by GRANT GODDARD April 1992

DJ OF THE MONTH: HELEN MAYHEW Age? 32. How did you get into DJ-ing? I saw an advert in the local paper in Exeter and joined 'BBC Radio Devon' as a Programme Assistant in 1985. After about a week there, I was on-air. Then I became a Producer and moved to 'BBC Radio Kent'. How did you join 'Jazz FM'? I sent them a tape of New Orleans rhythm & Blues records, with me chuntering away in between. They asked me round and then offered me a job. Do you play in clubs? No. I get offered jobs in clubs and they get miffed when I say "Oh no, I couldn’t do that." I would feel so silly. I wouldn't see myself as being a record spinner. How do you describe the music in your show? It's easily accessible to everybody, not just jazz fans. What is jazz? I just know when I hear something, I think "Oh yes, that's jazz." When I hear something else, I know I couldn't play that. I only play jazz. I'm the only one on the station able to pick their own music. I just have pet hates, like strings [on recordings]. All-time favourite record? 'Carolina Shout' by Fats Waller. Records to look out for? Tina Mey's album 'Never Let Me Go' [33 Records]; Deborah Brown; Rachelle Ferrell. Favourite record label? Verve or Blue Note. Record that's hot on your turntable? 'Grady Tate Sings' [Milestone Records]. Worst job you've had? Being a waitress in New York. Ambition? I don't really have one. What's the best thing about doing your 'Jazz FM' show? Having someone ring me up and say "What was that record?" Why are there so few women DJs?
DJ Of The Month: Helen Mayhew ('Dinner Jazz') ©1992 Grant Goddard page 2

I've no idea at all. I think some of it may be due to the fact that most managers are men, but I've never had any particular stumbling blocks or setbacks. Helen Mayhew presents 'Dinner Jazz' weekdays 6-10pm on London's 'Jazz FM' 102.2 FM.

[First published as 'DJ Of The Month: Helen Mayhew' in Jazz Express magazine, April 1992]

Grant Goddard is a media analyst / radio specialist / radio consultant with thirty years of experience in the broadcasting industry, having held senior management and consultancy roles within the commercial media sector in the United Kingdom, Europe and Asia. Details at

DJ Of The Month: Helen Mayhew ('Dinner Jazz') ©1992 Grant Goddard

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