Over the last few weeks, I've been bringing my 'Big Night In' to BBC Radio Somerset. The show takes the best bits of a big night out, like comedy, food, drink, and music, and delivers them right to you... so you don’t have to go anywhere!
Like a laugh? Well, I've had some great guests sharing their stories with you on the show.
On the 29th October, I caught up with comedian and regular on our TV screens (on shows like Live at the Apollo, QI, Have I Got News For You and House of Games), Sindhu Vee.
Sindhu's bringing her new show, Alphabet, to the Taunton Brewhouse on November 17th and we caught up about that, about how she got started in comedy, her kids, hair, cake, Longleat and lots more besides!
Here's a little snippet, and to listen to the full conversation it's here on BBC Sounds from around 25mins 50 in to the show.
For the low down on local comedy, I also chatted with Trish Caller who brings many of the shows we see in Somerset to our venues. For that conversation, head here, around 28mins 50 into the show.
And last Friday, I chatted with America's Got Talent Winner and ventriloquist, Paul Zerdin...
... as well as Strictly Come Dancing legend, Ian Waite. Ian is bringing his new show with Vincent Simone, 'The Ballroom Boys Part 2,' to Somerset soon and it was great to discover more about that, as well as about his life in dance, and on Strictly. To hear more, head here from around 14mins 43 in!
Now, if there's a band I love, who regularly play Somerset, it's the energetic rollercoaster ride that is Tankus the Henge! And, on the 29th, it was great to catch up with singer, songwriter, piano player (and piano dancer ;)) founder and frontman of the band, Jaz Delorean.
We played some Tankus tracks, chatted about how the band got started, their incredible live performances, the stories behind some of the songs and lots more.
Here's a tiny bit of it to tempt you...
To hear the rest, it's here, beginning with their anthem 'Smiling Makes the Day Go Quicker' at around 1 hour 11mins into the show.
As the BBC Radio Somerset shows are only available to listen to again for about 30 says after broadcast, I'll be creating a separate highlights blog of my conversation with Jaz, so it'll be here for as long as you want to listen to it!
The previous week's musical conversation was a corker too, as I caught up with Bristol-based live looper Suzy Conrad, AKA She Robot. Suzy was fantastic to chat with about her music, how she got in to live looping and her inspirations as well, so don't miss that chat.
Here's a snippet and the full chat is here on BBC Sounds at around 1hour 15 into the show.
Plus, watch this space for more about Singer Songwriter Alex Lipinski, including a chance to catch up with our BBC Radio Somerset conversation. That's coming soon, as last week on the show, the sport took over the FM frequency. That means although you could hear it live on DAB and MW on the night, it's not available on catch up. Never fear though because there'll be a separate blog about that, with our chat if you missed it live.
Somerset food and drink
One of the things I do on the show is explore the Somerset food scene, by heading to different places across the county, sharing their food stories with you and trying a taste as well!
My first stop was at boutique hotel, Backwell House, to catch up with their Head Chef Andy Brooks, get his insight about the food at Backwell, and to eat "Autumn on a plate"! ;) Here's a tiny taste of our chat and you can catch up here around 2hrs 16 mins in.
I also took a trip to The Holcombe. Interestingly, I covered The Holcombe Inn here on the blog a while back, but it's under new ownership now and it was great to catch up with Caroline Gardiner and Alan Lucas about the changes they've made, since taking over in the November before the pandemic. We also chatted about the inspiration behind their food and about the garden at this gorgeous country inn. Here's a snippet and you can hear the full conversation here at 2 hours 10 mins into the show.
For this week's foodie chat, I headed to The Barrington Boar to catch up with owners Alasdair and Vicky. You can catch up with that chat on a separate blog, here on Somerset cool very soon.
And to wash all that down, how about hearing my chat with Martin Berkeley, the man behind Pilton Cider?
It was fascinating catching up with Martin on the show on October 29th, to talk about keeving - the artisan method they use for making naturally sweetened cider - and about experimenting with different flavours, including plum and burnt orange. I'm still thinking about that conversation!
You can hear it here at around 3hrs, 13mins 50 into the show. .
Plus, this week I went mocktail making at Somerset's most beautiful cocktail bar - The Somerset in Illminster. There'll be a separate blog about that too, so you can catch up with the chat.
And don't miss our regular features, of course. Chef's corner, with private chef Steve James answering your food related questions, has been really busy! There have been lots of listener questions including what to do with seasonal ingredients like pumpkins, how to make fruit cake in a microwave, and what Steve does in his downtime! For a taste of that, head here at around 2 hours 44 minutes.
We've also been playing fact or fiction on the show. That's our little game where I ask for your help in working out which one of three facts is a lie. Sindhu Vee and Paul Verdin shared their 3 statements and only a couple of people got it right, so that's been fun!
All in all, it's been brilliant sharing a 'big night in' with you. Thanks for your company and I hope we can do it again soon.
The links to the show take you to the BBC Sounds App and will be available for around 30 days. Check out the Big Night In blogs for catch up conversations after that.