18 episodes

Stuart Maconie and Elizabeth Alker meet up to tell each other extra-ordinary tales from 400 years of musical history.
From a murderous 16th Century madrigal composer to Batley Variety Club - Yorkshire's very own Caesar's Palace... and from the espionage-tinted roots of the theremin to the wild weekend that was the Bickershaw pop festival... Notable has the lot. Produced by Geoff Bird, artwork by Rory Clifford.

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Notable Notable

    • Arts
    • 4.9 • 110 Ratings

Stuart Maconie and Elizabeth Alker meet up to tell each other extra-ordinary tales from 400 years of musical history.
From a murderous 16th Century madrigal composer to Batley Variety Club - Yorkshire's very own Caesar's Palace... and from the espionage-tinted roots of the theremin to the wild weekend that was the Bickershaw pop festival... Notable has the lot. Produced by Geoff Bird, artwork by Rory Clifford.

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    Notable: Timber Festival

    Notable: Timber Festival

    Stuart and Elizabeth are on their travels again for the last episode before the summer hols, this time heading to the glorious Timber Festival in the National Forest.
    Elizabeth begins her history of music festivals not with Monterey or the Isle of White but the Panhellenic Games in Ancient Greece - while Stuart's horizons are set even further afield. He regales the audience with the story of the most durable object ever created, The Voyager Golden Record, and the music found upon it - sent into outer space for alien life to get a flavour of some of the highpoints of human culture.
    Notable will be away for the Summer and return with more extra-ordinary musical tales in the Autumn.

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    • 28 min
    Notable: Wendy Carlos& Norman 'Nobby' Pilcher

    Notable: Wendy Carlos& Norman 'Nobby' Pilcher

    In the penultimate episode of the series, Elizabeth and Stuart tackle the stories of two very different figures from the illustrious annals of music history. Elizabeth describes how Wendy Carlos shook the classical world to its well-heeled foundations with her extra-ordinary re-workings of Bach in particular, using cutting-edge electronic equipment that she herself was helping to develop. On the other side of the Atlantic, as Stuart will reveal, Nobby Pilcher was fast becoming the most notorious policeman in the history of British pop culture, with his penchant for nicking high profile musicians including John Lennon and Brian Jones.
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    • 26 min
    Notable: My Boy Lollipop & Basil Kirchin

    Notable: My Boy Lollipop & Basil Kirchin

    Another week, another Notable! This time out Stuart and Elizabeth tell two more stories from the annals of musical history, first up the incredible tale of Millie Small and her hugely influential hit 'My Boy Lollipop', which gave Britain its first taste of Jamaican Ska and gave Island Records its first major success. After that we hear about one of the true mavericks of British music, whose too-often neglected career spanned several decades and numerous genres - Basil Kirchin.
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    • 34 min
    Notable: Albert Ayler & Cecil Sharp

    Notable: Albert Ayler & Cecil Sharp

    This week Elizabeth and Stuart tell the stories of two highly influential figures from very different sections of music history. First up is the brilliant saxophonist Albert Ayler, a free jazz pioneer whose influence on John Coltrane alone merits him a much wider audience than ever achieved in his lifetime. Then, after a blessedly brief diversion into the backstory of legendary Lancashire songsmiths the Dandelion Adventure, we hear about Cecil Sharp, whose work collecting thousands of traditional songs in the nineteenth century made him a king of folk music; more recently his reputation has become somewhat more complicated, as Elizabeth and Stuart explain.
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    • 37 min
    Notable: The Wicker Man/Johan Johannsson

    Notable: The Wicker Man/Johan Johannsson

    Elizabeth and Stuart embark on a by-now near legendary one-show tour with their visit to the Hinterlands Film Festival in Skipton, which celebrates films set in non-urban locations. Before a screening of 'The Wicker Man' at the town's Plaza Cinema, Stuart tells the audience about movie's soundtrack, which he suggests launched its own musical sub-genre. Elizabeth chooses the work of Jóhan Jóannsson, most famous for his astonishing film soundtracks including 'Arrival' and 'The Theory of Everything', and the amazing musical life of his home country, Iceland.
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    • 41 min
    Edgard Varèse - David Bowie & 1984

    Edgard Varèse - David Bowie & 1984

    Stuart prompts a startling confession from Elizabeth through his recounting of the story of David Bowie's obsession with 1984. Before that she delves into the remarkable tale of composer Edgard Varèse and the huge influence he had on musicians including Charlie Parker and Frank Zappa. All that and a Notable Exception every bit as tangled as a C90 cassette that's been spat out of the tape player.
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    • 37 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
110 Ratings

110 Ratings

OC1958 ,

Excellent company

Stuart and AlkerPops help me through the day in the warehouse.
Incidentally, Bill Oddie’s mum DID live in Rochdale; we met her in the pub in 1980 when we ( Mysterious Footsteps)were recording at Cargo Studios . She told us she was Bill’s mum but we didn’t believe her...turns out she blummin WAS. 😂😂 it came out on his ‘who do you think...’

Pam Doove ,

Just delightful

It didn’t take much for me to press play on the first of these perfect little podcasts as I’m a huge fan of the Maconie-Alker team anyway.

But like others have said, not only is the content of each episode really interesting and told by genuine music/ culture enthusiasts, the fact that each episode is half an hour long is a really refreshing change too. You’Droveft feeling satisfied and smiling.

I’m recommending this to everyone and hope there are many more episodes to come. Cheers!

Elleywell ,

What a find!

A great pairing - 2 people who are knowledgeable about music, serious, funny and articulate. I’ve learned so much about subjects that I hadn’t thought of before. More please!

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