Jackanory with photos. Great new app!


Who needs a Playstation?
Who needs a Playstation?

Which creative genius suggested they make a TV show consisting of a person reading out of a book sitting static in a chair for 20 minutes and called it Jackanory. No sets. No special effects. No fancy costumes and yes it was a huge hit! The intimacy as a 5 year old sitting cross legged in front of the telly watching a lucid adult reading you a story was the water cooler moment for the new TV generation in the late 60’s. I can hear the theme tune now….in fact here it is …..


Of course things move on and they moved on a pace with Tales of the Riverbank in which Ratty Rat and Hammy Hamster undertook projects. Riveting rivering by anyones standards.

Johnny Morris is the voice of these incredibly creative rodents. I was glued to this as a kid and can’t imagine why we didn’t invite the helpful little critters into our homes and live amongst us.I suppose rat fever and the plague is likely the answer to that

But goodness me how things have come on. Now anyone can make their own wee story using a New app… Adobe Voice . It’s very simple and within seconds I had the hang of it oh – and this makes an Aberdonians heart sing – it’s freeee! Just download  Adobe Voice onto your phone and off you go. Start telling your own Jackanory/Tales of the Riverbank stories.

They clearly had a huge respect for women in those days.
They clearly had a huge respect for women in those days.

I’m sure will get better in time. It’s fun. It’s quick and it brings it all to life. Have a shotty and leave a link on the comments bit of this blog and let’s have a look at what your Ridley Scott influences can achieve.


Terry Wogan. The boss. Gone.

The perfect shirt for radio.
The perfect shirt for radio.

The first time my name was on the radio was  a birthday request by Stewpot for my 6th birthday. “Mares eat oats and does eat oats, and little lambs eat ivy….”.no it does exist it’s just that I am ancient. From that moment to this, my overwhelming obsession in life has been radio. A medium where you as a listener really connect to the presenter and as a presenter if your doing your job, to your listener. To me the master of them all was Terry Wogan and when I heard the chocolate voiced, cheeky, twinkly eyed Irish man had passed away today there was a tear in my eye.

images-8Sitting circa 1976 on the way to school in Mums old Morris Minor I would turn the radio onto Radio 1 and crank up the volume, the second she stopped at the lights Mum would slap my leg and turn back to the Radio 2 Breakfast program which was then hosted by Terry Wogan. It only took me a while to to realise Noel was just a pretender to the throne (with bad streaks) but at a very tender age I also became a Wogan fan. His gentle self deprecating humour won me and millions of others over to be dedicated fans.

images-8When I heard Chris Evans was taking over his Radio 2 breakfast show all those years ago I wasn’t convinced he was the man for the job. But then who could ever take over from Terry? The day Evans took over he played it very low key and respectful and quiet and there was hope but within the week his volume was up, his me me me style was back at the fore and the memory of that lovely lilting unassuming Irish brogue was lost to our grumpy early morning ears.

Hearing his voice on air on a Sunday was piecemeal indeed but better than nothing. Which is sadly where we are now.


A huge loss. A colossus of the broadcasting world. Anyone who has ever asked me who I believe was the best radio presenter of all time I used to say listen to Terry Wogan. I always will.


Oh and to prove I am not insane….here’s a 1943 version of Maisie Dotes….


Quite realistic really

Things were going  well. The toxicity of my body at the weekend was reverting to near normal. The evidence of badness is a crop of rather impressive spots on my chin. Each one must repesent a bottle of wine consumed in party mode.  I considered a balaclava but when Teenwolf has experienced a beezer of a spot I aye tell him to let it breath and leave it alone or it will spread.

These words of wisdom come from my Mum who imparted this knowledge to me when I was but a youth. So trying to avoid hypocrisy – at least for the morning – I went bare faced. By 11am I was back in front of the mirror applying thick slicks of make-up to my chin.

Everyone I met, and I mean everyone, started off well enough talking to me and looking me in the eye. But before long their eyes were drawn to  a selection of other large red eyes staring at them from my lower face.  So clarted and orange I went about my day.

Now the colour of a Kiaora Orange juice I am off to the BBC to present Get It On tonight. You can listen online if you fancy 6-8pm on bbc.co.uk/radio scotland ook for Get It on or listen live and that’s me. Contact the show at getiton@bbc.co.uk and let me know what your suggetsions are for tonights theme – details here

Oh and horror of horrors spots will soon be the least of my worries….. as teenwolf has done what I dreaded he might. He has bagged his blog. He says his first post goes live tonight. We’ll see.

New BBC studios at Pacific Quay – a dream frankly.

Fatty Arbuckle doing the show last night

Great to get behind the desk of a music program at the BBC this week.

How things have changed. I used to slop into a studio with a wee box full of 7” singles. Yes I am that old. There were two record decks and 1 CD player – very new technology in those days., and 2 cart machines for playing in the jingles and promos.

Editing was by way of a piece of chalk which you would mark on ¼” tape and then slice it up with a razor blade, removing the piece of audio you didn’t want, before sticking it all back together again. Yes many a DJ had shorter fingers than the average person due to editing in the dark or with a hangover. No names no pack drill.

Well the new BBC studios at Pacific Quay in Glasgow are an amazing set up. Here you can see the desk I did Bryan Burnett’s show from last night. The desk is fully electronic and the height of the whole thing t is adjustable so the whole things comes right up high if you want to stand, or drops low if you prefer to sit. It is like The Starship Enterprise.

Joanna Glamorous engineer checking I haven't broken it.

All the music is on hard disc so there are no Cd,s vinyl or even DAT tapes. It is all controlled by those 4 screens.

One on the left for text, e mails and facebook communications during the show, the one next to that shows the running order of the program, what is cued up to come on next. Which  you control with a mouse.

The third screen is for your backingbeds there are 5 slots you can keep them on to fade up when you want to use them to talk over – much like a husband.

And the last one on the right is …I can’t remember. I was only there last night! Ah yes fried head.

It was great fun though and thanks if you took the time to get in touch, request a tune in the theme of velocity. I loved it.

Got a chance to play The Rattler by Goodbye Mr MacKenzie which I haven’t heard for years and believe it or not Ernie the Fastest Milkman in the West. It’s a great show – up to you what you hear on every weekday night from 6.10 – 8pm with Bryan Burnett, Get It On. If you haven’t listened do – it is brilliant to hear music that normally doesn’t get any airplay on radio.

Anyway I’m off to burn that stripey top I look like Gigantor!

Have a good Friday!

Barefaced horror on national TV – sorry.

Oh happy day.

Security woman carrying me in on her head

Up at 5am, looking like a sack of tatties, arrived at the BBC to prepare for presenting Call Kaye on Radio Scotland in Glasgow at 7am as Kaye Adams was having a well earned break. Sitting, baggy and slumped preparing the show when I get the call ‘come through we are ready to do  the trailer’ OK I said and shuffled through to the radio studio.

And then I heard the terrifying words.

No Alison, not in there it’s  a television trailer.


The trailer goes out on TV.

Immediate nausea hit me as I gasped but I haven’t got any slap.


Have you?

No sorry.
Can I do the trailer with a bag over my head?




Oh. Ok better get ready for the national grid to surge as everyone lunges at their TV and turns it off.

She laughed, bless her.

I meant it.

A wrinkle faced bat - or me? You will never know.

So if you were unfortunate enough to clock the tired, faced old bat this morning at 8.30am. Yes that was me and yes I did look shocking. I don’t go to the shops without my slap on – so national TV at 8.30am was a tad traumatic – for you more than me I suspect – and that’s saying something.

Ancient column – dusted down, hoovered and published on here….


DINNER at Howie’s with Pete Irvine, author of Scotland The Best and eventmeister of Scotland Hogmanay, Capital Christmas, Lomond Shores and general tourist guru. Talked about everything… food, TV, holidays, music and only at about midnight does it slip out that Pete was made an MBE MBE (in Britain) Member of the Order of the British Empire. Huh! Modest or what? I would have been wearing my “I’ve got an MBE” T-shirt at all times – which probably is exactly why I’ll never get anything like that. Good chat, too much wine, but it almost all came to a premature end when we realised we hadn’t taped Six Feet Under. After an emergency call to the babysitter we resumed our evening.


DRY. Felt like I was 6ft under after I got up. Did two voiceovers in the morning. I was required to sound husky in one, which was my speciality today… sounded husky and coincidentally looked like a husky. Got a call from Dave who suggested lunch. A cursory look at my old black jeans, off-white t-shirt and rumpled sweatshirt made me say, “OK, but just a wee sandwich in the back of the car.” So he took me to The Bonham, a super-smart hotel in Edinburgh. I sat in a corner trying to hide. Fabulous lunch and I was just starting to relax when I heard an “Alison, is that you?” Luckily, it was Marie, a good friend who also had a hangover. She sat at a neighbouring table, shaking and drinking water . Had a lovely lunch. Normally the pressure to wear shorts keeps me on the straight and narrow but I’m still swathed in woolly jumpers cos it’s cold, so what the hell.


TOOK about two hours to drive to my cousin’s house cos the Open golf was on and I forgot. Spotted lots of people in Slazenger V-necks. Saw Robbie Corbett again… he’ll think I’m stalking him. Got tickets for Saturday, drove home and collapsed in the bath when David answered the doorbell. It was John Whittle, from Optical Solutions, with my new glasses. He knew I had to drive to Glasgow tomorrow so delivered them personally. As I lay in the bath David plopped them on my nose. Now that’s what I call service.


GUESTING on Fred MacAulay Show with Steve Irwin, the mad Aussie who wrestles crocodiles and snakes for fun, and Pete McCarthy. His new book, The Road to McCarthy, is the follow-up to his incredibly successful McCarthy’s Bar. He’s very entertaining and I know from personal experience he has a great sense of humour On Room At The Top a couple of years back a researcher asked him if he had fully recovered after being held hostage. Yes, he mixed him up with John McCarthy. Last Playing For Time this week, then off to Aberdeen to do Radio Scotland’s afternoon show for a few weeks. Cousin phoned very excited, Tiger Woods has been going to her health club to train… though she was not quite as excited as her husband Mark as Tiger was there with his gorgeous Swedish girlfriend. God, it’s enough to make you turn to drink… or at least food. Dinner out with pals when I got a call from the babysitter… the wee man Louis was ill for the first time ever so had to whizz home. He wasn’t well, poor scone. He clambered into my bed where he stayed, sweating, tossing and turning.


LOUIS slept brilliantly but I was like a half-shut knife after 12 hours brow mopping. Decided not to be Snow White in panto Am I mad? Probably, but everyone says it is ten weeks, two shows a day, only Christmas day off. Thought long and hard, but it would mean no Christmas, no life, no Louis, no chance. It’s bound to be the last time he believes in Santa. I won’t miss it for anything.


OPEN golf. It was like monsoon, 3ft deep in water. No way I was going to watch men hitting balls with sticks… so I just hit the hospitality. Call from friend Fiona who was to have her 40th birthday party in Queen Street Gardens in Edinburgh… rained off. Panic – where can we have it? Happily, friend Derek volunteered his pad which was duly decked out with stuff, including copious quantities of food and drink. Danced the night away. Still enjoying someone’s hospitality at 1am.


GULP. Woke up fully clothed on couch. Asked long-suffering husband why he didn’t put me to bed. He said he tried but couldn’t – and besides my snoring would have kept him awake. Does Kylie have such problems? Tired. Old. Face strange shape. Yuk . Off to Aberdeen tomorrow to do Tom Morton Show on Radio Scotland for three weeks. Going on Slimfast diet as I’m becoming like a house – a two up, two down with large outside patio.