Reactions to Evans's departure have focused on figures. Was he worth it? By some reckonings, the extra listeners "cost" pounds 5 apiece; and more than a few of them were beginning to tire of his self-indulgence, his hangovers and his scatalogical humour. But he did more for the station, and for radio generally, than pull in new punters: he pushed the boundaries of what is possible in broadcasting. His show was truly spontaneous. You never knew what he was going to say next - telling listeners they were "giving me the horn", telling his team off for cocking up, or telling his producer to get married. At times, it was hard to believe the show was scripted. But we knew it was, because Chris told us that too. He continually gave the game away, exposing the artifice and breaking taboos (he routinely revealed the mid-week chart positions of the songs likely to be No 1 the following Sunday). He blew to pieces the banality of Smashy and Nicey radio. His show was live and it lived; and it's a shame it won't go on.
Rosanna de LisleReuse content