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  1. #1
    Senior Member Country: England Maurice's Avatar
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    ceefax:



    BBC Radio 3 and World Service presenter Charlie Gillett has died after a long illness, aged 68.



    Known as a champion of world music, the Lancashire-born broadcaster passed away in a London hospital on Wednesday, his family has confirmed.



    He contracted an auto-immune disease, and last week suffered a heart attack.



    Gillett is credited with discovering Dire Straits in 1976 after playing Sultans of Swing from their demo tape on his Radio London show Honky Tonk.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Country: England
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    I originally posted this elsewhere, so I hope you don't mind...



    One of those very few broadcasters who could claim - though he wouldn't have done, far too modest - to actually change the musical landscape. Him and Peelly, actually. Go into any substantial record shop and go to the section entitled World Music. That was his doing. Before Charlie Gillett you would have to go to one basement record shop in Soho, mostly folk music, and hunt in there. Now, a familiar sight on every High Street. Heard on Radio 3, Radio 6, and occasionally Radio 1 when they're feeling adventurous. An ingredient at every Music Festival worth attending. Others followed him and became more obvious proselytisers for the area - Ian Anderson at Folk Roots as was, Peter Gabriel at WOMAD, Andy Kershaw...but it was Charlie who led the way. I can point to a couple of feet of shelves of vinyl that was from artists I heard from him first...thank you for that, Charlie, there are thousands of little monuments like that, to you, all over the country.

  3. #3
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    Nice words, Penfold.



    Charlie really was a great educator.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Country: Great Britain
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    Indeed, Penfold. A world traveller myself in my work, whether by moped or matatu and having been regaled by the rhythms of the world from Kingston to Kigali, Charlie Gillet became the authority to learn from, and learn with.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Country: Great Britain
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    Back in the mid- 70's Charlie Gillett's radio show "Honky Tonk" was a hugely influential and the best show on the air in London for sure. Also his book "Sound Of THe City" ? was essential reading for many.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Country: Ireland fluddite's Avatar
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    Agree with all the above. RIP Charlie - you'll be much missed.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Country: England AdobeFlats's Avatar
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    name='billy bentley']Back in the mid- 70's Charlie Gillett's radio show "Honky Tonk" was a hugely influential and the best show on the air in London for sure. Also his book "Sound Of THe City" ? was essential reading for many.


    Stayed in several London hotel rooms in the late 70s/80s. After discovering C.G. on the radio therein, he was a must each time I visited the Smoke.

    R.I.P. C.G.

  8. #8
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    Hi.

    I am sad to hear the news. I used to listen to Honky Tonk. I also remember winning two vinyl albums from the programme. One of them contained an autograph photo of Charlie, with a message apologising for the prize being sent late. The other, however, was sent by Stuart Coleman, who guested on a particular edition. I think he made a competition up quickly on air, and Charlie said he would leave the handling to Stuart. Stuart Coleman eventually replaced Charlie Gillett with a programme called Echoes.



    I do not think that I can say anything better than penfold's tribute.



    However, I am sad.



    Charlie Gillett please R.I.P.



    Alan French.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Country: Great Britain
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    Two 'personal recollection' BBC radio programmes regarding Charlie broadcast very recently:-



    The Strand Broadcast on the World Service only at present, this is the edition dated Thursday 18 March. Includes an interview with Youssou n'Dour.



    Last Word This is the BBC Radio 4 tribute programme to those recently passed away. This is the broadcast of Friday, 19 March, due for a repeat this evening, Sunday 22 March at 8.30 pm.



    Both programmes are still currently available in the radio section of the BBC i-player.

  10. #10
    Senior Member HUGHJAMPTON's Avatar
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    name='penfold']I originally posted this elsewhere, so I hope you don't mind...



    One of those very few broadcasters who could claim - though he wouldn't have done, far too modest - to actually change the musical landscape. Him and Peelly, actually. Go into any substantial record shop and go to the section entitled World Music. That was his doing. Before Charlie Gillett you would have to go to one basement record shop in Soho, mostly folk music, and hunt in there. Now, a familiar sight on every High Street. Heard on Radio 3, Radio 6, and occasionally Radio 1 when they're feeling adventurous. An ingredient at every Music Festival worth attending. Others followed him and became more obvious proselytisers for the area - Ian Anderson at Folk Roots as was, Peter Gabriel at WOMAD, Andy Kershaw...but it was Charlie who led the way. I can point to a couple of feet of shelves of vinyl that was from artists I heard from him first...thank you for that, Charlie, there are thousands of little monuments like that, to you, all over the country.


    Nicely put, Penfold. He surely did put the music and the artist first, and in no way concerned with promoting his own personality. Always informative, whatever the music was



    name='billy bentley']Back in the mid- 70's Charlie Gillett's radio show "Honky Tonk" was a hugely influential and the best show on the air in London for sure. Also his book "Sound Of THe City" ? was essential reading for many.


    Concur entirely, billy. Has to be remembered also, his brief management of Ian Dury, when he was with the Kilburns. It might be said, that the Honky Tonk shows were fueled by nepotism, the playing and promoting of Stiff artists, a label he was influential in setting up, but it really was the best and most energetic music of that period, and generally accepted as such now.



    The interviews he did, were some of the best radio interviews I ever heard.



    My world's a little sadder today. RIP, Charlie, and thanks.



    If you've got a spare hour, check out on Youtube, The Oval Records Story with Charlie Gillett.

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