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This article is about the radio music journalist. For the Welsh screenwriter associated with reviving Doctor Who, see Russell T Davies. For those of the same or similar name, see Russell Davis (disambiguation).

Robert Russell Davies (born 5 April 1946) is a British journalist and broadcaster.

Davies was born in Barmouth, North Wales. He attended Manchester Grammar School, according to his own statement on a November 2010 Brain of Britain programme. During his time there (1957–64) he acted in dramatic society productions and was appointed school vice-captain.[1]

He gained a scholarship to St John's College, Cambridge, and was awarded a first class degree in Modern and Mediaeval Languages in 1967, but soon abandoned his post-graduate studies in German literature when the opportunity arose to tour with the Cambridge Footlights revue. During his time in Cambridge he contributed topical cartoons to the news pages of Varsity, the undergraduate newspaper, under the pseudonym Dai.

As a journalist, Davies worked as a film and television critic for The Observer and The Sunday Times, features writer and sports columnist for The Daily Telegraph and The Sunday Telegraph, a caricaturist for The Times Literary Supplement and was a deputy editor of Punch. He edited Kenneth Williams's diaries for publication, despite being the target of Williams's acid pen in those same diaries. He regularly appeared on television in the 1980s, presenting Saturday Review for BBC2.

In 1988 Davies was the presenter of a 12-part BBC radio series Radio Fun chronicling the history of comedy on the radio from the thirties to the present day. Since 2007 the series has been repeated most years on BBC Radio 4 Extra (formerly Radio 7), most recently ending in January 2011.[2]

Davies is a jazz musician, playing the trombone, and has presented television and radio documentaries on the subject, including in 1999 a year-long history for BBC Radio 3, Jazz Century. He has written and presented other radio programmes including BBC Radio 4's series Word of Mouth (winner of the 1996 European Radio, ONDAS prize), and a series on Radio 2 about songwriters Rodgers and Hart, Legends of Light Music. In 2003, Russell Davies wrote and presented Quest for Perfection, a film about jazz clarinetist and bandleader Artie Shaw, for BBC Four and produced by John Warburton (shortlisted for the 2004 Grierson Award). To date (July 2005), his film has been broadcast nine times.

His documentary on the life of the cartoonist Ronald Searle was shown on the BBC in 2006.

He presents Brain of Britain on Radio 4,[3] and until 2013 he presented a Sunday radio programme on BBC Radio 2, which spotlighted popular song.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ A Biographical Register of Old Mancunians. Manchester Grammar School. 1978. p. 789. 
  2. ^ "BBC Radio 7 - Radio Fun: The Story of Radio Comedy, Episode 12". Bbc.co.uk. 2011-01-09. Retrieved 2014-07-04. 
  3. ^ "Brain of Britain". BBC. Retrieved 15 February 2010. 

External links[edit]

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477 news items

Audiophile Audition

Audiophile Audition
Wed, 20 Aug 2014 14:11:15 -0700

I have the original recording of this work, from 1993, with conductor Dennis Russell Davies and the Brooklyn Philharmonic. Davies has been a long time promoter of Glass's music and I have seen him conduct his works live on several occasions. He really ...
Grimsby Telegraph
Fri, 29 Aug 2014 09:30:00 -0700

Russell Davies, defending, said: 'The doctor's position remains that he strenuously denies attending Patient A's home as she has described today.' The woman admitted she fancied the doctor after their first meeting today. Patient A has claimed that Dr ...
The Argus
Tue, 26 Aug 2014 03:07:30 -0700

The one-day conference will include talks from Russell Davies, award-winning creative director at GOV.UK, John Willshire, radical innovator and founder of Artefact cards business, Alexandra Deschamps-Sonsinoa, a designer for the Internet of Things, Ian ...


Fri, 22 Aug 2014 11:54:57 -0700

When Peter Capaldi was first announced as the Twelfth Doctor, one of the loveliest facts that quickly emerged was that he was himself a long-time Doctor Who fan, and that despite his long and distinguished career in acting, playing the Doctor was the ...
Sun, 24 Aug 2014 15:25:34 -0700

Patrician Yurena, who represented Spain at the 2013 Miss Universe pageant in Moscow, has come out as a lesbian, posting a photo on Instagram with her musician girlfriend, Vanesa. Yurena posted a second photo on Friday, with a caption thanking fans for ...

WBAL Radio

WBAL Radio
Wed, 13 Aug 2014 09:07:30 -0700

County fire Lt. Russell Davies says while they normally gear up for an expected heavy rain, this one took them by surprise. "They typically use inflatable boats for these type rescues, but yesterday they had to use engines as well to keep up with the ...
Huffington Post Canada
Tue, 05 Aug 2014 09:24:48 -0700

In 2011 Russell Davies, head of planning at the advertising agency Ogilvy and Maher, made a bold prediction: governments, he said, instead of banning the sale of certain products outright, will gradually turn to prohibiting their advertisement. His ...
San Jose Mercury News
Thu, 07 Aug 2014 11:35:24 -0700

And then the fact that people like John and Dennis Russell Davies have come through as its director, prior to Marin -- it all feeds that vibe. Contact Richard Scheinin at 408-920-5069, read his stories and reviews at www.mercurynews.com/richard ...

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