Archives for September 2010

and don't forget the pickles

Simon Mayo | 09:11 UK time, Thursday, 30 September 2010

Morning all, a fine autumnal one here. School run done, MrsM run done and coffee purchased. New Ronnie Wood album is playing loudly in the kitchen-recording an interview with him this afternoon. Guest appearances noted so far from Flea, Slash and Ian Mclagan and it's all really rather good.
Jilly Cooper update. She sent me a thankyou card which is lovely of her don't you think? It has a woman with a whip on the front which is hardly a surprise I suppose. Maybe I will turn up in her next book after all...
Now it being Thursday, it's Nigel time of course and after all the messing about with fish we come to the Vegetable Balti. Just sprinkle chicken in for that meaty flavour if you fancy. I have never attempted to cook my own Indian food as the proper versions are so near and such good value. So I'm hoping this is a first. Just pile up the poppadoms first thats all we ask.
And I think we need RYDER CUP oldies as the opening ceremony takes place later today. Could be GOLF or EUROPE V USA if you prefer. Or bad trousers, whichever you fancy really.
Have a fine Thursday. It really is nearly the weekend.

And the Oscar goes to...

Simon Mayo | 09:10 UK time, Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Well now. Hope you enjoyed Carlos Santana last night. He didn't always speak in a style to which we may accustomed but frankly, if you are Carlos Santana, you can speak any old way you like. And he had a very nice ipad cover which you can only buy in China he tells me.
Cold/cough thing a tad better but will try not to choke up during the confession again. It spoils the dramatic flow really don't you think?
Now after 6 today, how about Oscar-winning actor Tim Robbins? All 6'5' of him, which makes him the tallest person ever to win an Oscar I believe. The 'Shawshank' and 'Mystic River' star has, aged 51, decided to go make an album. And then form a band. And then tour. You can catch him and The Rogues Gallery Band tonight.
And tunes today please for the MIDDLE AGED. Not the middle ages which would be fun sometime, but we read that the MIDDLE AGED get mid-life blues and the full blown mid-life crisis much earlier (35-48 would you believe). So everything to do with being MIDDLE AGED will be fine. If you're in it, past it or not reached it, you know what to do...
Have a great Wednesday.
See you at 5.05

Guitar heroes Volume 5

Simon Mayo | 06:26 UK time, Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Morning DT bloggers. Lovely to have Fran Healy on the show yesterday. Enjoyed his songs - lovely to hear 'Wonderful Life' sung as a guitar tune. He said to me we hadn't met since 1999 and that I had looked really tired. That didn't surprise me as folk have said that to me since being on the breakfast show on Radio 1 but at least this time I had an excuse. Travis were singing right at the end of the 37 hour record breaking show I did as part of Comic Relief that year. I wasn't at my best having just been forced to interview Mr Blobby (I don't know either) and about to play the discs in for Pete Tong. I was not looking my finest. Depressingly, Fran didn't follow his observation up by saying how much better I look now. Guess I'll have to leave that to Jilly Cooper.

What a guitar hero we have today. None other than Carlos Santana who has a new album out called 'Guitar Heaven' in which he plays a whole number of legendary guitar pieces;'Whole Lotta Love','Sunshine of Your Love', 'Smoke on the Water' etc. Carlos on after 6 of course.

And having done the colour yellow for the Libdems, today might be a good day to have a go at songs with RED in the title. Ed Miliband (who once jumped out at me in Whitehall when I was trying to listen to music) makes his debut leader's speech today. RED tunes in the box below please and we'll get as many as we can on after 5.

Have a delightful Tuesday!

The return of the Fox

Simon Mayo | 09:18 UK time, Monday, 27 September 2010

Friday saw our farewell to Pauline and very fine were her departing cookies. Matt and I have both been inspired to not buy the Friday food anymore but make it ourselves. This resolution will last till Thursday but is in place at the moment. We'll miss Pauline-thanks MsMcColl! But the good news is that Rebecca 'Fox' PIke is back, having served her time at home looking after child no 3 (or Luca as he is more normally called). Welcome back Rebecca! Will she be as forbidding a presence in confessional booth as Pauline? We'll find out at 5.40...

Top music today from Fran Healy, formerly of Travis. He had a string of fine songs in the 90's and always got a great reaction from "Driftwood" and "Why Does It always Rain On Me" so it's good to have some new songs from him. His bass player appears to be one Sir Paul McCartney. Now that's class.

And in honour of Rebecca's return, let's do WELCOME BACK songs. It seems only right and proper really.

See you at 5.05. Have a decent Monday.

Books etc!

Simon Mayo | 08:37 UK time, Friday, 24 September 2010

The Drivetime office is always awash with cds as you would expect but now we have a mountain of books to climb over too. Since we mentioned our plans to launch the Radio 2 Book Club, paperbacks, hardbacks, thrillers, romances, historical fiction and a few Jilly Coopers have all appeared. We will hopefully come up with something for everyone as we'll do 2 books a month. The online form should explain everything if you wish to sign up. We hope to announce our first books shortly. But first, meetings must be held.

A 2 show Friday today with movies at 5 Live first with Dr K reviewing The Hole in 3D, Enter the Void and Eat, Pray, Love. And others, if we can stop wittering. Then it is off to don the leathers for the bike to get to another all request Friday. Last week in Newcastle was fun but home studio is home studio and this week it wont just be me in a darkened cubicle at the end of the corridor. ARF is the simplest format ever but (thank you Chris) delivers every week. There are so many trips, holidays, partys and family get-togethers to report, I almost feel I'm part of them. Even if I go home to a frankly rather dull weekend of being taximan and homework assister.

But it needs that opening song really...Go on, set the standard. See you at 1705

Well,ahem, moving on...

Simon Mayo | 07:53 UK time, Thursday, 23 September 2010

Morning to all bloggers and I have no idea if I turned red last night in the Jilly Cooper interview though note some of you thought you could hear me blushing. What is the correct procedure when a 73 year old lady flatters you on air? I think pausing,coughing and moving on still takes some beating. Anyway it was great fun and look forward to my appearance in her next book.

Last night the team went out to mark the moving on of Pauline. She leaves on Friday as Rebecca returns from maternity leave on Monday. As Nigel was in charge it was a remarkably well run do with fine food and booze. I left Pauline, Matt, Rebecca and Nigel putting the world to rights at some ungodly hour. Half past 10 I think. It was the exhaustion of the Jilly Cooper interview I think. Anyway Nigel will be bright as a button today as he tries to do something interesting to a sea bass. Not a big fishy person really, but I have realised that in the right hands, anything can be sensational. Nigel has those hands.

And for songs today, let's celebrate National Cruise Week. 1.65 million Brits go cruising apparently so it's a CRUISE special today. Not Tom, not missile but BIG SHIPS. Thank you.

See you at the muster station at 5.05


Jodhpurs ahoy!

Simon Mayo | 09:19 UK time, Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Morning bloggers all and thanks for all your birthday greetings yesterday. A small curry and some fizzy wine were consumed. Decorum was retained at all times. Whether that's the case tonight I seriously doubt as we are having a farewell to Pauline evening. Rebecca the Fox returns Monday after having her latest cub, so we toast Sister Pauline off to saner shores. Or Radio 4 I believe.
Enjoyed having Phil Collins on yesterday, thought he was in contemplative mood. It sounds like this might really be his last album, certainly for a while anyway. He is fired up about the Alamo however and is, as he mentioned, well into a book on the subject. That'll be for next time I feel.
(Todays musical accompaniment is a 'Come taste The Band' 35th anniversary release from Deep Purple. Getting in the mood for my midweek middle age mosh.)
Jilly Cooper tonight after 6, her latest critic-proof tome is Jump! so let us mark that with horsey tunes please. All things Jilly and all things HORSE if you wouldn't mind.
See you at 5.05 and enjoy Wednesday.

No really you shouldn't have

Simon Mayo | 09:25 UK time, Tuesday, 21 September 2010

So this morning, being the morning of my birthday, I have received the loving salutations from my family and some fine presents. Another fine cardigan, some lovely wine, sherbert lemons (the greatest sweet) and Doubt:A History by Jennifer Michael Brecht. This was recommended by Bill Bailey when he was on the show. His new show is themed around doubt and this was his bible. Of all the presents this is the one I'm not too sure about but will give it a spin over the next few hundred trips to the loo. I'll report back on that.

Today we welcome Phil Collins as our guest. He has a new album of Motown songs out and you can hear a very revealing interview with Phil after 6 today.

And lets follow a Liberal democrat theme for today and go for all things YELLOW. Songs with YELLOW in please-and there are many indeed. It might be orange where you are but it looked yellow on the news last night. So yellow it stays.

But first a birthday coffee and first sherbert lemon of the day...

email:simonmayo@bbc.co.uk

"Oh Andy..."

Simon Mayo | 09:32 UK time, Monday, 20 September 2010

There have been a few 'Oh Andy' moments this weekend. "All request Friday" and yesterday's Johnnie Walker show were full of them. This refers to the bit in "Toy Story 3" where the mum goes up to Andy's room, and because he is leaving for college and has removed all posters and possessions, just stands there, looks around and says 'Oh Andy...' Not a dry eye in the house. Thank heavens for the 3D glasses eh?
So this weekend was spent taking child1 to his new University life and at least he found it easy. The motorway network-lousy as it is-was enlivened by passing,and being passed by, loads of people carriers all full to the brim with student essentials and worried parents.

Todays programme offers you Seal live after 6 (talking not singing as he is saving himself for the radio theatre) and lets do oldies about FIDELITY. Inspired by the chap who appears to have had 10 children by 10 different women. Songs please about sticking together and being loyal, faithful and honourable.

Marvellous. Have a great Monday and see you at 5.05

email:simonmayo@bbc.co.uk

Look North East!

Simon Mayo | 22:37 UK time, Thursday, 16 September 2010

To Newcastle then on the early train this morning. Two shows to do. Firstly (and the reason I'm off) 5 Live is doing a bunch of shows there and the movie show with Mark will be live with an audience from 2. Then its another cab for a short hop to BBC Radio Newcastle for all request Friday. Now this is a strange one. As far as your concerned, there should be no difference. As far as I'm concerned, I'm sitting in a room on my own with a microphone and er, that's all.
So what you might think (and maybe you are quite correct) just get on with it. The thing is I like to have CONTROL. Music, jingles, Sally , Matt, Pauline and assorted guests are all normally blended by my Billy-boxing gloves style of mixing. An esteemed BBC studio manager is in charge of course, but today I shall just sit on a chair in a booth, and hope it all works. Which it shall, of course.
So hopefully another 2 hours of hen night plans/staying at home with a beer plans/taking the kids to parties plans/ looking after the grandchildren plans will flow out of your radio. And everyone wanting Cyndi Lauper.
Choose that song now! Join me in my cubby hole at 5.05.

Email:simonmayo@bbc.co.uk

Kedgeree v Steak and Ale Pie? No contest.

Simon Mayo | 09:17 UK time, Thursday, 16 September 2010

I was speaking for the nation I believe. When Nigel Barden gave me a choice of dishes for today, surely there was only one call I could make? Was there a single listener who was hoping for a quick kedgeree recipe? I think not. (If you need really need it, get some fish and grate it into some rice. Add sultanas. There you are.) Keep calm and eat more pies will be our watchword.

Any bloggers good at dream interpretation? My friend the lovely singer Martyn Joseph emails me his dream of last night. I was, apparently, playing on the wing for Wales. This'll be Rugby Union we are talking here. I have the ball, I look up the field and say I have 4 men to beat. I then set off, run the length of the field and score a staggering try for Wales. Now why would such a thing be happening? What can it mean? My inclination is that it means absolutely nothing other than Martyn is so desperate for a Welsh win he's dreaming of 50 something Englishmen in the shirt of Wales. If you can do better...

And songs today. Well I was trying to think of a way to do pope oldies but it was never really a goer. So let me offer you the Trade Unions instead. The TUC finish their conference today, so let's mark it in song. Folk have been singing about unions for centuries. Feel free to range widely as you normally do of course.

Off we go then for a lovely Thursday...

Email:simonmayo@bbc.co.uk

Your favourite preachers are back

Simon Mayo | 09:16 UK time, Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Morning bloggers all. So child 1 has gone, flown the nest, gone to Uni. But will doubtless be back next Monday with a bag of washing or somesuch. Enjoyed all the 'things to say to departing children' stuff yesterday. This morphed on twitter yesterday into worst student meals ever eaten. My favourite so far is beans on Weetabix which will take some beating.

Top live songs today from the Manic Street Preachers. They are almost in national treasure territory now which is weird indeed. The new album is "Postcards From A Young Man" and is the biggest sounding album I've heard this year. If you like the single, you'll get this. They have a brilliant live set and we'll sample two songs after 6. Any band whose bassist's mum sends me their records because I have declared an affection for it, is alright by me. Thank-you Nicky Wire's mum.

And oldies today. Well I fancy celibacy myself. There was a big debate last night at The Times on the merits or otherwise of this life style choice. So lets try CELIBACY for a few hours at last...

email:simonmayo@bbc.co.uk

See you at 5.05. have a fine Wednesday.

Flowers for you all

Simon Mayo | 09:13 UK time, Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Morning to all Drivetime Bloggers. Cold progressing, moving south, moderate, decreasing force 4, imminent. Thank you for your concern. If I did get it from Bill Bailey, I could have given it to Tony Blair who could have given it to Bill Clinton yesterday. The former President of the USA did sound a bit phlegmy. The power of Radio 2 crosses many boundaries.

Today we welcome Brandon Flowers to our show. The Killers frontman has a solo album and a Number 1 to boot. I have never met him before but find him intriguing and his music seems to appeal to the Radio 1 crowd as well as us more mature types. Brandon with us from 6.

And oldies today inspired by this new show on BBC1 tonight 'The Young Ones'. It's an experiment to discover if ageing is a state of mind. 'If you go back into an atmosphere when you were in your heyday, if you truly believe it, your mind and body will follow', says producer Michael Mosley. And the participants say it works! Hooray! So let's do FEELING YOUNG. I thought about ageing but FEELING YOUNG seems much better. By 7 o'clock we'll all be 30 again.

Your top youthful ideas below please! See you at 5.05...

No eggs or shoes thank you

Simon Mayo | 07:59 UK time, Monday, 13 September 2010

Good morning all Drivetime bloggers, I hope your weekend was a delight. I went, as I mentioned on Friday, to see Muse at Wembley. They are very good live but they gave me a cold. Now I can't see properly and my ears are still ringing. There were plenty of middle aged Musers there saying things like 'this is just like Queen' but a good time was had by all.

The cold unfortunately is a stinker. Maybe it was Bill Bailey's fault. He came in dripping with germs last week. Anyway, the result will be evident today I fear although will clear up miraculously at 6.07 as Tony Blair turns up on Drive. As that was recorded on Thursday I'll sound all healthy and lovely for half an hour or so, and then plumb the depths of coughs and sniffles as soon as he's gone. I hope you enjoy hearing the chat we had, it's slightly longer than most of the interviews we do but there's a lot to talk about (ah, the power of understatement).

And oldies today inspired by Dave Hartnett. He's the man at the Revenue who said he didn't have to apologise for taking too much tax from us. And then he did. Choose wisely, they will be listening.

Have a great Monday and see you at 5.05...

Rock and a hard place. Take a cushion.

Simon Mayo | 06:27 UK time, Friday, 10 September 2010

I've just remembered I'm off to see Muse tonight and I haven't a thing to wear. You see it's at Wembley stadium which makes it outdoors last time I checked and it's September. Do I take the travel rug? Will it embarrass my teenage son if I take a thermos? At what age do you stop moshing? These are all questions that will be pertinent tonight. Last time I went to a ROCK gig it was Kasabian and I ended up chatting to the only other guy I could see my age, who turned out to be the guitarist's dad. I have promised to behave myself but will take a book to read if I feel tired and need to sit down.

A quick 5 Live movie show for you this afternoon with Mark Kermode and director Joe Dante who did Gremlins. Then the bike beckons and we warm up with one of them there all-request-Fridays. You know the drill. Set the standard.

Sorry I'm late

Simon Mayo | 11:15 UK time, Thursday, 9 September 2010

Complex problems well beyond my understanding mean this a very late blog indeed. Apologies. Also there was the small matter of a Tony Blair interview to record. That has now happened and you can hear it on Monday's show. No shoes were thrown. He is chipper and on good form. It will be the only interview he does to address whether the Golden Hour is more fun than talking to the TUC. A Drivetime exclusive.

Today we have some chicken Piri piri to look forward to (and big P small P is indeed correct) as Nigel tells you how to enjoy this without having to buy a bottomless fizzy drink everytime.

And songs today please to preview National Poetry Day which is a month away. Poems, poets, rhyming couplets, haikus and all that stuff.

See you at 5.05 or whenever you wander our way...

A mid-week Modfather moment

Simon Mayo | 07:24 UK time, Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Assuming he's not so crushingly disappointed about missing out on the Mercury Music Prize that he doesn't turn up, Paul Weller will sing for us tonight. His last album got some of the best reviews of his life, even if the judges last night preferred The xx. I've been a fan since The Jam days and it's terrific to have him.

(Query answered from yesterday-my school run involves many children, and not all my own! Hence the unpredictable ages that have been mentioned. And as far as the on air mentions go, we always try to get a spread from you bloggers, tweeters, texters and emailers. Keep your thoughts coming, we will get to you!)

Many texters have been 3-wording about their various harvest commitments, so let's do assorted harvest business today on the oldies. We'll have our own harvest thanksgiving at 5 with your finely chosen track left below. Plough and scatter indeed.

Have a great Wednesday and see you at 5.05!

email:simonmayo@bbc.co.uk

Back in the Jug Agane*

Simon Mayo | 07:40 UK time, Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Oh the joys of the school run when the tube strike is on. 2 hours in the car is always a hoot at 4mph I find. We'll play games and sing to start with and enjoy the radio. By the time school is in sight it'll be shouting , fisticuffs and bedlam. I must rehearse the causes of the industrial strife to explain to an 8 year old.
One of my favourite comedians is in today. Bill Bailey is in after 6, he's headlining at the Greenwich Comedy Festival (6th-12th September). I've always loved his surreal stuff and musical flights of fancy and this time it's in aid of the Sumatran Orangutan Society. Bill will doubtless explain more after 6.
Oldies today please, inspired by the twin announcements of the Mercury Prize album of the year and the Man Booker Prize shortlist. Prizes, awards, judges, albums, books, hullaballoo, trinkets and baubles. You know how it goes.
* The title of one of Geoffrey Willans' brilliant books about Nigel Molesworth, pupil at St Custards skool (see the books for further SPELING HOWLERS) It seems to sum up the new term feeling rather well.

OMG! It's OMD!

Simon Mayo | 07:43 UK time, Monday, 6 September 2010

Three weekend highlights chez Mayo to mention:some friends' 25th wedding anniversary do in a marquee;a gig in a pub from Ahab; and a visit to a stationers. I only mention the last item because I love stationers and stationery at this time of year. I don't know why, it's probably just a back to school thing. Go on, you know want a small pile of A4.

And Ahab played Cropredy and Bob Harris said they were good, so I went to see a free gig they did in a pub last night. And surprise surprise, they are top notch. They pay UK Americana with tight 4 piece harmonies. It's foot stomping Mumford and Sons style country really. There's a few videos of them online but barely anything else. But they sounded the real deal to me.

And we'll be welcoming Andy McCluskey to talk Orchestral Manoevres In The Dark. Yes they're back (well, him and Paul Humphreys) with a new album and single. It's been 18 years, so there must be a few tunes and ideas ready to go. OMD from 6 tonight.

And for oldies, let's do eavesdropping. Hearing conversations you're not supposed to hear. Who knows who has been listening to whom, there are many stories around today. But we just want your bugging tunes please in the usual drop off point below.

That'll be Drivetime then from 5.05. Have a great Monday.

email:simonmayo@bbc.co.uk

Friday duties

Simon Mayo | 07:38 UK time, Friday, 3 September 2010

A sunny September Friday morning. The spiders are trying to spin us into their web prison but there's a school run to crank up again. I will manfully be first out of the house, flapping my arms. Every night I have spider-clearing duties to perform, called upstairs to remove "a really huge one". This turns out of course to be barely visible but the delicate use of a tissue usually suffices and the spider finds itself outside again. For about 5 minutes at least.
I'm back on a two show Friday model today. Two o'clock on 5Live for some movie reviews with Mark Kermode. We've been off for weeks so have a lot of movies to catch up with. He's at the Shetland Film Festival with Jason Isaacs and Julian Temple and me tying things together back at base. It would be great to be there but that all important "All request Friday" beckons.
I always think it's the greatest way to finish the week and rely on you to come up with some great tunes. That first one sets the standard don't you think? Your suggestions below along with all the other blog bon mots and banter.
Have a great Friday and see you at 5.05 as long as the spiders and assorted aracnophobic family members allow...

email:simonmayo:bbc.co.uk

Yes, it's Crumble Day!

Simon Mayo | 07:41 UK time, Thursday, 2 September 2010

A lovely evening to report as Radio 2's finest all met up for a bit of a social and a wee chat from our esteemed controller. Mainly this took place between 6 and 7 so I don't really know what it was about as I happened to be playing some tunes at the time. You might have noticed. But great to see Mike Harding, Bob Harris, Brian Mathew, David Jacobs, Chris, Steve, Ken, Jeremy (oh blimey I need to mention everyone now) Alex, Lynn, Janice, Mark, Richard, Clare and er, everyone else, all in one room! I can reveal that Richard Allinson and I were in agreement that it was brilliant to hear Georgie Girl by The Seekers on Mark and Stuart's show on Monday. Yes, we really did talk music played on each others shows.

Today is crumble day. After his stale bread salad last week, Nigel picks it up with one of the mightiest puddings of all time. Crumble is the word, pass it on. Hungry already.

And let's do autobiography for a music theme today. Tony Blair's book is now the fastest selling autobiography of all time, after just one day! And there are many songs which tell an autobiographical tale, leave your suggestion below.

5.05 then?

email:simonmayo@bbc.co.uk

Back in the old routine

Simon Mayo | 08:28 UK time, Wednesday, 1 September 2010

1st September. Autumn and school are back. I'm sure that I'm not the only adult who still, decades after leaving school, feels a twinge of nervousness about the start of term. A rogue butterfly still flutters when the new school year kicks in. Anyone else suffer from this?

Last night with Lissie was terrific stuff I thought. I'm watching the video we took while she was performing while writing this. A fantastic voice. I really wasn't sure she should have gone for a version of Stairway to Heaven as her contribution to the Great British Songbook (you can see me looking on nervously as the song starts) but she nailed it. Listener response was stunning- I thought the purists would hate it but that voice just works brilliantly and carried all the doubters with it. Do watch it!

Today we welcome the great James May to Drivetime. Captain Slow delivers his latest book "How To Land An A330 Airbus And Other Vital Skills For The Modern Man". He's always been my favourite Top Gear host and adds class to any show he graces so looking forward to James after 6 today.

And lets do that 'back to work theme' for the oldies. Back in the old routine indeed. And you may have been back ages anyway but now you have the satisfaction of knowing everyone else is too. Please leave your thoughtful considerations below.

email:simonmayo@bbc.co.uk
And see you at 5.05...

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