Saturday, 9 November 2013

The Song Show

There is still no sign of a replacement for what was an entertaining but intelligent weekly survey of popular song - mostly American, but a good proportion of British, with the occasional Continental dash. Without this programme, I would not have heard of Susannah McCorkle, Annette Hanshaw or Dave Frishberg. It is good to have an extra hour of swing and other big band music (though Clare Teal's chirpiness sounds a bit forced). She includes vocal jazz standards, as do Jazz Record Requests,  Geoffrey Smith's late night programmes and even Composer of the Week (!) on Radio 3. On Radio 2, there are plenty of programmes tied in with current stage and screen musical releases and regular looks at the star writers and performers. However, there is nothing which covers the sweep of popular song from the end of the Victorian ballad to the start of hard rock, as Russell Davies used to.

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