Steve Wright’s Sunday Love Songs Airs ‘Without the Chief’


The Sunday Love Songs show on BBC Radio 2 paid tribute to its late presenter, Steve Wright, who passed away earlier this week. Liza Tarbuck, who hosted a special episode of the show, said it would continue without its “chief”. She also shared tributes from listeners. Wright’s last show was a pre-recorded Valentine’s Day special aired last Sunday. He died on Monday at the age of 69.

Wright had a long career with the BBC, starting in the 1970s. He hosted afternoon shows on Radio 1 and Radio 2 for over four decades and also presented TV programmes like Top of the Pops. The Sunday show was part of a series of BBC tributes to Wright and featured some of his favourite tracks.

Another tribute show was hosted by Jo Whiley on Radio 2 on Tuesday evening. She described it as “very strange” as she had seen Wright only days before.

Wright had developed the format of Sunday Love Songs himself, a show where he would read out listener emails and letters verbatim. After leaving Radio 1, he briefly worked in commercial radio before joining Radio 2’s weekend line-up and launching Sunday Love Songs in 1996. He continued to present the show even after being replaced by Scott Mills on the afternoon show in 2022.

During the tribute show, Tarbuck shared messages from listeners who had their song requests played by Wright over the years. One listener wrote, “Steve read out every request as if he was talking to a friend – thank you Steve. We’re going to miss you so much.” Another shared how they listened to Wright while preparing for their wedding and received a special mention from him.

Tarbuck became emotional while reading a tribute from a listener who used to dance with her husband to the show every Sunday morning. “He was part of our family,” she wrote.

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