Danny’s connection with QI stretches back to the very first show, which he won by being much more knowledgeable than anyone else on the panel. Danny’s hyperactive, fact-driven radio patter translated perfectly to the screen and he has remained a staunch champion of the show ever since. Welcoming him back in the J and K series was a huge pleasure and he took up where he left off, outpacing even Stephen with his book-learning (e.g. telling us that croissants were baked in a crescent shape to celebrate the victory over the Ottoman troops in the siege of Vienna) and going on to win again in both episodes.
Danny’s career as a journalist began in 1976 when he joined the fledgling punk fanzine Sniffin’ Glue as receptionist. He soon reinvented himself as an interviewer and displayed precocious talent, stating his own opinions with a brusque Cockney honesty while managing to get the best out of his subjects. Jobs at NME, London Weekend Television and as a roving reporter for Michael Aspel’s The Six O’Clock Show on BBC One followed, but it was as a motor-mouth radio presenter that Danny was to really make his mark
Since 1989 Danny has applied his free-wheeling, stream-of-consciousness style to many award-winning shows and formats across a broad spread of stations including GLR, Radio 1, Radio 2, Radio 5 Live, Talk Radio and Virgin Radio. He pioneered the sports phone-in as the original presenter of the football show 6-0-6. After the cancellation of Danny’s BBC London radio show, he bowed out in style railing against the middle management of the BBC (the people who’d sacked him without actually telling him) as ‘pin-headed weasels’.
Danny once became a member of Led Zeppelin (for 25 minutes), as well as inadvertently starting a rumour that he caused Bob Marley’s fatal cancer by standing on his foot. In 2010 he was diagnosed with cancer of the neck and having made a full recovery, he has this improving philosophical lesson to impart: ‘In the eight minutes you spend thinking about your mortality you could have been watching a Tom and Jerry cartoon.’
I want the antithesis of what most broadcasting aims at.
Going off Alarming: The Autobiography, Vol 2
Book - Amazon.co.uk (pre-order)
Going to Sea in a Sieve: The Autobiography
Book - Amazon.co.uk
Classic Football Debates Settled Once and For All
Book - Amazon.co.uk
How to Understand Paul Gascoigne (Lives Less Ordinary)
Kindle Book - Amazon.co.uk
Danny Baker's The Game
DVD - Amazon.co.uk
It's so very rare in life to find someone you can praise without reservation.