BBC 6 Music's Mike Hanson meets his hero "Keef" 9.7 2012 - CDr

Working at BBC 6 Music brings many benefits. I get to work with really talented music loving radio people every day. Listening to new music is 'work'. And I get to meet my heroes. And none come bigger than Keef. Many people my parents chief among them - would say I could have picked a better role model in life. But he's the reason I picked a guitar. And once I realised I was never going to make records that got played on the radio, I decided I could at least pick the songs that were played on the radio. So I'm where I am today because of Keef.

I'm known for many things at 6 Music, but being The Rolling Stones office bore is the main one. For me all roads lead back to the Stones. Any time any of the programmes come up with a musical question or a new feature, I can always find a Stones example to contribute. Steve Lamacq wants to know what albums work just as well if you reversed the track listing? 'Some Girls,' I say.

So when we decided that the 6 Music Celebrates... theme for July would mark the 50th anniversary of the world's greatest rock n' roll band it was a no brainer that 6 Music's greatest Stones fan should programme it. Not going overboard was my only brief. Not an easy thing - to quote one of their greatest songs - 'I'm in need of some restraint!'

The Rolling Stones have a rich history as even their critics will acknowledge, and the BBC sound archive is brimming with brilliant content. So that's where we started. There are several documentaries, all well produced, but my favourite has always been The Rolling Stones Story by Alexis Korner, originally broadcast in the early 1970s. As I grew up in Canada I can't always share with my 6 Music colleagues memories of great BBC programmes that were broadcast in the 70s or 80s - except this one. The series was aired on a station in the US - probably an NPR station - and I remember my friends and I listening to it in September 1981, the night before we were going to travel over the border to the US to see the Stones for the first time. I taped as much of the series as I could and listened to it over and over again. If we ever lose the original tapes, no worries, as I have the whole thing memorised.

We also commissioned a new programme from a man who has an even better job than me - Paul Sexton, who beats my meeting Keef story by actually being in the great man's living room. Paul has interviewed all the Stones countless times over the past 25 years and he made us a wonderful programme of the band telling their history in their own words - The Stones by The Stones - built out of his own archive.

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