If you’ve not heard of SYN Radio before (under the umbrella of SYN Media, they also have a Television section), it is a community radio in Melbourne, Australia. It broadcasts on a metropolitan community radio license in Victoria, and is also available online and as podcasts. It runs on volunteer work by youths.
It’s basically a training ground and launch pad for people who want to get into the broadcasting industry, to give such people the experience of being on air, which can be a bit nerve-wrecking, particularly for the first few times. Speaking into a microphone may seem easy to some, but the truth is it can be harder than public speaking. A radio DJ is in a studio, speaking to no one but pretending that he is, and has to be energetic and perky to four walls. It is very difficult because the real audience is out there listening, but you have to imagine them, because there is no way to see them or gauge their reactions.
SYN has helped to launch careers of some notable Australians in the broadcasting sector. One such person is Joanna McCarthy, an award-winning journalist with ABC. Another duo who used to host on SYN Radio are Hamish and Andy, 2 Australian radio personalities. The last I’ve heard, they’re running around South America with a television crew to capture their exploits as they film a television show.
Yes, they began at SYN, and it’s nice to know they haven’t lost any of that wit and humour. Not only that, it’s even nicer to know that they’ve had success in doing what they love: entertaining people with comedy.
I joined SYN at the end of 2013, as part of a seasonal radio show, and we talked about multifaith perspectives, sharing the religious culture we came from and are exposed to. We eventually decided on the name Intersection, as a way of saying that we’re meeting at an intersection to sit down and discuss our opinions. Very fitting, especially when our show was about multi-faith, and we were from different religions.
Our topics differed from week to week, and we even managed to squeeze in interviewees from other faiths just to get a variety of opinions. And we also talked about projects that people within the community were doing, like the Respect #projectR13message that Greater Dandenong Youth Services were promoting.
SYN Radio is supporting @greaterdandenongyouthservices! This week we’re talking about respect on social media on SYN Radio, as well as the awesome #projectR13 message. Catch us on SYN 90.7FM or http://www.syn.org.au/ #bullying #family #relationship
It was fairly successful, and ran for 3 seasons. We even won a SYN award for the best diversity programming! It was a surprise honestly, because I thought the other nominees has shows that were just as engaging. Intersection is currently on hiatus at the moment, not because we wanted to leave the show, but simply because most of us hosts have other dedications to take care of first. Hopefully, we will return soon, but at the moment things are still up in the air.
More recently, I decided to join another seasonal show, this time about international students. Very fitting for me, particularly as I am on the committee for the international branch of Unimelb’s student union (UMSU International), and writing for international-focused Meld Magazine. We will only be airing in October, but things are very exciting. Onward to new, bigger, and better things, although Intersection continues to have a place in my heart due to its large success.
Right now though, we do have another show coming up and it’s a new brand of exciting. Wanderland on SYN is a how-to guide to Melbourne from an international perspective, as we’ll compare things like the coffee culture in Melbourne and whether the community prefers a different beverage back home. Like our Facebook page!
Now, while SYN is an Australian-focused station bent on airing music from local artists, I realise that I am very unfamiliar with local singers. This post is dedicated to the few singers I do know, and I am still slowly trying to find more Australian artists and supporting them.
With that being said, here are my favourite Australian songs!
I love Stan Walker even before I came to Melbourne. I knew him as the winner of Australian Idol, and when his first single came out Black Box.
Another of my favourites, although I do have a lot, is this song Chandelier.
You can also check out, Choose You, Unbroken and Homesick, just to name a few.
I think Samantha Jade is incredibly popular in Australia, on the account that I constantly hear her music when I walk into stores. Nevertheless, I like them anyway so I don’t have anything to complain about. Soldier is always playing, and sometimes it’s remixed with loud clubbing music in the background.
Another song is Firestarter, which I rather like. Although some people on YouTube have commented that her voice sounds like Selena Gomez in this song… and I have to say, I agree?
Birds of Tokyo
So there’s a backstory to the name of this band, and I always like to mention it whenever I can. Simply because I find it very interesting!
So the band members happened to read an article about there being no birds in Tokyo (capital of Japan) due to the amount of pollution. And they thought, well if there aren’t any birds there, we’ll be the birds of Tokyo! And that’s how the name stuck.
Lanterns is an amazing song, and I love listening to it although it can sometimes feel like a sad song (I try not to listen to it when I’m sad). But this song has penetrated pop culture, and last I saw it was in an episode of Rich Kids Of Beverly Hills.
So the reason why I knew about 44th Sunset in the first place is because the band had an interview with The Hoist, a music-based show on SYN Radio. As they were performing in Melbourne, they stopped by to give an interview and perform live in the studio. Ever since then, I’ve been listening to their music and following their updates. My personal favourite is Safe.
These are just a taste of my favourite songs by Australian artists, but mostly because I’m still new and unfamiliar with most of them. If there are any that you’d like to recommend me, let me know in the comments below!
– Fari Wu