Is Billie Eilish Forcing Radio To Change?

The following is an opinion piece published this week in the US online trade publication Hits Daily Double.

Our only national Top 40 station has thrown down the gauntlet. Kid Kelly’s decision to add three singles from Darkroom/Interscope’s Billie Eilish simultaneously at SiriusXM’s Hits 1 is, as far as we know, unprecedented for any Pop format—and an index of how radically the music world is changing.

Adding three tracks from any artist would be extraordinary, let alone an act who’s never had a hit before and never had callout.

Multiple songs by one act can blow up on the streaming platforms, and it doesn’t matter if the artist in question has had hits before. But radio has been another matter—at least until now. Republic’s killer promo staff has worked scrupulously to get two records on the air at a time from stars like Ariana Grande and Post Malone. They’ve done a yeoman’s job. But this happened only after these artists were already proven successes at Pop.

Billie is huge, and she’s only getting bigger. So maybe the callout problems her songs have been facing deserve about the same consideration as the callout that said “Shallow” from A Star Is Born wasn’t a hit. The callout is wrong.

Maybe both the callout research companies and the consultants who tell stations to be tighter and later are the ones who need to adjust.

It’s a new day. No Kidding.

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