February 21st, 2007 at 05:06am
Yesterday I decided to try and work out why 666 ABC Canberra rates well in this town. What is on there that is worth listening to, is there interesting discussion and debate of current issues, events and affairs? Are the presenters particularly interesting? What about the callers?
My plan was to listen for an hour between 10am and 11am…here’s what I heard.
News, bad song, droning on and on and on and on about a dead author with some local author, promo for Clean Up Australia day with really bad jingle set to the tune of Waltzing Matilda, presenter being smarmy about breaking the news of James Hardie chairwoman Meredith Hellicar resigning…a whole fifteen minutes after Lawsie broke the news (yes, I flicked back to 2CC during the bad song), another bad song, chatter between presenter and sport reporter who somehow managed to be at the Canberra Capitals breakfast whilst answering phone calls from the public about Basketball, and attending the Brumbies training session, whilst taking more phone calls from the public (does he give out his mobile number or something) and somehow making it back to the studio to take calls from ABC sycophants who claim that commercial radio don’t provide sport scores. Promo for a CD of the bad music they play on the air. Interview with a shareholders’ association representative telling us all how wonderful Meredith Hellicar is. Promo explaining that the ABC will play the emergency siren if there is an emergency. More bad music.
It was 10:45 and I had heard enough. It was the worst 45 minutes of radio I have endured in a looooong time…and that Alex Sloan couldn’t keep a straight face if it was superglued…and she t–a–l–k–s…..s–o…..s–l–o–w–l–y and constantly says um and er. I don’t mind the occasional um and er, but when they become a vital part of every second sentence it is downright annoying.
All the while, Lawsie was focussing on real issues, such as basic services for schools which seem to be sadly lacking in so many places, and the crazy outsourcing system which NSW schools have to go through to get things repaired…adds about 30-40% to the cost of the repair and they end up with the local repair person anyway. (Yes, I had to flick back during the bad music to save my ears).
So why do people listen? Clearly it has something to do with the sheer amount of people who are either Chief Turnip Stanhope admirers, require warning signs on clothing to remind them not to iron shirts while they are wearing them, or both. The other 666 listeners have me baffled as I can’t see how anybody else can put up with that crud for any length of time.
Clearly they come from a different planet and don’t visit this one…which begs the question, if Chief Turnip Stanhope lives on another planet, why must he issue directives for this one, seeing as he is never here?
I may try them again on a different shift with a different presenter (not breakfast…Ross Solly, combined with morning presenter Alex Sloan represent just about everything that is wrong with talk radio)…perhaps Drive has some decent programming, surely it couldn’t be any worse than the assault on my ears and intellect that came through my radio yesterday morning!
Perhaps while the ratings period is still on I will randomly review an hour of each radio station in the ratings race, now that would be some fun (and possibly burn my ears out…but fun).