Thursday 28 April 2016


On Tuesday evening it was a quick dash for me from the office across town to Levenshulme where I was honoured to be interviewed by Caroline Boyd on ALL FM’s Drive Time show. The main reason I was there was to promote the Beat Back gig Manchester People’s Assembly Against Austerity are holding tonight, Thursday 28 April at the Soup Kitchen cafĂ© and music venue on Spear St in the Northern Quarter. Four Manchester acts, three music, one poet. Tickets on door £7. The gig will take place at Soup Kitchen in Manchester, Thursday 28 April, 7pm – 10pm. Performing are The Tapestry, Novustory, Gareth Evans and Gerry Potter.

We spoke a little about the People’s Assembly Against Austerity’s campaigning work and the active Manchester branch, who campaign tirelessly on many fronts and offer many solutions and alternatives to the austerity measures which benefit the millionaires and leave the rest of us to pay for it in all senses.

Friday 1 April 2016

#RDE16 - and #IRF16 Milan here I come

Well, Ra
dio Days Europe in Paris was wonderful- 1500 people from 60+ countries, with four parallel streams of talks and a trade fair. Plus a concert and cocktail reception at Radio France. I am hoping an article I'm writing about it will appear in June's Radio User magazine (PW Publishing).

I enjoyed it so much that I'm off to Milan on Wednesday 6 April after all, to report on this year's International Radio Festival.

Some headlines from #RDE16:

· The launch of the LG Stylus 2, the world’s first smartphone with DAB+

· Radios in automated/driverless/connected cars a big topic, a challenge for broadcasters’ content wise (if drivers watch video instead of tune to radio in the future) and lots of app companies adapting and integrating smartphones to hook up with in car system. I sat in and watched a Hybrid car radio system that streams stations through web but seamlessly goes to FM/DAB if 3G etc. cuts out.

· Public and commercial radio embracing all platforms to reach audiences - podcasts, app teasers on Snapchat, What’s app and other social media etc.

· Challenge of ensuring diversity at the public broadcast stations so they reflect the city/country they broadcast from.

· The challenge to broadcasters of the “four horsemen of the apocalypse” (Apple, Amazon, Google and Spotify) encroaching the space of traditional radio audiences.

· The range of podcasters is rapidly growing as is easy to use podcast software. Anyone with something to say (radio hobbyists, plane spotters, artists, amateur chefs etc.) can build an audience.

Once upon a time: to smartphones and podcast apps

Once upon a time, many years ago, when I was a child, I used to dream of owning a magic book that would contain every comic strip, poe...