Archive — BBC Radio 1
I’ve recently been digging this old Stereolab song. By chance, this Peel session was recorded 25 years ago today.
Authenticity and character
An interesting comparison between modern-day radio presenting and that of previous generations: “That smiling deep disc jockey voice, broadcasting seemingly from a parallel mid-Atlantic world.”
Rarely has radio been quite so authentic.
In previous generations, it was enough to have a ‘voice on a stick’ as one of my colleagues used to call it…
Now – you tune in and you hear real life.
Listening to clips of old radio programmes, it is extraordinary how much times have changed. The Radio 1 Vintage broadcasts last year as part of Radio 1’s 50th birthday celebrations highlighted this starkly. Tony Blackburn’s live recreation of the first Radio 1 breakfast show even skipped over some of the content, tacitly acknowledging that it some of it was too cheesy (or perhaps offensive?) to be broadcast today.
There is an argument to say that people sometimes want to hear a bit of showbiz, and don’t necessarily always want to hear a voice that could be their neighbour’s.
But in the era of Spotify, a “voice on a stick” won’t do. Good content is essential for the long-term survival of radio.
Note — 2018-01-15
There may be no real science behind the concept of Blue Monday. But there is definitely something strange about mornings in January.
I always go back to work as soon as possible after the new year. On my morning walk to work, the streets are dark unlike any other time of year, and eerily quiet.
It’s now a new year tradition of mine to spend my first morning walk of each week listening to Blue Jam. Chris Morris’s peerless radio programme of the late 1990s mixed dark comedy with downtempo music. It was originally broadcast on BBC Radio 1 in the small hours of the morning, maximising its unsettling vibe.
That vibe seems to suit these weird, dark Mondays in January.