We learnt that the station name is pronounced KAY-da, with a Hip Hop twang, not CAR-da with an Aussie accent.
The first hour opened with an acknowledgement of country then a brief history of Hip Hop and the special launch song that uses the station’s tag line ‘never miss a beat.’
The breakfast team introduced themselves and talked to their producer, other show hosts and to hip hop artists. Music was delivered in a stylistically wide ranging hip hop DJ mix.
We also learnt that our smart speaker heard ‘CAMA’ when CAR-da was requested and played the indigenous Alice Springs radio station. When we asked for KAY-da a US station was played, and when we finally asked for KAY-da 96.1 it found the correct station.
Listening on multiple devices we discovered that the iHeartRadio stream is ahead of the RadioApp and smart speaker streams. Live radio (FM96.1 in Sydney) and the DAB+ broadcasts are in almost real time.
The music played in the first hour was a mix of more popular mainstream songs and pure hip hop sounds
Sample it yourself, listen here.
Friday’s breakfast show
The station’s first breakfast show went well with hosts Kian and Yaz (pictured below) delivering the show with a good rapport between themselves and also their producer.
Kian Oliver studied at AFTRS and previously worked for Grant Broadcasters presenting breakfast on the NSW South Coast, then joined ARN. Kian set out producing and writing songs – at age 16, he began working with superstar Hip Hop /Pop music artists and touring Australia. Kian has been the host of the iHeartRadio Countdown on the KIIS network broadcasting across the nation – interviewing the biggest music acts around the world
Yaz Haddad began his career as a permanent resident at Sydney’s hottest Hip Hop and R&B nightspots and it wasn’t long before his skills were recognised and Yaz hit the big stages, headlining shows and events across the country. Yaz goes from writing hit songs to creating viral videos, performing on the biggest stages to broadcasting across the country.
The breakfast show had all the elements of a traditional radio breakfast show, including Sydney traffic, and also spent enough time letting the presenters talk to each other so that the audience would get to know them.
Stings and jingles in the hip hop style were plentiful in the show, but perhaps a bit too repetitive. If they are going to be played so much there needs to be more versions of the voice drops, stings and jingles. On the first show it is understandable that many stings would be used to brand the station, but frequency will need to change as the show beds in.
ARN will also need to think about the style of ads on the station. The best ads were for Amazon – they were in keeping with the target age group and style. The worst were the government ads for infrastructure and environment, topics which are of interest to the younger demographic target, but they were delivered in a much too conservative style with ‘government messaging’ delivery and script. With so much effort being put into the other elements of the format, ARN and its advertisers will need to think more carefully about adapting messages to the younger audience in a style that will resonate with them.