Mary Anne Hobbs
Mary Anne Hobbs: Radio 1 firebrand at the helm of the pioneering electronic show the Breezeblock (Monday nite >> Tuesday morning 1.00-3.00am)… reppin' next generation dubstep, grime, drum&bass, hip-hop, techno, and radical electronic flavaz in every form..
Mary Anne left school at the age of 16 and went to work in an egg packing factory for the princely sum of £39 per week.
She quickly ran away to London with a hard rock band and lived on a bus with them in a car park in Hayes, Middlesex for 12 months, working as their lighting engineer, record sleeve artist, wardrobe designer… and mechanic.
Her great ambition was to become a music journalist. She figured the next logical step would be to produce her own fanzine - Krush.
She sent a couple of issues along with a demented CV detailing her adventures to the Editor of Sounds music paper and landed a job with them at the age of 19.
At 21, having been profoundly influenced by a snapshot of Metallica, Mary Anne sold all her worldly goods and bought a one-way ticket to Hollywood, where she lived in a garden shed.
She spent a year as Sounds US correspondent in the dark underbelly of LA writing about the fledgling thrash metal scene, Jane’s Addiction, Guns N' Roses et al.
At Sounds Mary Anne met fellow teenager James Brown (legendary writer and publisher, not the Godfather of soul) who became a lifelong friend.
James moved to NME as Features Editor and when Mary Anne returned to London from LA, he promptly poached her to work with him at NME. Mary Anne spent three years on the newsdesk and also worked as a major feature writer there, authoring cover stories on everyone from Ice Cube to Nirvana.
She went on with James Brown to form part of the original team he put together to launch Loaded magazine. She worked there as Music Editor, and writing major undercover stories about private detectives, cocaine dealers to the stars and most notoriously a Soho sex club.
Mary Anne got her break in radio at BBC GLR on Sunday mornings alongside Mark Lamarr.
She presented groundbreaking shows on XFM during their trail broadcasts, which helped to win their licence.
She was poached by Radio 1 in 1997 after a particularly confrontational interview with Radio 1's then Head Of Production (Trevor Dann) was bootlegged around the BBC and found the desk of the Controller of the day, Matthew Bannister.
Mary Anne's time at Radio 1 has been hectic… she has hosted shows from all the major award ceremonies: Q, NME, Brits, Kerrang, Mercury Music Prize… and made documentaries about artists as diverse as David Bowie and The Sex Pistols…
She championed comedy god Ricky Gervais in his pre-Office days… hosted a movie review show with Mark Kermode called Cling Film… founded and fronted the award-winning Radio 1 Rock Show for five years.
TV... there’s quite a lot, M.A. hosted live coverage of the ‘World Superbike Championship’ for British Eurosport… she made a series about global biker culture in India, Russia, Japan, the US and Europe for BBC Choice,‘Mary Anne's Bikes’… fronted 27 hours of live coverage at Glastonbury Festival for the BBC… and has guested on everything from BBC2’s ‘Never Mind The Buzzcocks’ to ‘John Peel’s Record Box’ for Channel4.
Mary Anne can ride any motorcycle you care to park in front of her too... Her current bike is the gorgeous Kawasaki ER-6n…
Here are just a handful Breezeblock guests you'll have found mixin' and in session on the show... The Beastie Boys, Squarepusher, Skream, Bjork, DJ Shadow, Loefah, Mixmaster Mike, Roll Deep, Roni Size & Reprazent, Trentmoller, Vex'd, Enduser, Chris Morris, The Bug + Stush, Warrior Queeen, Ras B, Roger Robinson, Space Ape, Flowdan, Jimmy Screech, Ricky Ranking & Ari Up, Noisia, Liam Howlett, Soundmurderer, Zinc, Kid 606, Evol Intent, Lady Sovereign & Shystie, UNKLE, RJD2, Andy C, Justice, Kanye West, LTJ Bukem, Peaches, 0=0, Cannibal Ox, Mogwai, Kano, Chuck D, The Mighty Boosh, Amit, Andy Stott, Bruza, Leftfield, Surgeon, Keaton & Hive, Digital Mystikz, Sigur Ros, Hatcha & Crazy D, Jeff Mills, Orbital, DJ Distance, Jammer, Matthew Jonson, Radiohead, Calibre & DRS, Envy, Kode 9, Bad Company, Roots Manuva, D-Bridge, Venitian Snares, Andrew Weatherall, Virus Syndicate, Ed Rush & Optical, Amon Tobin, Metallica, Limewax, DJ Food, Drop The Lime, Various Production, Isolee, Jimmy Edgar, Photek, Boxcutter...