Manipulated art ceases to be art. – Seth Godin
As a radio jockey, I have presented many live radio shows on the FM Gold channel until 2014. (It used to broadcast on 106.4 MHz back then).
My listeners are upset with me because now I rarely host radio shows. And I feel I owe them an explanation since they are the sole reason for me being a radio jockey.
So here it is:
10th December 2003 – one of the most remarkable days of my life – I hosted my first radio show on FM Gold channel from studio number 30 of All India Radio’s Delhi station @0700hrs. Show’s title: Fm Subah 7 Baje.
Here’s a brief list of the radio shows I presented on FM Gold:
- FM Subah 7 Baje
- Radio Yatra
- Hello FM Gold
- Radio Rhythm
- Radio Reel
- Yeh Rastein Yeh Manzilein
- Ye Shaam Mastani
- Sadabahar Dus Gaane
- Sangeet dot com
- Shukravar Raat Gold
- Shanivar Subhah Ki Chai
- Chutti Ke Bahane
- Shanivar Raat Gold
- Ravivar Subah Ki Chai
- Ravivar Raat Gold
As you can see, I did almost every programme (and I did loads of them), from 2003 to 2013.
Creating radio shows back then was fun because I had the liberty to ‘create’ something out of thin air with my imagination, dreams, and fantasies.
Post-2013, I noticed that a bunch of delusional people (who thought they ‘own’ FM Gold) needed workers who can do what they’re told to do.
I must admit that as an artist I am pretty bad at that stuff. I suck at taking orders from people who don’t even know the ABCs of radio shows hosting.
Times Changed. Something Unfortunate Happened
The situation worsened over time.
And now, All India Radio doesn’t need presenters to create radio shows; instead, they need ‘workers’ to produce them (like a day labourer working on toys on an assembly line in a factory).
The moment your ‘produce’ a radio show, it’d be dead because you took out its soul in the process
If you are a listener of FM Gold channel for quite some time, you must have noticed the gradual decline in the quality.
The (so-called) quality control system tends to bully and harass the artists and promotes the ‘workers’ in the name of compliance and obedience.
And in doing so, they missed the point:
An Artist Cannot Be Tamed or Made to Behave in Specific Ways
And why it is so?
Well, because that’s the difference between an art and a job.
In a job, the worker is supposed to follow orders and do as told. He does not have the liberty to create – he’s expected to deliver as instructed.
While on the other hand, art is spontaneous and unpredictable.
No one can predict the outcome, not even the artist himself – and that’s the charm of being an artist. You are free to create anything out of thin air, and because the outcome is unique; it’s beautiful.
So, you can mould a worker as you wish because he is fearful of losing his job, but you cannot tame an artist because that’s the most fundamental requirement of being one.
You see, I had worked hard to become a broadcaster – it took me four years to have one successful voice audition. There was a charm, a grace, a creative satisfaction in being a radio jockey.
I always strived to create a better radio show than the last one, which I feel was the effect of my training I did sincerely in 2002 for almost two months.
I cued cassettes, fetched cue sheets, delivered production sheets from studios to duty rooms, and sometimes even lunch and snacks for the radio presenters on duty.
Why I did all that?
Because my mentor, Mr Vijay Deepak Chhibber had once asked me to take my training ‘seriously.’
And I must say I was fortunate to get training from him because the insights about broadcasting he gave me are precious and invaluable. His words inspired and guided me in times of on-air crises, and they still nourish me as a voice actor.
In the end, all I want to say is this:
Creating radio shows is an art. That’s why we artists worship Goddess Saraswati, not Lord Vishwakarma.
When you start producing radio shows instead of ‘creating’ them, it ceases to be an art.
Keep your production. I am in love with my art.