Music broadcasting: Brandon Jackson’s good advice

Producer of Smooth Jazz 104.7 The Oasis in Detroit, Brandon Jackson is a devotee. And his radio, created last August, is a very pleasant musical thread, where smooth jazz unfolds its relaxing notes throughout the day, between saxophone, piano, and guitar. It is quite obvious that we would ask this experienced producer for some advice on how to successfully program a radio station’s music. Here they are in this interview.

Hello Brandon, first of all, why did you create Smooth Jazz 104.7?

Smooth Jazz 104.7 The Oasis was birthed in August after a month of consideration for a better jazz station for the Detroit area. I have studied the smooth jazz genre for close to 20 years and learned from looking over many playlists of various stations what listeners are needing.

How is the musical program composed?

This station plays a large variety of music of the genre from the past four decades.  I update the playlist quite frequently, and new songs are added at least once a week. The demographics of the smooth jazz genre is diverse but primarily made of those in the 25-60 age range. They want something they can do chores to, drive down the road to, host a party with—basically anything that encourages some form of relaxation and puts the mind at ease, especially when life gets harried.

Your radio is working pretty well. What advice would you give to other producers to do the same?

First of all, KNOW YOUR MATERIAL. At a minimum, you should know the titles and artists of 300 songs, to say nothing of keeping up to date on currents—all the more reason for being exceptionally well-versed in the genre. Then you must KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE. Understanding listener expectations will help you to stay successful and increase your audience growth and loyalty. This means you will need to skim the available playlists of several like stations to get an idea of what should be played. Finally, MAINTAIN YOUR DATA. In addition to keeping files organized, you must also make sure the sound quality is decent.  Skim each file for cutoffs, silence at the end, foreign sounds, songs skipping, etc. A good editing program will help you keep these things in check. There are many available for free online or as an application. Wavepad and Mixpad are great examples and are fairly simple to navigate.  You should devote at least an hour a day to listening.

Thank you, Brandon and long live Smooth Jazz 104.7 The Oasis!