ORGAN1st Radio
ORGAN1st Radio
ORGAN1st Radio is presented by ex-BBC broadcaster Alan Ashton. The monthly sixty-minute podcast features old and new recordings of theatre organs, electronic organs and keyboards and covers everything from Wersi to Wurlitzer and Hammond to Compton.

All The Past Shows are Available at:

The Final Show

A Message From Alan Ashton…

I would like to thank so many friends and organ world enthusiasts for all the messages of Sympathy following the passing on October 31st of my dear wife Dorothy after losing a 10 month struggle to overcome a serious heart operation. Thank you all so much.

Secondly and for the reason that I’ve been producing and presenting theatre, electronic & keyboard organ music for 50 years via broadcasts, (National and Local) and in more recent times via podcasts, I decided to make the December edition of ORGAN1st Radio my final one. Everything it contains are recordings, for one reason or another, that meant something to both Dorothy & I. For once it seemed to be a good excuse not to rack my brain in order to cobble together a programme of festive music that changes so little as the years roll by! Unbeknownst to me fellow broadcaster Ian Wolstenholme contacted many organists and people connected with the organ world in order to compile a lengthy retirement ‘best wishes’ addition to the final show. Huge surprise which I watched through a mixture of tears of sadness and happy memories.

All my programmes for ORGAN1st Radio will remain in the Archive and at least I will have a little more time to continue adding to the long list of YouTube videos in the Organ Celebrities and associated productions under my GramRfone or Percy Quill credits.

Back in 1971 the organ scene was dominated by the weekly broadcasts by the ‘Old Organ Grinder’ Robin Richmond, but whether he appreciated it or not along came the likes of myself (Radio Manchester) Eric Lord (Radio Blackburn) and Arnold Loxam, Frank Hare & Barry Davenport (Radio Leeds). In fact there were enthusiasts in the NW ‘triangle’ who were placed and able to hear all these shows, plus those by Robin each week… Happy days.

Back in 1971 my fee for a 30-minute weekly show was £5 & the Tax Man even chased me for some of that in the belief that I had an off-shore Swiss Bank Account! Mind you, towards the end of my BBC association of 17 years it had risen to £15 for a 60 minute edition which invariably got taken off without notice in order to comply with the need to honour the great God of Football at Trafford Park. With the occasional access to the WurliTzer at the Playhouse in Hulme, I was able to present several live concerts, all of which were free admission, featuring some of the great names in both theatre and electronic organ playing.

Finally, to everyone who has enjoyed my broadcasts/podcasts over the years, a big thank you for your musical friendship.

The Show…

Vic Hammett, Klaus Wunderlich, Keith Beckingham, Dave Nicholas, Lenny Dee, Ray Willetts, Paul Roberts, Brian Sharp, Franz Lambert, Grahame Wright, Tony Fenelon, Ian Griffin, Angela Turner, Claudia Hirschfeld, Howard Beaumont, John Mann, Ronald Curtis, Jean Martyn, John Kyffin, Mike Hall, Hector Olivera, Terry Charles & Dorothy Ashton.

Signature Tune
Sentimental Gentleman From Georgia
Vic Hammett
BBC Records

Overture To Donna Diane
Klaus Wunderlich
Concerto Grosso (Deleted CD)

For All We Know
Keith Beckingham
Any Other Business CD

Ramona & In A Little Spanish Town
Dave Nicholas
Dave Nicholas (Deleted CD)

Somewhere Over The Rainbow
Lenny Dee
In Hollywood (LP)

All I Ever Need Is You
Ray Willetts
At The Hammond EX2000 (Deleted CD)

Someone To Watch Over Me
Paul Roberts
What A Wonderful World (Deleted CD)

All That Jazz
Brian Sharp
BBC Recording

Flight Of The Bumble Bee
Franz Lambert
BBC Recording

Besame Mucho / Amor Amor
Grahame Wright
A Paramount Performance (LP)

All The Things You Are
Tony Fenelon
An Affair To Remember (Deleted CD)

Ian Griffin
As Long As I Have Music CD

The Floral Dance / In An English Country Garden
Angela Turner
By A Waterfall (Cassette)

Chianti Song / The Whole World Belongs To A Beautiful Woman / Paris, You Are The Most Beautiful City In The World / We Want To Be Friends
Claudia Hirschfeld
Jede Rose Spricht Von Liebe (Deleted CD)

Musetta’s Waltz
Howard Beaumont
Romantic Pipes CD

Swing Time Medley
John Mann
Wurlitzer Tour (Deleted CD)

Love Is Everywhere
Ronald Curtis
Puttin’ On The Ritz (LP)

Jean Martyn
Home At Last (Deleted CD)

Golden Days
John Kyffin
Private Recording

Southen Nights
Mike Hall
Southern Nights (Cassette)

That’s Entertainment
Hector Olivera
Intermission At Atlanta’s Fabulous Fox (Deleted CD)

The Lords Prayer
Terry Charles
Sound Of The Great Amen (LP)

Dorothy Ashton
Private Tape