24 May 2007


Its a radio time again for us. An FM radio war has begun now. Bangalore saw the rise of its first private radio channel Radio city in the year 2000. It first played very good Hindi and English music, occasionally Telugu and Tamil movie songs for its listeners. Some Kannada organizations objected, hence a Kannadiga RJ was inducted and Kannada was given a weekly slate on its calendar. However, it was only restricted to movie songs.

Thus started a journey which later got warring colours… Radio Mirchi was the next channel to be started. It gave a fitting competition to the lone Badshah Radio city. Here the Kannada connection was limited to RJs speaking distorted local language…. However, there was no much difference in terms of the music it played.

Later Akashavani came up with a unique FM station Rainbow. It played for a limited number of hours in a day and played Kannada, English, Hindi music, old, new alike. It gave importance to ghazals, folk music and Bhavageete too…

Then started Radio One, they innovated music playing concept by playing one Kannada song back to back with a Hindi song… It didn’t see any market in playing international songs…

Later started the warring channels…Big FM, S FM

Some frequency all of a sudden started playing the stotras and Vedic chanting.. few days later that frequency was occupied by a new FM channel that played only international music. Radio Indigo, another colourful channel.

A new Channel Fever 104 is giving fitting competition to Indigo, only difference is Fever plays some popular Hindi and Bhangra music as well.

Realising that the Kannada songs were doing extremely good, all the channels started playing Kannada songs in abundance…and each claimed that they were the players of highest number of Kannada songs…. And all the channels employed mental manjas, jakkhas meenakshis to host their shows….

What they call ‘fun’ has now become madness. They are not doing any good to Kannada with their kind of accent, vocabulary or style. Pathetic….

Meanwhile, Rainbow gave proper slots to news updates and classical music too. Buoyed with the response, AIR started a new channel that played only classical music, very recently, named aptly “Amruthavarshini”. AIR has to its credit other variety channels like Gnana Vani that featured educative programmes with students and knowledge hunters as intended audience. It’s a hit with limited set of audience. AIR upgraded their vivid bharati to FM and played soulful music, as always. One great feature of Kannada Rainbow is that the hosts here speak a proper Kannada, though in a dull tone.

All in all, the radio war has given us some good music, and this has to its credit, helped in the success of movies like Mungaru maLe and others. These channels played the maLe songs non-stop and made the audience check that out….

Now some details about Amruthavarshini channel. It plies in the evenings between 6 and 10. First three hours being dedicated for Karnataka Shastriya Sangeetha and the last hour reserved for Hindustani classical music. They also play tracks from the legendary musicians of yester years, taken out from their treasure some plates. A wonderful daily dose of classical music without any intermission of news, advertisements, nor any announcements. A great channel to tune in to when you are tired and seek some solacing graceful moments.

There are 11 channels in Bengalooru as of today. List of them with the frequency to tune into is here :

Channel Frequency
Radio City 91.1
Radio Indigo 91.9
Big FM 92.7
S FM 93.5
Radio One 94.3
Radio Mirchi 98.3
Amruthavarshini 100.1
AIR Rainbow 101.3
Vivid Bharati 102.9
Fever 104
Gyan Vani 105.6


December Stud said...

Awesome post. Different and informative. So, now everyone thinks Kannada songs are popular, huh? I did notice that ridiculous accent of some RJ' when I was travelling thro' Bengalooru.

AIR and DD have always been a step ahead in creativity. Private channels always get the lower grade.

One of my friends' cousin started as a small time English RJ with one of Akashavani's stations. He was paid Rs. 1,500 per month. Being a Kannadiga, he claimed that he cannot manage speaking in kannada for long, and thus became an English RJ. Well, lucky him, one of the private FM stations started a channel and offered him Rs. 30,000 per month and lo he was ready to become a Kannada RJ!!! Infact, he is one of the leading RJ's in Bengalooru now. But, he conveniently uses tons of English words whenever he is on radio.

Amrithavarshini, huh?!?!? For some odd reason, it made me remember Suhasini ;)

Vani said...


You forgot Fever 104....that's the new station playing English hits..competing with Indigo.

I remember the day Radio City Started...so much fun & freshness...

It is now a Radio Channel War....

Anonymous said...

Very informative post srik

As DS says DD and AIR hav stayed ahead in program schedules formed to win audience and listeners.

They were carefully planned to increase awareness, stimulate learning, provide soulful music to all parts of the country covering different culture backgrounds, they were sure to be hit.If we see those program lists of AIR and DD cosely we will see that there has been extensive study in timing those programs and their content too.

Amrtuavarshini,Rainbow , Vidivdbharathi and Gnanavani are my favourite channels, believe i havent even tired other channels to listen if they r bad or good. Gnanavani's (IGNOU's collaboration-Bringing education at your doorstep-what an apt title)lectures and discussions are so informative that all can defenitely make use of it. Best part of radio is ur work is uninterrupted :)

Happy listening....

Thanx for frequency lsiting.


Srik said...

Yes yes... creativity....but their RJs and hosts sound sooooooo dull... :(
Lucky ur friend's cousin, he speaks English and calls himself a Kannada RJ, whats more he gets to fill his pocket at the end of the month too.

Yeah...that connection Amruthavarshini and Suhasini is inseperable. Her performance in that movie won her great accolades.

Radio city was the only channel those days, when I was at a hostel, believe me since RC began airing, all the rooms were decorated with a radio set each.
RC was our companion during the over night study schedules for the exams. And the reception quality was good even 150 KMs far, in Tiptur.

Totally agree with u about the quality of programmes on AIR, but DD sucks at times.

Radio fares better 'coz ur work is never interrupted... is a good point. Its better than those noisy M series and K series on our television sets!!

Srik said...

And Vani,
Thanks. I have now updated the list with Fever!!

Veena Shivanna said...

What a Co-incidence Srik...
Read this post for sure! and the comment about Fever too...

Informative post..

A fun I want to have since long time, call up one of those RJ and wish prashanth something or make him talk on the radio..
He feels very shy for all these, I have shared this idea with him too..he says radio channel ella phone maadidre wrong number antha disconnect maadtheeni or sumne silent aagid bidtheeni....
but kelvrantha phone maadbittu eshT vaddadthaare maathadokke, I wonder whether its that much difficult to speak on air.. I will surely want to try.. so give some tips to reach out RJ's..

The only problem I find is the way they spell out the phone numbers to be called.. so fast and so quick.. I can never dial it or note it down...! so if possible you can post their numbers here...

Radios are omni present now, kitchen nalli haalalli, pen nalli mobile nalli , mp3 player nalli..

Srik said...

I wish your wish of a radio appearance comes true soon!!
To help you achieve your desire, I will try to* jolt down the numbers of some of the radio stations tonight and post them here at the earliest.

Paapa Prashanth, May God save him.
There is some program on Radio One (I think) called Birthday Bakara... U can use that platform to play the game on Prashanth.
All you need to do is send some unique sms to their number a day before his birthday, (u can call some day as his birthday ;)) and keep quiet.
An RJ calls, disturbs and plays on with him for a moment, the call ends with a birthday wish. U can certainly make use of this unique facility. Its so much fun, u know.

I will try to get those numbers by tomorrow.

reborn said...

Agreed , there are lot s of kannada songs being played, but the RJ s put on an accent ...

But then knowing to talk kannada very well is not sooo coool right ..? :).. lots of english with bits of kannada with atleast few grammatic errors ( ofcourse errors in kannada ) is in in Bangalore ...?

Srik said...

Yes...yes. Thats the trend. Enjoy MaaDi. ;)

Veena Shivanna said...

naarada munigaLe namaskaara,

birthday dina haagella pranks play maadodaa amele serious aagi kopa maadkondre .. ashTe.
astondella goL hoykoLLodu bekagalla avaranna bidi..

numbers kodi aadaga!

mouna said...

radio city plays bhavageete and sugama sangeetha on sundays since quite some time...

and yes, god!! some people put on atrocious accents, every word should be pronounced with the american twang, it's harsh. but some people do make an effort to talk in pure kannada..

in 'fever', the rjs' kannada, but they don't play kannada songs..

bachodi said...

Good for bangalore.

In chennai there must be four to five ( i really don't know ) channels. But all of them play only Tamil ( very rarely English ) . RJs speak only Tamil. So those who dont know Tamil are ussually never bother to listen to Radio.

Srik said...


Hahahaa... bhaya padabedi... I'm sure he'd be happy at the end of it all!!

Thanks for the information...Radio city playing sugama sangeetha is a news to me. would like to listen to it soon.

oh! pooor Bach,
consider shifting to Bangalore ;)
You have everything here...even the Aerosmith thought soooo.

neel3 said...

My hub and I enjoyed the FM channels very much while in Bengalooru.
Your post would have made me jealous if I were in Goa.

bellur said...

thanks for the FM channel list and the freq.

bhodhane maado akkanoo sister
needle chucchi vedane kodo nurse-oo sister
aadre yavaglu anandakodo sister
one and only TRANSISTOR

-- bellur

Srik said...

neela, now Im sad, for not making you jealous

wikitakavi bellursahebarige namo namah!
One doubt, are they still using transistors in this digital times also, I mean for radios?

bellur said...


INDIA: Radio Mirchi set to rock Patna
Leading entertainment channel growing, set to release 21 more stations this year

Times of India
Thursday, April 5, 2007

Patna --- Entertainment Network (India) Limited (ENIL) launched Radio Mirchi in Patna on Monday. Radio Mirchi 98.3 FM is a round-the-clock entertainment channel that will give the listeners the best of contemporary music, city happenings, Bollywood gossip, special interviews, exclusive film promotional tie-ups and lots more. Actor Manoj Bajpai was present on the occasion.

Radio Mirchi already enjoys a leadership position in ten cities and broadcasts on a common frequency across the country. Today, around 18 million Indians listen to Radio Mirchi across Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Kolkata, Indore, Ahmedabad, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Jaipur and Pune.

Twenty-one more radio stations will be rolled out by the end of this year by the company. ENIL COO Nandan Srinath said radio's strength is its immense flexibility. We expect the style of programming of Radio Mirchi to revitalise radio in Patna, he said.

Radio Mirchi station director Mandar Patwardhan is confident of winning the hearts of the people of Patna by delivering programmes that are relevant to the people of the city.

Mirchi spurs sale of FM radios

By Alok Mishra

Patna --- Only three days into its launch, and Radio Mirchi at 98.3 FM is the hottest thing around. So much so that transistor sellers in Patna are laughing all the way to the bank.

Take this from Manish Kumar, an electronics shop owner at Bakerganj: "Sale of FM-band radios, FM Player and Car FM has shot up suddenly, thanks to Radio Mirchi." His shop earlier used to sell 10-15 sets of FM Player, each costing Rs 90 to Rs 105. During the last three days, the number has gone up to 50 every day.

According to Manish, though Car FM is a new concept, more and more vehicle owners are opting for it. "With the FM channel dishing out the latest numbers, Car FM is set to replace stereo decks in four-wheelers," he said.

Transistor sales have gone up at the shop of Raj Kumar Verma, another trader at Bakerganj, too. Till three days ago, Verma said, he sold 20 to 25 pieces every day.

Now he sells up to 40 sets every day. The cost of each set ranges from Rs 100 to Rs 125. "Mirchaiya FM has revived radio," said Azad Ahmed, another electronic goods trader.

Mohd Sabir said mainly youngsters are buying FM-band radios. Mohd Shaukat Ali of Cabinet Sales, said if Mirchi's range is extended to the whole of Bihar, each shop would perhaps sell 500 sets everyday.

Anupam, a second year student of Patna University, is crazy about what he refers to as "Mirchi". At Bakerganj to buy a handy FM radio which he can carry even to college, he said, "We have a lot of music channels on our TV screens. But we cannot carry TV sets everywhere." He chose a earphone-equipped, plastic-body FM radio set for himself.

Tiwary and Manoj Kumar Singh, who had come from Ara to Bakerganj for purchasing FM radios in bulk, said some localities in Ara catch Radio Mirchi and youngsters there are thronging their shops to buy FM sets.

Date Posted: 4/5/2007

Srik said...

Thanks for the info bellur.
Surely, FMs have revived the style and have replaced so many stuffs!!

neela said...

Aiyyo, nam Goagu barattante radio mensinakai--adre adara ruchi will be like Pork vindaloo/xacuti.