Radio-Lists Home Now on BBC 4

RADIO-LISTS: BBC FOUR
Unofficial Weekly Listings for BBC 4 — supported by bbc.co.uk/programmes/



SATURDAY 15 SEPTEMBER 2012

SAT 19:00 Human Planet (b00rrd81)
Oceans - Into the Blue

As an air-breathing animal, the human is not built to survive in water. But people have found ways to live an almost aquatic life so they can exploit the sea's riches. From a 'shark-whisperer' in the Pacific to Brazilian fishermen collaborating with dolphins to catch mullet, this journey into the blue reveals astonishing tales of ingenuity and bravery.

Daredevil Galician barnacle-collectors defy death on the rocks for a catch worth £200 per kilo. In Indonesia an epic whale-hunt, using traditional handmade boats and harpoons, brings in a sperm whale. The Bajau 'sea Gypsies' of the Sulu Sea spend so much time on water they get 'land sick' when they set foot on the land!

We dive 40 metres down to the dangerous world of the Pa-aling fishermen, where dozens of young men, breathing air through a tangled web of pipes attached to a diesel engine, capture thousands of fish in a vast net. We see how surfing has its origins in the ancient beliefs of the ocean-loving Polynesians, and we join a Borneo free-diving spear-fisherman on a breath-taking journey 20 metres down in search of supper.


SAT 20:00 Horizon (b01llnb2)
2012-2013

Mission to Mars

Horizon goes behind the scenes at Nasa as they count down to the landing of a 2.5 billion-dollar rover on the surface of Mars. The nuclear-powered vehicle, the size of a car, will be winched down onto the surface of the red planet from a rocket-powered crane. That's if things go according to plan; Mars has become known as the Bermuda Triangle of space because so many missions there have ended in failure. The Curiosity mission is the most audacious, and expensive, attempt to answer the question of whether there is life on Mars.


SAT 21:00 Inspector Montalbano (b01mtrmg)
The Game of Three Cards

The death of local construction magnate Girolamo Cascio leads Montalbano back to the murder of Cascio's leading competitor, Giacomo Aletto, who was shot and killed two decades earlier. Rocco Pennisi, Aletto's partner, was sent to prison for the crime. But was the right man convicted?

In Italian with English subtitles.


SAT 22:40 The Age of the Train (b01mqv43)
In 1976 a new high-speed train, the Inter-City 125, helped save British Rail, an unfashionable nationalised industry suffering from a financial crisis, industrial relations problems and a poor public image. The train was launched with the help of a memorable advertising campaign, fronted by Sir Jimmy Savile, which announced that the 1980s would be the 'age of the train'. BR had an energetic new boss, Sir Peter Parker, who was determined to revive the railways. The result was a typically British success story, full of surprises and setbacks, as this documentary shows.


SAT 23:40 The Three Rocketeers (b01mqv45)
For his entire life, one man has nursed the dream of putting mankind into space. Inspired by the Dan Dare comic strip, Alan Bond first started building rockets as a teenager in his back garden. He started his career working on Britain's Blue Streak rocket, then HOTOL - the world's first attempt to build a 'single-stage-to-orbit' spacecraft. Each time, he was thwarted by lack of funding from the UK government, so, together with two colleagues, Richard Varvill and John Scott-Scott, he decided to go it alone. This documentary tells the story of how the three rocketeers defeated the Official Secrets Act, shrugged off government intransigence and defied all conventional wisdom to build a revolutionary new spacecraft - Skylon.


SAT 00:30 Peter and Dan Snow: 20th Century Battlefields (b007rt2l)
20th Century Battlefields

1968 Vietnam

Peter and Dan Snow trace the Tet Offensive of 1968, the turning point of the Vietnam War. State of-the-art graphics are used to illustrate how US marines flushed out Communist fighters, some of whom lived in a claustrophobic network of tunnels which were used as a platform for major attacks. Together the Snows join the British Army on an urban clearance operation to experience first hand the chaos and intensity of similar situations.


SAT 01:30 Top of the Pops (b01mmt54)
11/08/77

David 'Kid' Jensen looks at the weekly pop chart from 1977 and introduces the Steve Gibbons Band, Showaddywaddy, Eddie and the Hot Rods, JALN Band, Delegation, Donna Summer, Barry Biggs, Thin Lizzy and a Legs & Co dance sequence.


SAT 02:00 Human Planet (b00rrd81)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]



SUNDAY 16 SEPTEMBER 2012

SUN 19:00 Canal Walks with Julia Bradbury (b010v7kx)
The Caledonian Canal

Seasoned stomper Julia Bradbury dons her walking boots once again and this time she is exploring her own British backyard, travelling along the country's network of canals and their accompanying towpath trails. This sees her navigating Highland glens, rolling countryside and river valleys, as well as our industrial heartlands, following these magical waterways as they cut a sedate path through some of the country's finest scenery.

Julia kicks off her tour with a visit to the Scottish Highlands. Against the stunning backdrop of Ben Nevis, her walk starts near Fort William where she embarks on her eight-mile trip along the Caledonian Canal, the majestic waterway that cuts through beautiful mountain country and is regarded as one of the most ambitious canals of its time. Julia's journey tells the story of one of the greatest canal engineers, Thomas Telford, whose ambition was to create not only an engineering marvel, but also badly needed jobs and wealth for the Highlands. Two hundred years on, it is now one of the most popular walking trails in the country.


SUN 19:30 Story of Light Entertainment (b00792c1)
Double Acts

The great double acts have always been at the heart of light entertainment. They have endured through every twist and turn in the story of showbusiness, but behind the smiles, the dance routines, the jokes and the songs there is a whole other world of intense pressure and anxiety.

This episode looks at all the double acts from Laurel and Hardy to Ant and Dec. Why do they work? Why do we love them? And why do they so often end up hating each other? It examines the comedy gold produced by legendary double acts like Morecambe and Wise and Reeves and Mortimer, as well the bitter feuds and fall-outs of Mike and Bernie Winters, Cannon and Ball and Newman and Baddiel.

Stars featured include Mike Winters, Eddie Large, Sid Little, Vic Reeves, Cannon and Ball, David Baddiel, Hale and Pace and many more.


SUN 21:00 The Pharaoh Who Conquered the Sea (b00pq9gs)
Over 3,000 years ago legend has it that Queen Hatshepsut, Egypt's first female pharaoh, sent a fleet of ships to the wonderful, distant land of Punt. A bas-relief in the temple where she is entombed in Luxor shows them bringing back extraordinary treasures. But did this expedition really happen? And if it did, where exactly is the land of Punt?

Drawing upon recent finds, archaeologist Cheryl Ward sets out to recreate the voyage in a full-size replica of one of these ancient ships, sailing it in the wake of Hatshepsut's fleet in search of the mythical land of Punt. A human adventure as well as a scientific challenge, the expedition proves that, contrary to popular belief, the ancient Egyptians had the necessary tools, science and techniques to sail the seas.


SUN 22:00 Loose Cannons (b01832g8)
The Cantone family runs a successful pasta business in Puglia, Southern Italy. The head of the family, Vincenzo, is preparing to hand over the business to his two young sons, Alberto and Tommaso. But Tommaso hides a secret which threatens to throw Vincenzo's plans into disarray. He is gay and, what's more, he wants to be a writer, not a businessman. As he braces to provoke the scorn of his loved ones by announcing his homosexuality at a business dinner, elder brother Antonio beats him to it, causing Vincenzo to disown him on the spot before suffering a heart attack. With Antonio sent packing and his father in hospital, it is now to up to Tommaso to keep up appearances and run the family business. But his reluctant efforts to tow the patriarch's line risk being thwarted when his boyfriend and gay friends suddenly turn up at the familiy home.


SUN 23:45 British Passions on Film (b01mqv1h)
Fun and Games

Three-part series celebrating the hobbies, pastimes and leisure pursuits that have preoccupied the people of Britain during the last century. As a nation, the British have long been renowned for the creativity and enthusiasm they bring to their leisure pursuits. Whether by collecting cheese labels, painting characters on eggshells or finding unusual uses for sticky back plastic, Britons have always demonstrated enormous passion - and often, deep eccentricity - when pursuing the serious business of having fun. The first episode features enthusiasts of some of Britain's best-loved games, hobbies and leisure activities - and pays tribute to those with more offbeat preoccupations, including D-I-Y obsessives and those with a penchant for collecting street furniture.


SUN 00:15 Canal Walks with Julia Bradbury (b010v7kx)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]


SUN 00:45 Fairport Convention: Who Knows Where the Time Goes? (b01mmw5v)
Documentary following English folk-rock pioneers Fairport Convention as they celebrate their 45th anniversary in 2012. Fairport's iconic 1969 album Liege and Lief featured some of folk music's biggest names - including singer Sandy Denny, guitarist Richard Thompson and fiddler Dave Swarbrick - and was voted by Radio 2 listeners as the most influential folk album of all time. Today, having struggled for years with numerous line-up changes (26 members to date) and shifting musical fashions, these ageing folk-rockers host their annual festival in Cropredy, Oxfordshire in front of a passionate 20,000 crowd. Comedian Frank Skinner, who played the ukulele on Fairport's 2010 album Festival Bell, narrates this tale of the rise and fall - and rise again - of the original English folk-rockers.


SUN 01:45 Fairport Convention: 45th Anniversary Concert (b01mmw5x)
A concert to celebrate the 45th anniversary of folk-rock outfit Fairport Convention, filmed in March 2012 at the Union Chapel in north London, only a few miles away from the 'Fairport' house in Muswell Hill where the band was formed during the summer of 1967. Today only Simon Nicol, whose parents owned the house, is still there from the original line-up, but the wealth of incredible songs and arrangements left by former members such as Ashley Hutchings, Sandy Denny and Richard Thompson remains at the core of the band's live shows. This concert's highlights include Matty Groves from the band's landmark Liege and Lief album and Sandy Denny's Who Knows Where the Time Goes, voted 'favourite folk track of all time' by Radio 2 listeners.



MONDAY 17 SEPTEMBER 2012

MON 19:00 World News Today (b01ms4nq)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


MON 19:30 How It Works (b01g98vb)
Ceramics

Professor Mark Miodownik traces the story of ceramics. He looks at how we started with simple clay, sand and rock and changed them into pottery, glass and concrete - materials that would allow us to build cities, transform the way we view our world and communicate at the speed of light. Deep within their inner structure Mark discovers some of ceramics' most intriguing secrets. He reveals why glass can be utterly transparent, why concrete continues to harden for hundreds of years and how cooling ceramics could transform the way we power cities of the future.


MON 20:30 Only Connect (b01msf6p)
Series 6

Wordsmiths v Educators

Victoria Coren hosts the series where, as in life itself, knowledge will only take you so far: patience and lateral thinking are also vital.

Three writers face three high school teachers as they compete to draw together the connections between things which, at first glance, seem utterly random, from manufacturing gunpowder to Roman mouthwash to thickening wool to marking territory.


MON 21:00 Treasures of Ancient Rome (b01msf6r)
The Empire Strikes Back

In the third and final part of the series, Alastair Sooke charts the decline and fall of the Roman Empire through some of its hidden and most magical artistic treasures. He travels to Leptis Magna in Libya shortly after the overthrow of Gaddafi and finds one of the best preserved Roman cities in the world and the cradle of later Roman art. Sooke discovers glorious mosaics which have never been filmed before, but also finds evidence of shocking neglect of Libya's Roman heritage by the Gaddafi regime.

His artistic tour takes him to Egypt and the northern frontiers of the empire where he encounters stunning mummy paintings and exquisite silver and glassware. As Rome careered from one crisis to another, official art became more hard boiled and militaristic and an obscure cult called Christianity rose up to seize the mantle of Western art for centuries to come.


MON 22:00 If Walls Could Talk: The History of the Home (b010v8dx)
The Kitchen

Lucy Worsley, chief curator of the historic royal palaces, ends the series by looking at the room we now spend the most money on, but was once thought of as the most dirty, dangerous and undesirable room in the house - the kitchen. From baking bread in a Tudor kitchen to spit-roasting mutton with a dog to doing a week's Victorian re-cycling to trying out 1950s labour-saving gadgets, Lucy tracks the changes that have turned the kitchen from a room of hard work into the appliance-packed room we know today.


MON 23:00 The Shock of the New (b0074qg9)
Trouble in Utopia

Robert Hughes' classic series about art in the twentieth century; the avant-garde and the modernist in the century of change.

This edition deals with the aspirations and reality of the art in which we live, architecture. Utopian visions rarely work in reality and Hughes examines the utopian in the parallel lines of concrete, towering verticals of steel and planes of glass of modernism in the buildings, built and planned, of Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe and Gropius, which he contrasts with the paintings of Mondrian.


MON 00:00 Only Connect (b01msf6p)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:30 today]


MON 00:30 Loose Cannons (b01832g8)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 on Sunday]


MON 02:15 Treasures of Ancient Rome (b01msf6r)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]



TUESDAY 18 SEPTEMBER 2012

TUE 19:00 World News Today (b01ms4ny)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


TUE 19:30 Indian Hill Railways (b00qzzlm)
The Nilgiri Mountain Railway

From the Himalayas in the north to the Nilgiris in the south - for a hundred years these little trains have climbed through the clouds and into the wonderful world of Indian Hill Railways.

The Nilgiri Mountain Railway is a romantic line, popular with honeymooners and driven by love and devotion as well as steam. It chugs through the south Indian jungle up to a hill station, once known as Snooty Ooty.

The current guard is Ivan. Married for twenty years, he is concerned about his friend Jenni, the ticket inspector, because he's still a bachelor - but Jenni has a secret.

In the engine shed, Shivani, the railway's first female diesel engineer, is working on a steam loco. She has to make it look its best, as in the year of filming, 1999, the railway celebrated its centenary. The high point is the Black Beauty competition to pick the best engine on the line, but rains and landslides threaten the proceedings and the tourist business. Will love win out in the end?


TUE 20:30 British Passions on Film (b01msf93)
Getting Away from it All

During the course of the 20th Century, millions of British workers benefited from the expansion of paid leave and an increase in leisure time. This enabled many Britons to realize a cherished dream: at last, they could escape from their everyday lives, and go on holiday.

Getting Away from it All traces the evolution of the British holiday, from hugely popular day-trips and annual fortnights in holiday camps to the mass market package holiday to the Costas - and shows how Britons have never been more at home when they've been far away from home, having fun in the sun.


TUE 21:00 Love and Marriage: A 20th Century Romance (b01msfkl)
For Better, For Worse

This three part series follows the ups and downs of marriage in Britain from the 1900s to the present day using the deeply moving personal stories of couples, and their children, from all walks of life.

This first film looks at the period between the 1900s and the late 1950s, an era when the ideal of romantic love in marriage had to withstand the harsh realities of a world very different to today. Yet many marriages were defined by friendship rather than conflict and strife. Above all else couples wanted to provide a stable and loving home for their children - even those who struggled to bring up large families on the breadline. Despite the tragedy of two world wars, most marriages not only survived - some became even stronger.

Hetty Bower, now 107 and Britain's oldest peace campaigner, tells the moving story of her love and marriage to husband Reg Agony aunt Denise Robertson is emotional as she recalls how her parents remained passionately in love, despite losing everything in the economic crash of the 1930s. They provided an inspirational role model for her of a successful marriage. But she tells how she had to wait longer than she imagined to find the love of her life, a seafarer from the Shetland Islands.

Writer Diana Athill, 95, movingly recounts how in an age when divorce was very difficult and dishonourable her parents kept their marriage together despite her mother having an affair which resulted in the birth of an illegitimate sister, the 'family secret'. Diana's own hopes for love and marriage as a young woman were dashed when her fiancé Tony, an RAF pilot, rejected her in favour of another woman.


TUE 22:00 Lilyhammer (b01msfkn)
Episode 2

Re-located ex-mobster Frank Tagliani is finding his bearings in the snowy small town environment of Lillehammer and is trying to get his nightclub up and running by recruiting suitable personnel with the help of his right-hand man Torgeir. When they are offered a large amount of contraband liquor, they soon find themselves up against a gang of smugglers who are keen to get their goods back.


TUE 22:45 Rude Britannia (b00ssrsg)
Presents Bawdy Songs and Lewd Photographs

A popular culture of rudeness managed to survive and even thrive in the long era of Victorian values, from the coronation of Queen Victoria in 1837 until the 1950s. The arrival of photography in the Victorian age sparked a moral panic, as rude and saucy images became available to anyone who had the money to buy them.

Current-day performers recreate the acts of celebrated rude music hall stars such as Champagne Charlie and Marie Lloyd, and there is a look at the satirical and rude world of one of Britain's first comic book icons, boozy anti-hero Ally Sloper. The documentary shows how a 20th-century seaside culture of rudeness emerged, with peepshows on the pier - the Mutoscopes - and the picture postcard art of Donald McGill.


TUE 23:45 Inspector Montalbano (b01mtrmg)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Saturday]


TUE 01:25 British Passions on Film (b01msf93)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:30 today]


TUE 01:55 Love and Marriage: A 20th Century Romance (b01msfkl)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]



WEDNESDAY 19 SEPTEMBER 2012

WED 19:00 World News Today (b01ms4p3)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


WED 19:30 Great British Railway Journeys (b00y47bj)
Series 2

London Bridge to Chatham

Michael Portillo takes to the tracks with a copy of George Bradshaw's Victorian Railway Guidebook. Portillo travels the length and breadth of the country to see how the railways changed us, and what of Bradshaw's Britain remains, as his journey goes through Kent, from London Bridge around the scenic south coast to Hastings.

Michael visits the Royal Observatory at Greenwich to see how the railways standardised time, takes a walk through the world's first underwater tunnel at Rotherhithe and explores the historic dockyards at Chatham.


WED 20:00 Peter and Dan Snow: 20th Century Battlefields (b007sfdd)
20th Century Battlefields

1973 Middle East

Peter and Dan Snow unpick the complex history of conflict in the Middle East. Known in the West as the Yom Kippur War, the fighting that broke out in 1973 was the biggest military clash between Arabic nations and Israel.

Peter and Dan travel to Israel, the country that found itself in danger of being crushed on two sides when Egypt and Syria launched a massive combined attack. Using state-of-the-art graphics, Peter explains how the Egyptians stunned the Israelis in their surprise attack, when thousands of Egyptian soldiers and hundreds of tanks crossed the Suez Canal and pushed into the Sinai desert. With the help of the British Royal Marines, Dan experiences how small teams of Egyptian foot-soldiers used the latest technology to stop the Israel tanks in their tracks.


WED 21:00 Surviving Hitler: A Love Story (b013ffkv)
A Jewish teenager and an injured soldier join a doomed plot to kill Hitler. They face almost certain death, yet luck and love shine upon them as they outwit Nazi terror and become the first couple married in post-war Berlin. Narrated by the former teenager herself and featuring the original footage shot by her sweetheart, their story would sound like a pitch for a Hollywood blockbuster were it not all true. A harrowing tale of war, resistance, love and survival - and, miraculously, a happy ending.


WED 21:55 My Father was a Nazi Commandant (b013ffkx)
The Emmy Award-winning story of a young woman grappling with the terrible legacy left by her Nazi father. Amon Goeth was a prominent Nazi leader and commandant of the Plaszow concentration camp. Utterly ruthless and sadistic, he murdered thousands of Jews and others during WWII. After seeing Ralph Fiennes's portrayal of him in Schindler's List, Goeth's daughter Monika began a quest to come to terms with his evil legacy. Together with Helen Jonas, a survivor of the Holocaust and Goeth's slave, the two women unearth the personal cost of crimes that consumed millions and question whether a parent's actions can ever be truly laid to rest.


WED 22:45 Human Planet (b00rrd81)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 on Saturday]


WED 23:45 Horizon (b01llnb2)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 on Saturday]


WED 00:45 Great British Railway Journeys (b00y47bj)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:30 today]


WED 01:15 Peter and Dan Snow: 20th Century Battlefields (b007sfdd)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]


WED 02:15 Surviving Hitler: A Love Story (b013ffkv)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]



THURSDAY 20 SEPTEMBER 2012

THU 19:00 World News Today (b01ms4p8)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


THU 19:30 Top of the Pops (b01mxyl0)
Dave Lee Travis introduces Dooleys, Elkie Brooks, Carly Simon, Danny Williams, The Jam, Rah Band, Brotherhood of Man, Floaters Mink De Ville, Candi Staton and the Legs & Co dance sequence.


THU 20:00 Horizon (b00vv0w8)
2010-2011

Asteroids - The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Famed for their ability to inflict Armageddon from outer space, asteroids are now revealing the secrets of how they are responsible for both life and death on our planet.

Armed with an array of powerful telescopes, scientists are finding up to 3,000 new asteroids every night. And some are heading our way.

But astronomers have discovered that it's not the giant rocks that are the greatest danger - it's the small asteroids that pose a more immediate threat to Earth.

Researchers have explained the photon propulsion that send these rocks across space, and have discovered that some asteroids are carrying a mysterious cargo of frost and ice across the solar system that could have helped start life on Earth.


THU 21:00 The Two-Thousand-Year-Old Computer (b01hlkcq)
In 1901, a group of divers excavating an ancient Roman shipwreck near the island of Antikythera, off the southern coast of Greece, found a mysterious object - a lump of calcified stone that contained within it several gearwheels welded together after years under the sea. The 2,000-year-old object, no bigger than a modern laptop, is now regarded as the world's oldest computer, devised to predict solar eclipses and, according to recent findings, calculate the timing of the ancient Olympics. Following the efforts of an international team of scientists, the mysteries of the Antikythera Mechanism are uncovered, revealing surprising and awe-inspiring details of the object that continues to mystify.


THU 22:00 Treasures of Ancient Rome (b01msf6r)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Monday]


THU 23:00 Lilyhammer (b01msfkn)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 on Tuesday]


THU 23:45 Only Connect (b01msf6p)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:30 on Monday]


THU 00:15 Top of the Pops (b01mxyl0)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:30 today]


THU 00:45 Horizon (b00vv0w8)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]


THU 01:45 The Two-Thousand-Year-Old Computer (b01hlkcq)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]



FRIDAY 21 SEPTEMBER 2012

FRI 19:00 World News Today (b01ms4pf)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


FRI 19:30 Leeds International Piano Competition (b01mtb68)
2012 - The Finalists' Story

Episode 1

The first of a six part series providing extensive coverage of the Finals of 'The Leeds', presented by Suzy Klein. Each programme features one of the six finalists, showcasing their concerto performance in full. The series also takes viewers behind-the-scenes to see how The Leeds works and discovers why the competition continues to draw the very best young talent from around the world. As the competition approaches its 50th Birthday in 2013, we hear from Dame Fanny Waterman who, at 92, is still at the centre of the competition she created.

As well as focussing on The Leeds itself, the series includes special features that look more widely at the world of the piano: exploring the qualities needed to be a successful concert pianist; the mechanical marvel that is the piano and the evolution of the concert pianist. And with arguably the piano world's biggest star taking an ambassadorial role with the competition, an exclusive interview with Lang Lang reveals why he believes The Leeds still matters, after nearly half a century.

Comment and analysis will be provided by Japanese Concert Pianist and Teacher, Noriko Ogawa and British Concert Pianist and winner of the 2007 Scottish International Piano Competition, Tom Poster.


FRI 20:30 Sounds of the 70s 2 (b01glwkz)
Arthouse Glam - Get in the Swing

Performances from The Kinks, Roxy Music, Elton John, New York Dolls, Queen, Sparks, Rod Stewart and the rediscovered David Bowie performance of The Jean Genie from January 1973.

Welcome to gender-bending, boys getting in the swing and girls who would be boys and boys who would be girls in this mixed-up, shook-up 70s world.


FRI 21:00 imagine... (b00t15v1)
Summer 2010

Tom Jones - What Good Am I?

As he prepares to celebrate his 70th birthday, singing legend Sir Tom Jones is still recording, performing and collaborating with some of the biggest names in pop. In this episode of Imagine, Alan Yentob examines the extraordinary story of one of Britain's most recognisable pop icons.

In a frank and revealing interview, Sir Tom describes the dizzying ascent from his humble beginnings as a miner's son in south Wales to becoming a headline act in Las Vegas and recalls many of his most cherished moments from a career that enabled him to sing alongside Elvis, establish himself as a hairy-chested sex symbol and make one of the most successful comebacks in pop history.


FRI 22:00 BBC Four Sessions (b01mtrwf)
Tom Jones

Sir Tom Jones in a unique session of folk, blues and beyond from the beautiful LSO St Lukes in the City.

Jones and a special band put together by Ethan Johns, the producer of his last two albums Praise & Blame and Spirit in the Room, deliver songs of guilt, redemption and judgement drawn from those records and also collaborates with special guests Seasick Steve on Mississippi Fred McDowell's You Gotta Move, with 84 year-old American folk legend Tom Paley on the Mississippi Sheiks' Sitting on Top of the World and young Londoner Josh Osho on Big Bill Broonzy's Black Brown and White Blues.

Filmed more like a rehearsal in the round than a concert with Ethan Johns on guitar, Richard Causon on keys, Dave Bronze on bass, Jeremy Stacey on drums and The Staves - three young sisters from Watford - on backing vocals, this BBC FOUR Session finds Jones The Voice in masterful yet genial form, exploring his roots in the songs and styles of the American South in the 50s and 60s - early rock n roll, country, gospel, folk, blues and beyond.


FRI 23:15 Tom Jones at the BBC (b00vz5ml)
An archive celebration of Tom Jones's performances at the BBC from the start of his pop career in the mid-60s to Later...with Jools Holland in 2010 and all points in between, including Top of the Pops and The Dusty Springfield Show. A chronological celebration of Sir Tom through the years that is also a history of music TV at the BBC over most of the past 50 years.


FRI 00:15 Classic Albums (b01r22tl)
Peter Gabriel: So

With the release of So in 1986, Peter Gabriel achieved a level of success that had thus far eluded him. Gabriel famously started out leading Genesis, but his four albums of solo work had made him the definition of a cult artist, with flashes that broke through such as Solsbury Hill and Games Without Frontiers. His fifth album, the first not to be titled Peter Gabriel, changed everything and became a massive hit on both sides of the Atlantic.

So includes the singles Don't Give Up, Big Time, Red Rain, In Your Eyes and Sledgehammer, the latter reaching number one in the USA, ironically knocking Genesis's Invisible Touch off the top spot.

The R&B/soul inspired Sledgehammer was propelled to the top by a much-celebrated stop-motion music video, which won numerous awards and set a new standard for art in the music video industry.

By returning to the original multi-tracks, along with musical demonstrations and rare archive footage, we discover how Gabriel's melodic ability to blend African music, jangly pop and soul created a classic.

So stands as one of the greatest records of the 1980s, helping define its time to become a true classic album. The film features interviews with Gabriel himself, co-producer Daniel Lanois, bass players Tony Levin and Larry Klein, performer Laurie Anderson, drummer Manu Katché and Rolling Stone editor David Fricke amongst others.


FRI 01:15 imagine... (b00t15v1)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]


FRI 02:15 BBC Four Sessions (b01mtrwf)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 today]




LIST OF THIS WEEK'S PROGRAMMES
(Note: the times link back to the details; the pids link to the BBC page, including iPlayer)

BBC Four Sessions 22:00 FRI (b01mtrwf)

BBC Four Sessions 02:15 FRI (b01mtrwf)

British Passions on Film 23:45 SUN (b01mqv1h)

British Passions on Film 20:30 TUE (b01msf93)

British Passions on Film 01:25 TUE (b01msf93)

Canal Walks with Julia Bradbury 19:00 SUN (b010v7kx)

Canal Walks with Julia Bradbury 00:15 SUN (b010v7kx)

Classic Albums 00:15 FRI (b01r22tl)

Fairport Convention: 45th Anniversary Concert 01:45 SUN (b01mmw5x)

Fairport Convention: Who Knows Where the Time Goes? 00:45 SUN (b01mmw5v)

Great British Railway Journeys 19:30 WED (b00y47bj)

Great British Railway Journeys 00:45 WED (b00y47bj)

Horizon 20:00 SAT (b01llnb2)

Horizon 23:45 WED (b01llnb2)

Horizon 20:00 THU (b00vv0w8)

Horizon 00:45 THU (b00vv0w8)

How It Works 19:30 MON (b01g98vb)

Human Planet 19:00 SAT (b00rrd81)

Human Planet 02:00 SAT (b00rrd81)

Human Planet 22:45 WED (b00rrd81)

If Walls Could Talk: The History of the Home 22:00 MON (b010v8dx)

Indian Hill Railways 19:30 TUE (b00qzzlm)

Inspector Montalbano 21:00 SAT (b01mtrmg)

Inspector Montalbano 23:45 TUE (b01mtrmg)

Leeds International Piano Competition 19:30 FRI (b01mtb68)

Lilyhammer 22:00 TUE (b01msfkn)

Lilyhammer 23:00 THU (b01msfkn)

Loose Cannons 22:00 SUN (b01832g8)

Loose Cannons 00:30 MON (b01832g8)

Love and Marriage: A 20th Century Romance 21:00 TUE (b01msfkl)

Love and Marriage: A 20th Century Romance 01:55 TUE (b01msfkl)

My Father was a Nazi Commandant 21:55 WED (b013ffkx)

Only Connect 20:30 MON (b01msf6p)

Only Connect 00:00 MON (b01msf6p)

Only Connect 23:45 THU (b01msf6p)

Peter and Dan Snow: 20th Century Battlefields 00:30 SAT (b007rt2l)

Peter and Dan Snow: 20th Century Battlefields 20:00 WED (b007sfdd)

Peter and Dan Snow: 20th Century Battlefields 01:15 WED (b007sfdd)

Rude Britannia 22:45 TUE (b00ssrsg)

Sounds of the 70s 2 20:30 FRI (b01glwkz)

Story of Light Entertainment 19:30 SUN (b00792c1)

Surviving Hitler: A Love Story 21:00 WED (b013ffkv)

Surviving Hitler: A Love Story 02:15 WED (b013ffkv)

The Age of the Train 22:40 SAT (b01mqv43)

The Pharaoh Who Conquered the Sea 21:00 SUN (b00pq9gs)

The Shock of the New 23:00 MON (b0074qg9)

The Three Rocketeers 23:40 SAT (b01mqv45)

The Two-Thousand-Year-Old Computer 21:00 THU (b01hlkcq)

The Two-Thousand-Year-Old Computer 01:45 THU (b01hlkcq)

Tom Jones at the BBC 23:15 FRI (b00vz5ml)

Top of the Pops 01:30 SAT (b01mmt54)

Top of the Pops 19:30 THU (b01mxyl0)

Top of the Pops 00:15 THU (b01mxyl0)

Treasures of Ancient Rome 21:00 MON (b01msf6r)

Treasures of Ancient Rome 02:15 MON (b01msf6r)

Treasures of Ancient Rome 22:00 THU (b01msf6r)

World News Today 19:00 MON (b01ms4nq)

World News Today 19:00 TUE (b01ms4ny)

World News Today 19:00 WED (b01ms4p3)

World News Today 19:00 THU (b01ms4p8)

World News Today 19:00 FRI (b01ms4pf)

imagine... 21:00 FRI (b00t15v1)

imagine... 01:15 FRI (b00t15v1)