The Wichita Lineman: And I need you more than want you

A friend and I have been swapping lists just lately of our favourite pieces of classical music. For our own education and maybe even a blog post on here sometime. The doing of these somehow made me think of ‘Wichita Lineman’. Not because it’s classical music, of course, though maybe it is now?

I’ve been listening to this glorious song since it first emerged from my Binatone transistor radio fifty years ago. I’ll almost certainly have heard it on the new BBC Radio One that had just been invented then to replace my preferred Radio Caroline pirate station. And once I’d heard it the song not only stuck with me, it stuck in me.

The loneliness, the yearning, the situation, the working man out there on his own, the SOS in the strings and every single time these last fifty years when he sings:

‘And I need you more than want you
And I want you for all time’

I stop. Continue reading “The Wichita Lineman: And I need you more than want you”

Streets Apart: A History of Social Housing

Early in May this year writer and journalist Lynsey Hanley, together with a producer from BBC Radio 4 came and interviewed me for a series of programmes they were planning about the history of social housing. I was glad to do this as Liverpool had a significant role in the early development of council housing.

Then a few weeks after our recording the Grenfell Tower Fire happened and in its still unfolding aftermath it seems more necessary than ever to look back at the history and development of social housing. Continue reading “Streets Apart: A History of Social Housing”