July 2004

Two Sad Losses to Broadcasting

Jimmy Mack 1934 - 2004
Radio Scotland's Jimmy Mack passed away on July 3rd. Tony Currie's personal tribute is here. Radio Clyde's obituary is here.

Tony Allan 1949 - 2004
Tony passed away on July 9th. As his career began on 242, it seems appropriate that his tributes should be amongst the Radio Scotland pages.

Jimmy Mack

Tony Allan

Their friend aboard Radio Scotland's Comet, Ben Healy, writes:

I was saddened by the deaths of both my former colleagues Tony Allen and Jimmy Mack. As you know they phoned me when I appeared on Kenny Tosh's show on City Beat, last July. I will treasure that recording, as it was the last time I talked to them. We have exchanged e-mails quite a few times since then, but it's not the same as talking to them. I was also able to speak to both of them for quite some time off the air. I had a real affection for Tony and Jimmy and I had the opportunity to tell them so again last July.

Jimmy received the MBE from the Queen for his wonderful work with charities throughout Scotland. Tony should have received an award for the way he fought the cancer for the past three years.

The world is not the same today but it was a much better place with them in it. I will miss them dearly and they will always be in my thoughts and prayers.

International Radio Report – July
Not surprisingly, much of Hans Knot's newsletter is dedicated to memories of Tony Allan. Hans has included a personal tribute, beside those of Mike Brand, Robb Eden and Andy Archer. (To sign up for the free emailed newsletter, contact Hans at hknot@home.nl)

Wishing David A Sp(knee)dy Recovery
The Knees Club's most famous member, David Bowie, has undergone emergency surgery for a blocked artery. David, who was forced to cancel many dates of his 62-day European tour, had the operation in Germany. He is now convalescing in his New York apartment with his wife Iman and daughter Alexandria
. The Knees Club Founder and Officials send their best wishes to David for a sp(knee)dy recovery.

On Saturday, 10th July. BBC digital station 6 Music devoted an entire day to Knees Club member 127 and his recordings.

In case David should have failed to mention the most significant event in his career to date – his signing-up for the KC at the Target Club, High Wycombe, in 1966, the full story is covered here.
Tony's Highest Accolade
Talking of a career climax.... Following his 'sacking' and 'reinstatement' by Classic Gold Digital for playing Cliff Richard singles, BBC Radio Two's comedy programme 'It's Been A Bad Week', starring Hugh Dennis and Steve Punt, gave Tony Blackburn its highest accolade: 'The Worst Week of the Week Award, awarded weekly on a week-by-week basis."
Well done Tony – we think!

The bench is engraved with the title of Darrell's best-known recording, 'Open the Door to Your Heart'

Darrell Banks Tribute

Detroit soul singer Darrell Banks died in 1970, but his grave has remained hard to find and unmarked ever since. Now fans of Darrell, who gained recognition in the UK via Northern Soul circles, have raised the money for a memorial bench to be placed at the unsung musical hero's gravesite.

The Darrell Banks Memorial is to be officially unveiled on Saturday 17th July. The money donated to the project came from members of the www.soulfuldetroit.com web page.

Carl Dixon says:
"Whether musicians, artists or producers, I know many in the business today will be touched by this. Within Northern Soul circles there is recognition for those efforts by many, many years ago. However, initiatives like this are surely going to help keep the flame burning for the creative period that came from the US in the 60's, which we so much enjoy."

More info here.

Go-ahead for Summer RSL from the Ross
Bill Barnes, Webmaster for Radio Caroline Sales and Horizon Magazine (both at the same site, Radio Caroline Sales) tells us that Ofcom has now assigned a frequency of 1278kHz AM for the requested dates of 7th August to 3rd September,
for this year's Caroline RSL from the Ross Revenge in Tilbury. A great deal of help and effort is needed to help the whole Caroline crew prepare the ship, get her moved and ready and finally carry this broadcast through.

Anyone who can assist should contact the website as soon as possible.

Hope for Red Sands?
Bob le Roi's bumper July Scrapbook update includes the long-awaited Red Sands Part 2 with recent pictures taken inside the Bofors Tower. The photos illustrate the sadly dilapidated state of the structures, but there's also good news about the Seatribe Project, an organisation which aims to preserve the Red Sands Fort.

Hugo in the News
Hugo Miller, whose company Arun Coaches sponsored the Keith Skues Show during Big L '97, has appeared in the Sunday Telegraph. Christopher Booker's Notebook includes Hugo's story of his fight against EU regulations concerning 'speed limiters'.

Ian's Salute to Radio Pioneer
Ian MacRae 's on-line newsletter The Radio Wave, #29 relates, as usual, some of the wackier tales from the wonderful world of radio. Ian also pays tribute to to Loyd Sigmon, the man who invented the initial technology for traffic reports on radio, who has died at the age of 95 from ParkinsonÕs disease. Loyd invented a system to allow Los Angeles police to issue emergency warnings and traffic information to radio stations in 1955, when he was an executive at KMPC. Early bulletins included five warnings of rabid dogs and a ship collision in Los Angeles Harbour.
All for Peace
Mike Brand from Israel writes:

I am starting the English service of a new Israeli/Palestinian radio station "All for Peace". At the moment, broadcasts are only through the Internet, but we hope to be broadcasting on FM soon. We hope to reach the Central part of Israel, and the Palestinian Authority area.

This station has NO connection to the former Voice of Peace, but sees itself as a successor to the former offshore station. Programmes on the VOP were in English and Hebrew only (mainly English), whereas AFP will broadcast in all three languages (Hebrew, English and Arabic). All shows are currently taped, but live programmes are planned for the future.

You can listen to AFP at the following address : www.allforpeace.org. The site is under construction at present, but you can listen to the station through its Real Audio stream.

Elvis beamed from a 'Flaming Star'!
US satellite radio company Sirius is launching Elvis Radio to coincide with the US 4th July Independence Day holiday weekend, when thousands of fans are due in Memphis to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the King's recording of 'That's All Right'. Elvis Radio, which will broadcast non-stop Elvis recordings, will premiere via a live OB from Memphis. Sirius is partnered with Elvis Presley Enterprises (EPE), the company which handles the Presley estate.

Sirius receivers will be sold in the gift shops of Elvis's Graceland home (right) and from the official website Elvis.com

The station will be heard via the Graceland PA system and will be available in every guest room at Memphis' Heartbreak Hotel.

Ironically, it is Sirius's rival satellite broadcaster, XM Radio, which transmits from two satellites called 'Rock' and 'Roll'!

Radio 10 Gold on 1008
Congratulations to all at the popular Dutch commercial station Radio 10 Gold, on their July 1st national relaunch on 1008kHz, AM. A recording of the opening can be downloaded via the link below.

Thank you to Mike Terry for forwarding a link to a feature by Andy Sennit. No further comment is necessary.If you are outside the 1008 reception area, you can listen to the station via the net. Go to www.radio10.nl and click on "LUISTER LIVE" on the left. The quality is great!
Good Publicity for IMIB
A name you will hear mentioned during the Radio 10 Gold opening, is that of IMIB CEO Paul Rusling, who was receiving the broadcast clearly on medium wave in the Isle of Man.

IMIBC has been receiving good publicity for its fund-raising for its proposed national and international commercial radio station. A Guardian item dated June 17th, named Fab Forty fave Gene Pitney as one of the backers, and on June 29th, the Financial Times included a feature.

Said Paul:

The FT rarely carries radio stories, mainly as they don't usually do anything on unquoted companies – they just concentrate on FTSE 100 and occasionally FTSE 300 companies, with a sprinkling of AIM general coverage from time-to-time. We are delighted, therefore, to get the piece in the FT today – not only that but on page 4, the news section.

Ben's back in town!
Kenny Tosh has kindly supplied th
is photo taken on June 30th, during a visit to Ireland from Canada by ex-Radio City and 242 DJ, Ben Healy. Kenny (wearing the checked shirt) explains that the location is Ballywalter, on the Co. Down coast, where Radio Scotland's ship, Comet, dropped anchor at Easter '67. The photo shows where the tender used to come ashore.

The Fredericia's epic journey
To commemorate the fortieth anniversary of the start of Radio Caroline North, The Pirate Radio Hall of Fame celebrates the epic long distance broadcast which marked its launch. Also in the update, David Sinclair shares the first pages of his photograph album – this month, pictures from his time on Radio Essex; and there are more archive recordings, this time mainly from Radio 270.

The best £5 I ever spent!
Mark Keable, who runs Pirate Alley UK, writes:

My hits last week went thru the roof following the posting of a selection of the 100 or so pics I took on board the Communicator. I am fortunate that I live only five miles from Lowestoft so see the vessel nearly every week but it was great to finally get the chance to go on board. Dave Miller took us around personally and then allowed us basically to have the run of the ship. Best £5 I ever spent!

Also good to meet up with old friend Keith Travis again. He trained me when I was a member of Hospital Radio Yare before leaving to work on Amber, and then North Norfolk Radio with Messers Archer and Ahearn. Like Archer, he is currently resting away from radio.

Pirate Alley UK address: www.thunderbaynet.com/pirate

Technology Hall of Fame in New York City
John Schneider of radiopoly.com writes:

I've been working closely with Rich Garboski, founder of the National Technology Hall of Fame for several months now. We've produced demos for the upcoming Tech Hall of Fame Radio show, which, if all goes well, will launch from New York City this fall. It will be a weekly show, hopefully to be syndicated across the country on traditional radio, as well as on the Internet. The Tech Hall will also be located in NYC.

Rich is scouting locations for both the show and the Hall itself in Times Square and has two serious contenders. He will be the radio show's host, and I will be his associate producer/promo voice/sidekick/gopher.

Rich has very kindly given me "headline status" on the home page of the Tech Hall website, as well as a bio page that includes a link to my voiceover demo.

Brian Smiling again
Alan Hardy reports that Brian Wilson's 'Smile' album is due for release on September 27th. It's newly-recorded, with the touring band which accompanied him at the Royal Festival Hall performances earlier in the year.
(See report here)

Meanwhile, to promote his new solo album, Brian will be doing a public signing of the new CD at HMV Oxford Street on July 29th. Well-known for his reclusiveness, this is an event which his fans never thought they would see!

Also during the first week of July, Brian and his wife will be interviewed on the Larry King show on CNN TV. It will run for a full hour – apparently the longest interview he has ever undertaken.

Tuning in to Twiggy
And talking of Brian Wilson fans... Mega-fan Roger 'Twiggy' Day has sent a report on his latest programme schedule:

The bad news is I have some spare time on my hands during the next month or so. That means it's either do jobs around the house and garden or lead you astray on Radio Caroline. So I shall be on Tuesdays & Thursdays 10.00-14.00 BST. As usual your participation would be very welcome, and as usual let me know any songs you want to hear.

For my friends in the West Midlands, it looks like the Saturday gig from 9.00-12.00 on Saga is regular, so give it a whirl on 105.7. I am not quite so disgraceful there, but I think you might enjoy it.

No news at the moment on any BBC Kent or Essex programmes, but I'll keep you informed.

It has also occurred to me that, thanks to the Internet and various modern gadgets, some loyal twiglets may be hearing the same comments and funny bits three or four times. For that, you have my sympathy.

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