Monday, June 19, 2023

The Bard Radio Project: Australia

The most recent stop, in my quest to listen to radio stations from foreign countries, landed me in Australia after Google Bard suggested the country.

After randomly selecting the Land Down Under, Bard then - upon my request - named me a handful of radio stations to listen to. As I closed off in last week's post, I stated that I was keen to find a specific presenter on a certain station.

The station of note - Nova 96.9 - actually did wind up being suggested by Google's AI. 

The presenter I was looking out for - Kate Ritchie.

Ritchie became famous playing the character of Sally Fletcher in Home and Away. She was in the series from its start in 1988 and left after twenty years. I had heard she now has a radio career, so - as soon as Bard recommended Australia - I immediately wanted to seek out the Home and Away legend.

Nova Radio Australia

After doing some Googling, I found out that the presenter I wanted to listen to appears on Nova 96.9 in show called Fitzy and Wippa with Kate Ritchie. It starts at 6AM local time which - after working it out - I learned is 9PM for me.

I first tuned into the station on Sunday evening in order to catch the first episode of the new week. It didn't turn out well. All I heard was music and commercials. There were no presenters. After listening to ninety minutes or so, I concluded that the station aired a different feed online. 

My assumption turned out to be a poor guess.

I listened in on Monday evening and found Ritchie along with one of the other presenters (the other guy was on holiday). They alluded to the fact that it was Ritchie's first time working the 6AM show, so it seems I - or rather: Google Bard - selected the right week to choose Aussie radio.

It turned out the show didn't air on the Sunday/Monday because it was a Bank Holiday down under.

I ended up listening to the show for the rest of the week.

It played a lot of modern pop music (mainly from the US). I particularly enjoyed the dynamic between Ritchie and her co-presenter. They had good banter. Listener calls are also part of the show - I found those entertaining.

Another fun thing about the show was on Thursday night (for me!) they had someone in the studio to do a rap battle with the male co-host. They had jousted in the past, so this was a rematch of sorts. They replayed the original battle as well. Both times were funny.

Ritchie brought up Home and Away a few times during the week. It was interesting to hear some stories from her time on what is my favourite soap opera.

I will certainly tune in to this show again.

* * *

Nova 96.9 FM was the only content from Australia I ended up listening to for this edition of The Bard Radio Project.

I asked Bard to pick another country for me. Next up is... India.

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