Tuesday, 13 March 2007

The Renegade Master

It’s really unfair to listen to a jocks first show on their ‘new’ station and judge it. So that’s exactly what I did on Monday evening!

Having blogged several times on Bam Bam joining Capital Radio (sorry… Capital 95.8), it seemed only fair to complete the circle, and comment on his first outing on air on his new radio home.

He did all you could ask for on a first show, and more! He sounded relaxed, confident (but not to the point of over confidence) and genuinely excited to back on terrestrial radio, as we know it. The production was very strong. There were some nice little ‘bits’, but nothing too tricky for the first night.

He introduced the listeners to his new “team”, one producer and one female presenter… who he’ll use principally to bounce things off.

There were some nice calls from listeners who were delighted he was back on the radio, and having seen at first hand the passion and loyalty this particular presenter evokes in listeners, I’m certain there were many, many more that didn’t reach the radio… and lots of texts / emails besides.

The most striking thing, which I believe is something all great presenters have (and it was a joy to hear on Bam’s first show back) was the sense of honesty about his broadcasting.

There was no smoke and mirrors. There was no hiding. No illusion. He told it as it was. If things were odd, coz he hadn’t done a show for a while… he shared that emotion with the listeners. If they asked where Streetboy was, he told them. “He’s a roofer now!!” And if he felt a bit weird broadcasting on the station he used to knock regularly… he shared that too.

For far too long, there’s been an over reliance on presenters being super-slick and bordering on the insincere. An honest presenter is far more potent, as the audience don’t feel they’re being conned in any way. Someone who tells the truth is just naturally appealing. Listeners can see the strings these days.

There’s a certain childlike innocence about presenters who speak the truth. By that I mean, young kids tell the truth. They say it as they see it. It’s refreshing. Some presenters could learn a lot from that. Without trying to sound like Roy Walker… “Say what you see”! Or for those who prefer a more cultured quotation, George Eliot once summed up the challenges with being honest by saying "Falsehood is easy... truth so difficult." I can't be certain he had radio presenters in mind when he said that though.

Think about all the great presenters you know. And I’m certain the vast majority of them, you trust to tell you the truth.

Verdict? A good debut and I’m confident this is a strong signing for Capital. The future of radio will be decided by presenters who have something to say… other than just the station name twice a link!

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