super lex's photos More of super lex's photos


A Cut Out & Keep Guide to Making your Own BBC 6Music Radio Station.

Hello! Have you ever thought about making your own digital radio station? Well now you can with this charming and useful guide to broadcasting in the 21st century.

1. Hiring the DJ talent.

Can't think of anybody to host your radio programmes? No worries mate! All you need to do is think of some average (shit) bands from the nineties (Kenickie, Catatonia, Fun Lovin' Criminals, Montrose Avenue), contact the lead singers, and BINGO! you have yourself a knowledgeable and experienced line-up of readymade DJs! Simples! (Nb. I definitely do not include Jarvis Cocker and Pulp in this because I really think he/they are great. Also I really like Mark Radcliffe).

2. Creating your own 6Music style trail/advert.

6Music trails are important because they let people know what sort of stuff the station plays, even though they only get played on 6Music and therefore to hear to them you must ALREADY BE LISTENING TO 6MUSIC.

Nevertheless, without them your audience (which already exists and has a pretty good idea of why they are listening anyway), will likely start to wander across the air waves as they forget entirely what and why it is that they tuned into your station in the first place. Who knows, they might even switch off all together! This is because you think they are total morons that would happily listen to Jack Johnson unless you point out that Savages or whoever exist. To this end, it appears to be crucial that you the station, constantly remind them of your merits.

Start by getting the DJ (you/your mum) that you want to remind people about, to say a list of three things that they might play on their radio show. These can be anything as long as you remember to make them as diverse as possible, eg. 'I'll play "everything" from Public Enemy to Incredible String Band, right through to Joy Division.' Always try to start the list of three with Public Enemy, this will make you seem not racist, into politics, and excitingly anti-establishment because most Public Enemy songs are exciting and anti-establishment.

While all of this is going on, try to emphasise that you are taking the listener on a 'musical journey'. It doesn't matter that nobody will really understand what this means, or that despite your claims, you will mostly play Carter USM and The Wonder Stuff (give it up Steve Lamacq. It doesn't matter how much you play it, there will NEVER be a Grebo revival).

Upon hearing this the listener will think, or even audibly exclaim, 'WOW! I'D ALMOST FORGOTTEN ABOUT THOSE THREE VERY DIFFERENT THINGS (but not really as I listen to BBC 6Music all the time and also have my own mind that can summon up this type of information whenever I want, also I have an iPOD) AND I COULD NEVER HAVE POSSIBLY IMAGINED HOW THEY MIGHT SOUND WHEN PLAYED QUITE CLOSE TO EACH OTHER! (again, not really)'.

When the trail is finished, the DJ (you/your mum) whose show it interrupted must play a song that they feel not only lives up to this brash promise of seemingly unfathomable eclecticism, but also tops it. The most common songs for this purpose seem to be Superstition by Stevie Wonder or a new Hot Chip single.

3. Playlist trouble shooting.

Sometimes, via the diktat of the powers that be (your mum), you will have to compromise your passionate championing of true musical eclecticism in order to play new music by bands or artists that you don't much enjoy. This is not as big a problem as it might appear. In fact, play your cards right and you can turn this to your advantage, it all depends on your response. Here's what you do: If you have to play a boring singer-songwriter, instead of saying 'what a load of whiny, introspective shit that was!', try saying (in a hushed and reverent tone) 'Wow, that was just beautiful'. This will make your listeners think that it is an amazing glimpse into a troubled soul and not boring at all. This will work because you are a DJ, and DJs know loads more about what great music is than the thickos that listen to the radio, especially BBC 6Music DJs, the word music is even makes up nearly the whole name of the station for fuck's sake! A similar tactic will work should you have to play Mumford & Sons or Coldplay (which 6Music actually does). Here all you have to do is play the song but instead of saying anything afterwards, act like it didn't happen. By not saying anything, you are simultaneously nailing your colours to the mast, while ensuring that the mast itself is hidden from view or at the least quite far away. Follow this mysterious noncommittal stance with a song by a punk band or an old rapper. People will hear the two together and start to re-evaluate their opinion of Mumford & Sons based on the musical company they keep. Congratulations! You have successfully validated a load of old shit for mums!

4. Festivals.

In the world of BBC 6music festivals are the cherry on the whole smug cake. What could be better and more culturally important than loads of bands that fit your musical requirements all playing pop concerts over the same three days? NOTHING IS WHAT COULD BE BETTER THAN THIS! Not the passing of a law that lets gay people marry, the Edward Snowden case, the shooting of Trayvon Martin, or the birth of the heir to the throne. Ignore all of those things, they are merely news detritus. The real news is all about what kind of jacket might Mick Jagger wear at Glastonbury, or how big Alt-J's yurt is. Bang on and on and on about the festivals during the build up, the festivals themselves, and then forever after. If you talk about the festivals in the terms of life changing events enough then you will assign them the cultural clout that they so clearly deserve! Every festival will come to be regarded with the same significance as the Isle of White Festival or Woodstock.

Person 1: 'Hey have you ever met anyone who was at Woodstock, arguably the apex of the sixties counter culture movement and a watershed moment for both music and young people?'

Person 2: 'Don't need to mate. I was at Latitude 2009. Saw Newton Faulkner and The xx.'

Person 1: 'Fair play.'

5. Facing down 'the man'.

If you have done everything listed above then you should by now have a working copy of BBC 6Music, good for you! Don't get too smug just yet though (getting too smug comes later). What's this? It's Mark Thompson, director general of the BBC circa 2010, and he's decided that all your hard work is to be flushed down the digital toilet because 'only one in five UK residents were aware the station existed, and that it lacked presenters with credibility as music experts'. What a fuddy duddy square! Grown ups just don't get it, man! What should you do?! Here's what. Remember that loyal and mentally pliable listenership you built up? Well you've done a lot for them, like telling them about festivals and telling reminding them about punk music, anyway now it's time for them to do something for you. Luckily there are few things more powerful than the righteous indignation of white, middle class music nerds with access to social media. After all they are the license payers, and so help them god they will let all and sundry know about it if they are pissed off about something, even if the existence of that thing is unknown to four fifths of the population. Thank god! Your listeners have reached into Mark Thompson's toilet and fished you out! Phew! Now all you need to do is move everything to Manchester and talk about the Stone Roses for the rest of time.

No comments: