Radio is used to educate, to inform and to entertain. As part of its entertainment functions, radio plays music. Radio has a rich array of music and the range of music radio provides is unprecedented. Radio is said to have music because radio has a huge library of music more than any music library in the world. With the coming of technology, one would have thought that, radio’s position when it comes to music will be taken over by the internet or other technological platforms but radio still has the most incredible range of music. Technology has rather made storage of music easier for radio and it continues to give out more different genres of music because radio stations can be found in almost all parts of the world. Radio is constantly changing and “throughout the last century, it has adapted to cultural and technological change to remain a popular and distinctive medium despite the growth of television, cinema, cable and satellite service … and even the internet” (Fleming, 2002, pg1)
Radio is a technology that transmits data to a remote point where a receiver detects the signal with the use of wire (UL Hassan, 2010). Radio is also the transmission and reception of electromagnetic waves of radio frequency, especially those carrying “sound” messages. It is derived from radiation which is a principle that governs radio waves. Technology is a body of knowledge used to create tools, develop skills and extract or collect materials. Technology is also seen as the application of science to meet an objective or solve the problem. Technology has helped radio to improve on the way it stores music, thereby helping radio to give more different types of genres of music. Radio has got music and no other media or platform can change that.
Oxford English Dictionary sees music as a vocal or instrumental sounds combined to produce beauty and express emotions; the art of this is, the written signs representing this; something very pleasing to or welcome to the ear (p. 336). Music is a pattern of sounds made by musical instruments or singing or a combination of both, intended to give pleasure to people listening to it.
Hilliard (2008) stated that Radio, in the past and now is also music and talk. He mentioned that although talk and other non-music specialized format have recently increased on radio programming today is still principally music (ibid, pg. 302). According to Fleming (2002), most radio stations in the world are music based, and the style of each station is a crucial aspect of the station’s identity. Radio stations all over the world use music and the music they play are seen as a key component of its audience’s identity. Radio disc jockeys (DJ) use music to do their work on air. They bring a very rich array of music to the listener thereby increasing the music library of radio.
Now radio stations store their music on hard disk that is accessed either by a fader system or keyboard. In these times of technological advancement, radio can store more music. Hard disk can take a very large number of songs that makes the work of the DJ easy. Can you just imagine the number of radio stations around the world with hard disks to store music? It will be countless; multiplied by the number of songs each of the hard disks can take. Technology has rather come to reinforce the fact that radio has music and that it has an incredible and unlimited range of music.
Technological advancement has really helped radio musical library in a very positive way. Indeed radio’s said to have music and technology has been a blessing rather than a curse to radio. Unlike in time past, that, people used live instruments to produce music which also take a lot of time, now by the help of technology music is produced in a relatively short time. Technology has helped a lot of musicians and producers to release songs easily and in short time. Now a lot of songs being produced involve technology and it makes making music easier. As radio play these songs, it increases it library and this goes on all round the world. While people produce more Highlife, Hiplife, Agbadza and other local type of music, some other people somewhere also produce more Jazz, Blues, Soul, Zouk, Ndombolo, Calypso, just to mention a few. These and many more are all played on the radio in different parts of the world. Radio has music that is unlimited. Radio plays every type of music and the range of music that radio gives is unprecedented to any found record in any record library in the world. Technology has played a very important role in this.
The genres of music on radio are varied. Now with the help of technology, we can listen to music from all over the world through internet radios. There are a lot of radio stations all over the world and now with technology, most of them are online. There are some radio stations specifically established for the internet. For example once you have access to the internet, you can use TuneIn, an audio computer programme which can be use to receive radio signals of radio stations all over the world; provided it is on the internet. This gives people all over the world to get access to different genres of music that radio has stored. Technology has come to help radio increase its musical library. Now with technology, I can be here in Ghana and listen to an Indian music from a radio station in India.
Radio has music and the technology advancement has really been a blessing to radio. Technology has really helped increase the music library of radio. Technology brought internet radio and it has given us access to an incredible and unlimited range of music provided by radio. Technology has really reinforced that fact that radio has music and it is insatiable, inexhaustible and infinitiable.
Radio XYZ, 93.1fm
Fleming, C. (2002). The Radio Handbook. London and New Year : Routledge Taylor and Francis Group.
Hilliard, R.L. (2008). Writing for Television, Radio New Media. USA : Thomson Wadsworth Boston.
Ul Hassan, T.A. (2011). Brief History of Radio