Monthly Archives

September 2016

Mike Love

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I am a huge Beach Boys fan. Easily one of the greatest groups of all time. I’ve been lucky enough to interview Brian a couple of times. Once he was disinterested and giving one word answers, while the first time he was engaged, honest and quite rude about Al Jardine! This goes against one school of thought that says Brian is ALWAYS polite in interviews (sorry Smilers, it simply aint true). Anyway, both times were a huge thrill and I was dead happy.

I’ve been trying for ages to get an interview with Mike Love, the lead singer and lead lyricist of the Boys for quite some time but he has always proved elusive. I met him briefly backstage at the Royal Albert Hall, and he couldn’t have been nicer. I was inspired to write an article for Record Collector magazine suggesting that popular folklore had got it wrong and that Mike wasn’t the villain in the BB story. So many people seem to hate him and raise Brian to a saintlike status. Both are human. Both are flawed. Both have made mistakes. Both have also contributed to my life in immeasurable ways with their music and lyrics. I am deeply grateful to both men.

Mike has a book out and it’s a cracking read. Because of this, I was able to get him to call my show one evening and chat to me for almost half an hour. Sure, he told a couple of old stories, and no one in the UK knows what Full House is or what a John Stamos does, but, but, but….I think I managed to get him to answer a few new questions that he hadn’t been asked before. Come on, how many times in an interview has he been asked if it’s true he taught Dennis Wilson about cunnilingus?

I enjoyed it, and I think he did too. I had so many people get in touch afterwards saying it totally changed their opinion of him. Hey, he’s messed up but who hasn’t? He’s been in showbiz for over 50 years, so of course so it would be impossible for him not to have made some missteps. Give My Regards to Broad Street and Press To Play are two examples of McCartney getting it wrong.

Here’s the interview. If you enjoyed it, please do subscribe to my podcast on iTunes by clicking on this link or searching your usual podcast provider.

The Delightful Scroobius Pip

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I’ve been aware of Scroobius Pip for a while. I first heard his music when Russell Brand picked one of his songs on Desert Island Discs. Thou Shalt Always Kill is absolutely brilliant. Musically excellent and packed full of ‘jokes’ but it’s not a comedy song, it’s much much more than that. Gets you finking as well, which is a novelty in itself in not just music but culture as a whole.

I’d seen him win an award at the Radio Academy a few years back, the same year my team and I won Best Breakfast Show for the BBC 3CR show. I was thrilled when I discovered he followed me on Twitter, but I still didn’t know much about him. I knew his podcast was good, because people who’s opinions I really rated said it was good, but I didn’t listen because I don’t really listen to podcasts.

I decided to buy his book Distraction Pieces (which you can get HERE)and was so pleased I did. It is absolutely inspirational, not at all preachy, and bloody enjoyable. I devoured it in 2 days.

People had suggested I ask Pip to come on the show but I HATE asking people directly, especially in a public forum like Twitter. What if they say no? What if they feel pressured to come on because I’ve asked them publicly? What if they think I’m shit? Genuinely, I have all of these negative thoughts and more. Anyways, I did ask him and he was incredibly gracious in accepting.

He came on my show last night and we got on so well. He’s lovely, taller than me, hilarious, charming, warm and sympathetic. If you’re a friend of his, you are a very lucky person indeed. I could listen to him for hours. He’s invited me onto his Distraction Pieces podcast (which I have started listening to and you can subscribe to by clicking this link )

Click the player below to hear the hour of my show with Pip. I hope you enjoy listening as much as I enjoyed hosting it. If you want to subscribe and leave nice comments (it all helps) please click this link here Thanks for listening, I really do appreciate your company.


Noel Edmonds Called My Cat…

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…well, not mine, but he DID phone up the cat of Peter Ormerod. Ages ago on the show we were looking at Noel’s website and spotted a feature on there where you could register details about your pet and he may call it up. We thought nothing more of it until an eagle eyed listener called Aaron spotted a wonderful story in the Guardian about how his cat received a phone call from Edmonds.

I had to get Peter on the show. Luckily for us, he was gracious enough to come on and talk about it.

Click the link below to hear the podcast or click this link to subscribe to the daily podcast via iTunes.


Daily Podcast

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Some of you don’t know thatI now present a daily late night show on Well, now you do. Immediately after leaving BBC Three Counties I fell into a massive funk, a very deep existential depression that threatened to tear me apart. I still haven’t really climbed out of it. Breakdown? Probably. I was heartbroken. Luckily, talkRADIO was being relaunched and they were more than keen to get me on board. And I was thrilled to be asked.

So, every weeknight from 10pm Katherine and I, along with Ed, host a phone in show unlike any other phone in show. That’s not me being immodest, it’s true. If I’m wrong, please do let me know because I am trying to make the kind of show that I would like to listen to. Anyways, it’s about nothing. I go in, turn the microphone up, open the phone lines and see what comes out. I have no agenda when I go. Well, mostly I don’t. Sometimes I have something especially shitty or brilliant that’s happened to me that day that I have to get off my chest, for example, what’s going on with my mum and her care home situation.

It’s not all doom and gloom. Sure, people can come on and be honest about their feelings. We’ve had alcoholics and suicidal callers sharing where they are, trying to grab a gasp of air before they get pulled back under the sea of whatever demons are haunting them. We also twat about a lot as well and have a laugh. It really is driven by your calls and what you want to talk about.

I also try and get on guests you won’t hear anywhere else. They have to be people who have had an impact on me and touched my life in some way. Sometimes people frown at the people I choose to invite on but USUALLY I win them round because I know the guest has something special to share, a unique story. Hey, look, we even had Mike Love of the Beach Boys call in! And so many people got in touch to say the interview completely changed their opinion of him. Have a listen and see what you think.

The show is fun, I’m still not sure I’m on the right track with it. I have gaping periods of self doubt about treading such a lonely path. If more people were doing this kind of show I’d feel more secure. Maybe there’s a reason people are going on air with heavily formatted shows and relying on the tried and tested call in subjects of Muslims, immigrants and whatever the front page of the Daily Mail is shouting angrily about that day. I dunno.

Finally, there is a daily podcast of the show as well. iTunes subscribers can get it by typing Iain Lee talk into iTunes or simply by clicking this link It’s available on all your usual podcast platforms as well, if you email me the links you use I’ll add them on this page. If you get the hooky full show pods, please do consider getting the official pods as well as the higher the numbers, the more secure my job.

Thanks for being there team.




Performance Ring – Acts and Audience Wanted!

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A while I ago I floated the idea of hosting a variety evening in London where the acts were all made up of listeners. Keen amateurs, pro’s if there were any or people who just fancied having a go at…well…anything really.

The first night is on October 30th. Don’t look for tickets. It sold out like Billy-O. I immediately booked another night in for Sunday December 11th. We’re 3 months away from that and there are only 20 tickets left. Want them? Grab them HERE.

If you want to take part, then please get in touch. Your act can literally be anything. For example, on the bill for the show in October is a man pushing a wheelbarrow across the stage. That’s it. We’ve also got someone performing poetry via Skype and a short film being screened. Honestly, you can do ANYTHING. Acts need to be between 8-15 minutes, so it probably won’t work if you just want to get up and sing a song for a laugh. It CAN be a laugh, but it will need a little bit more.

You don’t have to have had experience, the audience is going to be lovely and want you to win, they really do. I’ll also be there to help you.

Fancy it? Email and let me know what you think you might like to do. Let’s do it.


PS here’s a link to my talkRADIO podcast by the way, just in case you didn’t know I had a daily podcast and a late night phone in show…

Set The Agenda Returns…sort of…

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Anyone remember the variety night I hosted a few years ago? It was called Set The Agenda and took place in Camden. First off we had a tiny room above a pub but soon outgrew that and we ended up taking over a whole pub in North London. It was a lot of fun and we had a delightful variety of acts. Adam Hess, Pete Heat, magicians, harpists, contortionists, a card ninja – it was weird and deliciously varied. Proper variety.

Well, that came to an end as all things must eventually and life moved on. Now I’m hosting a late night show weeknights from 10 on and it’s a joy. I received a call last night from an old friend of the show, Jim The Dancer. Jim’s been down on his luck a bit recently. His good friend Dennis passed away and Jim not only lost a friend, but also a place to record his wonderful videos. Here’s one here, absolutely brilliant stuff.

But Jim is a trooper. He’s got back up, dusted himself down and found a new outlet for his artistic needs. He now performs in comedy clubs. As he was telling me this, I was hit by a thunderbolt. Why don’t Katherine and I host a live evening of talent but not from professional acts I’ve found, but a night comprising of talent from the listeners, you lot. Now, you may be a professional turn, and that’s great, you’re very welcome, but you don’t have to be. You can be an enthusiastic amateur, or maybe a hopeless dreamer who has always wanted to do SOMETHING but didn’t quite know what.

Now’s your chance.

I’m looking for ANY acts to come and perform at a venue in London one Sunday evening, probably in October. It will be a completely safe environment, everyone will be in the same boat, and audience will be on your side. No one wants to see anyone fail. They all want you to succeed. So, even if you aren’t any good, you’ll be made to feel very welcome.

I don’t want to be too prescriptive on what acts we are looking for here, anything. I guess I don’t want too many blokes with a guitar but I don’t want to put anyone off for getting in touch. this may not work. Or it may be a triumph. Either way, I WANT this to happen. We’ll call it #TalentRing as it is different from STA and everything needs a hashtag these days.

If you’re up for it, email me and let me know what you think you might want to do.

Hope to hear from you soon.