Back in 1967, Sydneysider Ray Brown of Ray Brown & The Whispers fame (’20 Miles’, ‘Pride’, ‘Devoted To You’, ‘In The Midnight Hour’, ‘It’s The Same Old Song’ and many other radio friendly hits) released a really unusual and out of character song. It was called ‘Ivor The Engine Driver’ written by Pete Townsend of ‘The Who’. The song had previously been recorded and released in the UK and Ray Brown, along with his recording company Festival Records, decided to do an Oz version.
The song didn’t chart nationally, however it did receive turntable action, primarily on New South Wales radio (city & regional). I have the song on a double CD compilation, however what you’ll hear now from the CD differs from the original 7″ single, vinyl, version…http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FpqBiUx6tk0
What’s missing from this version is the news flash ! Y’see, in the original version there was a very apt and colourfully presented news flash re the train accident, delivered by a radio newsman. For 46 years on and off I have wondered ‘who’ is the radio news guy ? I raised the subject recently amongst radio friends from the era and collectively we nominated, eliminated, listened again and finally cracked the mystery voice.
For those who remember the days of Katrina Lee presenting TEN Eyewitness News on the box, you may also remember her husband or maybe not ? He was an out and about reporter for Channel 10, often covering police, accident and court cases. In the 60’s he also did some news moonlighting on Sydney radio station 2SM. Thanks to my good friend Phil Hunter, a former radio personality of the era on 2KO Newcastle and 2UW Sydney the mystery voice has been identified. Ladies & gentleman, now have a listen to the original news flash excerpt from ‘Ivor The Engine Driver’ featuring ‘Harry Potter’, veteran TV and Radio news man……http://www.voiceovertheworld.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/Ivor-The-Engine-Driver-Ray-Brown-01.-Track-01.mp3