Tuesday, February 12, 2008

So, Goodbye then, Xfm.

Well, perhaps that might be slightly premature, but it's fair to say that the decision of Gcap to sell the Xfm licences outside London marks the beginning of some very tough times for Xfm. The decision is one which is taken, ostensibly, to save money. £1.5 million will be saved, and it's pointed out that the stations are losing money. however in the case of Xfm south wales, surely this is down to one-off costs involved with starting the station, which let us not forget, only started in NOVEMBER. Jeez, how desperate can you get? To contemplate handing a licence back to Ofcom a matter of mere WEEKS after it started broadcasting! What pains me, is the fact that i've been in these situations before- when new managment arrives, sweeps that new broom, installs a raft of middle-managment idiots, and throws a number of hard-working, relatively low-paid, totally professional presenters, and employees of the station, on the scrapheap. The middle management goons will move on, effortlessly, to another job, when their experiments fail, and the real casualties will still languish on the scrapheap. It's playing hard and fast with peoples lives, careers, houses, incomes, and professions. It messes with peoples minds and their confidence, and all this so the managers can do all they can to protect their share options from shrinking.
Well, let's look on the bright side..all of this means that Gcap are running scared, trying to shed ballast from their rapidly-sinking balloon, as it drifts down to the welcoming arms of the Global group, who must surely fancy their chances of a successful takeover bid.
I'd say that would end the careers of those, whose malicious and spectacularly inept tinkering has sent Xfm London into a spiral, losing it's voice, it's passion for music, and it's reputation in the process. If a takeover would mean there was an outside chance of the station being run by people who actually understood ONE IOTA of the music it played, and the listeners it represented, then I for one, would welcome our new radio overlords. Global, (or anyone else for that matter) it's over to you.

9 comments:

Ian said...

I also found Hazlitt's comments on the impending death of DAB quite... Shall we say, interesting. Sounds rather like she's attempting to poison the well for Global's shareholders.

But the real tragedy is that I can't see much hope for improvement at XFM even if Global do buy it -- won't it be more of the same 'tinkering' that leads to yet more banality wrapped up in 'listener empowerment' (yes, you can now text us every minute of every day and we promise to keep all of the money raised and spend it on corporate boxes at Ascot).

I suppose a management buy-out at XFM would be just wishful thinking, then?

iain said...

I'm not sure that Global would improve X, or even care that much about it...
I guess i'm hoping for a change that would allow someone to step in and rescue the brand...a Global takeover might allow that to happen.

Ian said...

Well, I'll be keeping my fingers crossed with you. Have some very happy musical memories from XFM's earlier days.

chris said...

Well, I'll be keeping my fingers crossed with you. Have some very happy musical memories from XFM's earlier days.

Amen to that... I had some great times listening to Xfm, living up here in the Midlands I only ever got it on DAB, and then only from an underpowered multiplexer too far away to get a proper signal anyway...

Many a good night was had trying to get through the bubbling mud sound to listen to The Remix or The Rinse but miraculously it always cleared up just before the first tune...

I managed to convince the guys at work to give it a try in the office (internet radio) and we spent a good few years listening to X all day, Sean Keavney's show, Iain Baker's X-list almost made work worthwhile!

Now all that's gone and we get the playlist monotony and robot voices of Xu during the day, Iain and Sean have moved on to better projects, James Hyman's Rinse (at the time the best show on the radio) has gone and Eddy-TM's Remix looks set to lose the station it airs on...

Thanks GCAP.

Thanks very much.

iain said...

Like i said, i'm hoping a process of change forces an actual change to X...let's keep fingers crossed :)

Anonymous said...

Let's all go back to Charlotte Street and start again!!!
Never forget the day the scum bought OUR station and slowly started to strangle the life out of it. Where else on the planet could you here a mix of 'Bodies' at three in the afternoon!!!
Anyway Iain got me ticket for Lowgold today (31/3 at academy islington). I had a tear the last Sunday you were on XfM when you played 'In Amber'.

iain said...

So did I, so did I.
Cheers.

dobbyn said...

Mate - you said it. And don't forget that, whether you like the station or not (not, here), they've also managed to knacker Capital - one of the biggest radio brands around.

On the upside - if Clear had bought it, it would have gone down faster.

Bring back Dave Mansfield I say...

Mattski said...

Well put Iain, as you say, what a shame, middle-management arrogantly messed up a strong brand and in doing so messed up people's lives. It seems like the new management gave no thought to their knee jerk, 'let's change for change's sake' decisions.

I used to love hearing you, John Kennedy and Eddy & James on Xfm - proper passionate radio, I now listen to BBC Radio 1 & 6.

Even my kid brother's 30 song i-pod sounds better than G-CRAP, sorry G-SCRAP.