645 episodes

Mark Ellen and David Hepworth have been talking about and writing about music together and individually for a collective eighty years in magazines like Smash Hits, Mojo and The Word and on radio and TV programmes like "Rock On", "Whistle Test" and VH-1.
Over thirteen years ago, when working on the late magazine The Word, they began producing podcasts. Some listeners have been kind enough to say these have been very special to them. When the magazine folded in 2012 they kept the spirit of those podcasts alive in regular Word In Your Ear evenings in which they spoke to musicians and authors in front of an audience. 
Over these years they've produced hundreds of hours of material. As of the Current Unpleasantness of 2020, they've produced yet hundreds of hours more with a little help from guests kind enough to digitally show them around their attics such as Danny Baker, Andy Partridge, Sir Tim Rice and Mark Lewisohn. For the full span of the Word In Your Ear world, visit wiyelondon.com.
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Word In Your Ear Mark Ellen, David Hepworth and Alex Gold

    • Music
    • 4.6 • 197 Ratings

Mark Ellen and David Hepworth have been talking about and writing about music together and individually for a collective eighty years in magazines like Smash Hits, Mojo and The Word and on radio and TV programmes like "Rock On", "Whistle Test" and VH-1.
Over thirteen years ago, when working on the late magazine The Word, they began producing podcasts. Some listeners have been kind enough to say these have been very special to them. When the magazine folded in 2012 they kept the spirit of those podcasts alive in regular Word In Your Ear evenings in which they spoke to musicians and authors in front of an audience. 
Over these years they've produced hundreds of hours of material. As of the Current Unpleasantness of 2020, they've produced yet hundreds of hours more with a little help from guests kind enough to digitally show them around their attics such as Danny Baker, Andy Partridge, Sir Tim Rice and Mark Lewisohn. For the full span of the Word In Your Ear world, visit wiyelondon.com.
Get bonus content on Patreon
Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.

    For Jah Wobble driving tube trains was even more thrilling than playing Glastonbury

    For Jah Wobble driving tube trains was even more thrilling than playing Glastonbury

    Jah Wobble - aka John Wardle - wrote ‘Dark Luminosity: Memoirs of a Geezer’ in 2009. It’s just been reworked, expanded and republished and it’s well worth reading, full of detail about growing up in the East End, unexploded bombs, pickling factories, grim schooldays, record shops and clubs, the bands he saw and his arrival at Kingsway College where he met John Lydon and Sid Vicious and became a cornerstone of the punk rock inner circle. And then two challenging years as the bassist of Public Image Ltd, the time he worked as a train driver and ticket collector for London Transport, a series of collaborations – Brian Eno, Baaba Maal, Holger Czukay, Sinead O’Connor, Chaka Demus – and some bold and original solo albums (you’ll enjoy Island Records' reaction when he pitches an album based on the poems of William Blake). Among this podcast's highlights …
     
    … the Kafkaesque world of working for the London Underground in the days when you could “punch an area manager and not get sacked”.
     
    … why great rhythm sections are like great football players.
     
    … his dad, an El-Alamein survivor, on seeing Mick Jagger on Top of the Pops: “the Rolling Stones should be used for mine clearance.”
     
    … Public Image Ltd – “three of the weirdest people you could ever meet”, the band that kept their cash in a shoebox.
     
    … “you can’t go through life as a tourist”.
     
    … the secret of the perfect bass sound.
     
    … watching the first Sex Pistols’ rehearsal.
     
    … seeing Bob Marley & the Wailers at the Lyceum.
     
    … the record that reversed his dislike of the Beatles.
     
    … why working with Pharoah Sanders was the highlight of his musical life.
     
    … his 2023 album, ‘The Bus Routes of South London’.
     
    … Jim Reeves, Burl Ives and further sounds of the family homestead.
     
    ... and a powerful aversion to hippies.
     
    Order John’s memoir here …
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Dark-Luminosity-Memoirs-Geezer-expanded/dp/0571375359\
    Subscribe to Word In Your Ear on Patreon for early - and ad-free - access to all of our content, plus a whole load more: https://www.patreon.com/wordinyourear
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    • 35 min
    Steve Wright and other great radioheads, McCartney’s bass & the non-profits of Python

    Steve Wright and other great radioheads, McCartney’s bass & the non-profits of Python

    Pausing occasionally to spark a Senior Service and sink a milk stout, we kick cans down this week’s rock and roll boulevard stopping off at the following hotspots …   
     
    … the “Grunge Dripdown”: why Pearl Jam can play 60,000 seaters.
     
    … the Elton Line, the Dury Line, the Bragg Line, the Kirsty Line …. What the London Overgrounds should have been called and why.
     
    ... how Steve Wright made radio and sowed the seeds of the Fast Show and Stella Street.  
    … actors who’ve joined the Choir Invisible but live on in voice-over.
     
    … is any musician as closely linked to any instrument as McCartney to his Hofner bass? And the mysterious tale of its theft.
     
    … J&M Studios (where Little Richard’s Tutti Frutti was recorded) is now a launderette with a jukebox. What became of Olympic, Town House, Motown and Bearsville?
     
    … the Radio 2 v Greatest Hits ratings land-grab.
     
    … does anyone under 60 still care about Monty Python?
     
    … the latest glorious chapter in Taylor Swift and Kanye West’s 15-year “beef”.
    … “All pop music is Strictly”: what David learnt from his six-year old granddaughters. 
    … the voice of Tommy Vance returns by the miracle of AI.
     
    … “an elephant is a horse designed by a committee”.
     
    ... plus birthday guest Nick Foreman and why “underrated” is overrated.
    Subscribe to Word In Your Ear on Patreon for early - and ad-free - access to all of our content, alongside a whole load more!: https://www.patreon.com/wordinyourear
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    • 51 min
    Max Décharné reboots the golden age of the Teddy Boys

    Max Décharné reboots the golden age of the Teddy Boys

    If a film director wanted to flag up incoming violence in the late ‘50s, the camera would fall upon a couple of Teds lurking in the street outside. The teenage Keith Richards remembers razors, bike chains and bloodshed at dance halls and there was an infamous Teddy Boy murder on Clapham Common that plunged the nation into frantic, media-led moral panic. Max Décharné sets out to reclaim the Teds from their “Cro-Magnon, knuckle-dragging cliché” in his new book Teddy Boys and relives this dangerously thrilling rock and roll revolution – the music, clothes, films, press stories, the birth of Ted, Peak Ted, its eventual demise and what’s kept the flame alive since. Things of note include …  
     
    … the full effect of Blackboard Jungle on a packed 4,000-seater cinema.
     
    ... that poignant sight of an old Ted pushing a pram with a woman with a beehive.
     
    … Joan Collins in ‘Cosh Boy’.  
     
    … the first UK rock and roll gig, Bill Haley & the Comets at the New Theatre Royal in Portsmouth in 1956.
     
     … the crepe-soled, velvet-collared Duke of Edinburgh, unlikely ’50s fashion icon.
     
    … Little Richard, Chuck Berry and Jerry Lee Lewis at the London Rock and Roll Show at Wembley in 1972, a key point in the Ted revival.
     
    … Malcolm McLaren, Johnny Rotten, Wizzard and assorted Ted torch-carriers.
     
    … Viv Stanshall and ‘Teddy Boys Don’t Knit’.
     
    … fingertip drapes from Savile Row and how Teds subverted top-end fashion.  
     
    … Fleetwood Mac as Earl Vince & the Valiants doing ‘Somebody’s Gonna Get Their Head Kicked In Tonite’.
     
    … and how the Beatles and James Bond helped kick the Teds into touch.
     
    Order Max’s book here …
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Teddy-Boys-Post-War-Britain-Revolution-ebook/dp/B0C3SFMTFH
    Subscribe to Word In Your Ear on Patreon for early - and ad-free - access to all of our content, plus a whole load more!: https://www.patreon.com/wordinyourear
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    • 35 min
    Guy Garvey remembers the Grumbleweeds in panto, Santana fantasies & a song nicked from Roy Castle

    Guy Garvey remembers the Grumbleweeds in panto, Santana fantasies & a song nicked from Roy Castle

    Guy Garvey and Elbow start touring the UK in May and he looks back here at the first shows he saw growing up in Bury in the ’70s - when his five elders introduced him to punk, prog, folk, soul and Elton John - and proudly admits he still doesn’t know the names of the guitar strings. Look out for …
     
    … the secrets of the “Vanity Thrust” and other 21st Century stagecraft.
     
    … the time they supported the Stones.
     
    … being with the same band members for 34 years and each “wanting to be a different member of Santana”.
     
    … what he’s learnt about live performance - “never announce new material”.
     
     … his 6Music show, Guy Garvey’s Finest hour (“one hour too long” – Mrs Guy Garvey).  
     
     … the un-PC death of Roy Castle in the Peter Cushing movie Dr Terry’s House of Horrors.
     
    … good things about Little Simz.
     
    … the time a snowstorm doubled their audience.  
     
    … working with the BBC Concert Orchestra – “if it’s Wagner you’ll miss two tea breaks”.
     
    … when Paul McCartney turned “Partridge-esque”.
     
    … and the possible ‘star guests’ on the upcoming tour.
     
    Elbow tour dates …
    https://www.ticketmaster.co.uk/elbow-tickets/artist/886289
     
    Guy Garvey’s Finest hour …
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0072q60
     
    Elbow are on Radio 2’s Piano Room with the BBC Concert Orchestra on Feb 21…
    https://elbow.co.uk/bbc-radio-2-piano-room-month/
    Subscribe to Word In Your Ear on Patreon for early - and ad-free - access to all of our content, plus a whole load more!: https://www.patreon.com/wordinyourear
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    • 27 min
    Lulu, when Prince did a bad thing and how the Beatles changed the shape of the human head

    Lulu, when Prince did a bad thing and how the Beatles changed the shape of the human head

    This week the two-man kayak of curiosity tackles the following rock and roll rapids …
     
    … when was the last time there was a truly universal hit?  
    … why Waylon Jennings walked out of We Are The World.
     
    ... the story of Everybody’s Talkin’ and Midnight Cowboy.
     
    … why the Beatles’ 1964 American invasion was the biggest surprise party in the world and how the Maysles Brothers’ doc became the template for A Hard Day’s Night.
     
    … the secret haikus of Wes Anderson.
     
    … the best moments in Jaws.
     
    ... why Tracy Chapman stole the Grammys. 
     
    … how USA For Africa v Band Aid showed a fundamental difference in the British and American character.
     
    … the inscrutable world of Spotify royalty payments.
     
    … when Lulu, Dusty and Sandie Shaw were re-booted.  
     
    … Mojo Nixon RIP, a “corner on two wheels on fire” kinda guy.
     
    … Springsteen and Steve Van Zandt’s hair.
     
    … “Let me die a young man's death” - Adrian Henri.
     
    … plus birthday guest Keith Adsley suggests cover versions in movie soundtracks that are better than the originals – eg Fiona Apple’s Across the Universe, the Gypsy Kings’ Hotel California and the Soggy Bottom Boys’ Man of Constant Sorrow.
    Subscribe to Word In Your Ear on Patreon for early - and ad-free - access to all of our content, pus a whole load more!: https://www.patreon.com/wordinyourear
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    • 53 min
    Musicians and their mothers and the records we could never sell

    Musicians and their mothers and the records we could never sell

    We spun the week’s rock and roll roulette wheel and this is where the balls landed … 
     
    … why all rock biopics are worth seeing once.
     
    … ‘demixing’: we spent ages perfecting records. Now we’re unperfecting them.
     
    … the adorable hand-drawn flyer the 15 year-old Robert Plant made for his band Blacksnake Moan 60 years ago – “the weirdest, wildest sound in R&B!”
     
    … are all musicians driven by the urge to please their mums?
     
    … Pyjamarama, Crazy Diamond, Cigarettesnalcohol and other rock and roll racehorses.
     
    … why “The Room” by Fabiano do Nascimento and Sam Gendel is “healing music”.
     
    … has anyone been ‘bigger’ than Taylor Swift? And how can she be so universally popular and yet we can go through life without hearing a note of her music?
     
    … the Pet Shop Boys at the London Palladium: “we don’t do waving”.
     
    … “Something's lost but something's gained in living every day” – Joni Mitchell.
     
    … are any possesions more precious than records?
     
    ... and birthday guest Kevin Rose recommends the Brian Wilson biopic Love & Mercy – and we talk about Control (Joy Division), Backbeat (the early Beatles), Rocket Man and Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis.
    Subscribe to Word In Your Ear on Patreon for early - and ad-free - access to all of our content, plus a whole load more!: https://www.patreon.com/wordinyourear
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    • 47 min

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5
197 Ratings

197 Ratings

digusted-liverpool ,

I normally enjoy this

It's a mixture - sometimes I find the guest in the interview type podcasts uninteresting and give it a miss - but only once have I actally hated the guest - that honour belongs to the vile political bigot Cathi Unsworth, if I discovered she had died, I'd crack out the bubbly.

Sweeney Agonistes ,

Extraordinarily extraordinary

ME: This really is extraordinary
DH: Quite extraordinary
ME: Extraordinary that you think so too
DH: I think we both agree this is extraordinary

Welcome to the world of Ellen & Hepworth, where most things are extraordinary to both of them, on an ongoing basis.

Aromatic Feed ,

Softening my opinions with time

I first came across David & Mark on OGWT. I must say being a Rock,Metal, Pub Rock, Rock’n’Roll fan,I often saw my favourite acts getting withering,sarcastic reviews etc and feeling, it was generally open season at the Beeb, on the above genres. Un-trendy Rock dinosaurs like Jimmy Page & Roy Harper got the treatment! I always loved Keith Richard’s “Ming China” response .. Messrs Coverdale & Gillan separately replying around those times with elequence, in the case of the former and barely contained anger,to another OGWT presenter. That was then and this is 2023. I think the tone of David & Mark’s interview with Bernie Marsden was just right. Bernie R. I. P, was no Heavy Metal thicko and easily won David & Mark over when he recounted his start from Village Halls,Pubs, to joining Rocks first division from the mid 70’s.Recent episodes on my early musical heroes like Chuck Berry & Jerry Lee Lewis were coming from the right place, retaining enough focus on their talents rather than dwelling on the more sensational aspects of their private lives. The hackles still rise, when I think back but I am on board fellas, with my comb over!

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