Issue No.15 - On the radio... really?

If you haven’t dozed off by now (and I wouldn’t blame you) you will (hopefully) remember (thankfully) my short career in the teaching profession. Maybe I’m being a little cruel and maybe if I’d persevered a little more, then maybe I would have been able to make a real go of a career in education, but deep down I just knew it was not the road I wanted to travel. 

Anyway, I had answered an ad in the NME placed by a band looking for a guitarist and at their request made my way down to an address in South London. At this point I’d just like to say a few words about the band scene at the time. There were of course, like today, the big names and plenty of ‘rags to riches’ stories, but hiding below all the bright lights and screaming girls there were what was known back then as ‘semi-name’ bands. The reason behind this strange terminology was the regular appearances of these bands on Radio 1. 

Of course it was nothing like the Radio 1 we know now because back then many of the DJs would feature in their show a guest band performing one song every day for a whole week. These songs were pre-recorded at one of the BBC studios and would find their way on to whichever show they had been chosen for. Not being happy with just broadcasting from London, the Beeb also presented the Radio 1 Roadshow every weekday lunchtime, arriving at various venues up and down the country where (you guessed it) there would be a live spot for a guest band… so while these select few bands did not revel in chart success, they were in fact quite well known by virtue of the fact that they had been heard on the radio.

You probably have a pretty good idea by now where I’m going with this. Yes, I managed to scrape through my audition and became a member of Katch 22, who were at the time an established radio band. In fact there may be a few of you out there who remember them from the day but if not there’s a great website at Katch 22 which has a detailed biography of the band and some lovely nostalgic photographs of those halcyon days.

Anyway, as far as I was concerned I was well on the way to fame and fortune... oh yes!


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