Gavin Paterson has been in training to be a radio presenter since he used to entertain his family by selecting 7” singles from the family collection – before he could even read.
As a performing musician he went through piano lessons and recitals, playing as a backing musician in “the clubs” while in his mid-teens, leading a 1977 punk band and playing with the first Glasgow punk band to issue an independent single. Many, varied instruments were half-learned along the way; he became an on-call side man, to a huge range of bands and artists.
A career in the Glesga Polis “forced” a move into amateur theatre for a while but in 1985 he became a founder member of 21 Red who, until they finally stopped in 2020, were the longest standing wedding/club band in all Scotland.
Other band work included Musical Director for Crescent City Soul and Dexys Bootleg Runners – two 10-piece bands who played all over the UK.
His folk song was given in outlet in “Off The Beat” a pun-based collection of Polis & Pals and in Whappit Ben, a mixing of various musical styles.
Long an admirer of Liam Clancy and the extended Clancy/Makem families, Gavin has been involved in every Clancy Brothers Festival since it started in 2008, as musician and on-call historian to the Clancy Family. This close connection lead to a rather unique recording project. After making a very simple album of Clancy/Makem songs to sell at his festival gigs, Gavin decided to use his instrumental skills and went back to the studio where he spent weeks overdubbing everything from drums to Hammond Organ. The album was self-issued at the end of 2016.
To promote his “CMR Album Of The Week”, he came into the studio to be interviewed by both Gordon Hotchkiss and Ross McFadyen. It didn’t take long to realise that his encyclopedic musical knowledge and absolutely massive record collection had found a natural home at CMR. He started broadcasting Ballads & Balladeers in March 2017 and as a reward for the success of that show, a few months later, was given a Sunday night spot where he could play “Whatever” he liked.
Gavin curates four hours of radio for CMR every week. Both are in-depth, knowledgable and very opinionated shows and that’s the way he likes it.
“Ballads and Balladeers” focusses on what he calls “the first generation of vinyl folkies” (roughly 1960 to 1990) while “Whatever” is a theme-based show that changes every week and is aimed at the listener with more than just a casual love for music. You have to tune in to find out what the theme is, and hopefully stick around.