Vale ABC Radio’s Adam Bowen | radioinfo

Vale ABC Radio’s Adam Bowen

Thursday 10 December, 2020
Photo courtesy of ABC Archives

Adam Bowen, part of the “comic backbone” of triple j in its early days, has passed away.

He appeared regularly on the Jono and Dano show as comic character Roger De Suave and was also part of the writing team of the satirical radio show Brunswick Heads Revisited.

He was also heard with Ian Rogerson on the musical journey show Route 66 and, from 2004, was a regular film music commentator on the Classic FM program Lights, Camera, Action!

Ian ‘Dano’ Rogerson has told radioinfo:

“I worked with Adam first at Triple J in the early eighties. Jono Coleman and I were hosting Off The Record on Sunday afternoons. He was writing and performing with Angela Webber and Lance Curtis.

“Adam and I had been friends ever since. He’d also been one of the original team on Wonder World with Jono. We worked together again on ABC radio at 702. He was hosting shows on ABC FM for years and also worked in Germany for a few years on the German version of neighbours. He was a fantastic writer and performer and a dear friend." 


Adam’s ABC biography described his introduction to theatre and film:

Mrs Bowen took Adam, at a tender age, to a News Theatre, to see a Popeye cartoon. That was it: he was hooked. After that, every penny of his choirboy earnings went to local cinemas, and before long Adam had a three-double- features-a-week habit. 

After he left school (where he ran the film club), Adam found work in film editing. Because of these claustrophobic cinema-centric tendencies, a therapist suggested Adam change to the wide-open spaces of Australia, where he spent countless hours, breathing the fresh air of the drive-ins. Meanwhile, Adam worked as TV reporter, director, and comedy writer/performer to support his chronic filmgoing habit. 

By the 90s Adam was scripting for Australian TV drama series, and earning enough to support another habit: movie soundtrack collection. While working as a Script Supervisor on TV drama serials in Italy, Sweden and Germany, he spent his free time scouring the fleamarkets for rare film music. 

When he returned to Australia, ABC Radio's Bakelite Express, sent Adam back overseas to report on the arcane activities of far-flung film festivals.  Whilst on that assignment, in the USA, Adam also co-presented ABC's Route 66, with Ian Rogerson.

On ABC Sydney breakfast today, Simon Marnie, who was also at triple j about the same time as Bowen, remembered his career with Ian Rogerson and played a snippet from Brunswich Heads Revisited, the ABC Radio comedy show written by Adam Bowen and Angela Webber, that satirised the BBC's Brideshead Revisited.


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Anthony The Koala
22 December 2020 - 6:39pm
In the mid 1980s I used to listen to the J-Team on the way to work (a broadcasting network) or on the way to tech.

The J-team was the breakfast program on JJJ. It consisted not only of "Rusty Nails" (Derek Thorpe), Jonno (Jonathan Coleman) and Dano (Ian Rogerson (how does one derive Dano from Ian or Rogerson), Lance Curtis (RIP), Angela Webber (RIP) and Adam Bowen (RIP).

The additional characters "Lillian Pascoe" the hip grannie played by Angela Webber, "Larry Davenport" a pensioner played by Lance Curtis, and Roger de Suave a hairdresser played by Adam Bowen added additional comic relief.

I believe the J-Team was the genesis of today's FM breakfast radio teams. The distinction between the J-Team and today's FM breakfast radio shows is that the J-Team was funny with genuine teamwork. This is unlike FM breakfast shows which break-up, various talents not getting on with each other and some of those talents reforming with other talents.

To those deceased members of the J-Team, you passed away so young. For Adam Bowen, 72 is young. May you rest in peace, Amen.

Thank you,
Anthony of Belfield
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