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Author Archives: Paul

Chris Evans to leave Radio 2.

Why on earth would he do that? He has the biggest radio show in Europe with nearly ten million listeners. Why would he go to Virgin Radio, a tiny digital-only station with about 5% of that listenership? There is, of course, this mischievous and completely baseless conspiracy theory. Virgin Radio is owned by News International […]

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No, thanks. I’d just like to eat it.

I had a free voucher for the Wall’s Magnum pop-up shop by Sloane Square. You create your own Magnum from a choice of milk, dark or white chocolate and three sprinkly toppings. The young girl who served me held up the finished article and asked if I wanted to film it. When I said no, […]

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How I spent Saturday mornings in the early 90s.

Taking my mum to Holloway Prison to visit her friend Ivy. Ivy’s son Rusty was already in Pentonville for smuggling drugs from Jamaica, and when the police raided Ivy’s house, they found quite a few kilos of merchandise. They reasoned that Ivy must have been involved because her other son, known as “Yardie Ron” was […]

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He’d have been 60 today.

Michael Jackson, that is. I have nothing to add except to agree with pretty much everyone’s assessment of him as one of the most talented performers the world has ever seen. We’ve all heard most of his music many times – but this track is rarely played. It was a big hit for Eric Clapton […]

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Most gripping BBC drama for years but…..

….it’s drawn quite a few complaints. I’m talking about Bodyguard. It’s sensationally good but there have been innumerable objections to the casting. The Home Secretary, the senior police officer, the two police snipers, the senior train guard, the bomb-disposal expert and the head of the anti-terrorism squad are all women. In the words of one […]

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Football, boxing and Bilko.

I loved my dad. He was kind, quiet and devoutly Catholic so, as you can imagine, we didn’t have much in common. We did, however, share a fondness for football, boxing and random repeats of Sgt. Bilko. Many of them were written by Neil Simon who died yesterday, aged 91. At school, I worked part-time […]

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Mass exodus.

Pope Francis is in Dublin today and 500,000 people are expected in Phoenix Park to hear him say mass. The last papal visit to Ireland in 1979, and Pope John Paul II said mass in Phoenix Park, more than a million people were there. It’s not hard to see why mass attendances have fallen in […]

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Why you don’t hear many Scottish voiceovers any more.

There was once a belief that on TV commercials, a Scottish voice was more “trustworthy”. Particularly for financial services. Then scandals at RBS, HBOS and Gordon Brown’s handling of the UK economy rather damaged the Scots’ reputation for fiscal probity. But what really did for them was the independence referendum. Clients based south of the […]

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I thought I was special.

I love this record. Always have. It never made the charts over here and Cracked Rear View, the album from which it’s taken, didn’t sell particularly well in the UK either. Therefore that made me a true connoisseur whose eclectic tastes embrace music from outside the mainstream. This morning I discovered that Cracked Rear View […]

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The 2018 British Beard Championships…

….took place in Blackpool over the weekend. As you can imagine, some of the contestants’ facial hair was simultaneously magnificent and repellent. Suffice to say that the exuburantly hirsute members of ZZ Top wouldn’t have made it past the first round. The drummer, of course, was did not have a beard. But what was his […]

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