Radio 1: Just play the music!

Radio 1: Just play the music!

Are you a Radio 1 listener? Do you know what the average age of a Radio 1 listener is? 15? 24? That’s what I thought. No, it’s a whopping 30!  Bordering on Six Music and indeed Radio 2’s territory.

The BBC Trust insists that Radio One should be reaching a younger audience and Chris Moyles’ (aged 38) abdication from the flagship breakfast show after a record 8 years is to go some way towards fixing this issue.

Admittedly, I stopped listening to Radio One some years ago preferring to split my continued all-day radio listening pleasure between Radio 2 and 6 Music. I first transferred over to the witticisms of Wogan on Radio 2 as Moyle talks far too much (for that time of the morning) and plays far too little music. I wondered if this was my imagination but reportedly it’s true. When I turned on the radio at 7am, Moyles will still be talking about which famous people he was drinking with 6 hours ago and Wogan will be playing a wake-me-up tune. In those days I did used to switch back to R1 after Moyles had gone back to the pub to nurse his hangover but then one day I heard Fearne Cotton (bless, I’m sure she’s lovely) go into a long monologue on how dull emptying her dishwasher in her spacious, central London shack is. Enough.

I would have thought R1 retained its teen audience given the topics (sleb friends, drinking, parties, housework?) that the rest of us don’t much care for but Moyles’ average listener is actually 32. This is much higher that the Trust’s target audience of 15-29 year olds hence the cull of older presenters.

I do however love that the music fans amongst the presenters move over to the more credible Six Music or the most popular Radio 2. Chris Evans, Simon Mayo, Mark Radcliffe, even the ever-green teenager Jo Wiley (aged 47) are amongst those that have transferred across.

Radio 2 is still the most listened to station in the country, reaching the broader age range it does and Radio 1 has to settle for second place. Moyles’ audience is currently just under 7 million (1 million of which is in the equally greying 45-54 age group – who are these people, parents?!) and Chris Evans over on Radio 2 hangs onto just under 9 million.

I have met and worked with Moyles many years ago (we jointly judged a ‘Stars in their eyes’ type contest) when he was the night time shock jock on local radio and he appeared to be the perfect gent off-mike. I don’t suppose he won any new fans when he complained on-air that his £500,000 pa BBC salary was paid late,

Nick Grimshaw, (27) is just inside the target age for the R1 audience so I anticipate he’ll have the more usual 2-3 years stint as breakfast show host. ‘Grimmy’ currently presents the credible John Peel 10pm slot which showcases new music so it will be interesting to see how he copes on a show that’s more chat than music and he is given the tracks to play rather than choosing himself. I, of course won’t be listening.

As published by Beatwolf

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