80s radio stations were the last generation of independent radio before conglomerate companies began dominating the airwaves. These stations allowed talented deejays the freedom to pick the music that they wanted to play and 80s radio music was rarely limited to one set playlist of the top hits of the day. This freedom of deejays allowed listeners to develop an attraction to the personality of a radio show as well as respect for a deejayâs musical selections. Many of these radio stations have since adopted playlists that play the same ten to twenty songs over and over throughout the course of the day. This constant repetition is quite opposite the freewheeling attitude of radio in the 80s.
While there were a number of different types of radio stations in the 80s, certain niche variations existed with considerable success. One such niche was the college radio market. These stations often featured students as deejays and the music was often an eclectic mix of whatever the student felt like playing on that particular day. The randomness of this format attracted many viewers who did not enjoy a station focused on a single type of music. In addition, the 80s saw the emergence of morning talk radio. Syndicated shows featuring shock jocks such as Howard Stern and Don Imus quickly became a favorite for the morning drive to work.
80s radio stations also played a very different role in society than the current stations found on airwaves. Before the advent of the internet, radio stations were a constant source of information for listeners. In addition to keeping listeners informed about upcoming live concerts and other entertainment options, these radio stations were also used as a means of transmitting important community information. School closings and detailed traffic reports were an essential part of the morning routine as families would prepare for the day.
While 70s radio stations often featured disco and pop as the main musical styles, the 80s saw radio stations transitioning to more new wave and rock and roll music as well as newly emerging genres such as hip-hop and electronic music. The primary 80s radio music was a type of synthesized rock that is characterised today as 80s music. The transition from 70s radio stations also included more interaction with listeners as many stations had frequent and popular contests requiring listeners to call in to the show. Prizes such as tickets to concerts, clothing, and even money attracted more and more listeners to this golden age of radio.
Radio has always had a large place in popular culture, but this trend seems to be fading. Radio has been passed by the internet as the primary source of music and running a good radio station is quietly becoming a lost art. As radio stations depend on advertising revenue to support the broadcasts, they are having to split this market with internet radio station websites. Also, the computer company Appleâs introduction has changed the way that the population listens to music, with more and more people choosing to make their own playlists instead of listening to the ones on the airwaves. 80s radio stations were the pinnacle of radio achievement, but listening to radio in general is sadly becoming a thing of the past.