Tradition, rather than trying to emulate 6 Music, is the future of BBC Radio 4


And there’s the potential catch, with a music chat program like this, presenters sounding a bit like tiresome music snobs fighting over the stereo at a party. Luckily, veteran music radio DJ Cerys Matthews was a star here, remembering to keep bringing the conversation back to the listener.

Add to playlist was strangely like music radio, maybe 6 Music in particular, sometimes. Boakye kicked off the summit, for example, by announcing ‘let’s do this’. Not your typical Radio 4 intro, but then maybe that is the point; this is part of an attempt by Radio 4 controller Mohit Bakaya to freshen things up. If he can settle down, find his style, and stay focused on how music is made, thankfully he should fill the musical void in Radio 4’s artistic cover.

But Radio 4 shouldn’t think they invented the art of discussing music in a culturally educated way. On Radio 3, Between the ears: a tapestry from Orkney (Sunday, Radio 3) showed effortlessly how to be daring, creative and culturally mixed. Composer Erland Cooper and violinist Daniel Pioro embarked on a musical pilgrimage around the Orkney Islands to commemorate the literary achievements of George Mackay Brown, playing music among brochs and rock formations, singing sheep and seals of the coast . It was wild and inspiring.

Meanwhile, a much more confident start to Radio 4’s new artistic installment was the inaugural episode of This cultural life (Radio 4, Saturday), a long-running interview series in which John Wilson will speak to cultural figures about their creative process, inspirations and experiences. The first guest was Kenneth Branagh, partly there to film his new film, Belfast, but also to talk about his earliest memories of performing, his love for Shakespeare and what it was like to play at the ceremony. opening of the London 2012 Olympics.


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