Northbound Radio’s Music ‘Policy’

Written by on February 23, 2021


As head of the music pillar at Northbound Radio, I keep being asked about our music ‘policy’. Let’s begin with the words music and policy. They don’t fit together as they’re poles apart in feeling and meaning…


**Music: vocal or instrumental sounds (or both) combined in such a way as to produce beauty of form, harmony, and expression of emotion.

**Policy: A policy is a deliberate system of principles to guide decisions and achieve rational outcomes.


The question is how can you ever achieve rational outcomes from beauty of form, harmony, and expression of emotion? Instead let’s talk about our musical intent or purpose.


Our musical purpose is to blow your minds, break new and old artists enabling their music to be heard and burrow itself into your heads so you experience other cultures defining themselves through sound. Not forgetting the classics that you may not have heard.


For me music has been the catalyst to discovering other cultures, and a catalyst that inevitably leads to new food. Something else close to my heart. In other words, music has been my gateway drug. A legal high that beats all other illegal highs.


Our values at Northbound Radio are open and inclusive, curious and bold and positive and constructive. We want to reflect the people that make up London, which means the whole world. Remember people travel with their culture including their clothes, their food and their music.


We’ve all seen people more interested in the photo of themselves and their food than the food itself in restaurants. It’s completely different with music, once you hear the hook that draws you in you can’t ignore it and let it go cold, you’re submerged, you’re drowning in the sound, transported to your happy place.



It’s a neurological thing.


In 2011 McGill University published the results of an experimental study into the effects of music on the brain and nervous system. They looked at brain scans of eight volunteers as they listened to pieces of instrumental music that they found pleasurable and that gave them “chills” (also known as “musical frisson”), and other music that they did not find as pleasurable. The researchers concluded that experiencing intense pleasure in response to music can cause a release of dopamine in the brain that can additionally be released in anticipation of listening to the pleasurable music. Like seeing your food before you eat it.


Dopamine is also released in response to sex, food, psychoactive drugs, money and being in love as it’s released by the hypothalamus, the part of the brain associated with motivation and reinforcement of behaviour. In other words all of the good stuff. The researchers said that their results “help to explain why music is of such high value across all human societies”.


As Friedrich Nietzsche said…
“God has given us music so that above all it can lead us upwards.
Music unites all qualities: it can exalt us, divert us, cheer us up, or break the hardest of hearts with the softest of its melancholy tones.
But its principal task is to lead our thoughts to higher things, to elevate, even to make us tremble…
The musical art speaks in sounds more penetrating than the words of poetry, and takes hold of the most hidden crevices of the heart…
Song elevates our being and leads us to the good and the true.
If, however, music serves only as a diversion or as a kind of vain ostentation it is sinful and harmful.”


Thanks for joining us as we launch Northbound Radio…there’s so much good quality stuff to come, past, present and future…

Continue reading

Next post

Fashion File

Previous post

Chit Chat Sessions

Current track