Access To Live Music - Radio Programme.
Yesterday I went up to London to be interviewed by a radio producer for a programme that is being put together about access to live music for disabled people. The programme will tackle not only access to venues for punters but also for musicians too.
I answered a request in a post on the BBC Ouch Messageboard asking for interested parties to contact a production company in Manchester. Those of you who are regularish readers to this Blog know that I'm a big live music fan and have an interest in access to live music. Anyway, I e-mailed the company and low and behold I received an e-mail back asking for my phone number. Later that day I received a phome call from a researcher called Cordelia, who spent about 20 minutes finding about my interest in live music, how often I went to gigs and about my work as a steward at last years Reading Festival. She asked me if it would be possible for me to get into London the next week and meet with her producer so that she could interview me further. At the time I didn't know if I was to be used as a resource, or whether I was to be interviewed for the programme itself, which was to be broadcast on Radio One (You know, the young persons station!!)
On Wednesday I made my way to the production offices of Something Else, (who produce all manner of radio shows, a fair few of them jazz related) and met a woman called Jo Meek (who has never produced any 1960's pop records) who interviewed me. It was recorded on one of those new-fangled digital recorders that are about as big as a credit card. The last time I was interviewed by a radio reporter, (for a programme on a treatment I was having at the time) it was on a machine as big as a small radiogram!!
The interview itself was very interesting to do. I was asked basically the same questions I had been asked on the phone but went into more depth. The main thrust of the interview, was the changing nature of gig going for disabled people and whether there had any positive changes over my life as a gig goer (I've been going since 1983 and have been disabled since 1985).
I was also asked to pose a question to an interviewee for later that afternoon, who was none other than Undertones ex-front man Fergal Sharkey. My question to Sharkey (who is now a music industry bigwig) was to ask him if bands should be at the forefront of making music accessible. If bands refused to play at venues with bad access or facilities for their disabled fans, then maybe some of the more reluctant venues might get their arses in gear.
Of course there is no guarantee that I'll make it to the final cut of the programme. There have been loads of interviews and not much time available. However it was an interesting experience to be involved it it.
The programme is to be broadcast as part of Steve Lamacq'a show on 24th July at 11pm. It might be worth a listen