Categories / Film and TV

Cool Retro TV W/C 9th June

Barry Murphy once more trawls the TV and radio guides (so you don’t have to) to find anything worth tuning into this week. All listings are for UK terrestrial TV, Freeview and national radio, with the shows running from Friday 9th June to Thursday 15th June.

Highlight of The Week: Soul Deep – the Story of Black Popular Music BBC 4. 9.00pm – 10.00pm Friday 9th June

This major documentary series tells the story of the rise of black popular music. Once the party music of an oppressed minority, it is now the biggest single influence on global popular culture today.

It begins with the remarkable story of Ray Charles and how he merged the Saturday night rhythms of the dancehall with the Sunday morning emotion of the church to create a new sound that would become known as soul.

Set against a backdrop of racial segregation, this first programme recreates the heady world of the 1940s and 1950s rhythm and blues scene from which Ray Charles emerged, and also features artists such as Louis Jordan, Ruth Brown, Big Joe Turner, Fats Domino, Little Richard and James Brown. Featuring rare and never before seen archive, including a previously unseen interview with the late Ray Charles himself. 

Unlikely to ever be commercially released on DVD due to the complex music licensing issues involved, if you didn’t catch this excellent series when it was shown on BBC 2, make sure you do this time.

Friday 9th June


Soul Deep – the Story of Black Popular Music BBC 4. 9.00pm – 10.00pm
How Ray Charles merged dancehall with church music to create soul. (see Highlight)

Originals: Stan Tracey – The Godfather of British Jazz: BBC 4. 10.30pm – 11.40pm
Stan Tracey, widely regarded as Britain’s greatest living jazz musician, talks about his life and career, with contributions from colleagues and friends.

Grass (1999) – ITV 4. 1.00am – 2.40am (Sat am)
Documentary film chronicling the history of marijuana use in 20th-century America. Narrated by Woody Harrelson.   

The Craig Charles Funk Show – BBC Radio 6. 8.00pm – 11.00pm
The usual mix of funk, blues & soul.

The Motown Invasion (2/2) – BBC Radio 2. 2.00am – 2.30am (Sat am)
Adam White recalls Motown’s 21-day momentous tour of the UK in 1965.

Saturday 10th June


The Italian Job (1969) – BBC 1. 415pm – 5.50pm
The classic comedy caper starring Michael Caine and Noel Coward.

Topkapi (1964) – Five. 3.15pm – 5.25pm
Comic crime caper. A band of misfits attempt a heist on an Istanbul museum. Peter Ustinov earned himself a best supporting actor Oscar for his performance.

The Zoo Gang – ITV 4. 6.00pm – 7.00pm
Revenge: Post Dated. A quartet of World War Two freedom fighters are reunited 30 years after the end of the conflict – and Tommy is shocked to recognise a man who betrayed them to the Gestapo

The Summer of Rave 1989  – BBC 2. 9.10pm – 10.10pm
The summer of 1989 saw a new type of youth rebellion transform the cultural landscape, as thousands of young people danced at illegal acid house parties in fields and aircraft hangars. Featuring interviews with rave promoters, newspaper editors, and the bands who made it big on the back of rave culture.

The Album Chart Show – Channel 4. 1.45am – 2.15am (Sunday AM, repeated 1.15am – 1.45am Tues AM)
Paul Weller performs a Jam classic.

Sounds of the 60s – BBC Radio 2. 8.00am – 10.00am
Brian Matthew plays two hours of hits, B-sides and album tracks.

Jonathan Ross – BBC Radio 2. 10.00am – 1.00pm
Includes a live session from Paul Weller.

School of Rock – BBC Radio 4. 10.30am – 11.00am
1/3. Folk, Jazz and Rock ‘n’ Roll. Andy Kershaw explores the link between university’s and live music.   

The Craig Charles Funk Show – BBC Radio 6. 6.00pm – 9.00pm
More soul, funk, r&b, jazz and blues.

Sunday 11th June


Come On, Get Happy (1999) – Five. 1.25pm – 3.15pm
Nostalgic biographical musical drama, telling the story of The Partridge Family, the hit 70s TV show. Tacky TV biopic.

The South Bank Show – ITV 1. 5.10pm – 6.10pm
Repeat of the recent Dusty Springfield special, tracing her rise to stardom in the 60s and her subsequent career.

Hands of the Ripper (1971) – ITV 4. 11.00pm – 12.45am
One of the more entertaining of Hammer’s latter films, Angharad Rees stars as Jack the Ripper’s daughter, who goes slightly barmy whenever she gets kissed in a flickering light.

Monday 12th June


Matt Monro: The Man with the golden Voice – BBC 2. 7.00pm – 8.00pm
It’s over 20 years since the death of the singer they called "English Sinatra" but his voice still draws millions of fans across the world. The story of how young Londoner Terry Parsons became a sophisticated ballad singer provides fascinating insights into working-class life and popular culture after the Second World War.

Riding Giants (2004) – More4. 9.00pm – 11.05pm
Dazzling Documentary charting the history of big wave surfing from the 50s to the present day. Extensive archive footage, great editing and a cracking soundtrack.

Man in a Suitcase – ITV 4. 6.00pm – 7.00pm
The Revolutionaries. McGill’s boss denies all knowledge of him in the cult adventure series.

The Persuaders – ITV 4. 7.00pm – 8.00pm
Take Seven. Sinead Cusack guest stars as an heiress cut off from her expected legacy by the sudden reappearance of her long-lost brother. Brett and Danny set out to discover the true identity of a man who seems to have returned from the dead. With Roger Moore and Tony Curtis   

Tuesday 13th June


Fathom (1967) – More4. 4.15pm – 6.10pm
Terrific tongue-in-cheek spy spoof starring the ‘statuesque’ Rachel Welsh. Bikini clad, skydiver Fathom Harvill is recruited by a top secret Western agency to retrieve a vital lost atomic device hidden in a rare Chinese dragon by parachuting into a house occupied by some Chinese ‘reds’. But Fathom soon realises that nothing is as it seems. Johnny Dankworth provides the cool jazzy score. Not currently available on PAL DVD.

UFO – ITV 4. 6.00pm – 7.00pm
Adventure series about an organisation set up to protect earth from aliens, A Siamese cat brings sinister drama into the lives of a Shado pilot and his wife.

The Champions – ITV 4. 7.00pm – 8.00pm
The Champions escort a reluctant ruler back to his strife-torn North African country.


The Reggae Show with Mark Lamarr – BBC Radio 2. 9.00pm – 10.00pm
New series showcasing choice examples of the Jamaican music genre.

Bespoken Word – BBC Radio 4. 11.00pm – 11.30pm
New series of the performance poetry series with special guest, living legend John Cooper Clarke.   

Wednesday 14th June


Jason King – ITV 4. 6.00pm – 7.00pm
Rival factions try to use Jason as bait to trap a double agent.

The Saint – ITV 4. 7.00pm – 8.00pm
The Saint plays his part in a gangster’s plot to trick his four greatest enemies into carrying out a robbery.

Best of Talk – ITV 3. 9.00pm – 10.00pm
A thrown-together jumble of clips from David Frost’s chat shows from 1960s-80s featuring John Lennon and Muhammad Ali.

The Kid Stays in the Picture (2002) – More4. 9.00pm – 10.55pm
Brett Morgen’s fascinating documentary tracing the turbulent life of US film producer Robert Evans, based on his autobiography.

Doomwatch (1972) – BBC 1. 12.40am – 2.15am (Thurs AM)
Spin off movie from the eco thriller BBC TV series. An investigation is mounted into the effects of a sunken oil tanker on the inhabitants of an island off the Cornish coast and discovers something nastily mutated in the biological woodshed. Starring Ian Bannen and Judy Geeson.

Thursday 15th June


Paul Jones – BBC Radio 2. 8.00pm – 9.00pm
Classic r&b and blues