Friday, 3 October 2008

5fm rocked my world.

Warning!!!  What follows is a boring and self-indulgent post. If you are not South African, never listened to 5fm, weren't alive in the 90's, or just don't care, then I apologise. Come back next week, there will be fresh brownies.

After intensive research I have calculated statistically via the ANOVA F-distribution analysis (I made that up) that people are less likely to read blogs on Fridays, so I figure I can get away with it.

I am in a reminiscing mood today.  For some reason I have turned out to be one of those people that look upon my youth as this wondrous paragon of halcyon idyll, and other big words as well (I don't know what they mean). Which is ironic because I am sure I remember thinking at the time I was actually youthful, "This hell, when shall it end?" 

Today I am reminiscing about the good ole days  of 5fm. In the 90's 5fm was the soundtrack to my life. I listened to it day and night. I was so not an East Coast Radio girl, that shit was for old people.

Who remembers Tony Murrel? His intro went something like: "he's really rather pretty for an antelope". He was so funny. And mad. I think he was English. Which may explain things.

And Alex Jay, what a legend.  It was through his comedy half hour that I first discovered Eddie Izzard, my favourite executive transvestite.

Then there were Ian F and Sasha Martinengo, what a pair of numpties. They had such a good repartee. I loved their prank calls, and that atrocious dance single that they released. 

And Darren Scott (who I see has gone over to the dark side of East Coast Radio) with John Walland and the news reader Leanne.  I loved the way Darren ripped off John, although deep down I was still too naive to work out whether he really meant it or if it was all for show. Darren, what a biscuit.

And what about Barney Simon's Night Zoo? How legend was that show? That guy was at the forefront of promoting South African music. He played stuff you would never hear anywhere else. When he had to start playing crap like Dario G's sunchyme to increase the ratings I wanted to cry. Remember, "Look everyone, he's coming through the doors... brilliant, he didnt even open them, he's here!" And one time (at band camp) he played my song list, which made my week!

Remember the UK top 40 and how it was treated as the holy grail of music? "Based on sales and only sales". No kidding it was based only on sales, which is why songs like Bob the builder and the tweenies were at number one for 100 straight years. Help. me.

All those guys stood out as individuals; they had banter, they had some control over what they played. 5fm seems so bland now. The DJ's just aren't funny, and the music... well I won't say anything about the music in case I reveal myself as an old whingeing crone. 

Suffice it to say that when G and I visited this year we ended up going over to the dark side. Yes, we switched to East Coast radio. They had good load-shedding traffic light updates at least.


Rox said...

Sigh... good memories!

I used to tape stuff sometimes, and whenever I replayed them the songs would have the first bits missing and lots of DJ talk, I loved it.

And I remember Barney played at my local hangout aka Cape Town's legendary Springfield, and they had to put him in a mesh cage because drunk people would throw stuff at him.

Funny, I also don't listen it anymore... over the years it's somehow lost its magic, and now it's all about the precious playlists.

P.S. I listen to KFM now, who would have thought.

Ches said... we've got Grant and Anele in Ian F's spot....they are effing terrible, damage your ears!

Tamara said...

Do you remember Marc Gillman? He was reason enough to switch to the dark side!

po said...

Rox: I used to tape stuff all the time too, with bits of radio clip in the front.

Ches: yeah, I listened to them a bit before I was forced to change the channel!

Tamara: yeah Mark Gillman started out in the mornings, and he annoyed me.

po said...

Rox : kfm is East coast radio's capetonian twin. For old people, like me :)

Ooh, i went to Springfields once or twice as a student. Was that the one inside a train? It was all so long ago.

Lopz said...

@Rox & Po - oh me too, radio mixed tapes!!! The stuff of legends. I still listen to Five when I'm down in CT for a holidaym but you're so right - whatever happened to compelling radio? I've also gone over to the dark side of Kfm - we are so all getting old!

Kitty Cat said...

What an excellent post! But heck, just on the day I turn 30 I feel old reminiscing about the good old 5fm! But I loved them, what memories you brought back! Barney Simon...Leanne...and now I've crossed over to the dark side as well. I'm officially old because I listen to East Coast.
But I agree with Tamara about Mark Gillman!

po said...

hmm Lopz and kitty

seems we must all be about the same age if we have all gone over to the dark side!

Fluffy Pink Thing said...

Oh yeah, Barney Simon - reminds me of my angst-filled-Docs-wearing-teenage years spent in my bedroom listening to the radio. And what about Kevin Savage's Music Power Half Hour?!?!? Loved that! (And Tony Blewitt 'His mother's favourite DJ'?!?:) Yeah, things have changed. Other than Gareth Cliff's show, I give 5FM a huge miss. Kfm is a tad boring so I find myself listening to 567 Cape Talk. Wow, just writing that makes me feel old. Shit.

po said...

OOh yes Kevin Savage. And Tony blewitt, he was also really funny, I loved both the Tonys. I have never listened to Cape Talk, will give it a try when I am next over.

The Blonde Blogshell said...

I know the guys personally...Alex Jay is the most amazing, modest and incredible man in this industry, that I have ever met! I am in awe!

po said...

Blondie that is so SO cool, I really admire many of those guys. Actually I plucked up the guts to write to Barney Simon, telling him how much I loved his show and he replied, which was so awesome!

And I loved Alex Jay.

Charlotte said...

Alex Jay was the king! Thanks for reminding me.

(I came to visit via Being Brazen ...)

po said...

hey Charlotte, thanks for visiting.

Kitty Cat said...

I have something for you at my blog! Go check it out immediately and collect!!! :)

DT said...

Po - you have brought back many memories - I loved Barney Simon's show: If it is too loud you are too old! I never understood why they cancelled his show! It happened at the same time local music was getting more popular! I love that he is still wearing his Doc's!

po said...

Thanks DT, I was trying to remember the whole of Barney's intro but it was so long. I remember "welcome to the moshpit". I had forgotton about the "too old" bit. Thanks!

Marcel said...

What ever happened to Tony Morrell? I remember laughing my teenaged ass off during his show; can't remember why though.

I remember sick days when I'd stay at home & put the radio on so that I could listen to shows I normally missed during school times.

I wonder if it's an unwritten rule that if they give you the mid-morning show, then you're the next DJ to be axed?

But 5fm is no longer worth listening to. The DJs have no style or character. The 'old' guys were fantastic, so now I feel like an old far... fogey ... when I listen to Primedia's Kfm, or Highveld (when I'm in Gauteng).

Maybe it's time they re-brand those stations so that we can all feel 'cool' again?

po said...

Marcel: I think I remember Tony Murrel going to the UK?

I reckon that rebranding kfm and East coast is a brilliant idea. I mean at the moment it caters to my agegroup but also my moms age group. We need to feel cool and have our our own station again!