I’m sure you’re all dying to know my opinion on this whole Taylor Swift Hottest 100 campaign, so here goes.
Firstly, yes the Hottest 100 is a popular vote, so people power counts. I mean, ‘Asshole’ By Denis Leary won the first ever yearly countdown, and ever since the beginning, the poll has been distorted and hijacked by people that probably rarely listen to the station and/or by the latest hot novelty song.
There have been multiple number 1’s in the countdowns history that could be classed as embarrassing (although I was rocking out to Offspring with the rest of them) , and there are certain to be many more. For me, I vote for the songs that I’ve loved throughout the year, regardless of their popularity, and whilst I would love to see them all make the countdown I am used to only about 5 or 6 of them making it in to the list.
What shits me about this #TayforHottest100 campaign is that it’s being used as a protest of sorts by people that rarely, if ever, listen to Triple J to complain about what they play. Seriously? Do the people supporting this drive really want to hear things on Triple J that are played on 2Day or Nova? Yes, there is always a crossover, but the best thing about the j’s is the diversity that they play and whilst they definitely avoid playing some tracks that perhaps they should play like Sia’s Chandelier or Lily Allen’s Sheezus album, they have far and away the most diverse playlist you’ll hear, outside of community radio.
Interestingly a lot of songs that get popular on Triple J are picked up by the commercial stations, sometimes 6 months or more later, once they believe there is a big enough market for it, but you will rarely, if ever, see Triple J picking up songs that they have passed on, once they have become popular in the mainstream.
Should Triple J play Taylor Swift? I don’t think they should, but not because she doesn’t make good music, but because if you’re a Taylor Swift fan, and you just so happen to want to hear Tay Tay on the airwaves, you are probably not going to be tuned in to the national youth radio station. You could probably listen to Nova for a couple of hours and catch her song any day of the week.
Before you go calling me a Triple J snob or a hipster or some bullshit, remember what Triple J stands for. They are, at their core, a youth radio network, and with their national presence, they are able to reach the corners of the country with music, current affairs and youth issues. They provide a much needed alternative outlet for young people that live in remote areas that may not have many choices besides some Austereo or ARN affiliate in their town. They are also a huge outlet for Australian music. 50-70% of their playlist is Australian, well over the the 25% that most commercial stations play and this country’s music industry would be in the toilet without them.
So, let Swifty have her No.1 on Nova’s Top 100 and let Triple J give us a No. 1 that their listeners want. For my money, it will be either Chet Faker’s Talk is Cheap or Peking Duk’s High, although if Swift had released this, maybe we’d have the same song win two years in a row.
Rest assured, I will be well drunk by the time the top 10 rolls around, so if someone tells me to “Shake it Off’, I probably will.
Vote here – Triple j’s Hottest 100 2014