire Princess which I think used to visit the 270 ship."
We notice there's a man on the end of the harbour who's been there since 1966! Would that be an Anorak of long-standing? Sorry, I think we have Tony Blackburn disease.