Wednesday, 10 June 2020

John Baker / BBC Radiophonic Workshop ‎– "The John Baker Tapes Volume 1 - rare and unreleased recordings 1963-1974" (Trunk Records ‎– JBH028CD)

John Baker, was a scumbag who lived at the shitter end of my street when I was vilified for daring to win a place at Grammer skool.Being called intelligent was as good as wearing a sign saying 'please kick my head in' for us unfortunate members of the underclass from the oxygenated end of the gene pool. The 'Bakers' all had scoliosis, the word 'Shithouse' was written in dripping black gloss on their toilet door,the eldest male was nick-named 'Igor',and they had a predeliction towards violence and criminal behaviour in general.
The John Baker responsible for the music on this CD, however, didn't live on my street as a kid growing up, but he was an unnamed member of the household through his prolific production of TV Theme tunes and Radio jingles throughout the sixties, seventies and no further, after he got the sack in 1974.
A contemporary of the legend that is Delia Derbyshire, he brought musicianly technique into the Workshop, as well as forty fags a day...thats cigarettes to you americans. He filled the vacancies for the Jazz Musician of the group, as well as the chain smoker. I'm also sure he joined in on the heavy wine consumption that the workshop was also renowned for,especially as wine bottles with various levels of liquid in them were an essential sound source for the staff to record and manipulate.
Many of those bottles no doubt found their way onto many of these jolly little tunes.
John,like Delia,died early from heavy cigarette and Alcohol comsumption in a confined space for too long a period. 
After becoming an alcoholic, Baker recorded no further music after being sacked by the Radiophonic Workshop and later died in poverty.......a life summed up in one dismissive sentence!?
He deserves more than that,thats why we've have three John Baker retrospectives lined up to revive the forgotten man of the Radiophonic Workshop's tarnished reputation.
This John Baker died while the scummier John Baker with the bad posture probably still lives,just, on my childhood street,and 'Shithouse' is probably still written on the toilet door.The wrong one died young,there's still time for that to be put right,if it hasn't been already?But,Justice is something that is rarely doled out fairly in this cruel world.
PS...Igor still lived,by the way, because i saw him down the pub on the night Leicester City won the League Cup back in '97....he gave me a HUG(?).Ahhhh,Association Football....the great leveller!?


1 Newstime BBC 1+2 0:23
2 Tros Y Gareg (Main Theme) 2:50
3 Tros Y Gareg (Idents) 0:20
4 20th Century Focus 2:22
5 Vendetta: The Ice Cream Man 1:18
6 Woman's Hour (Reading Your Letters) 1:47
7 Many A Slip 0:57
8 Look And Read 0:35
9 Building The Bomb 6:24
10 Au Printemps 2:27
11 Big Ben News Theme 0:33
12 Codename 1:03
13 Decimal Currency 0:20
14 Barnacle Bill 0:21
15 Dial M For Murder 2:25
16 Farm Management 0:30
17 Radio Sheffield (News Idents) 0:45
18 French Science And Technology 0:39
19 Good Morning Wales (Idents) 0:37
20 Heavy Plant Crossing 0:59
21 COI Technology Pavilion 9:30
22 John Baker Interview (Radio Nottingham) 2:33
23 Radio Nottingham Idents 0:34
24 Look North: Newstime 0:50
25 Man Alive: UFO 1:14
26 PM - Computers In Business 0:39
27 Submarines 1:59
28 Oranges And Lemons (Radio London) 2:36
29 Orbit 0:47
30 Places For People 0:47
31 Sling Your Hook 2:27
32 Suivez La Piste 0:49
33 Scene (Never Never) 1:40
34 Diary Of A Madman 3:54
35 The Two O'Clock Spot 0:58
36 Radio London: News Idents 0:25
37 The Caves Of Steel 3:11
38 The Locusts 0:45
39 Square Two 0:29
40 The Tape Recorder 1:11
41 Tom Tom (Theme) 0:42
42 Tom Tom (Idents) 0:15
43 Trial (Opening Theme) 0:35
44 Trial (Closing Theme) 1:22
45 Vendetta: The Sugar Man 2:01
46 Spin Off 0:21
47 Radiophonic FX C 0:10
48 Radiophonic FX A 0:54
49 Radiophonic FX B 0:35

1 comment:

Salem Tunes said...

Sad way for him to go and John Baker does deserve so much more. I have this and volume 2 in my Radiophonic collection and is a great body of work.

Your post also reminded me of a git from school who made my life hell... but treated me like a long lost friend several years later when our paths crossed. That event was so long ago now, I'd completely forgotten about it. I'll remember your services should I need memory data retrieval in the future!