Radio: the colour of skin has nothing to do with the selection of artists

Radios: la couleur de peau n'a rien à voir avec la sélection des artistes

The skin color of the artists does not influence the selection of the music on the radio, say representatives of Cogeco Media and Bell Media, called to respond to comments made by québec musicians in the wake of the #BlackoutTuesday.

In the pages of the 24 Hours in the last few weeks, the artists Webster, Imposs and Sarahmée claimed that the commercial radios don’t support enough artists black.

“I have colleagues who do break even not mind to pay the “radio tracking” because they say that they will not play anyway”, stated in part Sarahmée.

The vice-president of programming at Cogeco Media, Guy Pelchat, denies these allegations and argues that all play on a level playing field.

“This is not an issue of skin color. When we listen to music in the musical committee, there are no album covers or photos of anything. Then, we decide if the music works with the formats,” says one, in which the group has, in particular in Montreal, the antennas of CKOI and Rythme.

“There is so much room for Gangnam Style, artist, south Korean, that is for an artist a German or jamaican. The richness of a good radio station, it is really the multitude of the origin of the different styles, as long as it is within a format.”

The “progressive chlorination” of the québécois rap, denoted by Webster does not exist in the eyes of the Guy Pelchat.

“Dubmatique still plays at CKOI and, as far as I know, it is people of black race. It was the first hip-hop group that was played in French at CKOI and Rythme FM elsewhere.”

“Tizzo plays at CKOI, this is another “méconception”. His song [It flogs] plays since 22 January 2020 to CKOI.”


Asked to comment, representatives of Bell Media (Rouge FM, Energy) went from this statement, transmitted by e-mail.

“The radio stations each have their own musical identities with programming that evolves regularly to meet the musical interests of the listeners. Ultimately, the listeners decide what programming radio: if a song works with the musical identity of the station and that it has the potential to attract a lot of listeners, it is broadcast.”

“The chain dedicated specifically to the quebec rap launched in may 2019 by Bell Media Radio on iHeartRadio allows fans of this genre to discover new content and follow all the latest news of their artists from quebec favorite. It is a way of recognizing that the québécois rap takes more and more place in the hearts and ears of Quebecers.”

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