RADIO presenter, raconteur, autobiographer, sitcom writer, music journalist and Millwall fan Danny Baker can’t stop talking.

First there was his debut stage show, Cradle To The Grave, and now he is on the road again with Good Time Charlie’s Back!, visiting the Grand Opera House, York, on Monday at 7.30pm.

"My fellow Vaudevillians, following the extraordinary success of the Cradle To Grave tour, I was asked to reconsider my initial statement that I would never undertake such a venture again," says the 61-year-old south Londoner.

"The books are fine and great, and the TV series were fine and great, but telling the stories first hand, that’s how they work best."

Baker, host of a regular Saturday morning show on BBC Radio Five Live, thrives on the chance to chatter. "I don’t have a fear of public speaking," he says. "On stage, I like knowing that I’m heading into a really good story. Along the way they’re funny, but I like to know that they pay off. I’m having a terrific time myself, and I hope that's infectious. I don’t laugh at my own jokes, but I do clap my hands and think, ‘Oh, you’ll like this, here’s something, this is great, let me tell you’."

Baker writes nothing down before venturing on stage. "There’s no structure to the show, but there's an absolute power house of stories. And why deny telling people those? Yes, I’ve got 61 new stories to get through in the new show. But I will get through about, on any given night, …15.

"They’re not written down. I’m like the Navajo; it’s all an oral history, passed down through the generations. It’s not a written language. But that’s the fun of it. If it were written down, the audience could tell, and it would take some of the vim out of it. I don’t ever work to a script in radio or anything else. People think there must be a script. There isn’t, and whatever facility I may have, that is it."

Baker is a storyteller, not a comedian, telling tales in print and in theatres as "the culmination of a pretty peculiar life". "It’s not like, ‘Oh, I know this joke'. It’s all in the story. The devil is in the detail, and it forms an overall patchwork on the night: another thing I’ve got in common with the [American] Indian Nation!" he says.

He acknowledges his perpetual ebullience might annoy some people, but says: "I’ve said it many times, I’m very shallow. That has become a bad thing, but, in my book, it’s not . Too many people today affect a darker side. I can’t bear the word ‘dark’. I’m a euphoric, and that’s all there is to it. I’m stuck with it.

"I had loads and loads of uncles and aunts. My wife is one of ten. Our house was always full of pushchairs and bikes and you had to be competitive to be heard. Our family was noisy. But even before I left school, I was fortunate enough to realise that when something funny happened, it would make a great story."

Baker stresses Good Time Charlie’s Back! has "no great social message in it". "I’m not raising awareness about anything," he says. "I wouldn’t know how to, and I don’t think people want that." Box office: 0844 871 3024 or

Charles Hutchinson