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The life and times of james Hart: his family, his music, life in Luton and his occasional escapes onto the internet.

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Friday, 11 May 2007

Radio wrongness?

As you're no doubt aware, I have a passion for radio, and there have been a couple of things that have piqued my interest of late which I'd like to share with you.

The first was a report in a local paper about the prosecution of a pirate radio operator.. not much unusual about that, except his transmitter was rebroadcasting a French Radio station to the people of Brighton! Apparently he had quite a following.. (thanks, Jon!)

Then there's The Big L.. it is on-air legally, but has recently had some (shall we say) interesting media coverage, which included being featured on Channel 4's Get Your Act Together With Harvey Goldsmith. If you get the chance to watch it (I have a recording if you're interested) I would certainly recommend it, since it is hilarious in some places, and cringingly quirky in others - no doubt the effect the editors wanted to achieve.

Not wanting to be swayed by their rather negative portrayal on TV, I thought I'd give the station a 'good listen' and I have to say I was surprised at what I heard. Despite the comments and advice given by industry professionals both during and after the show, they seem hardly to have changed anything, even to the point where (this morning at least) the internet radio player still didn't work, nearly a month after the programme was recorded!

They have absolutely no 'station sound', with each DJ seemingly bringing their own jingles, many of which sound like they were originally recorded in the 1980s, and in nearly a day's worth of listening, I only perceived two ad-breaks. The music? Well, there's certainly much less* heavy a-list repetition than Virgin Radio and their apparent obsession with Snow Patrol and The Kaiser Chiefs but the near-random zipping from Elvis to Mika was a little hard to keep up with for much of the time, and the DJ banter became a irritating (much as it does when I occasionally listen to Radio 1).

All in all? I really want them to succeed - their premise of musical freedom and 'old-time sounds' is a laudable one - but I can't help but be swayed in favour of the TV coverage.. these are some deluded people, who could find themselves off-air before long. I hope they don't, for the sake of everything that used to be good...

*(for 'much less' read 'no apparent')

Posted by james at May 11, 2007 6:10 PM

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