BBC Radio 2 is to get a new station dedicated to certain eras of music in a huge shake-up. The BBC is launching the new platform to give “more choice to those currently underserved” by the company.
The four new genre-focused digital stations, which will launch on DAB+ digital radio, will be extensions of Radio 1, Radio 2 and Radio 3 and will use archive material, some new commissions and a small amount of new live content. The new stations will also be available on BBC Sounds.
The expansion on Radio 2 will bring listeners nostalgic pop music curated from the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s. The digital station will be fronted by a mix of Radio 2 presenters, and listeners will have access to the BBC’s archives to discover concerts, exclusive BBC sessions, interviews and Radio 2 programs not broadcast for decades.
The program mix will include some new bespoke commissions and some content already available on BBC Sounds, such as Sounds Of The 60s and The Paul Gambaccini Collection.
The Radio 1 extension is either set to focus on a wide range of music from the 2000s and 2010s or be a further version of the existing BBC Sounds Radio 1 Dance stream which showcases electronic music and dance trends.
The station will also provide context around live events such as Radio 1’s Dance Weekend: Ibiza and other third party events.
The new Radio 3 addition will feature a range of classical music, celebrating both established and emerging composers.
The changes are still subject to relevant regulatory approval but are expected to launch on BBC Sounds later this year. Lorna Clarke, head of BBC Music, said: “Our stations have captured the history of music in the UK for the past six decades for our audiences, and we now want to give them more choice from the BBC as listening habits change.
“Our add-ons for Radio 1, Radio 2 and Radio 3 will allow listeners to delve into more pop and classical genres and periods of music they love most, uniquely created by the BBC. They get a deeper listening experience than available anywhere else , hear brilliant storytelling through our extensive archive and discover more music to love, whatever your mood.”
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