Saturday, August 09, 2014

AMP decides nobody has time for a three minute single

You hate radio stations fading out songs too soon? You might want to steer clear of Calgary's AMP radio, which has hit on the idea of paying people to edit tracks down to two minutes.

Wait, what? Why?

Steve Jones, VP of programming for Newcap Radio, which operates close to 100 stations across the country including AMP, said it is a sign that radio is finally willing to get with the times.
[...]
As we look to people’s changing habits and changing attention spans and watch people on their iPod listening to half a song and forwarding on to the next one we sort of came to the conclusion that maybe it was time to rethink why songs are the way they were.
I suppose for listeners it's lucky he watched someone forwarding through their collection; if he'd observed one of those people who find a track they like and leave it on repeat for six or seven turns, Calgarians would be facing an endurance test.

By the way, isn't there something heartbreaking about Jones' desperately trying to be all modern, and talking about iPods? Half expecting him to start mumbling about how radio has to compete with people looking up music on Yahoo! in a minute.

So, the radio people have noticed that people skip through songs and rather than thinking "it's interesting that faced with a large supply of music they themselves have chosen, listeners will rush through their tracks trying to find something that resonates with them and therefore our task is to program music which resonates", concludes that people really love fast-forwarding and try to do that on their behalf. It's like a pub noticing their best customers go to the toilet a lot, and opting to add extra diuretics to their beer.

The rest of the world has pointed that cutting songs down to two minutes is an act of insanity, but for Jones, it's all upside:
Besides, he said, half the song length means double the amount of songs AMP can play in an hour, which also equals more exposure for the musicians, for more musicians. And that, theoretically, translates to more revenue.

“The artists are generally quite receptive to having their songs heard more often by more people,” he said.
Yeah, you're getting your music in front of more people. But unfortunately they're people who are quite happy to listen to a radio that has eviscerated music.
Mr. Jones said the reaction has been “really, really positive. There’s obviously been some negative, for sure, but we’ve been really happy with the feedback we’re getting from listeners.”
Jones is happy with the feedback, but to be fair his attention span is so stunted he only reads as far as "I was listening to your station today and", so has no idea what they're actually saying.


2 comments:

Paul said...

Nothing about getting with the times at all. From Radio Caroline's history, talking about Radio Luxembourg in the early 60s:

Station air time was block booked in fifteen minute or half hour slots and taken up entirely by the major record labels of the day; Decca, Capitol, E.M.I., Parlophone etc... Only their own signed and recorded artists could expect any air play. In order to showcase as much of their product as possible DJ's such as Jimmy Saville would play only one minute of each new release, linking each with a quick fire introduction.

Jon Myer said...

It looks like the format is heading this way: http://radiotoday.co.uk/2014/08/quickhitz-format-on-its-way-to-the-uk/

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