Friday, 18 September 2009

Media Barron

Brian Barron made a big impression on me in the mid 70s when I was a teenager, beginning to take an interest in current affairs and starting a Politics A Level, for which American post-war politics was a big part. Vietnam was riveting.
He was a superb journalist and a brave one too. I had an idea of emulating him after I left the Army in the 80s, but having got down to the last 24 for BBC Radio News (I think they had 2,500 applicants for half a dozen places), they failed me on the voice test. I should have tried ITN where they were much less chippy about public school accents, but a job offer came my way from the City and the money, though modest, was a lot better than that of a trainee broadcaster. If I'd known there were going to be so many wars just round the corner, I'd have stuck at it.
He began his career on the radio and built his reputation with his gift for using words to paint a scene with enviable immediacy and economy: the North West Frontier comes to life in "a dingy, smoke-filled eatery in Peshawar – a place awash with stomach bugs, assassins, spooks and Afghan rug sellers".
Superb; even a touch of the George Macdonald Fraser about it. I've been to Peshawar and this is on the button. Sorry he didn't make old bones. R I P

11 comments:

Scrobs... said...

Good one.

It seems wrong that we'll never again hear the announcer say "Here's our Foreign Coroespondent, Brian Barron".

It was a regular visit to reality when he spoke.

Philipa said...

Yes I think journalists can be heroes. Sadly they are mostly not.

good post.

electro-kevin said...
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electro-kevin said...

I think journalists ARE modern day heroes, Pippy.

They're the only people saving us from these ghastly politicians.

Philipa said...

Kev - so Suzanne Moore's piece in the MoS about Keith Floyd was heroic was it? And Lemon Face talks a lot about freedom of speech and liberty but phones a very ill and struggling single mother to threaten and bully her? Then he emails her friends asking if they are sure they want to be friends with her? Oh yeah, some fucking hero.

Elby the Beserk said...

EK, I'd say there are very few journos in the MSM defending us from the bastards. Bloggers, more like.

Tuscan Tony said...

Thank you idle, he sounded to have been a proper chap.

lilith said...

There was a time when Mr Barron seemed to be everywhere that bombs and bullets were flying. That John Simpson gets on my tits though.

Philipa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Economic Voice said...

Why didn't his death have more coverage?

Trubes said...

What a shame he's died Idle. I too, thought he was a brave man to do the job he did.

Pity you didn't become a 'journo', then we'd be able to see your handsome face adorning our TV sets!

Di.x