Saturday, March 19, 2016


The discovery of a 1964 recording of a previously-unknown song by the Rolling Stones (carried in the Telegraph) reminds us that there was more than one set of studios in Portland Place in those days. 35 Portland Place was the home of IBC studios, part of the International Broadcasting Company, set up by Captain Leonard Frank Plugge as a rival to the BBC in 1931.

His original operation was set up in Hallam Street; the IBC made programmes in English that were shipped out to radio stations across the Channel that could be picked up easily in the UK. His biggest operation, pre-war, was Radio Normandy, which could be heard up to the Midlands.

After the war, the move was made to Portland Place. The studios still recorded programmes and commercials, but increasingly, pop. Lonnie Donegan recorded My Old Man's A Dustman there in 1958; The Kinks made You Really Got Me in 1964, and Cream recorded Badge in 1968.

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