Steve Barker (born c. 1948) is a music journalist and broadcaster, who presents On The Wire, an alternative music show broadcast since 1984 on BBC Radio Lancashire. On the Wire was one of the first shows in the UK to play hip-hop, house music and techno music. It gave the first radio plays in the UK for Derrick May and Kevin Saunderson and the radio premier of 808 State's "Pacific State" and A Guy Called Gerald's "Voodoo Ray". Guests on the show have included Lee Perry, Mark E Smith, Half Man Half Biscuit, Kelly Joe Phelps, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Jeb Loy Nichols and Blood And Fire. Between 2003 and 2012, Steve Barker was based in China working for the British Council and where he sent a weekly contribution to On The Wire from his apartment and the BBC bureau in Beijing.
Links To Peel
Peel was an avid supporter of Steve Barker's On The Wire show and would praise him, especially in 1987, when he played tracks from Steve Barker's compilation album of his favourite current artists called Bugs On The Wire. In 1991, during a review of output, a new radio manager decided to take On The Wire off air. After a public uprising the BBC decided to keep the show when pressure from various people including John Peel and former radio DJ Martin Kelner, who had written a piece for The Independent in support of On the Wire forced the station to put it back on.
Radio plays by Peel of various artists assembled by Steve Barker.
(LP - Bugs On The Wire)
- 26 June 1987 (Radio Bremen): Lee Perry (with the Flying Vicars & Sir Freddy Viaduct): Scratch On The Wire
- 29 June 1987: Fall: Wings
- 08 July 1987: Bim Sherman & Singers & Players - The Need To Live
- 10 July 1987 (Radio Bremen): Fall: Wings
- 29 July 1987: Lee Perry (with the Flying Vicars & Sir Freddy Viaduct): Scratch On The Wire
- 04 August 1987: Bim Sherman & Singers & Players - The Need To Live
- 24 August 1987: "Chop" Walker & Brenda "Beachball" Kenny: Tall Dark Stranger