Paul Corfield fills us in:

Just surfed onto your site and the 93KHJ section and thought I would update you on info on British DJ Tommy Vance who was on KHJ in 1965.

When coming back to Britain in 1966, Tommy Vance joined pirate station Radio Caroline on the South ship, anchored in the North Sea off Frinton On Sea in Essex, England. In July 1967 he moved to Radio London/Big L until they closed in mid August 1967. Just after this he spent a short time on Radio Luxembourg.

Tommy was then heard on BBC Radio 1 and for a short while Radio Monte Carlo until joining Capital Radio in London when they opened in October 1973.

(Until April 1989 when Capital Gold was launched on the 1548 AM frequency, Capital Radio simulcasted on both AM and FM, so up until that point there would have only been one Capital Radio service on both channels, so Tommy would have been on AM and FM at the same time!!! In his early days at Capital he did a mid morning show which he co-presented with Joan Shenton. When Capital launched, it was on 539 metres, 557 khz AM but during 1975 this changed to 194 metres, 1548 AM where Capital Gold now is. Capital has always had the same FM frequency of 95.8, now home to Capital FM.)

In 1974 Tommy made an apperance in the film 'Slade in Flame' which featured the popular British rock band Slade (their biggest USA hit was 'Run Runaway' in 1984 - their UK hits 'Cum On Feel The Noize' and 'Mama Weer All Crazee Now' were USA hits for Quiet Riot and The Runaways in the late 70's/early 80's!!). The film was about a rock bands stuggle for success set in the 1960's, and Tommy played the role of a radio DJ in the film re-creating 1960's pirate station Radio City 299 - the station was re-created in the film in a studio on board the 'Shivering Sands' ex Army World War 2 fort in the English Thames Estuary which was where the original Radio City broadcast from between 1964 and 1967. (The pirate 'Radio City 299' of the 60's has no connection whatsoever with the 'legal' station Radio City in Liverpool which is still on the air today.)

In 1978 Tommy re-joined BBC Radio One until the early 1990s, lauching the Friday Rock show (he now presents a TV version of this show on VH1 UK and Ireland).

Tommy joined Virgin Radio when they launched in 1993. He occasionally presented programmes for satellite station 'Rock Radio Network' and was The Nightfly on VH1 for the UK and Ireland until his death on March 6, 2005 after suffering a stroke.

Going back to Radio Caroline, go to where on the opening page you will see a picture of Tommy along with other Radio Caroline jocks of the time, taken on the Radio Caroline South ship MV Mi Amigo in 1966.

Radio Caroline is still broadcasting today as a legal satellite radio station all over Western Europe and worldwide at weekends on the Internet. Radio Caroline was Britain's first commercial radio station and the UK's first pop/rock station starting as a pirate in 1964, and changed the whole world of radio in Britain. The MV Mi Amigo sank whilst broadcasting in March 1980. The station re-launched from a new ship MV Ross Revenge in 1983, but became a legal station in September 1998 on satellite. Their vessel MV Ross Revenge is currently anchored at Queenborough on the Isle of Sheppey in Kent, England.

You can listen to Radio Caroline on the internet on Saturdays and Sundays from 8 am to 11 pm British Summer Time by click on the link at

I hope that this information is of use to you to update Tommy's section on the 93KHJ part of your site - let me know if you use the information, i'll be pleased if you do. Visit the Radio Caroline site - Radio Caroline is to the UK what KHJ was to Los Angeles!!!!

With kind regards from England,

Paul Corfield,
Telford, Shropshire. England.
(May 2000)


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