Today we announced that we have decided to call it a day with LugRadio. Our last show will be LugRadio Live UK 2008 on the 19th and 20th July 2008 at The Lighthouse in Wolverhampton. We announced this in the latest episode of LugRadio, Season 5 Episode 21 – go and have a listen to the show to hear more.

In a nutshell, we have decided that LugRadio has had a good run for the last four years and five seasons, and a show such as ours has always faced the risk of getting old and tired unless the formula is changed to keep it fresh. This growth and evolution has happened to a decent degree over the seasons as we introduced interviews, musical comedy skits, points based segments, competitions, focusing on different types of content etc, but as we near the end of Season 5 we came to the conclusion that the show was nearing its natural conclusion. From the beginning, when we have discussed if and when LugRadio was to finish we were always determined to take it out on a high, and this is part of the reason we feel now is a good time. The last thing we would want people to say is “yeah LugRadio was fantastic, well apart from that dire sixth season“. We feel we have had five good solid seasons under our belt, so now is probably a good time to wrap things up.

Now, as with when Matt left, some people are bound to jump to conclusions why we are calling it a day. To clarify:

  • We have not fallen out. We are all still best friends.
  • Severed Fifth is not why I am leaving.
  • Adam’s business dreams is not why he is leaving.
  • Aq has not decided to join a travelling circus.
  • Chris has not set up a cult around the Network Block Driver. Actually, that’s a lie. He has.
  • We have not been acquired by the Linux Action Show and Jupiter Enterprises.

A am massively proud of what we have managed to achieve. Over 100 shows, 7 full-time presenters and countless guest presenters, 200+ hours of audio, 100+ guests, 2million+ downloads, 1000+ forums members, 40000+ forums posts, 5 live events in two countries, 5000+ emails to the show and an incredible community of people who have surrounded the show, discussed it, got involved in some way, and otherwise given us all an immense enthusiasm to keep doing LugRadio. I am also proud of every one of my co-presenters over the years – Steve “Sparkes” Parkes, Matt Revell, Ade Bradshaw and the current roster of Adam Sweet, Chris Procter and Stuart “Aq” Langridge. I am particularly proud of Aq, my best mate and someone who has been my partner in crime in LugRadio since Season 1 Episode 1.

The thing I am most proud of about LugRadio is that it shook things up. It has always been raw, unexpected and at times uncomfortable to listen to. We always set out to do a show on our terms, knowing full well it would not be everyone’s cup of tea, but we forged ahead and I am proud of how the history looks.

Everyone has their favorite moments, and I just wanted to highlight just a few of mine:

  • Our many incredible guests – Nat Friedman, Jeff Waugh, Eric Raymond, Miguel de Icaza, Mark Shuttleworth, Matthew Garrett, Rob McQueen, Sacha “Sago” Goedegebure, Alexandre Juillard, Havoc Pennington, Colin Walters, Quim Gil, Greg Kroah-Hartman and many more.
  • The many strong debates Aq and I have launched into on the show. We have a somewhat unusual style of debating and some people have been worried we were on the verge of falling out, which has never happened. I know, its odd, and something that started back in 2001 at LUG meetings. It never stops being fun. :)
  • The Gong-a-thong was an idea that Aq and I concocted late one night while on the phone. The first time we did it in Wolverhampton, we both stood at the side of the stage and it was a very surreal, proud and frankly hilarious moment. We replicated such insanity in San Francisco with Aaron Bockover and it was another comedy gem. The final gong-a-thong will happen at LugRadio Live UK 2008 in a few weeks.
  • Ade’s random stories, and strange expectations of life. Who can forget Ade asking if any of us looked at our arses in the mirror, expecting a fully reasoned and learned discussion about said activity. Oh, and Ade’s perspectives on women in technical roles and his idea of compliments to a lady in a nightclub (“You sit well for an old girl…“). Bonkers.
  • The booting of Matt Lee and GNU/FSF on the show and his admirable efforts at retort. Oh, and RMS refusing to come on the show as we use the words “Open Source” in the description of the show.
  • Theatrics and comedy skits – The National Lottery segment, musical efforts (Pigeon Street, Lion Sleeps Tonight), Mrs Mudchild appearing because Matt was late for the show, Stallman only wanting a kipper, the What The F**k Book Truck, Filthy Gamble and more.
  • LugRadio Live USA 2008. Wow, what an experience – a lot of fun, and a lot of work, but well worth it.
  • LugRadio Live And Unleashed – there is nothing like doing a show in front of hundreds of people. It is a lot of fun and a real buzz.
  • Sparkes availing us of his many stories, particularly the girl taking the piss out of his shoes in Wolverhampton. When I was editing his best bits segment I had tears streaming down my face laughing.
  • Filming the LugRadio Live 2007 promo videos. It was a lot of fun making them. Actors, we are not.
  • The emails. Our emails were always eclectic. Sometimes random, sometimes wise, sometimes hilarious, sometimes deeply offensive, but always inspiring. We loved every one of them, even the ones we thought were crap. :)
  • The competitions – Stupid Hat For Corporate Tat, Look Queer In The New Year, Pimp My LugRadio, Asa Raskin’s Hat Dilemma and more.
  • Bruno’s talk at LugRadio Live 2006 about how much we all swear in LugRadio and his rather amusing delivery and graphs.
  • Matt’s impressions, particularly his Irish leprechaun impression. Specifically, Matt’s leprechaun impression that he used to impersonate Lucky Charms when at Skycon in Limerick.
  • The Finger Of God.

It is certainly going to be unusual not having my mates around to my house every two weeks to record a show, drinking endless amounts of tea, taking an average of 15 takes to record an intro (really), regularly ribbing each other about everything under the sun, and then releasing a show and hearing about how it was received by our community.

So, the last episode of LugRadio will be recorded in front of a live audience at LugRadio Live UK 2008 on the 19th July 2008 in Wolverhampton. Why not come and share it with us, and the Saturday night we will be toasting to four years surrounded by our friends from the community; I can’t think of a better way to get off the roller-coaster. :)

Also see Aq’s write-up.

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