Adam Buxton's passion for music videos
Emma LeeNorfolk-based broadcaster and comedian Adam Buxton hosts a night showcasing cutting-edge music videos from around the world at Norwich Playhouse this Thursday. EMMA LEE spoke to him.Emma Lee
With his comedy partner Joe Cornish, Adam Buxton co-created the perfect recipe for post-pub TV viewing.
Their irreverent lo-fi late-night Channel 4 show the Adam and Joe Show, which featured a mixture of skits and remakes of Hollywood blockbusters starring toys (such as 'Toytanic'), became cult viewing.
And their award-winning Saturday morning show on BBC 6Music, which follows the same endearingly ramshackle formula, is easily the funniest three hours on radio all week - a winning mixture of the sort of pop culture-led banter you'd have with your friends down the pub and homemade songs.
But at the heart of the show is the fact that they're both obsessive music fans.
Adam has made videos for Radiohead and one for Frank Black, in which he made his father, Nigel, better known to fans of the Adam and Joe Show as Baad Dad, walk around Brixton wearing a sandwich board.
And this Thursday night, Bug: Evolution of Music Video, which he regularly hosts, moves outside London for the first time to the Norwich Playhouse.
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It will be a chance to see some of the cutting-edge music videos from
around the world that don't make it onto MTV, and features special guest Dougal Wilson, who has made videos of the likes of Dizzee Rascal, Coldplay, Basement Jaxx and the Streets.
'It's the ultimate genre for me,' Adam says. 'I'm a big music fan. I have a huge amount of all different sorts of music.
And I love film as well. With music videos you can cram a lot of invention into four minutes.
'You can be really creative without having to worry about the narrative. It's just the ideal opportunity to have an explosion of ideas that wouldn't really fit anywhere else,' he says.
'I'm very good friends with a guy called Garth Jennings, of Hammer and Tongs, who did the video for Coffee and TV by Blur and one for Supergrass where he turned them into Muppets.
'And I love Michel Gondry, who has done a lot with Bjork and the Chemical Brothers - Let Forever Be is amazing - it blows your mind.
'The videos are shown in blocks of three, showing about 15 videos in total. You're not likely to see the new Beyonce video.
'It's more leftfield, things by underground directors. Occasionally we show more mainstream stuff - a mix of things that people might have missed that sometimes don't get seen in other places because they're just too weird.
'It's nice to show them on a big screen.'
It's the first time that the acclaimed event has been held outside London - its home is the British Film Institute - and Norwich Playhouse was chosen as the location as Adam and his family now live on the outskirts of the city.
'It's where my wife's family come from. And we were always thinking about coming back here.
'We've got three children and it was a good opportunity to get out of London. We moved late last year, we're still unpacking boxes.
'We spent a lot of time here anyway. I really like Norwich and I love the Playhouse.
'It's a theatre with a lot of character,' he says.
He and Joe have been friends since school and got what Adam describes as a 'foot in the door' at Channel 4 while they were still at college.
'I was at art school studying sculpture, but I was making a lot of videos with Joe at the weekends. I saw an ad in the NME asking for weird videos for a show called Takeover TV. They ended up using a lot of it, and I ended up hosting a couple of them,' he says.
Their Takeover TV contemporaries included Garth Jennings, who as well as being a sought-after music video maker directed Son of Rambow, Edgar Wright, who went on to direct Shaun of the
Dead and Hot Fuzz, Graham Norton and Leigh Francis of Bo Selecta.
There's an enviable variety to talented Adam's career - as well as presenting his show with Joe, he writes, makes short films, performs stand-up comedy and has had roles in sitcoms including
Graham Linehan's IT Crowd and some of the biggest British films in recent years, including Stardust.
And there's more acting ahead - he's going to be filming a new sitcom for the BBC in the spring.
'It might be top secret,' he says.
'So I can't say that much about it. But it's set in an advertising agency.
'And it's got a really amazing cast.'
t Bug: The Evolution of Music Video is at Norwich Playhouse this Thursday, February 5. The show starts at 8pm. Box office: 01603 598598; www.norwichplayhouse.org.uk
t Adam and Joe are on BBC 6Music on Saturday mornings from 9am-noon.