21 May 2007: Poetry on a country ride with Martin Newell

Spoke N WordThe Bike Show returns to Essex and Martin Newell, writer, poet, musician and horticultural assassin, for another helping of Spoke N Word. This year’s programme features a new route from Wivenhoe to Bentley Green, reported to be the largest village green in England. We cross fields, pass through woodland and finish on a series of quiet country lanes. Rain threatens but Martin is equipped with a waterproof poetry kit.

In the studio is Andy Cox, with the latest developments on the UK premier of the Symphony for Singing Bicycles, set for Saturday 7 July. Got a dynamo? Want to take part? We need up to 24 riders, so please get in touch via bikeshow(at)gmail(dot)com.

Spoke N Word runs until 1 July, every Saturday and Sunday, with cycle rides on Sun 27 May, Sat 2 June, Sun 3 June, Sun 17 June, Sun 1 July. Tickets from £7 bookable at the Colchester Arts Centre on 01206 500 900.

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14 May 2007: Road Peace // Floyd Landis

testosteroneReturning for the summer season, The Bike Show turns to the trials of US cycling star Floyd Landis, whose sensational victory in the 2006 Tour de France was thrown into doubt after he failed a test for the banned drug testosterone. We also hear an extended talk on road danger in a global context by Dr Ian Roberts, Professor of Public Health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical medicine. Dr Roberts was addressing an event organised by Road Peace, the UK national charity for road crash victims. See also Moving Target Zine for excellent coverage of road danger issues London cyclists, plus top tips for all you fakengers out there. The ‘def track’ is by ex-bike messenger MC Abdominal who has given up being a courier in order to rap about being one. Is he serious??

To follow the latest twist and turns of the Floyd Landis doping affair, I recommend Trust But Verify, whose authors, devoted fans of Landis, have digested an ungodly amount about the science and law of anti-doping in cycling, and present their coverage in an honest, straightforward way. Cycling Post maintains a Landis Dossier.

The launch of Graeme Fife’s new book, The Beautiful Machine, is at Velorution on Thursday evening, 17 May.

Downloads: MP3 (128 kbs)MP3 (64kbs)Ogg Vorbis

12 March 2007: The word from San Francisco and a singing bicycle prototype

Singing bicycleWe test out Andy Cox’s prototype singing bicycle, for use in the performance of Godfried Willem Raes’s Second Symphony. Down the line from San Francisco, Jon Winston fills us in on Bay Area cycle culture and his own Bikescape bicycling podcast.

This is the last in the current season of the Bike Show. Thanks to everyone who made it happen, and to everyone who’s tuned in. We’ll be back in the early summer.

Update (November 2007): The Symphony was performed in July 2007. You can hear a recording in this show.

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12 February 2007: More experimental bicycle music

Pipe cycleAnother thrilling dip into the world of experimental music involving bicycles. With guest in the studio Andy Cox, guitarist in The Beat, Fine Young Cannibals and Cribabi, who is known to play the occasional bicycle. We feature Frank Zappa’s first ever TV appearance (see below) – playing a bike! Plus music made by Sylvia Hallett, the Portland Bike Ensemble, Jon Rose’s Pursuit Project and Jab Mica Och El. Andy shares a few exclusive fragments of his own bicycle music.

Thanks to the knowledgeable folk at Create Digital Music for many of the leads on the music in this show.

See the full Frank Zappa appearance on the Steve Allen Show (1963): Part one and Part two.

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20 November 2006: Experimental music and the bicycle

It’s cold outside, so stay at home and turn your bicycle into a musical instrument! Featuring performances by Stephen Schweitzer’s
(pictured left), electro-acoustic composer David Berezan and the Tea and Toast Band.

And we set a new challenge for London’s musical cyclists in 2007, the year that the Tour de France comes to our city… A performance of Godfried-Willem Raes’s Second Symphony for ‘Singing Bicycles’.

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20 March 2006: Deadley Treadleys live session

This week’s show features a long-awaited live session by London’s best bike messenger band, the Deadley Treadleys.


13 March 2006: Bike Show Jukebox Jury – part two

Second half of the Bike Show’s ‘Jukebox Jury’. Cabaret star Sarah-Louise Young joins Alex Crawford and Jack Thurston in casting a critical ear at another cluch of bicycle-themed songs. Find out which come out top and which are the howlers…