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28 minutes | Dec 13, 2021
On The Edge
Jarvis goes into hospital for a routine procedure, and the anaesthetic gives him some very strange nocturnal visions. As Dr Ed Patrick administers the anaesthetic, Jarvis is transported far, far away. One moment he's on a Scottish lighthouse at midnight with artist and writer Peter Hill, who spent time as a lighthouse keeper in the 1970s. Then, in the blink of an eye, he's in a blizzard in the far north of Norway with Sunniva Sorby and Hilde Fålun Strøm, who became the first women in history to overwinter solo in the Arctic. The visions just keep coming as ice turns to fire, and Jarvis finds himself on the top of a mountain watching forest fires burn through the night with author Philip Connors who spends half of every year as a fire lookout high up in the mountains of New Mexico. In a night of vivid encounters, everyone Jarvis meets has stepped away from their every day lives, to live life on the edge. Doctor and comedian Ed Patrick is the author of 'Catch Your Breath: The Secret Life of a Sleepless Anaesthetist' Peter Hill is the author of 'Stargazing: Memoirs of a Young Lighthouse Keeper' Philip Connors is the author of 'Fire Season: Field notes from a wilderness lookout'. Details of the work of Sunniva Sorby and Hilde Fålun Strøm are at heartsintheice.com Producer: Laurence Grissell
28 minutes | Dec 10, 2021
In this edition of Wireless Nights, Jarvis Cocker discovers what happens here on earth on the night of the full moon. He'll be meeting the planet's inhabitants, both man and beast, as they divulge what light of the full moon does to them. Jarvis heads to the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, London to search for the full moon. His guide and telescope operator is astronomer Dr Emily Drabek-Maunder. Jarvis also discovers what others are getting up to on this full moon night. On a beach in Merseyside he encounters Moon Goddess Gatherings, a mass ritual where hundreds of women watch the full moon rise and embrace the energy of the lunar cycle. The writer Lewis Coleman reflects on his own relationship with the full moon as is teases him with lunacy and lycanthropy. And ecologist Rachel Grant reveals how a moonlit Italian jeep ride led her to discover that it’s not just wolves driven wild by the full moon, but amphibians too. Lewis Coleman is the author of Drinking The Moon and other works. Rachel Grant specialises in behavioural and evolutionary ecology at London South Bank University. Dr Emily Drabek-Maunder is an astrophysicist and Senior Manager of Public Astronomy at the Royal Observatory Greenwich. Karlee Matthews is Lead Pathfinder for Moon Goddess Gatherings. Produced by Sam Peach
28 minutes | Nov 29, 2021
Lost in the Forest
Jarvis Cocker gets lost in the forest at night and encounters a series of rather intriguing characters. As darkness falls on the forest, Jarvis realises he's hopelessly lost. Disorientated and desperately trying to find his way out, his nocturnal woodland walk takes a series of increasingly dark turns. He stumbles upon members of Essex Ghost Hunters who are mounting some rather spooky paranormal investigations. Another presence in the woods tonight is storyteller Lisa Schneidau who recounts some very strange fairy tales and legends of the forest after dark. He then runs into mountaineer Nick Bullock who recalls his own terrifying encounter in the forests of Alberta, Canada. But just as the darkness of the forest seems to be at its most impenetrable, Jarvis runs into bushcraft expert David Willis who guides him back to the light. Lisa Schneidau is the author of 'Woodland Folk Tales of Britain and Ireland', and Nick Bullock is the author of 'Tides: A Climber's Voyage'. Producer: Laurence Grissell
28 minutes | Nov 26, 2021
Jarvis Cocker is back with a new series of Wireless Nights Tonight, armed with a bat detector Jarvis sets off through a wetland in search of bats and bat stories. He finds ecologist John Altringham crouched beside a cave in North Yorkshire awaiting a swarm of bats that come once a year to dance the night away. Jayne Hyde Dryden is using her powers of echo location to find her way around on a night walk. Being blind, this helps her see in sound. And Gail Armstrong is on watch at the Bat Hospital in Lancashire, nursing injured bats back to good health and finally returning them to the wild. Thanks to Lisa Woodward at the London Wetland Centre Producer Neil McCarthy
28 minutes | May 25, 2020
From somewhere deep in lockdown, Jarvis trawls the Wireless Nights archive looking for relief from isolation. From the darkness of Lundy Island to a snowbound white out, from a man sending radio signals to the moon to a castaway in the North Sea, Jarvis tunes into stories of isolation and endurance with fellow travellers as they make it through the long night. Produced by Laurence Grissell and Neil McCarthy
28 minutes | Jan 1, 2019
A New Year's Resolution
Jarvis Cocker continues his nocturnal exploration of the human condition. He often lies awake at night trying, unsuccessfully, to nod off. But, not one to give up, his New Year's resolution is to crack this habit and attain the perfect night's sleep. His restless search leads him to fellow insomniac Marina Benjamin, sleep coach Max Kirsten, Greek goddesses and a cave where night meets day and peace may possibly reside. Producer Neil McCarthy
28 minutes | Dec 25, 2018
Jarvis Cocker hosts a special festive edition, telling stories of a shepherdess and a miracle birth, whilst a wise man looks out for bright lights in the Christmas skies. On a cold and frosty Christmas night, a baby is set to enter the world in the most inauspicious circumstances, a pair of shepherds keep watch over their flocks and a star gazer scans the heavens for unusual signs. Producer: Laurence Grissell
26 minutes | Dec 18, 2018
Jarvis Cocker’s series exploring the human condition after dark boards the Wireless Nights Express to hear tales of night people on sleeper - or sleepless - trains. He begins on the Caledonian Sleeper, leaving the noise and crowds of London Euston to make a night-time journey across the country to the Scottish Highlands. In the dining car and corridors he meets fellow passengers and stewards. And as he starts to drift off in his cabin, the train makes some unscheduled stops. Geoff MacCormack recalls taking the Trans-Siberian express with his childhood friend David Bowie and a sobering stop at the East German border. Tessa Smit boards a twenty-four hour party train; and travel writer Colin Thubron on the time he got off his train, in the middle of Siberia. Producer: Georgia Catt
28 minutes | Dec 11, 2018
Jarvis Cocker's series exploring the human condition after dark returns with a night wander around Dungeness. Sometimes referred to as Britain's only desert, it's a shingle headland in Kent jutting into the English Channel. Sparsely populated, with wooden shack cottages and star filled night skies, a lighthouse sweeping its beam out to sea and a nuclear power station glowing with electric light like a city suspended in the darkness. But Jarvis isn't alone as he explores this untamed landscape, torch in hand. Also on the move are Paddy Hamilton and Bridget Wilkins who leave the cosiness of their old railway carriage home for a night walk on the beach, bumping into a Chinese fishing party along the way. At the Bird Observatory, moth trappers Sean Clancy and David Walker keep vigil as they wait for a specimen to fly into the light and recall other things that went bump in the night. Doreen Thomas, the matriarch of a Dungeness fishing family, reflects on nights gone by. And Mark Daniels is out there somewhere, swimming in the cold black inky waters. Producer Neil McCarthy
27 minutes | Apr 3, 2017
Jarvis Cocker's nocturnal exploration of the human condition leads him to Berlin. Walking in the shadowlands of the Wall he reflects on a once divided city and hears stories of thenacht. Between East and West, he encounters a 1930s musical salon run by a cabaret diva; a ballroom dancing escapee from East Berlin; an underground den of iniquity and vice; and Iggy Pop, held prisoner. Amid the street-lit ruins of the Berlin Wall, he considers the scar left behind.
30 minutes | Mar 27, 2017
Jarvis Cocker navigates the ether as he continues his nocturnal exploration of the human condition. On a night voyage across a sea of shortwave he meets those who broadcast, monitor and harvest electronic radio transmissions after dark. Paddy McAloon, founder of the band Prefab Sprout, took to trawling the megahertz when he was recovering from eye surgery and the world around him became dark. Tuning in at night he developed a ghostly romance with far-off voices and abnormal sounds. Artist Katie Paterson and 'Moonbouncer' Peter Blair send Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata to the moon and back, to find sections of it swallowed up by craters. Journalist Colin Freeman was captured by the Somali pirates he went to report on and held hostage in a cave. But when one of them loaned him a shortwave radio, the faint signal to the outside world gave him hope as he dreamed of freedom. And "London Shortwave" hides out in a park after dark, with his ear to the speaker on his radio, slowly turning the dial to reach all four corners of the earth Jarvis sails in and out of their stories - from the cosmic to the captive - as he wonders what else is out there, deep in the noise Producer Neil McCarthy.
29 minutes | Mar 20, 2017
Jarvis Cocker rides in the driver's cab of a late night Tube train, hearing tales of nocturnal travellers across London. With Beyoncé-loving Night Tube driver Kylie at the controls, Jarvis is whisked along the Victoria line late into the night. En route he hears from a cast of characters embroiled in their own dramas as they make their way around the capital in the small hours - including a late night reveller who fell sleep on the train and got more than she'd bargained for. Producer: Laurence Grissell.
30 minutes | Mar 13, 2017
Jarvis Cocker returns to Radio 4 with his nocturnal explorations of the human condition. In tonight's Wireless Night, Jarvis travels to a remote village in the Rif Mountains of Morocco to join the Master Musicians of Joujouka. Their ancient Sufi trance music is said to heal crazy minds. Jarvis wonders if his own troubled mind can find tranquillity there but encounters the wild living embodiment of the God Pan, half man and half goat, who has other ideas. The Master Musicians of Joujouka were first discovered by Western ears in the 1950's when beat writers and artists like Brion Gysin and William Burroughs, living in Tangier, were lured up to the hills and had their minds blown by the healing power of the music. Rolling Stone Brian Jones also made a recording of their music shortly before his death calling it The Rites of Pan in Joujouka. This ritual lives on in the village, where somebody dressed in goatskins takes on the mythical character Bou Jeloud, enters a trance, whirls around with branches of willow and anyone he brushes with is blessed with fertility. For one night only Jarvis joins the musicians and Bou Jeloud under a starlit sky in North Africa where unexpected things happen after dark. This programme was recorded "Binaurally". This is a special, immersive way of recording whereby you'll hear things the way Jarvis was hearing them and can best be appreciated by listening on headphones. Producer Neil McCarthy.
29 minutes | Jan 15, 2016
Jarvis Cocker is snowed in for tonight's nocturnal exploration of the human condition. With the snow piling high outside his farmhouse and long hours to kill, Jarvis's mind drifts to other snowbound dramas and dilemmas as he tries to distract himself from a creeping solitude. But as night draws on, can he be sure he's really alone? Producer Neil McCarthy.
28 minutes | Dec 15, 2015
Jarvis Cocker invites you to a night out in Soho on his nocturnal exploration of the human condition. Below street level he finds drama and delirium as clubbers play out their lives after dark. From a dimly lit ska joint to an after hours speakeasy, Jarvis is night guide to the smoke and mirrors of underground Soho - brushing shoulders with a club angel, a psychic mod and a singing waitress in among the shadows. (Free dance lesson included) Producer Neil McCarthy.
28 minutes | Nov 30, 2015
Keep on Truckin'
Jarvis Cocker continues his nocturnal exploration of the human condition. Tonight: an unlucky trucker, a hopeful hitch-hiker and a host of Scottish ghostbusters. As Jarvis climbs up into the Wireless Nights monster truck, he hears from a long distance lorry driver who received a nasty surprise, a hitcher trying to make it to Liverpool and he travels along the most haunted stretch of road in Scotland. Producer: Laurence Grissell.
28 minutes | Nov 24, 2015
Underwater at the Proms
Jarvis Cocker's nocturnal exploration of the human condition takes him beneath the waves in this special edition of Wireless Nights. Accompanied by the BBC Philharmonic at this year's Proms, as Jarvis drifts off to sleep he soon finds himself on an underwater voyage down to the endless night of the ocean bed. En route, he meets psychoanalyst Carl Jung, two submariners called Roger trapped in a tiny submersible and a free-diver experiencing "the rapture of the deep". The BBC Philharmonic creates a sonic seascape as Jarvis goes deeper and deeper - but will he make it back to the surface in time to wake up? Producers Laurence Grissell and Neil McCarthy.
28 minutes | Nov 3, 2014
In the second part of his nocturnal Icelandic adventure, Jarvis goes on a journey through the long, light summer night. He meets Megas, the island's best known poet and rock and roll legend, who warns of wandering demons as he embarks on an overnight road trip. Along the way he stops to hear ghost stories in Reykjavik's oldest cemetery, meets an elf seer in a lava field and is led to a sacred waterfall, behind which he makes a wish. But will he make it back before the hour of the wolf? Producer Neil McCarthy.
28 minutes | Oct 27, 2014
Lava and Ice
Jarvis Cocker wanders the lava fields of Iceland in search of the unseen forces of night. In the midnight shadow of Snaefellsjokull, the volcano featured in Jules Verne's Journey to the Centre of the Earth, Jarvis considers the timelessness of the landscape, until he discovers sheep time. His sheep guides only lead him further into the unknown, through a hole in the lava floor and on a journey through a magma underworld, finding there a symphony orchestra, human seals and a wake. Producer Neil McCarthy.
28 minutes | Oct 20, 2014
Reaching for the Moon
Jarvis Cocker attempts to fly to the moon, with the aid of astronaut Chris Hadfield - famous for his rendition of David Bowie's Space Oddity on the International Space Station. En route he hears stories of those touched by the moon in its many manifestations. Producer: Laurence Grissell
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