Written by Radio

Sony Radio Academy Award Winners 2013

So last night in a hot and sweaty room where the tables were just that bit too close together, this year’s Sony Awards were handed out.
Absolute Radio did rather well, and I suspect that there may be a few sore heads around the station today.
Most of the press seems to be leading on John Humphrys for his interview that dovetailed into the BBC DG resigning. But I think it’s fair to recognise BBC Radio 5 Live as the overall Station of the Year, especially in an Olympic year. I think they really did capture the mood of the nation over those two short weeks.
Eddie Mair’s star continues to rise with a win as Best Speech Broadcaster of the Year, and Issy Suttie’s comedy win is well worthy of it. There’s a new series from her that’s just started on Radio 4 which, along with Down The Line being back, is an unmissable comedy strand right now. Richard Herring won bronze incidentally – I think the only non-radio award of the evening.
Richard Park won the Special Award for an incredible run over nearly five decades in radio, while Steve Lamacq won the Gold award for his contribution to music radio.
The Today Programme was somehow adjudged (see, you can use that word outside of football!) better than Christian O’Connell and Chris Evans – not a decision that would be easy to make. Metro won the Battle of Tyneside, and Classic FM won Brand of the Year.
I really don’t like new “Sony Golden Headphones” Award – which I’m not sure counts as a Sony Award proper. I suspect that it was introduced to broaden the appeal of the Sonys amongst the public at large. The idea is that it was a popularity contest and every presenter in the country was able to win it. Except that was never the case. It was always going to go to someone on a big station (sorry local commercial radio presenters), and it was always going to go to a winner who could “get out the social media vote” (sorry presenters not fully utilising this or forced to use a station generic Twitter/Facebook account). So the fact that the first winners are Dan & Phil from Radio 1 – perhaps the most “hooked up” presenters on the biggest youth orientated station in the country, isn’t a surprise. For all I know, they’re brilliant. But popularity contests don’t belong in the Sonys. They become the equivalent of the TV Quick awards or something.
The full list of winners is here.
And yes, I’ll put up my complete list of winners in the next few days to put it all in perspective over the longer haul.