“TUNE IN WEDNESDAY” and the My Radio Fashion project is about celebrating radio, celebrating YOU – the radio people who shape it! Francis Currie is one of them! As our friend Peter Waak would say: “THANK YOU FOR MAKING THE WORLD SOUND BETTER!” Francis, thank you!
Francis and I’ve never met but in a way we have really – I guess this happens when people believe what you believe. And we both believe in radio!
Francis, thanks for loving radio so much and congrats again on being chosen as ‘one of radio’s best consultants’ in a poll conducted by US trade magazine Radio Ink in 2011 (delighted to discover you were the only non-American on the list
Before I forget: Francis is writing a book on radio – get a sneak peek into it by signing up your name here! << Click!
And before we go ON AIR with Francis, just so you know, he and I will be very thirsty after Francis’ session at the biggest radio event in Europe – Radiodays Europe in Barcelona! Don’t be shy, say hi and let’s all go out together – oh my!
Your radio girl.
Francis, why RADIO?
Radio really has always been, and continues to be, the sound track to my life, both personally and professionally. What could be more powerful than that? Of course we all know that radio is portable, personal and powerful, and that it’s a constant companion that’s always there to entertain, stimulate, challenge and inform. But even more than that, it is a positive and integral part of everyday life
Your TOP 3 radio songs of all times.
Phew! That’s a tough one. It really depends on my mood, and the radio station format that I am working with. Songs that make me turn the radio up today include:
And if you ask me tomorrow I’ll have three different songs for you …
When and how did you fall in love with radio? When did you heart get trapped?
I can’t even remember when my love affair with radio started. By the time I was six years old I was already passionate about it, and had a small portable radio that went almost everywhere with me. Since those early days radio has been my constant companion.
I grew up in a rural town in the UK, so radio was not only always by my side, but it was also my best connection with the bright lights and the big city beyond my own world. Still now, as an international radio consultant, I get a great kick out of hearing new radio stations and working with new radio people in new markets.
Who was your inspiration – was it a radio DJ, consultant, copywriter, PD, GM etc.?
For me, both as a listener and a radio professional, radio has always been about the music and the people on the radio. And it is still about what comes out of the speakers. All the rest of the backstage stuff is just there to improve the output and improve the listener’s experience. With radio more than any other medium I think you can spot a fake – that’s the power of the human voice – and I have always been drawn to those presenters who talk to me authentically, and who share their passion for music and their interest in the world with the listener.
What advice would you give to young people that are now falling in love with radio and want to make it in radio!?
Radio can be demanding – especially at the moment – so follow your heart. If radio’s your thing then always keep the passion and the vocation. And when you land that radio gig, don’t let it turn in to just another job. You need to care and to commit to make it work. If you want to make it in radio then get interested in people and start figuring out what makes them tick. It’ll help you whether you end up on-air or behind-the-scenes.
What are your first memories of radio?
I have three:
Listening to BBC Radio 4 on my mother’s kitchen radio.
Cycling around the countryside, listening to music radio with a mono earpiece plugged in to my tiny transistor radio.
Listening to BBC Radio 1, Radio Luxembourg and French radio after bed time, excited about the world beyond mine.
Tell us your favourite radio story (that happened to you or that you’ve heard and just stayed with you).
Did you hear the one about the Programme Director who was watching a Real Time Focus Group about his Morning Show? The plan was that whenever he had a question to ask the group, he would text the Moderator who would then ask the question on his behalf.
One of the main topics for investigation was whether the Morning Show should be replaced, so the Programme Director texted through quite a few questions about this:
- “How much would you miss Mr X, the current Morning Show host, if he left?”
- “How would you feel if the current Morning Show host were replaced by TV & radio Presenter Mr Y?”
- “Would a new Morning Show host make you listen more frequently or stay listening for longer?”
As the Real Time Focus Group continued, the Programme Director became more and more irate as the Moderator ignored him, and didn’t ask any of the questions. Then the PD himself received a text message that made his heart stop. It was from the Morning Show host. The message was a single word in capitals: “WHAT?”
As the PD felt a powerful blast of dread, his heart started beating again, faster and faster, and he slowly realised the full horror of what he had done.
The Moderator and Mr X shared a first name so they were next to each other in his phone address book, and the PD had actually been sending all his questions about the future of the Morning Show to Mr X, whilst he was live on the air!
Needless to say, both the PD and Mr X had a lot to discuss after the show …
And the moral of this story? I will never ever confuse the Moderator & Mr X ever again – nor underestimate the power of a simple text message!
A coffee with Francis? Mobile: +44 (0)7770 82 85 30
Francis Currie Consulting
GL7 9WY United Kingdom
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