Vienna Bon Bons

Tony Currie, historian extraordinaire of Radio Times, TV curator, theme tune specialist and all round good sort, has a new venture: UK Light Radio, an internet-only service that’s hoping to launch for real next year.

There’s a promising line-up. Tone himself helms Rise’n’Shine, the breakfast show, including a feature enticingly called Tony’s Test Card Classics. Then there’s Pete Murray from 9am, for just one hour, promising stuff such as Pete’s Juke Box Gem. Obviously any feature that boasts the name of the DJ in the title is a Good Thing, so it’s reassuring to find so many of them listed in the schedule.

Margaret Howard, who hosted Pick Of The Week on Radio 4 for about 70 years before getting the sack, turns up late morning, then after lunch there’s no less a personage than Brian ‘Swing With The King’s Singers’ Kay with a show called, obtusely, The Lightswitch. Are we meant to listen to it with a dimmer switch to hand to vary the illumination according to the choice of record?

Paul Hollingdale, the very first voice on Radio 2, has an afternoon shift called Vienna Bon Bons. It sounds like an assortment of light classics from numerous Palm Court orchestras, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Later still there’s Sing Along, with the Cliff Adams Singers promised, and Making For Midnight where “the sounds are sweet and gentle…all the way”.

The whole thing, as described, sounds fantastic, and completely deserving of a proper licence. As for the way it actually sounds…well, shame you can’t listen live on a Mac, but there you go.

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