So up and running with our shiny new transmitter, great broadcasting site and extended roster of DJs. The roster of DJs now presented a broader base of Black music as was the whole ethos of the station established by Lepke. Unlike other stations that were popping up the station wasn’t for self promotion of the DJs but a service to the community at large. Many of the other stations had club DJs presenting playing soul and funk in the main, these genres were also presented by mainstream Radio, good as they were IMHO nothing too special. Here’s how the Friday night 6 hours of programming ran….
Chucky, Chucky’s brief was a lighter side of reggae giving new releases exposure. Sadly no longer with us he was a long time friend of Lepke the perfect DJ for this spot, he was also the House DJ at the ‘Apollo Club’ the Willesden club owned by the Jet Star company (more about them later)
Dr Martin & Smiley presented jump up blues and vintage R’nB. Their shows were short sharp and jumping to say the least. Two friends who shared a love of this genre and it was a way too short 30 minutes of good time music.
The ‘Sponsored Slot’, as written about previously labels and shops could buy a slot and present a self programmed selection…for the most part ‘Orbitone’ records took this slot and it proved so worthwhile as Soca music got a look in. Not sure but it may well have been the first Soca programming to feature in a radio show.
Dark Star and Lady Di presented a soul show…Dark Star who was Lloyd Bradley selected and his wife presented. Star ran a soul sound system and later went on to become a renowned journalist and author. Lady Di had a wonderful style of presentation and the first of two wonderful female voices championed on the station…more about that later.
The Ranking Miss P, Lepke’s sister had her ‘Something For The Girls’ show..After much nagging by Lepke, Miss P got a show together. Dr Watt helped setting her up with a home studio to record. She was a busy young mother with two children but managed to find time to record a show. She soon had a regular audience as her voice so Radio friendly…..again more later.
Graeme Ewens and Charlie Wood briefly presented an African music show. Another first as I believe the first dedicated African Music show. Graeme a journalist and later a record label owner along with Charlie who was a musician, my landlord and co founder of ‘Nightdoctor’. They did a sterling job until along came Gus ‘Dada’ Africa who they stepped aside for. Gus had been a DJ at Dingwalls, a musician and had a great presentation style with a wonderful Nigerian accent that was so natural.
Dr Watt, the revive master…Dr Watt played the tunes you forgot. One time sound man Dr Watt had/has a great record collection and selected an essential set each week. Having his own home studio where he produced high quality shows. His atmospheric shows utilising echo and effects led to the highlight Lepke.
Lepke- ‘The Dread Outta Control’ I’m taking credit for this handle, again a parody of the Mikey Dread handle and it stuck. Lepke’s shows were something else. He took a great deal of time to produce in his home studio. Space echo, synn drums, duck calls, Jingles all mixed up to make a truly wild program. Phone competitions too, how ? yes how as recorded shows all will be explained later.
So there the initial 6 hour programme. This line up would change but this was the basic. The station now a diverse one some firsts, Sponsored programs, Soca and African selections, Reggae new and old and most importantly two wonderful female voices and presenters.