Radio-Lists Home Now on BBC 4

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



SATURDAY 25 JULY 2015

SAT 19:00 Wild Burma: Nature's Lost Kingdom (p01hsd4k)
Episode 3

For the first time in 50 years, wildlife film-makers and scientists venture deep into the impenetrable jungles of Burma. Their aim is to discover if these jungles are still home to animals that are disappearing from the rest of the world.

For the last leg of their journey, the team search for the most iconic animal of them all, the tiger. To find it, they must split up. Wildlife camerawoman Justine Evans and the science team head to the tangled jungles of northern Burma, one of the largest swathes of unbroken forest in Southeast Asia. Wildlife cameraman Gordon Buchanan heads to the only other place in Burma where tigers may still exist, the far south. The forests of Karen State were once home to a thriving population of tigers, but this region has been isolated by war for over 60 years and little is known about the fate of the animals.

The team must overcome intense physical hardship and tough field conditions to find the evidence they need to help preserve this unique and largely untouched wilderness. What they discover could change the future of Burma's forests forever.


SAT 20:00 Pappano's Classical Voices (b0638jby)
Baritone and Bass

Series in which conductor Sir Antonio Pappano explores the great roles and the greatest singers of the last hundred years through the prism of the main classical voice types - soprano, tenor, mezzo-soprano, baritone and bass. Through discussion, demonstrations and workshops, Pappano explores every aspect of the art of great singing.

Gods, demons, drunks, lechers, silly old codgers, double-dyed villains - life on stage for the bass is rarely dull. The baritone, meanwhile, is the most common male voice type, and yet the parts he sings - especially in the operas of Verdi - are anything but.

Pappano explores the lowest male voice types, and the roles they play, in comedy as well as tragedy. How do basses sing so low? What different qualities does a baritone bring to a Schubert song? He meets the Russian 'oktavists', who sing a whole octave lower than the standard bass. With the help of leading practitioners - Bryn Terfel, John Tomlinson, Ferruccio Furlanetto, Christian Gerhaher, Alessandro Corbelli and Willard White - Pappano uncovers the tricks of the trade. He examines in detail some key performances from the legendary basses and baritones of the past - Feodor Chaliapin, Tito Gobbi, Paul Robeson, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Boris Christoff , Nicolai Ghiaurov and Ezio Pinza.


SAT 21:00 Cordon (b063qps8)
Episode 9

After the brutal raid on the lab, Jana is desperate to get away and finally agrees with Sam to attempt the escape route being controlled by the black-marketeers. Jokke and Lien hear rumours of a boy who is immune from the virus. Lex calls on Gryspeerts wondering why he has not published his explosive evidence, but he himself comes under pressure from Lommers.

In Flemish with English subtitles.


SAT 21:50 Cordon (b063qpsb)
Episode 10

Totally discouraged, Jana succumbs to Sam's offer of an escape route from the cordon. At NIIDA, Jokke does his utmost to reveal the full truth about the virus. Lex and Nald discover a hole in the cordon and set out to find the people behind it. The discovery leads to Lex having to make the biggest decision in his life.

In Flemish with English subtitles.


SAT 22:45 The Heart of Country: How Nashville Became Music City USA (b04ndxlr)
This historical biography of the city that is the glittering hub of country music reveals the dynamic relationship between commerce and art, music and the market, that has defined Nashville since 1925. It explores the conflicts and demons that have confronted Nashville's artists and music industry down the years, such as the creative pressures of the 'Nashville Sound', the devastating impact of Elvis and then Bob Dylan, the rise and fall of the urban cowboys and the struggle of several Nashville legends to confront their inner demons.

The story unfolds through the testimony of musicians, producers, broadcasters and rare archive of the country legends. These include Dolly Parton, Charley Pride, Willie Nelson, Ricky Skaggs, Steve Earle, Kris Kristofferson and several hit-making contemporary stars - Kasey Musgraves, Brad Paisley and Jason Aldean. This cast reveal the unique power of country music to hold up a mirror to its fans and create a music that has - for decades - touched the hearts of the south and of working people. Kristofferson calls it the 'white man's soul music'.

Also featured are extensive musical performances by Nashville's greatest, from Johnny Cash to Loretta Lynn and George Jones to Garth Brooks. Several of Nashville's younger stars describe their ongoing journey from their hometowns in the south to the streets of this city, from the first studio demos and the sawdust of the Broadway bars to the stadiums and promo videos that now define country stardom.


SAT 00:15 Johnny Cash: The Man, His World, His Music (p0295qy9)
A rare chance to see Robert Elfstrom's 1969 classic film that captures the Man in Black at his peak, the first of many in a looming rollercoaster career. Fresh on the heels of his Folsom Prison album, Cash reveals the dark intensity and raw talent that made him a country music star and cultural icon.

Elfstrom got closer than any other film-maker to Cash, who is seen performing with his new bride June Carter Cash, in a rare duet with Bob Dylan and behind the scenes with friends, family and aspiring young musicians - painting an unforgettable portrait that endures beyond the singer's death in 2003.


SAT 01:15 Top of the Pops (b0638yc7)
Simon Bates presents the weekly chart show with guests, including Olivia Newton-John. Featuring performances by Randy Crawford, XTC, Stevie Wonder, Nick Straker Band, Billy Joel, Kelly Marie and Madness.


SAT 01:50 Wild Burma: Nature's Lost Kingdom (p01hsd4k)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]


SAT 02:50 Timeshift (b01rjr2y)
Series 12

How To Be A Lady: An Elegant History

Journalist Rachel Johnson goes in search of what seems an almost vanished social type - the lady. With a handful of vintage etiquette books to guide her and a generous helping of film archive, she wants to find out how the idea of the lady changed over time - and what it might mean to be one now. Along the way she tries out etiquette classes and side-saddle lessons, as well as discovering that debutante balls have been revived for export.



SUNDAY 26 JULY 2015

SUN 19:00 BBC Proms (b063qqtw)
2015

BBC Proms Sunday Symphony: Stravinsky's Symphony of Psalms

Sir Mark Elder continues introducing his choice of great symphonies from the Proms - this time it's Stravinsky's Symphony of Psalms, a masterpiece of devout musical gesture, reimagining religious rituals on a symphonic scale. Commissioned in 1930 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, it is performed by the BBC National Orchestra and Chorus of Wales, conducted by Thomas Sondergard.

The programme also includes an additional performance in Mozart's enduringly popular 'Jupiter' Symphony.

Katie Derham presents, from the Royal Albert Hall.


SUN 20:05 The Chopin Etudes (b0074qgh)
Opus 25, No 10

Pianist Freddy Kempf plays Chopin's Etude in B minor, Op 25 no 10.


SUN 20:15 Neil Sedaka Says: All You Need Is the Music (b00pwstt)
During a career which was originally designed to make him a classical pianist, the musical achievements and statistics of singer-songwriter Neil Sedaka have made him a compelling figure in contemporary music, with 600 songs written and 20 million records sold. The hits from his early rock 'n' roll days to his later, more lyrical age are all included in this special one-man show from the 1980s.


SUN 21:00 A Blackpool Big Band Boogie: Jools Holland and His Rhythm & Blues Orchestra (b0645530)
Concert specially recorded for BBC Four on 24 June 2015 at the Empress Ballroom Blackpool, where Jools Holland and his band were joined by special guests Rumer, Marc Almond and Ruby Turner.

More than 14,000 people applied for tickets and a lucky 800 were in the audience, and by the end of the concert Jools and his orchestra had almost every one of them on their feet.

The concert celebrates the golden age of big band music from the 1930s to the 1950s and Jools presents his interpretations of standards from the greats such as Count Basie, Louis Armstrong and Woody Herman. Jools's orchestra includes some of the best musicians in the business and the concert combines the incomparable power and sophistication of the big band sound with brilliant individual performances.

Highlights include Rumer's joyful Ac-cent-tchu-ate the Positive, Marc Almond's stunning rendition of Edith Piaf's Hymn Le Amour and singer Ruby Turner's extraordinary vocals.


SUN 22:00 Len Goodman's Big Band Bonanza (b04w7zlm)
Len Goodman investigates the rise and fall of British big band music and charts its recent revival. Before the war, popular jazz and dance band music enjoyed universal appeal, capable of reaching out to people across the generations.

Len spent many of his early days listening, and of course dancing, to the music of Ted Heath, Glenn Miller and Joe Loss. He has an enormous affection for the days when swing was king and top of the pile were the big bands. Len returns to some of his old stamping grounds and discovers why we continue to love this bold and brassy art form.

The film looks at how the bands survived, and indeed thrived, in the years after the war. Eventually, though, the world around them moved on. The rise of teenager culture, rock 'n' roll, pop and other forms of jazz, blues and folk meant big bands were struggling to compete in a crowded market, one that catered for an incredibly diverse range of musical tastes.

Today we've come full circle. The big bands are enjoying something of a revival, and once again have universal appeal. Bands live on in towns and cities across the UK. Artists such as Robbie Williams have also introduced a new generation to the sound of swing and popular big band jazz. And, as Len says: 'Everyone seems to have an affection for it - and, you know what - when I hear Glenn Miller's music drifting lazily through the air, I can really understand why...'.


SUN 23:00 The Golden Age of Steam Railways (b01pdsy6)
Branching Out

For more than 100 years steam trains ran Britain, but when steam started to disappear in the 1950s bands of volunteers got together to save some of the tracks and the steam engines that ran on them. Some of these enthusiasts filmed their exploits and the home movies they shot tell the story of how they did it, and how they helped people to reconnect to a world of steam most thought had been lost forever.


SUN 00:00 Storyville (b03yfwk3)
Brakeless: Why Trains Crash

Documentary exploring one of Japan's biggest train crashes in modern history, caused when a driver tried to catch up with a delay of just 80 seconds. It's a cautionary tale of what happens when punctuality, protocol and efficiency are taken to the extreme. On Monday April 25th 2005, a West Japan Railway commuter train crashed into an apartment building and killed 107 people. Just what pressures made the driver risk so much for such a minimal delay?

Piecing together personal accounts of those affected by the train crash, with insights from experts and former train drivers, the film poses a question for a society that equates speed with progress. It offers a fascinating insight into the railway's role in Japan's post-war economic boom and the dangers of corner-cutting in the prolonged economic stagnation that followed. Through the lens of this catastrophic train crash, Brakeless considers the ultimate cost efficiency.


SUN 01:00 Great American Rock Anthems: Turn it up to 11 (b03n2w37)
It's the sound of the heartland, of the midwest and the industrial cities, born in the early 70s by kids who had grown up in the 60s and were now ready to make their own noise, to come of age in the bars, arenas and stadiums of the US of A. Out of blues and prog and glam and early metal, a distinct American rock hybrid started to emerge across the country courtesy of Alice Cooper, Grand Funk Railroad et al, and at its very heart is The Great American Rock Anthem.

At the dawn of the 70s American rock stopped looking for a revolution and started looking for a good time; enter the classic American rock anthem - big drums, a soaring guitar, a huge chorus and screaming solos. This film celebrates the evolution of the American rock anthem during its glory years between 1970 and 1990 as it became a staple of the emerging stadium rock and AOR radio and then MTV.

From School's Out and Don't Fear the Reaper to Livin' on a Prayer and Smells Like Teen Spirit, these are the songs that were the soundtrack to teenage lives in the US and around the world, anthems that had people singing out loud with arms and lighters aloft.

Huey Morgan narrates the story of some of the greatest American rock anthems and tracks the emergence of this distinct American rock of the 70s and 80s. Anthems explored include School's Out, We're an American Band, Don't Fear the Reaper, Paradise by the Dashboard Light, I Love Rock 'n' Roll, Eye of the Tiger, I Want to Know What Love Is, Livin' on a Prayer and Smells Like Teen Spirit.

Contributors include: Alice Cooper, Dave Grohl, Butch Vig, Meat Loaf, Todd Rundgren, Richie Sambora, Blue Oyster Cult, Survivor, Toto and Foreigner.


SUN 01:55 What Ever Happened to Rock 'n' Roll? (b063h4lm)
Lauren Laverne hosts an all-star discussion from London's iconic 100 Club, asking if rock 'n' roll is in crisis and what it now means in the 21st century. Can rock 'n' roll still be as dangerous and subversive as the original or has it become more about lifestyle and decoration? Joining Lauren are Savages' lead singer Jehnny Beth, Dr John Cooper Clarke and former Animal Eric Burdon. Featuring original contributions from Noel Gallagher, Dave Grohl, Sleaford Mods and Alabama Shakes. Music from Mercury-winning Young Fathers and Matthew E White.


SUN 02:55 The Golden Age of Steam Railways (b01pdsy6)
[Repeat of broadcast at 23:00 today]



MONDAY 27 JULY 2015

MON 19:00 World News Today (b063n08m)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


MON 19:30 Great British Railway Journeys (b03qgbjv)
Series 5

Northampton to Nuneaton

Steered by his Bradshaw's Handbook, Michael Portillo heads north on his journey from London to Leeds, stopping in Northampton, the land of shoemakers, where Victorian 'clickers' have been making shoes for more than 130 years.

In Rugby, Michael discovers the legacy of Dr Thomas Arnold and trains with the school's 1st XV before heading to Coventry, where he finds out how the city's craftsmen learned to adapt to survive. Michael ends this leg of his journey in Nuneaton, birthplace of an author whose identity was once a closely guarded secret.


MON 20:00 Nelson's Caribbean Hell-hole: An Eighteenth Century Navy Graveyard Uncovered (b01s6gjx)
Human bones found on an idyllic beach in Antigua trigger an investigation by naval historian Sam Willis into one of the darkest chapters of Britain's imperial past. As archaeologists excavate a mass grave of British sailors, Willis explores Antigua's ruins and discovers how the sugar islands of the Caribbean were a kind of hell in the age of Nelson.

Sun, sea, war, tropical diseases and poisoned rum.


MON 21:00 BBC: The Secret Files (b06455ch)
Episode 1

Penelope Keith uncovers the secrets behind some of the BBC's greatest artists and programmes as she delves into the corporation's written archives.


MON 22:00 Storyville (b05nyyd9)
Masterspy of Moscow - George Blake

He said he was doing God's work on earth, but betrayed his colleagues to the KGB. Sentenced to 42 years in jail, George Blake escaped from Wormwood Scrubs five years later and fled to the Soviet Union. George Carey's film follows the strange life of this enigmatic traitor, tracking down people who knew him, and ending with an unexpected encounter in the woods outside Moscow.


MON 23:30 Operation Crossbow (b011cr8f)
The heroic tales of World War II are legendary, but Operation Crossbow is a little-known story that deserves to join the hall of fame: how the Allies used 3D photos to thwart the Nazis' weapons of mass destruction before they could obliterate Britain.

This film brings together the heroic Spitfire pilots who took the photographs and the brilliant minds of RAF Medmenham that made sense of the jigsaw of clues hidden in the photos. Hitler was pumping a fortune into his new-fangled V weapons in the hope they could win him the war. But Medmenham had a secret weapon of its own, a simple stereoscope which brought to life every contour of the enemy landscape in perfect 3D.

The devil was truly in the detail. Together with extraordinary personal testimonies, the film uses modern computer graphics on the original wartime photographs to show just how the photo interpreters were able to uncover Hitler's nastiest secrets.


MON 00:30 BBC: The Secret Files (b06455ch)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]


MON 01:30 Nelson's Caribbean Hell-hole: An Eighteenth Century Navy Graveyard Uncovered (b01s6gjx)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]


MON 02:30 Dissected (p01mv2md)
The Incredible Human Hand

In a purpose-built dissection lab, Dr George McGavin is joined by leading anatomy experts to dissect a real hand, taking it apart layer by layer to reveal what makes it unique in the animal kingdom. We discover what gives our hands an unrivalled combination of power and precision, and meet people who use their hands in extraordinary ways - from magicians to rock climbers - to discover what gives them such astonishing abilities.


MON 03:30 Danny Baker Rocks... A Bit (b03v0svf)
The Seventies

In the first of three programmes showcasing the best of British rock, Danny Baker tees up, with characteristic humour, great performances from the 70s by the likes of The Who, Genesis, Kate Bush and The Specials.



TUESDAY 28 JULY 2015

TUE 19:00 World News Today (b063n08v)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


TUE 19:30 Great British Railway Journeys (b03qgdph)
Series 5

Leicester to Loughborough

Guided by his Bradshaw's Handbook, Michael Portillo continues his journey north along Robert Stephenson's London to Birmingham line. He begins this leg in Leicester, where he picks up the trail of 'the famous crook-backed King Richard III', who Bradshaw's guide informs him was buried at the Grey Priory. Michael finds out about the hunt for the king's remains and how scientists managed to prove that the skeleton found under a car park was him. From Rothley, Michael works his passage on the Great Central Railway to Loughborough, where the bells have been tolling since 1839.


TUE 20:00 Great British Railway Journeys (b03qgh0r)
Series 5

Nottingham to Leeds

On the final leg of his journey along the first intercity line to be built from the capital, Michael Portillo rediscovers a once-famous poet in Nottingham. In Mansfield, he travels on a railway line resurrected by popular demand after falling victim to Beeching's cuts, then heads to Worksop, where he learns about the burrowing activities of an eccentric duke.

Michael's next stop is 'railway city' Doncaster, where in the 19th century thousands laboured to build trains and where in the 20th century rail workers shaped British political history. His last stop on this journey is Leeds, where he auditions at the Venus and Venice of Variety on the stage at Britain's oldest continuously working music hall.


TUE 20:30 Hive Minds (b063qscp)
Series 1

Goats v Araucarians

Fiona Bruce presents the quiz show where players not only have to know the answers, but have to find them hidden in a hive of letters. It tests players' general knowledge and mental agility, as they battle against one another and race against the clock to find the answers.

The Goats face the Araucarians over four rounds of hives.


TUE 21:00 Egypt's Lost Cities (b011pwms)
It is possible that only one per cent of the wonders of ancient Egypt have been discovered, but now, thanks to a pioneering approach to archaeology, that is about to change.

Dr Sarah Parcak uses satellites to probe beneath the sands, where she has found cities, temples and pyramids. Now, with Dallas Campbell and Liz Bonnin, she heads to Egypt to discover if these magnificent buildings are really there.


TUE 22:30 BBC: The Secret Files (b06455ch)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Monday]


TUE 23:30 Norman Wisdom: His Story (b00vhmqq)
From street urchin to knight of the realm - the story of Norman Wisdom, who used to be one of the biggest film stars in the UK, portraying a man who rarely stepped out of character in public, and whose highly individual comic style hid the private tragedy of his early life.

The actor's life story is told through the people who knew him well - his son and daughter Nick and Jacqui Wisdom, his daughter-in-law Kim, film director Stephen Frears, actors Ricky Tomlinson, Leslie Phillips and Honor Blackman, and singer Dame Vera Lynn.


TUE 00:30 Byzantium: A Tale of Three Cities (b03kp6hg)
Episode 1

Simon Sebag Montefiore traces the sacred history of Istanbul. Known as the 'city of the world's desire', it's a place that has been the focus of passion for believers of three different faiths - Paganism, Christianity and Islam - and for nearly 3,000 years its streets have been the battleground for some of the fiercest political and religious conflicts in history.

Montefiore uncovers the city's ancient Greek roots, maps its transformation into the imperial capital of a Christian empire by Emperor Constantine the Great and reveals how ecclesiastical clashes forced eastern and western churches apart.


TUE 01:30 Hive Minds (b063qscp)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:30 today]


TUE 02:00 Egypt's Lost Cities (b011pwms)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]


TUE 03:30 Danny Baker Rocks... A Bit (b03v4hsf)
The Eighties

In the second of three programmes showcasing the best of British rock, performances from the 80s by the likes of The Clash, The Pretenders, Ivor Cutler and Prefab Sprout are saluted by arch-enthusiast Danny Baker.



WEDNESDAY 29 JULY 2015

WED 19:00 World News Today (b063n090)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


WED 19:30 Great British Railway Journeys (b03sgpsj)
Series 5

Southampton to Basingstoke

Assisted by his Bradshaw's guide, Michael Portillo embarks on a new journey from Southampton to Wolverhampton.

On this first leg, he learns to set the table aboard the luxury liner Queen Elizabeth before she sets sail and discovers how Cunard steamers began by transporting post across the Atlantic. He then heads to Netley, where he discovers the remains of an extensive military hospital built by order of Queen Victoria. From there he journeys to Basingstoke, where he finds out about a pitched battle between townspeople and the Salvation Army.


WED 20:00 British Gardens in Time (b040y79r)
Stowe

Stowe, one of the most remarkable creations of Georgian England, is the birthplace of the landscape garden. Created on a vast scale with 36 temples, eight lakes and a dozen avenues, Stowe launched the career of Lancelot 'Capability' Brown and fostered a rebellion that overthrew the first British prime minister, Robert Walpole.

Rather than being a garden of flowers and shrubs, Stowe is a garden of ideas and its grottos and classical monuments spell out a furious, coded political manifesto. Stowe's creator, Viscount Cobham, dreamt of climbing to the pinnacle of political power and establishing a long-lived dynasty, but less than a century after his death, his family was to become the most scandalous bankrupts in English history.


WED 21:00 Life of a Mountain (b04y4gd7)
A Year on Scafell Pike

A beautifully cinematic documentary following a year in the life of England's highest mountain, Scafell Pike, through the eyes of the farmers who work the valleys and fells, those who climb the mountain for pleasure and those who try to protect its slopes.

Filmed over a twelve-month period, it follows the seasons on the mountain from spring lambs through to winter snows. The contributions of the British Mountaineering Council and National Trust volunteers make clear the crucial importance of maintaining the landscape quality of England's highest peak for future generations.


WED 22:00 All Aboard! The Canal Trip (b05t7kc1)
A two-hour, real-time canal boat journey down one of Britain's most historic waterways, the Kennet and Avon Canal, from Top Lock in Bath to the Dundas Aqueduct. Using an uninterrupted single shot, the film is a rich and absorbing antidote to the frenetic pace and white noise of modern life.

Taking in the images and sounds of the British countryside, underpinned by the natural soundscape of water lapping, surrounding birdsong and the noise of the chugging engine, this is a chance to spot wildlife and glimpse life on the towpath while being lulled by the comforting rhythm of a bygone era.

Along the journey, graphics and archive stills embedded into the passing landscape deliver salient facts about the canal and its social history.


WED 00:00 Wild Burma: Nature's Lost Kingdom (p01hsd4k)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 on Saturday]


WED 01:00 British Gardens in Time (b040y79r)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]


WED 02:00 Byzantium: A Tale of Three Cities (b03kp6hg)
[Repeat of broadcast at 00:30 on Tuesday]


WED 03:00 Life of a Mountain (b04y4gd7)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]



THURSDAY 30 JULY 2015

THU 19:00 World News Today (b063n095)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


THU 19:30 BBC Proms (b0643sj0)
2015

Concerto at the BBC Proms: Mark Simpson Plays Nielsen

Former BBC Young Musician winner Mark Simpson is the soloist in the fiendishly virtuosic Clarinet Concerto by Carl Nielsen, with proms favourite Sir Andrew Davis conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra. The BBC Symphony Chorus have a chance to shine in the world premiere of Hugh Wood's Epithalamion, a song of joy celebrating married love. Presented by Tom Service.


THU 20:30 Brushing up on... (b01s1c4y)
Series 1

British Tunnels

Danny Baker considers some tunnel-based archive footage and endeavours to give a quick brush up on these mysterious, subterranean realms.


THU 21:00 Digging for Britain (b052vcbd)
Series 3

North

Professor Alice Roberts and archaeologist Matt Williams present 2014's most outstanding archaeology from the north of Britain.

Sitting in the heart of the Neolithic Orkney World Heritage Site, the Ness of Brodgar houses a 5,000-year-old temple at the heart of a sacred landscape, built out of stone over hundreds of years.

We catch the unearthing of a Roman altar dedicated to Jupiter that was originally carved in the 2nd century, when Maryport was part of the coastal defences linked to Hadrian's Wall.

11,000 years ago, Flixton in Yorkshire was an island used by our very earliest ancestors, and it has preserved vital clues about their world and the wild horses they hunted and ate.

In Ardnamurchan, a 5,000-year-old cemetery - housing burials from the Bronze and Iron Ages... and an intact Viking boat burial.

A Tudor-era aristocrat's feasting hall is revealed... and how one night the revelry came to a very abrupt end.

One of the richest hoards of Pictish treasure ever found reveals the metalworking secrets of the mysterious tribes who ruled Dark Ages Scotland.


THU 22:00 Britain and the Sea (b03lbv22)
Trade and Romance

This third episode traces the crucial importance of the sea to Britain's trade and to individual livelihoods of coastal communities. Joined on this leg of his epic sail by his son Fred, David follows the trade routes of the west coast of Scotland along the monumental channels that cut through the romantic Highlands and brought wealth and prosperity to the heart of Scotland. The journey starts at Craobh Haven and takes David along the Crinan Canal, around the Isle of Bute and up the River Clyde towards Glasgow.


THU 23:00 Life of a Mountain (b04y4gd7)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Wednesday]


THU 00:00 The Many Faces of... (b018nvwc)
Series 1

Les Dawson

Les Dawson was one of Britain's all time great comedy talents, best known as a comedian but also a talented musician, writer and actor. This programme traces his career, with familiar favourite TV clips and some rare gems from the archives. Together with interviews from friends, relatives and colleagues, the programme unpicks the secrets of his enduring legacy nearly 20 years after his untimely death.

After 'discovery' on the Opportunity Knocks talent show in the 60s, he quickly became a regular face on TV, hosting comedy-led variety shows like Sez Les and The Les Dawson Show. His trademarks were short, pithy jokes, usually targeting his wife or mother in law, long verbose monologues and, perhaps most famously, piano recitals that went hilariously off key.

His reputation attracted guest appearances from some unexpected fans like John Cleese and Shirley Bassey, and he created an overweight dance troupe, The Roly Polys.

The programme shows how his career unfolded and illustrates the different facets of his comedy genius. John Cleese remembers their unlikely friendship, modern comedy stars Robert Webb and Russell Kane talk about his inspiration and Dawson's widow Tracy recalls their marriage and his joy at being a father late in life.


THU 01:00 Storyville (b05nyyd9)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 on Monday]


THU 02:30 Norman Wisdom: His Story (b00vhmqq)
[Repeat of broadcast at 23:30 on Tuesday]


THU 03:30 Danny Baker Rocks... A Bit (b03v4jsx)
The Nineties

With the help of a couple of morris dancers, Danny Baker showcases performances by rockin' Brits such as The Justified Ancients of Mu Mu, Radiohead, Happy Mondays and Portishead.



FRIDAY 31 JULY 2015

FRI 19:00 World News Today (b063n09d)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


FRI 19:30 BBC Proms (b063qzc8)
2015

Friday Night at the Proms: Holst's Planets

The Royal Albert Hall comes to life with Gustav Holst's ever-popular Planets Suite. A Proms favourite, it is performed by the BBC Symphony Orchestra conducted by Susanna Malkki, with the Elysian Singers. The orchestra then travels though the evocative soundworld of Pierre Boulez's Notations.


FRI 21:00 Sound of Song (b04y4qpt)
The Recording Revolution

Songs are the soundtrack of our lives and it takes a kind of genius to create a true pop masterpiece. But, as Neil Brand argues, there is more to consider in the story of what makes a great song. Neil looks at every moment in the life cycle of a song - how they are written, performed, recorded and the changing ways we have listened to them. He reveals how it is the wonderful alchemy of all of these elements that makes songs so special to us.

To open the series, Neil investigates how songs were recorded for the first time, the listening revolution in the home that followed and the birth of a new style of singing that came with the arrival of the microphone - crooning. He also looks at the songwriting genius of Irving Berlin and the interpretative power of singers Bessie Smith, Louis Armstrong and Bing Crosby.


FRI 22:00 Sound of Song (b04z23vl)
Reeling and Rocking

Musician Neil Brand explores the magical elements that come together to create great songs by recreating some of the most memorable and innovative recording sessions in music history - from Elvis's slapback echo in Memphis and The Beatles' tape loops at Abbey Road to Phil Spector's Wall of Sound and The Beach Boys' pop symphonies.

He shows that all this was made possible by the discovery of magnetic tape by an American soldier in the ruins of WWII Germany, the invention that, more than any other, drove the emergence of the music studio as a compositional tool and the rise of the producer as a new creative force shaping the sound of song.


FRI 23:00 Sound of Song (b050rbz8)
Mix It Up and Start Again

Composer and musician Neil Brand's series exploring the alchemy that creates great songs reaches the modern era, when a revolution in how they were made took place. From the synthesisers of symphonic rock to the mixes of disco and the samplings of hip hop, music was transformed by the arrival of digital technology and the computer, which gave some songwriters more power but others much less. Along the way Neil talks synths with Rick Wakeman from Yes, samples with Public Enemy's Hank Shocklee, uncovers the surprising lo-fi origins of Bruce Springsteen's stadium-busting Born in the USA, and finds out how Cher changed the sound of her voice on the smash hit Believe.


FRI 00:00 Synth Britannia (b00n93c4)
Documentary following a generation of post-punk musicians who took the synthesiser from the experimental fringes to the centre of the pop stage.

In the late 1970s, small pockets of electronic artists including The Human League, Daniel Miller and Cabaret Voltaire were inspired by Kraftwerk and JG Ballard, and they dreamt of the sound of the future against the backdrop of bleak, high-rise Britain.

The crossover moment came in 1979 when Gary Numan's appearance on Top of the Pops with Tubeway Army's Are 'Friends' Electric? heralded the arrival of synthpop. Four lads from Basildon known as Depeche Mode would come to own the new sound, whilst post-punk bands like Ultravox, Soft Cell, OMD and Yazoo took the synth out of the pages of NME and onto the front page of Smash Hits.

By 1983, acts like Pet Shop Boys and New Order were showing that the future of electronic music would lie in dance music.

Contributors include Philip Oakey, Vince Clarke, Martin Gore, Bernard Sumner, Gary Numan and Neil Tennant.


FRI 01:30 TOTP2 (b00sfz04)
80s Special

Mark Radcliffe presents a look back at some of the most memorable Top of the Pops performances from the 80s including Adam Ant, Kylie and Jason, Culture Club, Bucks Fizz, Yazz, Duran Duran and Wham!


FRI 02:30 Sounds of the Eighties (b0074sjk)
Episode 2

Serious and sincere they may have been, never cracking a smile where a tortured, artistic look would do, but this tranche of 80s pop stars know how to make that look work - Eurythmics, Spandau Ballet, Phil Collins, Fine Young Cannibals, Tears for Fears, Suzanne Vega and Simply Red.


FRI 02:55 Sound of Song (b04y4qpt)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]




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

A Blackpool Big Band Boogie: Jools Holland and His Rhythm & Blues Orchestra 21:00 SUN (b0645530)

All Aboard! The Canal Trip 22:00 WED (b05t7kc1)

BBC Proms 19:00 SUN (b063qqtw)

BBC Proms 19:30 THU (b0643sj0)

BBC Proms 19:30 FRI (b063qzc8)

BBC: The Secret Files 21:00 MON (b06455ch)

BBC: The Secret Files 00:30 MON (b06455ch)

BBC: The Secret Files 22:30 TUE (b06455ch)

Britain and the Sea 22:00 THU (b03lbv22)

British Gardens in Time 20:00 WED (b040y79r)

British Gardens in Time 01:00 WED (b040y79r)

Brushing up on... 20:30 THU (b01s1c4y)

Byzantium: A Tale of Three Cities 00:30 TUE (b03kp6hg)

Byzantium: A Tale of Three Cities 02:00 WED (b03kp6hg)

Cordon 21:00 SAT (b063qps8)

Cordon 21:50 SAT (b063qpsb)

Danny Baker Rocks... A Bit 03:30 MON (b03v0svf)

Danny Baker Rocks... A Bit 03:30 TUE (b03v4hsf)

Danny Baker Rocks... A Bit 03:30 THU (b03v4jsx)

Digging for Britain 21:00 THU (b052vcbd)

Dissected 02:30 MON (p01mv2md)

Egypt's Lost Cities 21:00 TUE (b011pwms)

Egypt's Lost Cities 02:00 TUE (b011pwms)

Great American Rock Anthems: Turn it up to 11 01:00 SUN (b03n2w37)

Great British Railway Journeys 19:30 MON (b03qgbjv)

Great British Railway Journeys 19:30 TUE (b03qgdph)

Great British Railway Journeys 20:00 TUE (b03qgh0r)

Great British Railway Journeys 19:30 WED (b03sgpsj)

Hive Minds 20:30 TUE (b063qscp)

Hive Minds 01:30 TUE (b063qscp)

Johnny Cash: The Man, His World, His Music 00:15 SAT (p0295qy9)

Len Goodman's Big Band Bonanza 22:00 SUN (b04w7zlm)

Life of a Mountain 21:00 WED (b04y4gd7)

Life of a Mountain 03:00 WED (b04y4gd7)

Life of a Mountain 23:00 THU (b04y4gd7)

Neil Sedaka Says: All You Need Is the Music 20:15 SUN (b00pwstt)

Nelson's Caribbean Hell-hole: An Eighteenth Century Navy Graveyard Uncovered 20:00 MON (b01s6gjx)

Nelson's Caribbean Hell-hole: An Eighteenth Century Navy Graveyard Uncovered 01:30 MON (b01s6gjx)

Norman Wisdom: His Story 23:30 TUE (b00vhmqq)

Norman Wisdom: His Story 02:30 THU (b00vhmqq)

Operation Crossbow 23:30 MON (b011cr8f)

Pappano's Classical Voices 20:00 SAT (b0638jby)

Sound of Song 21:00 FRI (b04y4qpt)

Sound of Song 22:00 FRI (b04z23vl)

Sound of Song 23:00 FRI (b050rbz8)

Sound of Song 02:55 FRI (b04y4qpt)

Sounds of the Eighties 02:30 FRI (b0074sjk)

Storyville 00:00 SUN (b03yfwk3)

Storyville 22:00 MON (b05nyyd9)

Storyville 01:00 THU (b05nyyd9)

Synth Britannia 00:00 FRI (b00n93c4)

TOTP2 01:30 FRI (b00sfz04)

The Chopin Etudes 20:05 SUN (b0074qgh)

The Golden Age of Steam Railways 23:00 SUN (b01pdsy6)

The Golden Age of Steam Railways 02:55 SUN (b01pdsy6)

The Heart of Country: How Nashville Became Music City USA 22:45 SAT (b04ndxlr)

The Many Faces of... 00:00 THU (b018nvwc)

Timeshift 02:50 SAT (b01rjr2y)

Top of the Pops 01:15 SAT (b0638yc7)

What Ever Happened to Rock 'n' Roll? 01:55 SUN (b063h4lm)

Wild Burma: Nature's Lost Kingdom 19:00 SAT (p01hsd4k)

Wild Burma: Nature's Lost Kingdom 01:50 SAT (p01hsd4k)

Wild Burma: Nature's Lost Kingdom 00:00 WED (p01hsd4k)

World News Today 19:00 MON (b063n08m)

World News Today 19:00 TUE (b063n08v)

World News Today 19:00 WED (b063n090)

World News Today 19:00 THU (b063n095)

World News Today 19:00 FRI (b063n09d)