My interest in the music of the 1930s to 1960s was nurtured by the fact that my father was a fan of the music from the era preceeding those years, ie: Crosby, Mills Brothers and Paul Robeson to name a few and who, I hasten to add, can still be heard on various programmes today.
A man by the name of Frankie Dee, who lived in Costa Mesa in California was running a station (GMMY Radio) that played my kind of music so I sent him a demo disc, only to find he was playing it nearly every night. Shortly after he contacted me and said that what I had sent him was exactly what he was looking for and from then on my programmes went out every night for 14 years.
I visited Costa Mesa and was interviewed by Frankie, who was one of the nicest and most sincere gentleman in the broadcasting industry, unfortunately he passed away earlier this year and the station closed.
My show is now broadcast on Aycliffe Radio every Sunday morning from 10.00am to 11.00am and all the records I play are from my own personal collection (around 5000 albums).
I still own the first 78rpm I bought in late 1944 by Perry Como – it has turned into a life time hobby!
There are certain artists I do not have in my collection, purely and simply because they do not fit into the envelope of my type of singers.
I have been fortunate enough to have broadcast over Daytona Beach Radio and to have excerpts of my programmes played on Dick Robinsons American Standards By The Sea programme. I have also been fortunate enough to have had top artistes as guests on my programmes, such as Steve Lawrence, Edyie Gorme, Don Cherry, Michael Lund, Ron Della Chiesa and Jonathan Schwartz – I was also lucky enough to have had singer, Vic Damone do station checks for me, so all in all, for a presenter that never professed to be a professional I am pleased with the way the listeners have received me.
The late Alan Dell, in one of his programmes did a segment where he spotlighted me and my interest in fine American singer (who was a friend of mine also), by the name of Tommy Leonetti; David Jacobs has played certain records that I had sent him on occasions.
Even at my age, I will be 90 on my next birthday, I hope to be airing the type of music that made the GAS (Great American Songbook) and the GBS (Great British Songbook) so popular worldwide.
Catch Alan’s “Yesterday’s Music Today” show on Aycliffe Radio every Sunday morning from 10.00am.
Aycliffe Radio have a diverse range of over 40 presenters aged from 15 to 90, visit www.ayclifferadio.co.uk for more details.