Ian Camfield (“Legendary Rock DJ”)

Ian Camfield is rock DJ on Xfm. He currently presents mid-mornings every weekday between 10am and 2pm, and The Rock Show every Saturday night between 10pm and 2am.

According to the Xfm website: “The story of Ian’s path from rock-obsessed child to a regular guest on Tommy Vance‘s show while still in his teens to the rock broadcasting behemoth you hear today is an incredible one. And may bring a tear to your eye.”

If you like what you read below, you can read more from Ian on his blog at:

So, here goes …

What does rock music mean to you?
It’s the best kind of music, but it’s also an attitude and a lifestyle.

Sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll – jaded stereotype or the meaning of life?
I don’t know that it’s the meaning of life, for some it’s resulted in death. But I don’t see sex, drugs, or rock n roll going away anytime soon, so they can hardly be a jaded stereotype.

First artist to make an impression on you?
Meat Loaf. There was a gig on late night TV which my Dad recorded on his new VCR, this would have been mid 80s, I was probably four or five. I was transfixed by this mountain of a man and loved the performance and showmanship, the way in which he delivered those epic Jim Steinman songs. I was also fascinated as to why he always had a red scarf. In later life, I asked him during an interview why the scarf was always red (he still uses them on stage now). His answer didn’t really make sense, but I went with it anyway, cos he’s Meat Loaf, ain’t he.

An album, band or song that means a lot to you?
Witchita Lineman’ by Glen Campbell. My first gig on the radio was aged 16, working on an AM Country station! I hated much of the music, but even at that age, I knew this was one of the greatest songs ever written. I was fortunate enough to see Glen Campbell twice last year on his farewell tour, that was a privilege.

An artist or album that has stayed with you over time?
Motorhead. They are my favourite band. For a group who have been releasing music consistently since 1977, their musical standards have remained incredibly high. But there is so much more that comes with Motorhead. They are an enormously influential outfit who have always remained the cool underdog, and this has a lot to do with the attitude of Lemmy. His values, to a large extent embody the world of rock ‘n’ roll, or maybe rock ‘n’ roll embodies his values. Plus, Motorhead are a formidable live force, I feel lucky for every extra show I see, because we all know this can not go on forever. If you have the chance to see them, do so, before it’s too late.

Dylan or Morrison?
Does Dylan get extra points for sticking around? I think he does.

What do you say to a ‘rock star’ after you say hello?
Can I get a drink please? (They always have free stuff around them.)

Your best encounter with an artist as a fan?
There was a time I went on stage with Axl Rose and Sebastian Bach. That’s a whole other story, too long to write in full here. I’ll document that in MY book!

What makes a rock gig special?

Your most notable gig as a fan?
Lou Reed performing Berlin in its entirety. Again, for too many reasons to write here. Read more in my book, coming sometime around 2025.

Rock music – music for all or a tribal affair?
Anyone can listen to it, I think rock fans are the most open minded of all music fans, so all are welcome. But only some ‘get it.’

Rock music – the spawn of the devil or a force for good?
Undoubtedly it has achieved more good than bad, and has probably done more good than any other genre.

What would you say to people who say that rock or the rock era is dead?
I’d be walking away from them before they’d finished making that point. Why bother talking to someone that stupid?


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