BBC Music

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BBC Music
Industry Mass media
Founded 2014
Headquarters Broadcasting House, London, United Kingdom
Area served
Key people
Bob Shennan (Director of Music)
Services Radio and TV broadcasting, online services, event organisation
Owner BBC
Parent British Broadcasting Corporation

BBC Music is an umbrella title used by the BBC to collect together its music output.[1] Officially it is a part of the BBC's Radio operational division and is directly responsible to Helen Boaden (director of Radio), however its remit also includes music used in television and online services. It was established in its current form in 2014, however the BBC had already been using the BBC Music brand to refer to its online music content and some live events beforehand. The current director of music is Bob Shennan, who is also the controller of BBC Radio 2, BBC Radio 6 Music and the BBC Asian Network.[2]


BBC Music had its official launch at 20:00 on 7 October 2014, with a simulcast of a specially-commissioned cover of the Beach Boys' 1966 song "God Only Knows".[3] Produced by Ethan Johns, it featured a supergroup of singers such as Chris Martin (of Coldplay), Stevie Wonder, Kylie Minogue, Elton John, Pharrell Williams and One Direction, accompanied by the BBC Concert Orchestra.[4]


BBC Music is responsible for the music played across the BBC. It has direct editiorial control of the music content of the BBC's six national music radio stations Radio 1, 1Xtra, Radio 2, Radio 3, 6 Music and the BBC Asian Network, as well as organising live music events for each of the stations. These include Radio 1's Big Weekend, Live in Hyde Park and In Concert for Radio 2, the BBC Proms (including the various "Proms in the Park" events), and the BBC 6 Music festival.

Many of the BBC televisual music programmes and documentaries are now co-produced with BBC Music, with a BBC Music ident often being played between the regular channel ident and the start of the programme. It will also coordinate the BBC's coverage of other live music events such as the Glastonbury festival, T in the Park, the Reading and Leeds Festivals and Celtic Connections amongst others.

It is responsible for the BBC's online music database, collating every music track played across the BBC's national radio stations and a larger amount of the music played on the BBC's UK television channels. This includes looking after BBC Playlister, an interactive, personalisable music service that allows users to create playlists of music that have been played across the BBC. It also features playlists created by BBC radio DJs and presenters such as Jo Whiley, Greg James, Steve Lamacq, Zane Lowe and Fearne Cotton.

In December 2014 it organised the first BBC Music Awards and also is now in charge of BBC Introducing, an initiative to get less well-known and unsigned artists played on local and national radio.


  1. ^ "BBC - BBC Music - Media centre". BBC Media Centre. 16 June 2014. Retrieved 5 March 2015. 
  2. ^ "BBC - Bob Shennan, Director, Music - Inside the BBC". Retrieved 5 March 2015. 
  3. ^ "BBC - BBC Music launches with God Only Knows - Media centre". BBC Media Centre. 7 October 2014. Retrieved 5 March 2015. 
  4. ^ "BBC - The Artists - Media centre". BBC Media Centre. 7 October 2014. Retrieved 5 March 2015. 

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