Ten years of NTS radio
If you tuned into a mainstream radio station ten years ago, you knew what to expect. You could practically guarantee the cheeky male host, the insane foray and tedious rotation of the same 20 songs that are currently in the charts. By and large, it was a pretty predictable media landscape. And for someone like Femi Adeyemi, the co-founder of NTS Radio, the different stories, music and people that London had to offer weren't represented.
"We were surrounded by so many different, talented people in music, art and fashion who weren't getting the recognition I thought was deserved," he tells CR. "These platforms did not highlight the diversity of what was happening or what London was about."
At the time, Adeyemi was experiencing this first hand, working as a DJ and trying to get into the radio, but felt that he somehow didn't fit into this world. After meeting business partner Shaun McAuliffe and loving the capital's underground scene, the two decided to start NTS Radio in 2011 as an alternative to the mainstream. "I was wondering why no one had tried to play everything at once," he explains the station's beginnings. "You can have a jazz show with a rap show and a metal show that are all connected and that's what we tried with NTS.
Above: Photo from the Top Boy Academy – a two-day program from NTS and Netflix designed to give young Londoners an insight into the film, television and music industries; Above: The NTS logo is celebrated on its fifth birthday in 2016
“What we did with our program from day one was to take our audience on a musical journey. You can hear all of these things that feel different but have a narrative that runs through them – almost like a mood or a feeling that resembles a story. It's like different chapters with a running thread that is consistent. And that set us apart. "