Mike Smith, who died on Friday, once told Chris Moyles to his face that he wasn’t a fan of modern radio broadcasting, nor of Chris Moyles’ own particular style.
Mike was one of the group of BBC Radio 1 Breakfast Show hosts being interviewed by Chris Moyles for a special programme in 2010, when he told him that, “Sometimes your style of broadcasting doesn’t pull me in. And, to me, breakfast radio in particular is about connecting with a listener.”
Mike Smith was a popular host of the Radio 1 Breakfast Show, but left after only two years
Moyles took this criticism on the chin, as Mike Smith explained,
“Radio is a very special medium, because radio is contact with the audience in a very special way. It’s a privilege to be let into people’s lives and to talk to them, and I just find that sometimes, when I’m listening to the radio, the people doing it are not talking to me, they’re talking to themselves, or they’re talking to an inclusive group.”
He added to Chris Moyles, “And I have to include your style of broadcasting in that.”
Mike Smith reflected on his decision to leave the Breakfast Show chair after only two years. “It probably wasn’t the right decision, because now I’m not front of camera, not front of microphone, and missing it all. Radio I miss more than TV, radio I miss tremendously.”
Even if he preferred broadcasting as it used to be, Mike Smith had one particular bugbear from his time in the host’s chair, and that was the music that was in the charts during his tenure.
“There would be weeks when the Top 40 had, it felt like, half of it was Stock Aitken Waterman records,” he told Moyles.
“I felt that when I was doing the Radio 1 breakfast show that there was a chance that Stock Aitken Waterman were ruining the whole thing and it was one of the things that chipped away at me, to say, ‘You said you were only going to do this for two years, so when it gets to two years, leave.’”
Despite his ambivalence about the music he was playing, Mike Smith was one of Radio 1's most popular broadcasters who juggled his DJ duties with a TV presenting career.
Later, he started his own company, Flying TV, providing aerial camerawork for events including The Boat Race and London's 2012 Olympics.
Mike Smith died on Friday of complications following heart surgery. He was 59.
You can see the interview with Mike Smith by Chris Moyles below - they're together from about 4'20" in...
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