Sunday, 22 April 2018

Turntable Tales - Turntablists And Turntable Survival

BBC Radio 4 broadcast: 19th March 2016

In the second part of her history of the Record Turntable DJ and broadcaster Colleen Murphy brings the story up to the present. After the war there was a steady improvement in the quality of Turntables and their attendant amps and speakers but the biggest step was the introduction of small, self-contained units that allowed teenagers to find and refine their musical tastes in the relative seclusion of their bedrooms.

Colleen also tracks the recent rise in Turntable sales and visits a surviving and now thriving niche producer, Nottingham Analogue, to see how they go about creating the perfect Deck.

But there's been another revolution in the Turntable story which began on a very particular day in 1975 when DJ Grand Wizzard Theodore, with the help of his mother, developed the 'scratch'. Colleen chats to Grand Wizzard about his scratching discovery and the Turntablism which developed from it. She also hears from JFB, the UK DJ who's a three times British DMC Turntablist champion and the master of a myriad of scratching techniques.

As well as their own DJ world, of which Colleen is a part, the likes of JFB have also inspired classical compositions using Turntables. Gabriel Prokofiev talks to her about his concerto that's now on a list of pieces recommended for Secondary Schools.

It was the DJ's who, back in the nineties helped sustain the production of vinyl. Now it's the audiophiles who lead the charge. Turntable sales have turned a corner and the Turntable Tale is very far from over.

In searching for the magic of what the Turntable is, can be and has been, Colleen hears again from the Antiques Roadshow's Paul Atterbury about a memorable moment during his time on the show involving an old, wind-up Gramophone.

Producer: Tom Alban.

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