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Factoids from original sidekick Richard Easter


After spending 11 years working with "Wrightie" before being tempted away by TV, who better to present us with a veritable pot pouri of "Did You Knows" than the original Radio Sidekick Richard Easter.


Did you know that many of the Shows cartoon jingles were composed and performed by Dave Sanderson PhD (Dr in Musical Composition). One jingle of his, entitled "An' That's before me Tea" (a quick-fire Geordie monologue with piano accompaniment) was released on Tangible Records and reached No.62 in the Gallup Charts.


Did you know that "I'll Be Back" was written in two hours, start to finish, lyrics , music and all over an evening in 1991 when Richard Easter had nothing to do on the Roadshow that year. They said "do Arnee" and he said "but Arnees whole raison'd'etre is blowing people away. Now, fun as that may be, I don't think they'll allow carnage of that scale on the Roadshow". So he was told to"write a song, then", which he did.
It was never intended to be released, but then CBS rang up, offered a shedload of cash and that was it.



Did you know...Jonathan Ruffle, "Happening Boy", went on to produce the Bafta award winning documentary "The Traitor King" for C4, and the award winning radio play "Bomber" for Radio 4. And to think, this was the man that used to do The Pervy ("oo-oo! Sweet Stevie! I'm at the windowww!").



Did you know...Kenton Allen, who was then Simon Bates' producer, did the voice for Llamaman, and is now an executive producer for Granada TV, with hits like "The Royle Family" under his belt?



Did you know...Mike Woolmans, "Mikie" is now a TV theme composer? Check most of the shows out of Carlton TV and his name will be there.



Did you know...Dianne Oxberry went on to become a newsreader and weathergirl for BBC Northeast?



Did you know...Simon Bates once hid some Arbroath Smokies in Steve's console before he went on his round the world trip? We finally found them once the all-pervasive smell of fish filled the studio.



Speaking of which.. Did you know..."Dr Fish Filleter" was never intended to be a character? The name came about in a conversation between Richard Easter and J.Ruffle. Richard Easter said "I'm a bit fed up with doing characters". Jonathan Ruffle said "but people like them" R.Easter said "yeah, but before we know it, we'll have a character called...I don't know, Dr Bloody Fish Filleter". J.Ruffle said "Lose the "Bloody" and do it".



Did you know..."Easy Life" was not a radio performer at all, but the barman in Richard Easter's local pub? The Show had the character for about 4 months before they found a voice (they even tried Phil Cornwall) but then, one evening, Barman Bill was calling time and Richard Easter thought....hold on...THATS the shouty voice we need. And finally, "Easy Life" went on to become "Bill" who recorded the in-at-number-75-with-a-bullet smash "Car Boot Sale".



So how do you become a member of Steve's posse and what's Richard Easter up to now? Here's the potted career history from the man himself:-


"Originally, I wanted to be a journalist (this is back in '87) and I wrote to a few magazines - there were no FHMs or Loadeds then - so it was all Cosmo and Company etc.
None replied, so I thought "I'm going to show them I can write" and I sat down with my girlfriend of the time and came up with an idea; I'd disguise myself as a girl, go to a real Essex-Style White Stilettos nightclub, get in the toilets and find out what girls talked about when they didn't think blokes were around. I wrote it up, and it was published in a Mag called FSM, which no longer exists. Although printing my piece and it's folding are not related- I hope.

Janice Long saw the article, and got me in to talk about it. After the interview, I asked if there were any jobs going at R1. There was, as a messenger. In those days, I HATED Radio1 - it was real Smashy and Nicey and I particularly hated Steve Wright in the Afternoon. My opinion was "just play the records and stop talking". But then I got to know Steve and found out he was actually far more subversive than I thought.

I suggested an idea for a jingle (which was George Michael singing "I've Gotta Have A Shave"- not great, but it was a start). SW said "there's a studio, there's a producer, go and do it- and if you have any other ideas, let me know". I did have more ideas, and 8 months later, Jonathan Ruffle said "stop being a messenger and start being a writer"- so I became the first ever daily comedy writer on Radio One. Which was a bit of a coup for a bloke who hadn't got any experience of it whatsoever.

I then spent 88-95 as the in-show writer, followed Steve onto commercial Radio, then back to R2. In 1998, I finally got myself an Agent. She said "this company Celador are looking for a writer for a new game show". So I went along, and talked to these people who said they were planning on giving away 1 Million pounds for 15 questions- and would I write the script? So I did.
Now, my basic script is sold all over the world- but I had a buyout contract, so I can't retire just yet. I don't set the questions, but I do all Chris Tarrant's pieces to camera, including he contestant biographies, opening monologues etc. It's good fun - and it was brilliant fun in the first series of ten, when, by about Wednesday we realised 16 million people were watching. That was just ridiculous.

Since then, I've done (and do ) Stars In Their Eyes, You've Been Framed, This Is My Moment, Athletes Behaving Badly, Soap Fever, Hot TV (for Sky) I'm about to do Tarrant On TV, Mike Reids Late Home Video Show, and I've got a couple of drama scripts in with the BBC and Granada."