Monthly Archives: May 2019

Last chance to listen: Eclectic 80s

It’s the decade of big hair, big shoulder pads and even bigger songs.

That’s why, over the Easter period, I wanted to present a specialist music programme dedicated to the music that defined a decade. It’s a popular radio format for a reason and these songs ‘test well’ with listeners.

If the BBC wants to attract younger audiences then I think music of this era is a great way to do it. It evokes memories for those who remember the decade for those who lived it and appeals to those who didn’t. I think it’s testimony to how good the sound of the time was because programmes – and indeed entire radio stations dedicated to the decade – prove so popular.

When I was starting out in my broadcasting career I learnt a lot from the likes of DJ Caz Matthews at North Manchester FM. A few years later, I appeared on BBC Radio Manchester’s 80s programme firstly with Manchester musician Clint Boon and latterly Stuart Ellis. I was delivering travel bulletins into the programme at the time and a great advantage was that I got to hear a lot of the output! I know 80s is a format well done by very knowledgable and experienced presenters, which is why I wanted to do something a little different an put my own spin on things: I pitched “Eclectic 80s”.

My programme on BBC Radio Lancashire celebrates the niche, the novelty and great songs you don’t often hear on the radio. Wham! was the most requested band in my running order but, instead of what you might expect, I played ‘Young Guns’, when was the last time you heard that?

80s computerised TV host Max Headroom makes an appearance with The Art of Noise for ‘Paranoimia’, in what arguably takes the title of most eclectic song played in the whole two hours – and proudly so!

Also, I channeled Brett Davison’s ‘Tricky TV theme teatime teaser’ by playing the full theme from the TV show ‘Moonlighting’, which starred Bruce Willis – back when he had hair. It was performed by the late, great Al Jarreau and producer by Nile Rodgers of Chic. I’ll post a full tracklist at end of this blog post.

I was so proud of this programme, especially with the amount of interaction that I got while on-air. I wasn’t expecting much as it was Good Friday evening, but people got in touch to say they were listening, to tell me what they were doing and share their memories of the 1980s.

It’s only available on BBC Sounds for a few more days so if you fancy a quirky couple of hours to re-live the new wave, new romantic and synth pop style that defined a decade, follow the link here and re-run the fun: https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/p075j96b

TRACKLIST:

Stomp! – The Brothers Johnson

Sweet Surrender – Wet Wet Wet

Oh Patti (Don’t Feel Sorry For Loverboy) – Scritti Politti

Here Comes The Rain Again – Eurythmics

Rain or Shine – Five Star

The King of Rock n Roll – Prefab Sprout

You’re the Best Thing – The Style Council

My Old Piano – Diana Ross

Moonlighting – Al Jarreau

Kissing with Confidence – Will Powers feat. Carly Simon

Dancing with Tears in my Eyes – Ultravox

Let’s Wait Awhile – Janet Jackson

Danger Zone – Kenny Loggins

Chant No. 1 (I Don’t Need this Pressure On) – Spandau Ballet

Too Shy – Kajagoogoo

Sweet Love – Anita Baker

Young Guns (Go For It) – Wham!

Bridge to your Heart – Wax

This Woman’s Work – Kate Bush

Paranoimia – The Art of Noise feat. Max Headroom

Rosanna – Toto

Here we Are – Gloria Estefan

Don’t Look Down (The Sequel) – Go West

January, February – Barbara Dickson

Half a Minute – Matt Bianco feat. Basia

Thinking of You – The Colour Field

My One Temptation – Mica Paris

Down to Earth – Curiosity Killed The Cat

Waiting for a Train – Flash and the Pan

Cassette tape

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