About your host!

You may not really care much about me as much as the music but I’m going to tell you anyway!

I have lived in Frome, Somerset, since October 2008 – before that, I was mainly a Blandford Forum, Dorset man. I met my wife-to-be, Jen, at the local Tesco where we both worked and soon found out she was from Frome [ about 30 miles away from Blandford ]. Once we were together, I began visiting Frome to see her family and slowly grew to like the place! It is a bigger town than Blandford with much more going on, including the Community Radio Station.

We eventually settled down and decided after a couple of years to re-locate to Frome for a variety of reasons I wont bore you with here. Just to say, I live here with Jen, 6 years married as of December 2011, with our little lad, Dan [ who is sometimes in the studio when I do the show, not always happily though! ).

I then bugged Phil Moakes @ FromeFM and he seemed only too willing to let me have a crack at doing a show. My original first wish was to do a rock show but this was already being done very well. My next choice was a sport show, as I had been Managing a Sunday League football club and had previously played volleyball to a very average level. This was something FFM was looking for, so SPORT PIE was born. [ This is still my log-in name for this site ].

I started that in 2009 and after the first year of doing it, the show was the number one rated on FFM! Eventually, I felt the need to do a music based show, as guests were becoming a little harder to find for the sport show and it involved a lot of talking and hardly any music. I had always enjoyed blues music, without it being my first love [ which was rock music ] but I did have quite a few blues CDs and had seen the likes of Gary Moore, Dave Hole and Jeff Healey in concert, along with the likes of The Hamsters. So I suggested it as a show and was lucky enough to be given the green light.

After coming up with a list of possible names for the show, between a few of us, it was thought that BLUES TRAIN was a cool name and this stuck. I have since thought of a few names I would maybe have preferred but too late to change now!

I was struck immediately by how the blues community help each other – as a brand new name, I still found that promoters, musicians and fans were only still too happy to help. I had loads of music sent to me and so in January 2011, the first show went out on a monthly basis. Obviously, across the globe and in the UK in particular, there are so many quality blues show each week – community radio being particularly strong. I may well never reach the heights of those guys but I seem to have slowly gained a foothold among the community and hope this will carry on in 2012.

I feel so lucky to have been accepted as a trusted name – the show is fortnightly and with new names contacting me almost every day now, I can hopefully keep growing. I still don’t have enough time on air to play every great song on each show but this is what I have to work with for the time being. Family committments means a weekly show is just not achievable right now.

I may not be a blues encyclopedia, I might not be able to tell you who first performed a particular track in 1923, I may not be able to pin point who played bass on The Thrill Is Gone, I may have no musical skills whatsoever. I can’t bring you live sessions very often, or live phone calls.

However, what I can bring you, is a real down to earth show. I play what I like and what I think you’ll like too. No airs or graces, you can enjoy this whether you know everything, or whether you are not sure yet. Its a 60 minute bite-sized portion of great blues from around the world, much of which you haven’t heard on other shows yet. I love to find new names and play them for you! The weekly two hour shows are amazing and you should listen to them all – however, I offer an alternative – if you haven’t got time for them, an hour is easily found.

Make sure you have subscribed on iTunes or one of the podcast Apps and its a great show for your mp3 player.

Blues Train was recently shown to be the most popular show on FFM for 2011, which is amazing for a supposed niche musical market and I thank everyone that clicked my link to have a listen. I will strive to improve across 2012 and hope that if you like what you hear, you will keep listening and also help me spread the word to even more people!

3 comments on “About your host!

  1. Hi Dave


    Just to say this gig featuring Mark Butcher is hopefully the first of a regular monthly ‘blues’ nights at Crawley Football Club, Sussex, so any help, advice or suggestions regarding publicity would be much appreciated. As ever, it’s hardly a money making exercise, merely an attempt to add to the circuit for everyones benefit! It’s not Dorset but you have a (inter)national listenership? so?


    Also, while Im on may I also mention…


    A debut DVD of Jo Harman and Company is now available and a preview can be seen here

    Featuring many favourites from Jo’s barnstorming live set, the seminal ‘Sideways’ included, this DVD also features previously unreleased newer material such as ‘Cold Heart’ and ‘Worthy of Love’. Also included is Jo’s unique take on classics such as ‘With A Little Help From My Friends’, ‘I Can’t Stand The Rain’ and ‘How I Got To Memphis’. Apart from over 60 minutes of ‘in performance’ footage featuring Jo’s remarkable 7-piece band containing some of the UK’s most respected musicians, who have worked with the likes of Bob Dylan and Beyonce, the DVD also includes both off stage and interview features, including discussions with one of Jo’s main co-writers, artist/guitarist Mike Davies.

    Jo Harman and Company touring dates already confirmed (more to follow) include:-

    Sun. 22nd Jan Jazz Club, Dean Street Soho (sold out)
    Fri. 24th Feb, Hideaway, Streatham, London
    Sat. 24th March, Theatre on the Steps, Brignorth, Shropshire
    Sun. 22nd April, Cafe Des Artists Festival, Lewes, Sussex
    Sat. 19th May, Lustleigh Hall, Devon
    Thur.10th May, Latest Musicbar, Brighton
    Fri. 22nd Jun, Durham Blues Festival, Durham
    Sat. Jun Cleethorpes Blues Festival, Yorkshire
    Tues. 29th May 100 Club London
    Fri. 24th Aug, Limetree Festival, Yorkshire
    Sat. 8th Sep, Exchange Arts Centre, Dorset

    The DVD can be bought direct from Yellow Fish Music Group at info@yellowfishmusicgroup.com
    for £10 plus £2 postage and packaging (debit/credit card payments by phone on 01273 782035).
    Digital distribution is due March 2012.

  2. Love the show! I’ll start with that. Have only heard the Jo Harman episode, trying to navigate the Apple Podcasts App and can only see 2 additional episodes. The most recent, I guess. Do you have an archive of your shows elsewhere so I can start at the beginning and work my way through them? Thanks much from the foothills of Virginia.


    • Hi there and apologies for the very late reply. Thank you for the comments and interest in the show. If you go to http://www.fromefm.co.uk / Programmes / Music and scroll down the list on the left hand side, you will see the Blues Train name. Click on that and you should find pretty much every show I’ve done there somewhere!
      If you are on Facebook, http://www.facebook.com/bluestrainradio tends to be updated more frequently with playlist and podcast links. Let me know if you listen to more shows!

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