Ten years ago in March the BBC launched 6 Music as part of its digital radio output and the broadcaster will celebrate the milestone with a series of live shows from Maida Vale studios.
From March 12th-16th, DJ Lauren Laverne will host the shows from London’s iconic studios and welcome 6 Music favourite guests including Orbital and Spiritualised.
One of the Orbital duo Phil Hartnoll extolled the virtues of the radio station, calling it “brilliant”.
“For me it takes over from where John Peel left off to be honest but not just one night, it’s 24-7,” he said, revealing also that the band will play some new tracks although a set list has not been confirmed.
On March 16th, the station will take residency at London’s Southbank Centre where Laura Marlin, Gruff Rhys and Anna Calvi are among those set to perform.
Artists will perform in three different spaces within the venue and the shows will be broadcast on the BBC Red Button, the broadcaster announced. Tickets for the shows have sold out.
Other celebrations include a new feature – 6 Music Playlist – where popular guests will take control of the station’s playlist with their favourite songs.
A decade of ‘alternative spirit’ music broadcasting has not been plain-sailing. In 2010 6 Music was under threat of being closed as part of the BBC’s cost-cutting measures. A campaign by listeners led to the station being saved and subsequently doubling its audience thanks to the publicity.
The station now brings in an average audience of 1.4 million listeners.
Phil Jupitus launched 6 Music on March 11th 2002 with his breakfast show, choosing Ash’s Burn Baby Burn as the first track.
It launched alongside urban music station 1 Xtra, the now-defunct Asian Network and BBC 7, which has since been rebranded as Radio 4 Extra.