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Joe Blogs

by Tim 21st Mar 2013 | 31 comments


Tim: “Here’s a guest blog from my friend Joe Stilgoe, who made an amazing radio show pilot the other week. I was lucky enough to be a guest. Thought you might be interested! He’s a fine man and a great muso. Check out his album here or here.”


Joe: “You might imagine an altogether different clientele when free wine is offered at 12 noon in the middle of Soho, but those who arrived at Ronnie Scott’s, blinking in the darkness and groping around for a svelte Chardonnay or a chunky Merlot, were a classy bunch, and of the same mind: WE’RE HERE TO BE ENTERTAINED. I had been asked by those kindly if misguided souls at Radio 2 if I could put together a new show of wit, warmth, music, mirth, jazz, soul, comedy, unique moments and exciting revelation. I said no. They said there would be free wine. I said YES. They bought me a drink. I said YESH. The first name at the top of my hit-list was your very own boy wonder Minchin, and after he said YESH as well, I knew we’d be able to cram in some other rather juicy guests and at least have a stab at making this thing work.

The aim of this lunchtime romp was to thrash around in a hot jazz club oven and magically create an hour long radio show, or cake, if you will, so the brief demanded plenty of high quality organic ingredients to get that perfect bake, and no soggy bottom thank you very much. Does a baking metaphor stretch to radio? Does it ever…

I’d asked Tim because I knew he would fit in perfectly, be the biggest star in the room by an Australian mile (km) and give me some space to concentrate on hosting the thing and trying to hold it together. I was a mixture of… No, I’ll leave it there. I was a mixture. (See? The baking thing is STILL going!)

Without wishing to give too much away, we were aiming for a combination of the great bits from Later with Jools Holland, with a topical theme running through, as heard on great radio shows that very few of you will remember (and I don’t either, but my Dad forced me to listen to them) like I’m Sorry I’ll Read That Again, In Town Tonight, and possibly even The Now Show. So, it had to be up to date, snazzy, entertaining and fresh. Tim kicked things off with the ‘Take My Wife’, and we were off and running. People were laughing, people weren’t leaving. Tim and I performed the world’s very first sung interview, with me at the grand piano and he on the Korg keyboard with weird buttons. We sung about Spice Girls, we veered into keys neither of us was comfortable in and I got the audience to sing ‘Tim, you’re not ugly’ in formidable unison, until everybody there knew they were really in the midst of something new and exciting. It felt wonderful, Tim was on top form, even though he’d been performing only a few hours before, and was due to fly to New York that evening to play again at 54 Below. How was that, by the way? Did you miss the Korg?


In between his two songs (obviously ‘Inflatable You’ was the second, with accompaniment from my stunning band who had only learnt the song minutes before) we had Heather Headley singing her and everyone else’s head off with magnificence and beauty and class, the beatboxing legend that is Shlomo, new Radio 2 favourite and Swedish chanteuse Emilia Mitiku, and one of my favourite composers (he wrote Black Beauty!) Denis King. The show seemed to be rolling along quite nicely, even when Tim called me a ‘jazz wanker’. There was a small gasp. Jazz clubs don’t normally play host to such words. But I soldiered on, mopped up my jazzy tears. Oh God, that sounds awful, not jazzy tears. Not after the other word. Oh no. Forgive me, everybody, PLEEEEEASE. FORGIIIVVVE MEEEEE.

Right. Sorry. What’s important to note is that your favourite auburn Antipodean Judas genius was a complete wonder, and because of Tim we could get hold of everyone else we asked, and because of Tim there’s a faint sniff of a chance that we might get this show a regular slot on the radio waves, although alas this was a pilot and it won’t be broadcast. I’m sorry you couldn’t be there to share in the loveliness and fun, but do have a look at the brilliant snaps taken by Matt Humphrey on the day, to see us in action. Hopefully we’ll meet again, you and I. Come and like me or follow me (but please not like Joss Stone, that’s too much) and one day Tim and I might be able to reprise our little slice of half-baked interview pie, and this time he won’t call me a wanker.

That’s where the baking metaphor, and my blog, ends.


Joe x”


Facebook: Joe Stilgoe
Twitter: @joestilgoe

Photos: www.matthumphreyimages.com
For a gallery of Matt’s images from Joe Stilgoe’s BBC Radio Pilot click here.

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Susanne on 24th of March 2013

Oh yes, I agree about Matt’s photos — they’re really fabulous.

MsJinnifer on 23rd of March 2013

Thanks to Joe, Matt and Tim for this — very thoughtful to post the account and pictures. Matt I think your photos are wonderful! And of course I agree that it would be a crying shame for what was plainly a fabulous event to get lost in the archives.

Vika on 23rd of March 2013

Please, come to Russia!!!

DiB (Sue) on 23rd of March 2013

Aww Joe you are such a tease. Getting our hopes up then dashing them.

I wish I could have been there. If the pilot gets the go-ahead I hope you ask them for a series of 12 episodes, then throw in the pilot to make a nice baker’s dozen.

Beth on 22nd of March 2013

This is amazeballs why is this not being aired this needs to be seen by the world.

Lj on 22nd of March 2013

I have never understood the saying – you can’t have your cake and eat it, but now I do. Sounds like great fun was had, and its sad that those who weren’t there will never hear it. Especially the singing interview. Thank you for teasing us with the blog tho Joe ;p xx

Aimee on 22nd of March 2013

Thanks so much for posting this, Joe, although don’t you think it’s a bit cruel to tease us with hints of what sounds like an amazing afternoon? I hope the show goes well! x

Mark on 22nd of March 2013

Jazzy tears…!
Sounds like you had a blast making this guys – we need to hear it!
Joe, this type of show would make a perfect series for Radio 2
I much admire your work as well as that of Mr Minchin. Thanks for blog.

Mark Nutt on 22nd of March 2013

Thanks for letting us know about this Joe! This sounds so great and it would be wonderful to see it take off!

Catherine on 22nd of March 2013

Great blog post, thanks so much for sharing – I’m another who’s really disappointed we shan’t get to hear it, it sounds wonderful!

DiB (Sue) on 22nd of March 2013

Oh how I would have loved to have been there. This deserves to be broadcast to the masses: both the pilot and the series.

TV should give us more proper talent like this and less unreal reality shows.

P.S. Love your work Joe, I saw The Horne Section in Edinburgh in 2011, and I remember your dad on TV when I was a young ‘un.

Alfa on 22nd of March 2013

Looks and sounds like a really fun night, really a shame we won’t get to hear it.
Thank you for posting.

Mary on 22nd of March 2013

Thank you so much for posting, Joe! It sounds like an amazing time and I really hope there is a possibility it gets broadcast. I guess the next best thing was reading it in story form. Thanks for sharing.

Elaine Webb on 22nd of March 2013

Fabulous blog and photos Joe, thanks. I would love to hear this in full -Tim and you playing together would have been pretty special!
Surely Radio 2 will jump at the chance of a show like this,sounds like a breath of fresh air and if we could get to hear this pilot somehow…well that really would be the icing on the cake.

Caz on 22nd of March 2013

Thank you very much for the blog Joe. Sounds funny and wonderful. I only wish we had the opportunity to hear it broadcast on our radios.

Rozboz on 22nd of March 2013

Oh Radio 2, you whip us up into a frenzy of anticipation, then it all folds as you tell us this won’t be broadcast? Poor taste.

Ms P on 22nd of March 2013

Thanks so much for sharing, Joe. It sounds like it was a special one, I wish I could have been there. I hope you get the radio gig!

Caz on 22nd of March 2013

Thank you so much for the blog Joe. I’m really sorry I won’t be able to hear this. Sounds like it would have been great.

Kathryn on 21st of March 2013

Thank you for taking the time tell us about this, so sad it wont be heard, i think whoever made that decision are ‘baking’ mad.

rebecca on 21st of March 2013

Sounds wonderful! Hope it gets picked up and made into a series. Wish I could have been there!

velvet cat on 21st of March 2013

That’s f*ingly rocked.

Irene on 21st of March 2013

Thank you, Joe. I got really excited when I heard about this soufflé of musical talent. And somewhat deflated to hear that the world will never hear the recording. Let’s hope the good folk at Radio 2 decide to give you a regular series!

Cathy on 21st of March 2013

Thanks for filling us in, Joe – it sounds wonderful. What a shame it won’t be broadcast – surely there must be a chance of a podcast version?

Amanda on 21st of March 2013

Not broadcasting our Tim and co doing divine stuff at Ronnie Scott’s is a crime against jazz, comedy and all that is good in the world. Come on, you know you want to….!

Nicole on 21st of March 2013

Not broadcast? You are kidding?
I wonder if the ABC would be interested?

Good post,sounds like great fun. I am with Susanne,I would have loved a ticket.

Allison on 21st of March 2013

Tim Minchin and a Jools Holland reference in the same blog…uber cool. Can you imagine a piano duet between those two in a jazz setting, heaven! If it gets commissioned please consider that as an opener! Also, the pilot must have been recorded, couldn’t it “accidently” get released as a podcast? Blame someone in the audience, they will never know.

Anne on 21st of March 2013

You can’t tell us all that and then not broadcast it! Isn’t there room for *one* episode on the Radio 2 schedule? I have no doubts everyone would love it (although I might be a bit bias, visiting this site and stuff…).
Even if it doesn’t make it to a series, a little taste (metaphor!) would be appreciated.

Heather Jones on 21st of March 2013

Thank you so much for this lovely blog, Joe – a much appreciated glimpse of fun-sounding event; glad to hear that everyone ‘rose’ to the occasion (well you started it!) Really hope they light the gas on the series!

LesW on 21st of March 2013

Great blog Joe. Wish I’d been there. The UK “kneads” a radio show like this so hope it gets made.

PS Loved your dad’s work and you seem pretty good too :)

Sian Morton on 21st of March 2013

It’s a bit cruel describing a show that sounds like it was designed in some sort of heavenish place then telling us it won’t be broadcast! I would also love to have been there.

Susanne on 21st of March 2013

Great post, thank you! How lovely of Tim to “rise” to the challenge and throw a bit of his ginger into your mix :) I would love to have been there!

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