This week’s best radio: 6 music's annual fest pitches camp in Glasgow

David Hepworth
Glasgow’s son: Bobby Gillespie of Primal Scream. Photograph: Martyn Goodacre/Getty

The 6 Music festival comes from Glasgow this weekend with live music, DJ sets and complementary experiences by day and night. In a break between the live entertainment and the transplanted regular shows presented by 6 Music favourites such as Cerys Matthews and Huey Morgan, Colleen Murphy presents Sounds of a City: Glasgow (Sunday, 1pm, 6 Music) in which she argues that the record that’s most representative of Glasgow is Primal Scream’s Screamadelica from 1991. Evening sessions at the Barrowland Ballroom feature performances from the Shins, Grandaddy, Bonobo, the Lemon Twigs and many others.

It is the melancholy fate of all young legends to becoming better known for the things they did to exploit fame than the things that made them famous in the first place. John Lydon must be more famous for his efforts on behalf of dairy products than his music. This is an imbalance that will be redressed when he pops up on Simon Mayo Drivetime (Monday, 5pm, Radio 2) to talk about a new anthology of his lyrics.

Formed in 1967 and still performing regularly half a century later, Fairport Convention are Britain’s equivalent of the Band. Unlike the latter they have maintained cordial relations. In the runup to the Radio 2 Folk awards, which take place next week, Fairport at 50 (Wednesday, 10pm, Radio 2) celebrates what has been a long, strange trip.

Talking of British institutions, in Seventy Years in the Planning (Saturday, 8pm, Radio 4) Will Self sets out to walk the London green belt. His agenda is partly personal. Self’s father was a leading exponent of the principles that underpinned the postwar decision to make sure that all Londoners were within reach of green space. Now that the call for new homes is one that all politicians have to be seen to echo, this precious element of the old consensus is under threat.

Chances are you’re not Missing Richard Simmons quite so much as the people who’ve recently made it one of the most popular podcasts in the US. Simmons wasn’t just one of America’s most famous fitness/weight-loss gurus. He was also always available to his public. Then, three years ago, Simmons withdrew from the public arena. Dan Taberski set out to discover why. Actually, what he set out to do was see if he could make a compelling audio series out of his quest. So far he has done, but not without attracting criticism from those who think famous people don’t owe us any explanation if they go off and live a quiet life. That’s a fair point.

At the same time, the great thing about podcasts is there’s something faintly naughty about them. They work because they do things that standard media outlets shy away from. A case in point is The Hilarious World of Depression. Only here could I hear an interview with a woman who was considering suicide but put it off when she realised she had Billy Joel tickets.

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