Record industry bigs up 6

By | Published on Friday 16 April 2010

Record label trade body the BPI yesterday issued a statement formally calling for the BBC to save digital music station 6music, which, of course, Corporation bosses want to close next year. The statement follows the previously reported industry delegation who rocked up at the BBC Trust earlier this week to try and persuade bosses there to block the Beeb’s proposed radio cutbacks. 

In the industry delegation was Sony Music’s Paul Curran, Universal’s David Joseph, Warner’s Jeremy Marsh, EMI’s Andria Vidler and Infectious Music’s Korda Marshall plus reps from trade bodies the BPI, UK Music, the Association of Independent Music and the Music Managers’ Forum.

Yesterday’s statement outlined the argument the music industry bods presented earlier this week. They argued that 6 provided a music service that could not be replicated in the commercial sector, and therefore the station is an excellent example of the BBC’s public service mission in action. That the station plays an important role in the country’s cultural life, by showcasing new and alterative artists. That 6 should be thought of as contemporary music version of Radio 3, rather than an alternative to Radios 1 and 2, and its audience size should be viewed in that context. And that putting the bigger 6 shows on Radios 1 and 2 would just see alternative music saddled with graveyard slots.

They also used the opportunity to complain again about the lack of a weekly music show on prime-time BBC TV since the demise of ‘Top Of The Pops’.

Confirming the industry’s support for 6, BPI chair Tony Wadsworth told CMU: “We cannot see the sense in pulling the plug on a successful outlet for artists, both new and established, that are not being played on either Radio 1 or 2. 6 Music has significant cultural worth and public value that you can’t measure by audience numbers alone, and it provides programming that commercial radio does not”.