Radio – Suckers Never Play Me (2014 remix)

Hang on a second, just let us get open the bumper book of media cliches… ah, here we go:

It’s getting to that time of year where Australian radio stations all start playing musical chairs. Only the music they’re playing sounds a lot like Nickelback. Still, the use of the word “beloved” in this story is pure comedy gold.

HUGHESY and Kate have been poached by a rival radio network to take on Hamish Blake and Andy Lee.

The beloved duo of Dave Hughes and Kate Langbroek will be heard nationally in the drive timeslot on Kiis FM, switching from their long time home at Nova.

The pair quit Nova’s breakfast show after 12 years in November last year.

Scoring the pair is a costly coup for Kiis, who will use their new stars to re-brand the network currently known as Mix in Melbourne.

Kiis did the same thing last year when they lured Kyle and Jackie O from a rival network for their Sydney breakfast shift.

It means Dave Hughes and Kate Langbroek will go up against Hamish and Andy, who announced their return to drive radio for Austereo last week.

Oh yeah, that:

After weeks of speculation, Southern Cross Austereo today announced that from July next year Hamish and Andy will return to the lucrative national drive timeslot (4pm — 6pm) that they dominated so convincingly for five years until 2010.

“We are taking an actual break,” said Hamish to news.com.au.

“We’ve made the decision to not officially commit to another TV show next year … but we just haven’t had a bit of time off in a very long time. Between doing radio and TV for the last few years we just wanted a bit of space and to work on a few other things that we’ve got bubbling along that may or may not amount to anything.”

The radio duo wouldn’t say how long their new contract with Southern Cross Austereo is but Andy did suggest that he’s keen to tweak the show slightly before they kick things off in July.

“I’ve put in an application to have it changed to Andy and Hamish,” he joked.

Hamish and Andy quit the drive show in 2010 after five years, during which they broadcast from Afghanistan, travelled around Australia in ‘Caravans of Courage’ and even crossed the Bass strait in a tall ship.

But they’re sure they’ll be able to come up with new ideas that can top what they’ve achieved in the past.

“At the end of every year I always felt like we were out of ideas,” said Hamish.

“And then by the sheer process of turning the mic’s on and turning up each day and having a chat with each other, funny things just seem to arise, mostly driven by our listeners.

“You can’t write out five years of ideas on paper now but that’s what we love about radio, that once you start doing it adventures arise and it’s a great format that you’re able to explore those adventures in.”

Hang on a sec – didn’t that first story say:

Hughesy and Kate will get a crucial head start, with Hamish and Andy not on air until July, after they’ve filmed another chapter in their travel TV series.

What happened to taking “a bit of time off” to “work on a few other things that we’ve got bubbling along”?

There’s two ways to read this. The first is that News.com.au got their facts wrong and just assumed Hamish & Andy are filming another instalment of their travel show when in fact they really are taking a break. Seems fair enough. Move along folks, nothing more to see here.

The second way is that when you’re talking about Australian commercial radio you can never ever go wrong expecting more of the same. Look at the names in those stories: they’re the same old tired pros, perfectly capable of churning out the same old bland radio they’ve been doing for the last decade or more. When was the last time anyone even realised they were listening to Matt Tilley? Who would have guessed those shithouse “gotcha” calls were the only trace of personality he had?

“that’s what we love about radio, that once you start doing it adventures arise”. Who is Andy Lee trying to kid? Once you start doing radio in Australia your soul dies. And that’s the way pretty much everyone involved likes it. Why else would every show sound exactly the same – thirty seconds max between songs for the hosts to bark at each other about what they did on the weekend then it’s time to take some calls! But first three minutes of ads back-to-back and a bunch of Taylor Swift songs only slightly sped up and with the last 30 seconds faded down so we can get back to the ads.

These days the hard-core nutter fanbase of Get This – maybe give the Rex Hunt and “people want ducks” references a rest guys, it has only been seven years – has largely overshadowed just how funny that show was. And it was a radio show! That was popular and rated well! But who wants to put in that kind of effort to make good radio comedy these days? Better to just hire yet another double act who ran out of things to say to each other a half decade ago and get them to take a bunch of slightly awkward calls from the kind of people who call into radio shows to talk about the weirdest place they had sex.

Ugh, we’re even depressing ourselves here. Let’s give the last word on Australian radio to Tony Martin:

‘I’ve never met Kyle Sandilands and he certainly does a different kind of radio from what I have done, but I will say for Kyle Sandilands: there is nobody that says more true things about how commercial radio works.

”People in commercial radio are generally terrified to speak honestly until they’re sacked, whereas Kyle Sandilands said something a few years ago, which no one in commercial radio had been brave enough to say, which is that commercial radio is the only job where your boss is someone who has failed at your job, which is literally the case. I think a lot of people cheered when he said that.”

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