David Jacobs - Broadcaster and Presenter Nov 19, 2013 1:42:10 GMT 1
Post by Laurence on Nov 19, 2013 1:42:10 GMT 1
David Lewis Jacobs, CBE (19 May 1926 – 2 September 2013) was a British broadcaster who gained prominence as presenter of the 1960s peak-time BBC Television show Juke Box Jury and Chairman of the BBC Radio 4 political forum, Any Questions? He broadcast, mostly for the BBC, as an announcer and presenter for over sixty-five years, only stepping down shortly before his death. Though not really an actor, his earlier radio work had included some acting of small parts and he also sometimes played himself or presenter characters in films, television and radio.
In 1964, he became one of the original Top of the Pops presenters and he also worked as the BBC's Eurovision Song Contest commentator before he was succeeded by Terry Wogan. He also introduced all 53 episodes of radio sci-fi serial Journey Into Space, as well as playing 22 characters. He also broadcast on Radio Luxembourg. He had, between 1957 and 1961, established the chart show format of the Light Programme's Pick of the Pops, to which he briefly returned in 1962.
Jacobs was born to a Jewish family, the youngest of three sons of Jeanette and David Jacobs senior, in Streatham Hill, London, and educated at Belmont College and Strand School. In his early years the family was affluent, but his father, a Covent Garden fruit importer, was bankrupted in 1939 after suffering ill-health for a decade, and the family soon lost their home. This forced his youngest son to leave school at 14, and Jacobs took up various short-term jobs, before he served in the Royal Navy from 1944 to 1947, and performed on the popular BBC General Forces Programme Navy Mixture in 1944. He became an announcer with the British Forces Broadcasting Service and was chief announcer on Radio SEAC in Ceylon (1945–47). Jacobs was later assistant station director.
His life was marked by several tragic events. Jeremy, his 19-year old son, was killed in Israel during 1972 in a car accident while engaged in charity work. In 1975, Jacobs survived a car accident in Spain in which his second wife, Caroline (née Munro), whom he had married earlier that year, and Caroline Marsh, wife of politician Richard Marsh, were killed. Jacobs' wife was pregnant with their unborn child.
Between January 1985 and December 1991, Jacobs presented a daily lunchtime programme on Radio 2 of what he characterised as "our kind of music", much of it popular tunes from musical theatre. Jacobs subsequently presented a weekly programme following a similar format, for a time on Saturday evening and later on Fridays, although the show finished airing in early 1999. He also presented Radio 2's long-running Sunday programme Melodies for You from 1974 to 1984.
Radio 2 controller Bob Shennan paid tribute to "a true giant of the BBC".
"David was a legend in broadcasting, not only for the Radio 2 audience, but for the whole population," he added. His broadcast hallmarks were "great taste, authority and warmth", he said. "I am sure his audience will feel they have lost a friend, as we all do here at Radio 2." Broadcaster Chris Evans described Jacobs asthe gentleman's broadcaster. "David Jacobs [is] one of the cornerstones of British broadcasting," he said. "A man who always has time for you, who always has something worth listening to."