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Blog: People Off The Telly, On The Radio
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John The Publisher was down for a SEMINAR, so we met for a quick pint beforehand to discuss VITAL MATTERS like foot health, also plans to write some more songs. Just before he had to dash off to his DO over at the PRS offices the aforementioned Friend At My Social Occasion arrived, briefly met John for the first time, and settled down for a quick SHANDY before we went round the corner to The Drill Hall, to watch a recording of Clive Anderson's Chat Room.
We've been trying for AGES to get tickets to one of these shows - it's not that either of us really listens to much Radio Comedy, but it seemed like a Good Night Out and the FACT that it seems so difficult to get onto the LIST of people who get tickets only made us want it MORE. When we got into the Drill Hall BAR we found it full of people who were surprisingly a) MATURE and b) POSH. I guess it is a MARK of the success of Radio 2's ongoing rebranding that you expect their audience to be all HEP and GROOVY these days, as it WAS a surprise to find that the actual audience was still the traditional, as I say, Mature, Slightly Posh people who have always BEEN listening to Radio 2. I guess that's a clue to why the BACKLASH against Russell Brand and Jonathan Ross was SO large - for years the hardcore Radio 2 Audience has been politely IGNORING their presence on their network (much as us hardcore 6Music Audience members do our best to ignore George Lamb...) but once it was bought out into the open they saw EITHER the need OR the chance at LAST to do something about it.
Anyway, we hung around for a bit near the doors to the studio, gradually getting CRUMPLED as the Old Hands came to QUEUE in a polite, mannerly, but actually SLIGHTLY AGGRESSIVE way. When the doors opened we were nearly CRUSHED in a GREY STAMPEDE as people made for the best seats. There were a LOT of Walking Stick Rage.
Once everyone was settled in Clive Anderson came on and did The Warm-Up, which was all very jolly, then introduced the guests. MUCH excitement at The Hibbett End as the first two walked on - Nick Robinson and Arthur Smith! WHOO! A PROPER Famous Person Off The Telly AND A Comedy Legend! RESULT! I was also pleased to see next was Miranda Hart from off of Hyperdrive (which I really liked but wasn't mentioned) and then Steve Pound MP, who I didn't know much about. But still, 3 out of 4 guests being someone I'd heard of, PRETTY GOOD!
The show then got underway and, all in all, was dead good. They recorded over an hour's worth for a half hour show, so there were quite a few bits that SAGGED, and I guess when they edit it they'll even out the contributions. Clive Anderson ALSO seemed to be quite excited about having Nick Robinson on so asked him LOADS of stuff and, though he wasn't always terribly funny, he WAS always DEAD INTERESTING. Arthur Smith also was REALLY FUNNY, he was GRATE, and I was INTERESTED to see that both he and Miranda Hart had come on with loads of NOTES. Miranda Hart herself didn't seem to say much at all, and looked a bit nervous about it all, though did make a GRATE, also IMPASSIONED speech about Nasty Comedy and how, actually, it's MUCH easier to get laughs with swearing and being MEAN than writing Actual Comedy, and the WHOLE audience NODDED. We also APPLAUDED a bit about Barrack Obama being MEGA BRILL. The only slightly annoying bit, for me, was Steve Pound KEEPING making the same jokes and interrupting other people, but then I guess as an MP that's what he does in THE HOUSE.
It was all dead good anyway, and as we left I did rather hope we'd be able to go again - though next time I'll try and remember NOT to have a whole pint of guinness JUST before going into a room where you have to sit still for an hour!
posted 7/11/2008 by MJ Hibbett
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