Bad Memories is a supernatural horror radio play by Julian Simpson. It was first broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on 07 January 2011, as an installment of the Friday Play. The play won a 2011 BBC Audio Drama Award in the category of Best Use of Sound in an Audio Drama. [more inside]
The BBC has announced that it will be producing a radio dramatization of Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett's book, Good Omens. The radio drama will be broadcast as six episodes in December on BBC Radio 4, and will feature Mark Heap and Peter Serafinowicz in the lead roles.
The pre-2005 series had a Doctor who was dressed in vaguely Edwardian clothing, who spoke with an RP accent, who had his stories adapted into books. That’s just the way it was. - Andrew Hickey's Fifty Stories For Fifty Years, one for every year of Doctor Who, reaches 2004 and Scream of the Shalka (previously) - arguably the end of the line for "Classic" doctor who. Previous instalments had covered the TV series from start to end, as well as the odd novelisation or movie. Possibly of greatest interest are the years before the new TV series where, TV movie aside, the franchise survived and evolved in strange directions via novels and audio stories. Then, at the outmost reaches of Whodom, there is the Book of the War and the strange world of Faction Paradox, which THERE IS NO FACTION PARADOX, THERE IS NO EVIL RENEGADE, YOU DID NOT READ THIS POST.
BBC Radio 4 now has a dedicated online program library! Rather than hunting through the site, you can now browse by subject and/or program from one main 'Collections' page. It's not all of the output by any means, but there's plenty there to keep you going, such as the philosophy archives from Melvyn Bragg's "In Our Time", or various mathematics programs from different series. There's much much more as well. [more inside]
2009 marks not only the 150th anniversary of the publication of Charles Darwin's On The Origin of Species* but the 200th anniversary of his birth as well. To celebrate, BBC Radio 4 presents a special series of Melvyn Bragg's In Our Time exploring Darwin's life and work: Episode 1 explores Darwin's unhappy childhood, his time at Cambridge University and his failure to become a priest, episode 2 focuses on Darwin's round the world voyage on the Beagle and the objects and the ideas he bought back, episode 3 looks at the publication of Darwin's masterpiece, On the Origin of Species, and the controversy it stirred, and episode 4 is set in Down House where Darwin lived out the final years of his life and which became both family home and experiment lab. [more inside]
A recently uncovered musical experiment by Delia Derbyshire predicted the sound of modern dance music three decades before it became fashionable. [more inside]
The first known recording of a digital computer playing music, recorded by the BBC in 1951. The music played on a Ferantti Mark 1, one of the first commercial general-use computers, and was entered via punchtape and played on a speaker usually used for making clicks and tones to indicate program progress.
Create Digital Music has two pieces on the making of Doctor Who's theme song. The second is an introduction to Delia Derbyshire, who is considered to be the "woman behind the men" behind the notability of the song. She pioneered techniques of synthesizing sounds, sampling and looping in the sixties. One WFMU blogger waxes on about Delia, who "was an inspiring collaborator" working behind the scenes of the BBC's Radiophonic Workshop. BBC Four produced a documentary about the workshop called Alchemists of Sound which aired in 2005, ten years after the workshop closed due to budget cuts.
BBC Radio 2 -- Sold On Song The website for this show on BBC Radio 2 is pretty awesome; it's got a list of pages on various classic songs in their library (also sortable by artist), which includes song clips and (where available) clips from covers of the songs, taken from the same place -- check out the various It Must Be Loves (originally by
Madness Labi Siffre) -- my favorite will always be the Madness one, but the Lyn Paul version is actually pretty cool. There's also some weird and awful covers available for the picking. I've just been spending about an hour or two picking through random songs and noting on which ones are as good as the original or ones that just fall so very short. (They've also got lots of other content, like the songwriting guide, but the real fun is in the song pages, reading about these great songs and listening to other people do their own cuts on them. [All links go to text; all sound files are in RealAudio.]
Getting back into the groove : In the corner of a California university laboratory, two men are battling against time to perfect a machine that will read old recordings - using special microscopes to scan the grooves - and software that can convert those shapes into sound. Their work could bring history to life.
The BBC are testing out Ogg Vorbis for audio streaming. Ogg is a completely Free and open audio codec. This is great news for Ogg Vorbis, as you don't get a much better endorsement than one of the most respected media services trialling your system.