Lewis, a former primary school headteacher and further education lecturer, joined Speysound in 2013 initially presenting our one-time training programme Melody FM. By mid-2015 he had become such a confident broadcaster that he was presenting two programmes a week; Musica Mundi, a world music programme and Music for Driving, his own special selection of tunes to drive home with on a Thursday evening.
Then in October 2015, Lewis approached Speysound’s Board, which he had joined as a Director the year before, with a suggestion for a new community programme. His plan was that each week the programme would focus on a different local group, personality or event mixing chat with the guest’s selection of music. He said he thought he already had enough interest to do six programmes and hoped that more people would volunteer to be featured once the show started airing. Out & About with Speysound was born and proved such a success that it continued a long way past the initial six originally promised, to eventually number 150 programmes covering a vast range of contributors and topics.
Ever the innovator, Lewis went on to introduce two more new shows. Firstly, Starmaker, which started airing in 2018, made a feature out of the new music sent in to Speysound each week by hopeful artists and later, when recovering from a hip-replacement made recording Out and About more of a challenge for him, the Speysound Magazine, a mix of pre-recorded interviews and music.
Lewis was also a regular sight at outside broadcasts, he would often be the first to arrive and the last to leave, notching up attendance at over 25 events between 2015 and 2019. When asked why he enjoyed being involved in outside broadcasts so much, he said it was because they gave him the chance to play whatever he wanted, as his regular programme formats had inadvertently restricted his music choices.
By the time ill health unfortunately meant Lewis had to retire from broadcasting in May 2020 he was providing four hours of content per week and his happy personality and wonderfully eclectic selection of shows have been greatly missed. Lewis sadly passed away in June 2021.
Archive editions of Out & About with Speysound can still be heard on Speysound – see the programme’s page for schedule details.