Chelsea Deeley 2

Out of the Box - Chelsea Deeley

hfriedlander, 1st March 2017

When I first walked up the stairs and into Eastside Radio, the idea of being an on-air presenter was the furthest thing from my mind.

I was 20 years old, about to graduate from my first university degree, and was standing in the reception area looking at the gig posters and photographs plastered all over the walls, listening to the melodic jazz sounding out across the room and thinking how utterly cool this place was!

Chelsea Deeley

For about two years I’d been the music editor for a publishing company here in Sydney and on a partially calculated whim I’d decided that I wanted to get into radio. In my naivety, I’d decided that I wanted to learn all I could about how it works, the preparation behind it all and how I could be a part of it outside of being on air, which was something I thought was out of the question since possessing a slightly weird British-Australian accent.

My early months at Eastside Radio mainly consisted of creating website content, answering phone calls, and assisting presenters with on-air guests and giveaways and it really helped me understand the culture and the community that Eastside is a part of. The listeners of the station truly love Eastside, whether it is for the great variety of music that we play on a daily basis or the talks programs that cover the local arts news and current affairs that affect them and their lives.

I was asked to be the Music Director for the station not long after, which was a complete honour, and it pretty much gave me an excuse to listen to music all day, which I was definitely not complaining about! I learned so much more about Australian musicians, particularly within the jazz, blues and soul scene that I wasn’t overly aware of before. It really gave me a sense of pride to know we had such a thriving scene right here in Sydney.

Fast-forward three years and after a fair few nightshifts and a whole lot of tips from many of our experienced presenters, I now present my own show every Monday morning, called The New Thing. I basically get to spin new music, feature three brand new albums and promote independent Australian artists. It’s the best 90 minutes of my week.

The more I learn about community radio, the more I realise that it brings so many people a sense of inclusion and freedom, as well as giving them an opportunity for self-expression. From my own experience at Eastside Radio, the volunteers are passionate individuals, totally dedicated to their community and have a great deal of knowledge and skills that I have been fortunate enough to learn from. I can’t think of many, if any, other places outside of the community radio sector where I would be able to play the music that I want to hear every week and then in turn hear people that I know play music that they genuinely love.

Having held our own awesome world music festival Global Rhythms back in September, as well as running successful fundraisers and live music events throughout the year, the future is looking super bright for Eastside Radio and I’m so lucky to be a part of it!

The New Thing Mondays – 9:00AM – 10:30AM Listen live on 89.7FM within Sydney and surrounding suburbs. Stream/listen back to the show:

This article was originally written for the 2016 November edition of CBX.

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*Past webinar - click through to view webinar recording*

A well-managed music library can help improve your stations’ sound by ensuring presenters have new and high quality music at their fingertips, 24/7.


*Past webinar - click through to view webinar recording*

In this webinar, find out how to identify your content strengths, focus your station’s content and volunteers on maximising them and efficiently integrate on air, web simulcast, radio on demand, your website and social media.


International Jazz Day (30 April) celebrates jazz around the world and is marked by Eastside Radio with a special day of broadcasting, featuring 24 hours of jazz music.