We’re surrounded by an amazing choice of radio programs all day, every day. When you think about it, it’s incredibly difficult for any radio show to really capture the attention and the hearts of lots of people that could be listening.
But it does happen. In many cases a radio program can be perfectly entwined with its host, making it a perfect combination of talent and ideas. Of course different people are likely to have different ideas when it comes to what is influential.
A current example of an influential radio show is The Rush Limbaugh Show. Whetehr you agree or disagree with his politics, being the highest rated radio talk show in the whole of the US definitely counts for something. Limbaugh’s monologues have the ability to shape conservative policy and public opinon in America, which certainly earns a place on the influential list.
Another of the most influential radio shows is The Howard Stern Radio Show. Even if you’ve never heard of it before, you’ll definitely have heard of Howard Stern. This host takes no prisoners – love him or hate him, his audience is devoted while his critics deem him too controversial and offensive. His successful radio show is just one essential part of his eye opening career, which began in the 1970s.
But maybe we should go a little further back in time to the earliest days of radio too. After all many shows then were feeling their way through this new medium. Some of them failed to catch on, but others lasted for an incredibly long time and influenced many shows that came after them.
When Amos ‘n’ Andy began back in 1928 on the radio, no one could have foreseen the incredible run it would have. It was one of the very first comedy programs on radio, and carried on right through into the 1950s, eventually even made a big splash on television. As its popularity endured, it would even be carried on in syndication until the 1960s.
Charles Correll and Freeman Gosden were the two men in charge, and the show actually underwent some major changes during its lifetime. It started out as a serial but then switched to be a situation comedy.
Thousands of programs that have graced the radio waves since the birth of radio. But what makes an influential show? It isn’t always the viewership. A show can be hugely popular in its time and still not be remembered years later. No, clearly something else is at work here – and sometimes it is the very fact that a show blazes a trail, going where no one has gone before, or appealing to an audience that may otherwise go unnoticed.