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Page last updated at 07:49 GMT, Thursday, 25 June 2009 08:49 UK
Presenter profile: Steve Barker

Steve Barker

Born in Brierfield, when it was still the centre of the known universe, Steve remembers seeing hordes of local "football supporters" heading off to Old Trafford rather than Turf Moor on a Saturday.

His best football memory from the sixties, apart from the Division 1 Championship, is a 5-3 away win by the Clarets over United. He's looking forward to watching the next premiership season live in some of the less salubrious bars across Beijing where he now lives.

After a promising start in journalism, interviewing Jimi Hendrix and Yoko Ono in the same week, his ambitions receded only to be recruited to Radio Blackburn in 1978 to work on the music review show RPM. In 1980 RPM begat Spinoff which in 1984 mutated into On the Wire, now the longest running continuous alternative music show on UK radio - and due to celebrate its 25th anniversary in September 2009 with a month-long extravaganza of special extended shows and guests from both Lancashire and across the globe.

Many bands and performers who were to become musical legends passed through the show including U2, REM, The Smiths, Depeche Mode and Joy Division - but of late On the Wire has taken a more relaxed view of the music scene and is as likely to play pre-war hillbilly music as much as experimental dance or dub.

Over the past eight years Steve has been contributing to the show from Beijing where he works for the British Council, popping back every now and then to caress the BBC Radio Lancashire's Mark II Chiltern studio desks he has known loved for years. Longtime listeners of On the Wire continue expect to hear the unexpected. On The Wire is on Saturday evenings at 10pm.

On the Wire celebrates 25 years
11 Sep 09 |  Nature & Outdoors


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