This disco classic tells a powerful story: that of a young, gay man leaving his homophobic small town for the freedom of the big city. Released in 1984, Smalltown Boy continues to resonate and has become an anthem for the LGBTQ+ community. The track appeared on their album 'The Age of Consent' which drew attention to the inequality between the ages at which heterosexual people and homosexual men were legally able to have sex.
Taking part in the programme:
Shaun Dellenty, an ex primary school leader and author who developed an award winning LGBT+ training programme 'Celebrating Difference-Inclusion For All' which he now delivers to students and staff around the world.
Paul Flynn, journalist and author of 'Good As You, 30 Years of Gay Britain'.
Diane Anderson-Minshall, CEO and Editorial Director of Pride Media.
Colin Crummy, freelance journalist
Neil Brand, pianist, composer, writer and broadcaster
Adam Carver aka Fatt Butcher, drag artist, creative producer, and community organiser.
Archive: The audio of Jimmy Somerville is taken from the BBC archives
Music:: various versions of Smalltown Boy by Jimmy Somerville, and Bronski Beat. Also covers by Dido, and Orville Peck.
Produced by Karen Gregor for BBC Audio in Bristol.
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Written by Bill Danoff and Taffy Nivert with and for their friend John Denver, the song went on to be covered by Ray Charles, Toots and the Maytals, Olivia Newton John and many more. A song about the longing for home and the desire to be back...
"So fill to me the parting glass...
Goodnight and joy be to you all."
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The Carpenters - brother and sister duo Richard and Karen - were one of the most popular groups of the 1970s. His outstanding compositions and her stunning vocals created several massive hits including We've Only Just Begun. Originally written as a TV advert for a bank portraying happy young...