Video thrills the radio star: Ken Bruce enjoying Popmaster TV transition

What's On Scotland catches up with the Glasgow-born DJ at the Greatest Hits studio in London.

Ken Bruce – one of the most popular voices on our airwaves and a broadcasting hero to many, myself included.

I got the chance to meet the Scottish radio favourite in the comfort of his Greatest Hits radio studio in London, the home of his morning show since departing from Radio 2 earlier this year.

It may have hit the headlines at the time, with many upset at his departure from his hugely popular show, but it seems Ken has settled into his new station just fine, telling me: “It feels like home and actually it did from pretty much the first day. I’m really enjoying it here.”

I don’t know whether it’s his voice or his relaxed, friendly demeanour but you are instantly put at ease in Ken’s company.

The Glasgow born star began his career in hospital radio in Glasgow before becoming an announcer at BBC Scotland. From there, he moved to BBC2 in London, where he jokes he “hung around for quite a wee while”.

He became a regular presenter on the station in 1984 and remained there until earlier this year.

It was on Radio 2 that his quiz, Popmaster, was formed, over a rather “refreshing” lunch one day. So refreshing that he initially forgot the great plans they had had for the quiz, so had to have another meeting to hammer out the ideas.

But it clearly worked, as Popmaster has gone on to be a must-listen on air, with thousands of people taking part and playing along at home each day.

Testament to its success is the fact that Popmaster was recently taken onto TV, showing on More4 with Ken fronting the show.

He said: “I always assumed I was much too old to be thought of as a TV presenter and then Channel 4 got in touch and said ‘we want to try Popmaster on TV and want you to host it’. It’s been a lovely thing and an unexpected thing but it’s really been a great experience.”

I get the feeling that whatever Ken takes on in life, he enjoys. From Noel Gallagher, to Elton John, his interviews with the stars are such a relaxed, informative listen, he really is in a league of his own.

Despite chats with some of the biggest names in showbiz, the 72-year-old still has a few on his hit-list.

I have interviewed Paul McCartney. I would like to have another crack at him and I’ve never done Ringo Starr and I would love to do Ringo. The Beatles were my first wow moment in music.”

He may not be quite on hero Ringo’s level of drumming, but Ken does get behind the kit, performing in his village band at the local pub and festival. He joked: “I’m an enthusiastic drummer.”

Ken is also keen to use his voice and presence to raise as much awareness of autism as possible, with his son Murray living with the disorder.

Indeed, he has just been awarded an MBE for his broadcasting and charity work and says he hopes it will help highlight the challenges autistic people face.

We concluded our chat with a game of Scotmaster – a Scottish take on Popmaster, which I asked him not to sue us on. We know he can ask the questions but how does he fair when it comes to answering them?

Find out by catching up with What’s on Scotland on the STV Player.

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