Don’t Call It Brexit Radio 

OXFORD, England — Union JACK Radio broadcasts out of a low-slung, graffiti-covered structure that its staff affectionately refers to on the air as “the dumpy little building.” On a nondescript Oxford street, the building is technically two stories but looks shorter; the ceilings are low, the carpeting worn. When I visited recently for a tour, one of the first things I learned was that there are bomb shelters underneath dating back to World War II — the days of Churchill, Spitfires, and Britain’s finest hour.Had it launched at any other time, Union JACK might not have attracted quite so much attention. The concept behind the station is straightforward. As the name implies, it plays only British music, by British artists. Its target audience is people 45 to 59 years old. This demographic is reflected both in the choice of the listener-selected playlist (you’re more likely to hear Pink Floyd than grime) and in the smattering of British-inflected dad jokes listeners are treated to between songs (the station eschews DJs in favor of pre-recorded promo material). On a recent morning, the playlist included music by New Order, Queen, Radiohead, some very good punk by a band called The Members, and recorded voiceovers making quips about some of the things typically viewed as essentials of Britishness: “popping out for a curry,” MINI Coopers, excessive politeness. According to its promotional materials, the station aims to celebrate “the quirky British way of life … from Mary Berry’s soggy bottom to a proper cup of tea.” (Sample catchline: “More British than Stephen Fry riding a swan.”)

Source: Don’t Call It Brexit Radio | Foreign Policy

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