Clint Boon: My Life In Media

'I did 'Star Test', the TV show where the guest was interviewed by a computer. I shouldn't have done such a crucial bit of TV drunk. I'd been up all night'
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Clint Boon, 47, is a presenter on Xfm Manchester and a member of Madchester band Inspiral Carpets. He began his radio career on the Liverpool station Crash FM in 1995. He has since stood in for Terry Christian on Century FM in Manchester and spent a year at Revolution in his hometown Oldham. Since Xfm Manchester started in March 2006, he has hosted Music: Response from Monday to Thursday as well as Saturday evening show Boon Army. He is nominated for two Sony Awards: Music Broadcaster of the Year and The Specialist Music Programme Award.

What inspired you to embark on a career in the media?

It was Janice Long who completely out of the blue bumped into me at the Reading Festival in 1995 and said, "I'm looking at starting a new radio station in Liverpool and I'd really like you to get involved as a presenter." That was Crash FM in Liverpool, my first break.

When you were 15, which newspaper did your family get, and did you read it?

We used to get the Oldham Chronicle. My mum and dad still get it to this day. I used to find it quite interesting. I even read the births, deaths and marriages page.

What were your favourite TV programmes?

Top of the Pops was always my main programme on TV. Back then it was essential viewing. Tomorrow's World was my second favourite TV show. I've always been fascinated by the future and science fiction.

Describe your job

I have several jobs. Playing records and talking bollocks in between has got to be the best job in the world. I'm still with the Inspiral Carpets and I'm a club DJ.

What media do you turn to first thing in the morning?

It's usually Five children's TV. We watch Milkshake! because in our house the entertainment department is completely dictated by my three-year-old, Oscar.

Do you consult any media sources during the working day?

Because I work at Xfm Manchester I'm in there most of the afternoon so Sky television will be on. I don't buy newspapers because I don't get time to read them, but every time I'm pull into the petrol station I stand at the forecourt and catch up on all the news headlines.

What is the best thing about your job?

Getting paid for loving music. I get to have one-on-one discussions with some of the most amazing musicians on the planet: Jarvis Cocker, Nicky Wire, James Dean Bradfield, Flea out of Red Hot Chili Peppers.

And the worst?

It's a bit of strain on the family life. I do five shows a week and there's a lot of time spent outside of the three hours that I'm on the air.

What's the proudest achievement in your working life?

Giving lots of breaks to unsigned bands through my radio work. It's a brilliant feeling when you see you've helped them to cross the threshold into the music industry. The other thing I'm proud of is the fact I've written a lot of songs and have made a lot of records with the Inspirals which have changed people's lives.

And what's your most embarrassing moment?

The programme Star Test. It was a TV show where the guest was interviewed by a computer and I did that at the end of 1990. I should have said no to it. I shouldn't have done such a crucial bit of TV drunk. It was nine in the morning when they filmed it and I'd been up all night. I was drinking whisky out of a coffee cup so I don't think I came across the best.

At home, what do you tune in to?

Xfm Manchester, or we'll put Radio 2 on. We love listening to Jonathan Ross on Saturday mornings.

What is your Sunday paper? And do you have a favourite magazine?

I honestly don't have one. I just don't have a chance to read them. Proper intelligent music magazines like Q and Mojo. Mojo is a bit more trainspottery - it goes into a lot of depth about the bands they're talking about.

Name the one career ambition you want to realise before you retire

I'd like to interview David Bowie and Michael Stipe if I get the opportunity. Outside of being a radio presenter I've always said that as a recording artist I'd love to work with Michael Stipe and Philip Glass - two of my musical heroes. My ultimate ambition as a radio presenter might sound really idyllic but it's to do total free full-on radio to the nation - pretty much what John Peel did.

If you didn't work in the media what would you do?

If I got really pissed off with radio and Inspiral Carpets records and got sick of music I think I'd try my hand at teaching art to kids.

Who in the media do you most admire and why?

As a radio presenter John Peel was the ultimate. Peel was responsible for changing the direction of my life as a musician and as a listener. Peel's the man I think about when I do my work.

The CV

1984-1985 Forms the band T'Mill with Mani (Gary Mounfield) and Chris Goodwin

1985 T'Mill splits. Boon forms Inspiral Carpets; Mani joins the Stone Roses and Goodwin forms The High

1995 Invited by Janice Long to help to set up Crash FM in Liverpool, his first radio presenting work

1995-2000 Sets up and fronts Start 95, a pioneering scheme in partnership with Oldham Council which helps young bands and individuals to learn about the music industry

2005-2006 Presents six shows a week and becomes head of music at 96.2 The Revolution based in Oldham

March 2006- Presents Music: Response five times a week for 97.7 Xfm Manchester