My passion for music drew its first breath when Radio Rentals took our TV away. I was 10 years old. Not being one who waits to be entertained, and being of a curious nature, I decided to explore my mother’s vast record collection, the bulk of which represented the genres of folk and country. But, hidden in its depths were some real sonic treasures. After a short search, I unearthed Bob Marley’s Burning and the Wailers albums, Donny Hathaway’s Extension Of a Man, and the complete works of Ray Charles and Millie Jackson. This was truly my Eureka moment!
Now I had a new passion, now I could see a path before me, one that I would follow from that day forth. Paper-round money was now being used to service a new addiction — a new hunger.
No longer would I be visiting the local toyshop to buy yet another Airfix Spitfire (1:72 scale) to cover in inappropriately-applied glue. No, from now on, it was now the racks of vinyl in my local record stores that beckoned me with their seductive contents. Aylesbury’s Record House, Earth Records and Our Price were my after-school haunts. Even now I can still recall, as if it were yesterday, the alluring scent of clean, fresh vinyl that permeated these (what were in my mind) palaces, these shrines dedicated to music, sanctuaries where I could escape from the world and be Me.
The Grundig radiogram, my then pride and joy, with the glow of its valves radiating evocatively through the louvered vents of the rear cover, would now be pumped to the max, and my my bedroom window would be wide open. This was the life, sharing the music I loved with the kids playing outside my house, while Mother would scream her own chorus of disapproval, “NEIL! TURN DOWN THE BASS!”.
I knew it in my heart, my blood, my soul, I wanted to be a DJ.
So now you know a little more about me from my perspective. In the eyes of others I’ve been described as (amongst other things that I think I’ll keep to myself!) charmingly and uniquely amusing, but I will let you, my beautiful listeners, be my judge…