Sunday, 2 April 2017

Dear Dredge - The UK’s Foremost Untrained Agony Uncle Attempts to Help You With Your Awful Problems.

Dear Dredge

Both my father and my mother have been banjo players since before the war. Sadly I am unable to play the instrument myself despite having had 3,5050461235 lessons, and instead I have had to make do with the flute.  My parents have virtually disowned me and I have been ostracized by a number of ostriches as well as people in the local banjo-playing community. What should I do?

Don, Prestwood

Dear Don

Disguise the flute as a banjo.  If anyone asks you why it still sounds like a flute, simply change the subject. 

Dear Dredge

My husband has decided to hire the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra to mow our lawn. He feels that not only would the large number of people involved help get the task completed more quickly, but they might give us a musical performance afterwards at no extra cost. We are both fans of classical music and effective gardening, but is this a step too far?

Gladys, Frinton

Dear Gladys

The RPO are not widely known for their lawn mowing skills so it may prove a costly mistake, with the possibility of sheet music left strewn all over the garden. I would recommend you use the Kronos String Quartet instead, as they have excellent horticultural skills, and are happy to give recitals after completion of any gardening work. They also take up a lot less room, and are in the phone book.

Dear Dredge

I am writing a concerto for camels as I believe these magnificent creatures have been ignored by the classical music world for too long. Do you have any advice?

Len, Nahden-on-Sea

Dear Len,

Speaking as a composer of concertos for camels myself, I can only applaud this move. However if you do have to give a performance in the desert, make sure you take some suntan lotion. I should add that camels fear the key of G, so why not write it in A-flat or, if you need more room, A-house.


Sunday, 26 February 2017


I haven't blogged since last year thus now I rectify said blogging contrafibularities forthwith.  Plinge.

Today I was listening to wonder broadcaster Danny Baker on the Radio Today podcast. I reckon he could easily get on TalkRadio if he wanted.  Most peculiar that Radio 2 didn't like him - probably meaning one person didn't like him.  The world of radio continues to confound innit.

Am doing some sort of live podcast for Comic Relief next month, one hour's nonsensical ramblings as part of the Southampton Super-Pod. Looking forward to burbling on with ace nutcase Andy Harland and our cat, Norrington.  I think our double-act could go places this year.  Places like Scarborough, Whitley Bay and Pobblehume.

Pondering going to Iain Lee's Performance Ring this evening where he generously showcases new acts - Andy and I did the first one and had a blast.  I think I was possibly the first person to push a wheelbarrow across the stage in that particular venue.  But then again who knows what tonight will holdddddddddddd?

I was watching an old Tiswas yesterday which brought back lots of fun memories.  Mainly of watching Tiswas.  Of the old team, Tarrant's probably done the best with his long boring train documentaries that are on at the moment, although he was never better than when hosting the Saturday morning madhouse.  Lenny Henry's still at the top but again I think he was best on that kids show.  They never spoke down to their audience, which marked them out as something special back then.  I remember when Tiswas finished, the next week Isla St Clair was on with something called The Saturday Show and I couldn't understand why it was nowhere near as good.  Looking back, few things were ever as good.

I sometimes wonder exactly where I fit into 2017.  Perhaps into a small holdall in the corner of the living room.

I must now leave you to return to my home planet of Vulcan.  Live long and prosper, and don't forget to put the cat out.

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Today's A Day

Today is Pnurgsday the Nintenteeth once again which of course means it’s National Lengths Day.  People from all over the country will be celebrating lengths in all their longitudinal glory. From Frinton-on-Sea to St Albans-On-The-Naze, there will be literally fourteen events both hither and, in some cases, yon.  Here’s an awful round-up of what you can go and see.

In Tiptree South, Elmo McTaggart will be holding a sponsored Spot The Lengths Contest.  Participants are advised to look in the dustbin (see Oracle for details).  The winner will receive a portrait painting of some granite, and a small fortune into the bargain.  Please note: If you live in Whitstable, bring a packed lunch.

There will be a concert in New Malden Crowbar Centre where Ellis Huge, the most famous lengths specialist of all, will be premiering a new composition entitled ‘Lengths And Longths.’ This is an involved piece which was written on foot during a walk in the Brecon Beacons.  The ramifications of this are not yet known.

Finally in Bexhill-On-Sea, as a tribute to the many lengths in the area, a steam roller will be driven up and down.  Parking is available, but if you are walking to the event don’t worry about it.     
Lastly, in Norway-on-Sea, opera singer Barbara Grainge will be making a strangulated noise for three and a half minutes.  You may recall that last year’s attempt went horribly wrong and left many spectators incompetent.  Precautions have now been taken and placed in a sealed container.   Thank you.

Thursday, 11 August 2016

hope you might review us on itunes folks!

I've got a new rambling talking podcast on iTunes and if we get reviewed it might be possible to get featured on there, which means the difference between hundreds of listeners and thousands...hope you might help us out!

Here's the podcast here:

Thanks for reading and listening and things of that nature xxx


Wednesday, 6 July 2016

The UK’s Foremost Untrained Agony Uncle Attempts to Help You With More of Your Awful Problems in ‘Dear Dredge’

Dear Dredge

My desk in our office is directly opposite my manager’s desk, and we generally get along very well. However, he has mannerisms which I find hard to deal with. For example, every ten minutes he stands on the desk, screams at the top of his voice and does an elaborate tap dance, before blowing an enormous raspberry and resuming his seat. I may be overreacting but some things are difficult to overlook. What would you advise?
Gwen, Prestwood-on-Sea
Dear Gwen
Make sure you take regular breaks.

Dear Dredge
Somebody has stolen some cubes from my highly expensive cube collection and I am at my wit’s end. What should I do?
Muriel, Penge-on-Sea

Dear Muriel
The Cube Police may be able to help you here. Unfortunately, and this may cause some difficulties, the Cube Police does not exist. I would wait until their formation takes place, form a branch yourself, or simply take up the banjo to take your mind off it.

Dear Dredge
I have recently acquired a biscuit tin but have nowhere to put it as my flat is chock full of Shreddies, for reasons I don’t have time to go into now. What would you suggest?
Daphne, Bexhill-on-Penge
Dear Daphne
Attach an elastic band to the biscuit tin, tie it under your chin, and voila - a stylish and unusual hat. This won’t take up unnecessary shelf space, and if it is kept stocked with fresh biscuits, you may find yourself becoming more popular than ever before.

John’s new talking-type-podcast can be heard here:

Sunday, 26 June 2016

The DredgeLand Podcast Spectacular - Episode 1

Join insane comedic human beings John Dredge and Andy Harland as they take a bizarre verbal stroll through the canyons of their own minds. There are scintillating subjects galore, as well as many other things which have yet to be undecided.

Conversation will flow freely in a disorderly fashion, so why not grab a cup of biscuits and an artichoke, sit back, and listen to the nonsensical ramblings of this pesky duo of duos. Slightly skewed and super-strange, John and Andy will keep you confused for a half hour at a time – that’s the DredgeLand promise. Or is it?

And if you contact us @DredgeLand with your ridiculous tweets and sayings, a green inflatable trilby hat could be yours. Get on the DredgeLand Express today, and may your banjos never become detuned. Ker-pow!

This week sees John and Andy abandoning their carefully prepared script and embarking on an imaginary tour of Hove. Spot our ‘Word of the Week’ and win a fortnight for two in the aquarium of your choice. Plus facts, figures, frenetic freeform fun, and a preview of forthcoming things in the Durham area.

Link to podcast:

Monday, 9 May 2016

Slightly exclusive interview with new indie sensations

The No-Marks may be the newest band on the scene since the last one, but will they really be able to push into new areas?

'Well we're playing Lowestoft for the first time next week.'

It's lead vocalist, Clark Clarksonby.

'Some critics have said that we're nothing more than a cross between Nirvana and The Massed Bands of the Royal Highland Fusiliers.  That's a very one-dimensional view.'

But aren't you a very one-dimensional band?


Vexed bassist, Gary Pink.

'The No-Marks are simply the sound of a porpoise in a ditch, or a cablecar being pulled along the M1 by a giant ocelot.'

'You're wrong there.'

Guitarist extraordinaire, Bob Loam.

'Hold on, mate.  I don't consider myself a guitarist.'

But surely you play the guitar?

'I hold the guitar and my spirit plays it.'

Has your spirit ever considered tuning up beforehand?

'That would make us sound too safe, too conventional, too..what's the word...?'

'I don't know.'

Toothless drummer, Milton Winterbaum.


Why, I wondered, did they decide to call themselves The No-Marks?

'Because there's no one in the band called Mark.'

'What did you say?'

Erratic xylophonist, Mark Hoist.

'Originally we were going to be called Womack & Womack, but we discovered there was another band called that.'

Simple.  They see their new EP as embracing a kind of negative optimism, a rejection of both conformity and non-conformity, and yet an acceptance of both, though not at the same time.


A silence descends.  It's awe-inspiring.  It's the sound of The No-Marks, except with the music taken away.  Perhaps, all things considered, it should be.