To commemorate 90 years of radio at the BBC, Blur frontman Damon Albarn has composed a three minute piece that was played simultaneously across 55 BBC stations.
Aired today at 17.33, approximately the time of the first BBC radio in 1922, the composition potentially reached a worldwide audience of 80 million.
Named 2LO Calling after the 1922 2LO transmitter, the piece is a “snapshot of the airwaves” and features iconic sounds across the ages such as Bertrand Russell in Morse code, the chimes of Big Ben, messages from listeners across the world and of course snippets from the first ever BBC radio broadcast.
The special broadcast was hosted by Simon Mayo on BBC Radio 2 at London’s Science Museum, while other BBC radio stations reuniting to broadcast the composition.
When hearing the composition go live I have never had so many goosebumps listening to the radio like I did this evening. It brought together everything you read about and everything you dreamt about with the future and hearing the dulcet tones of Stephen Fry combined with a sound that all audiences could listen to really was a once in a lifetime treat for the ears. Bring on the 100th celebrations of radio at the BBC, it’s bound to be a corker!