Australian Commercial FM Radio Stations Are Failing To Support Local Acts

With over 35 years of experience in the music and entertainment industry, Collarts’ Head of Entertainment Management Chrissie Vincent has shared her research on Australia’s radio communities. Conducted as part of her Masters thesis, the data concluded that radio listeners are not being exposed to emerging local music as Australian commercial FM radio stations are failing to support homegrown artists.

Graduating with the new Masters of International Music Business degree at another institution, Chrissie says that commercial radio is not upholding the content quota requirements and has submitted these findings to APRA in December last year. It goes without saying, this research is important in looking at commercial radio with a critical eye, questioning how a lack of visibility and mutual support can affect Australia’s music industry and its emerging artists.

“My research showed that during a typical week NOVA played a measly 7% Australian content, Fox FM just 11% and KIIS FM played 13% during a 24 hour period, with the stations making their quotas playing local artists from 10pm till midnight during the ‘off-peak’,” she noted.

“Of the commercials, Triple M was the only station researched to hit the minimum of 25% content quota during a 24-hour period. National youth broadcaster triple j who are not a commercial radio station were compared for this research and were found to be easily reaching well above the minimum local requirements, proudly flying the Aussie flag with a massive 49% Australian content.” Chrissie described, “My research outcomes were more shocking than I expected with just six acts receiving frequent airplay during the research period, sufficient enough to translate to actual chart positions and sales.”

 

“It has been shown over and over that familiarity and frequency make hits. If Australian artists were given the same frequency of plays that international acts were given, the audience would become fans of Australian artists they will not turn off, they will not turn away.”

 

The research comes after APRA AMCOS, ARIA and Commercial Radio Australia announced this week that they will work together to ensure commercial radio stations are meeting their Australian music quotas and how to handle non-compliance issues and where they can be addressed. The discussion will also be raised with a Senate enquiry in local content set to go ahead in May, with hopes of changing the dialogue around local music and radio.

“I believe the government needs to support Australian music and one thing they could do right now is examine the relevance and transparency of AMPCOM (Australian Music Performance Committee), who are meant to be monitoring what is happening on radio playlists,” Chrissie noted.

“It has been shown over and over that familiarity and frequency make hits. If Australian artists were given the same frequency of plays that international acts were given, the audience would become fans of Australian artists they will not turn off, they will not turn away.”

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