Friday, 18 August 2017

Radio Review: 18 August

A tear for Glen Campbell and a boo for bad comedy

Written by Louis Barfe
Listening to a turn from the Edinburgh Fringe on the Radio 2 Arts Show with Jonathan Ross last week (Thursdays, R2, 10pm-Midnight), I was so dismayed by the quality of the comedy on offer that I’ve decided to mount my own Fringe show next year. It’s clear that anybody can do it. I shan’t name the act in question, out of kindness. Louis-Barfe-colour-176

Earlier, ‘Whispering’ Bob Harris had marked the sad but merciful passing of the great Glen Campbell by devoting the bulk of his country show (Thursdays, R2, 7-8pm) to the man and his music. I’ll admit to having something in my eye as Harris played Wichita Lineman, the song that made Paddy Mcaloon of Prefab Sprout want to write songs, for which we must be profoundly grateful.

Blighted by Alzheimer’s, Campbell’s life ended with him unable to recognise a guitar. In his day, Campbell had been one of the top us session guitarists. Just too awful. The tributes from listeners, many of whom had seen Campbell live, were touching.

It was a delight to hear Suzi Quatro in conversation with Hollies drummer Bobby Elliott on her Quatrophonic show (Tuesdays, R2, 10-11pm) about his favourite drum records. Elliott is probably the most underrated drummer in the history of pop, and I was thrilled to hear him choose another hero of mine, Kenny Clare, for his performance on Ella Fitzgerald’s cover of Can’t Buy Me Love.

It was also a delight of sorts to hear Caroline Robertson and Emma Borthwick bickering on BBC Radio Cumbria about lip balm. Borthwick offered Robertson some of hers, then accused her colleague of picking her nose before dipping her finger into the tin. It was settled amicably enough, with Robertson promising to buy a replacement, but lifelong showbiz feuds have sprung from far less.

Louis on Twitter: @AlanKelloggs or email: 

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