From Murphy transistors to FM radio in mobile phones, radio in India has been flourishing. What began as pockets of entertainment with Vividh Bharti is now an entertainment vehicle that offers the beauty of randomness with their explicit content and playlists.
Keeping in mind the beauty of the diversity of the medium, exchange4media asks industry creatives to share their favourite radio memory, etching out a bouquet of radio shows that have touched souls over the years.
The value of Old!
Despite being challenged with hurdles time and again, the Indian radio industry has managed to create legends that claimed the hearts of thousands. Till date, the elderly miss their radio favourites and such as ‘Binaca Geetmala’, ‘Hawa Mahal’, ‘Bioscope ki Baatein’, and many more, while the youth are more cued on to the new content or adapting to the digital form of radio.
“When I was a kid, it was ‘Sugam Saritha’ that we heard in the mornings as my mom dressed. It kind of remained etched in the mind as a memory,” shared Priti Nair, Co-Founder, Curry Nation, shedding light on her happy memory with radio.
Ashwini Deshpande, Founder-Director and Principal Designer, Elephant Design shared that she grew up listening to radio legends, including ‘Binaca Geetmala’. “Ameen Sayani used to get the nation glued to radios on Wednesday nights with that show. We used wait with bated breath to know the top song of the week. Then there used to be S Kumar’s ‘Filmi Muqadma’ on Sunday mornings, which was also quite a favourite.”
While these golden era songs take the creative honchos back to their childhood with smiles, they also felt a connect with certain contemporary shows.
“I like ‘Purani Jeans’ on Radio Mirchi for the sheer joy of listening to songs from my time,” added Despande. The other property to make it to the charts is ‘Babbar Sher’, expressed Nair. “It is humour at some genuinely evil, different level. They are so funny and absolutely mad. It puts a smile on your face when you are in that rush to office. The voice talent, the music, the jokes – everything is truly crafted superbly,” she added.
Initially, while there was a lot for Hindi music enthusiasts, but very little was available for those who had international music preferences. However, the situation changed with time and now there are a number of radio stations that bridge this gap.
Minakshi Achan, Co-founder, Salt Brand Solutions said that her favourite show is ‘American Top 40’ with Ryan Seacrest on Radio Indigo.
From the time of Ameen Sayani to RJs such as Suren and Meera and Anurag Pandey, radio has had a lot to offer. However, with the increased commercialisation and craze of other media, radio has slid from its earlier position of preference. Nonetheless, with content differentiation, aggressive business strategies and soulful music, radio is now again on the track of being ‘the’ media.