<p>When I asked presenters Ashleigh Hastings and Carolyn Huane how they would explain the premise of Off Beet to virgins of their show, they offered “local bands, banter and hopefully enjoyable music” as a tagline.</p>
Off Beet is a show on Radio Fodder hosted by kickass presenters Ashleigh Hastings and Carolyn Huane. When I asked them how they would explain the premise of their show to Off Beet virgins, they offered “local bands, banter and hopefully enjoyable music” as a tagline. Essentially, they conduct an in-depth interview each week with artists from Melbourne’s music scene—quote: “We hold them hostage and we ask them the difficult questions.” Sounds… interesting?
To learn more about Off Beet and the talent behind the show, I caught up with Ashleigh and Carolyn in the Radio Fodder studio for an interview. Don’t worry, no-one held anyone hostage this time.
I’d like to kick off with a hard-hitting question. Who would you crown as the Queen of Music?
Carolyn: Ashleigh’s my Queen of Music.
Ashleigh: [laughs] Because I play so many instruments? Carolyn: Maybe you’re Queen of Radio.
Ashleigh: Aw bless! Well, I was gonna say Lorde, but now I feel bad.
Carolyn: That was my first instinct. Lorde.
What’s the one song that will never fail to get you down and dirty on the d-floor?
Carolyn: I don’t want to be basic, but I feel like it would definitely be a Justin Timberlake song.
Ashleigh: ‘Rock Your Body’?
Carolyn: Yeah, that one gets me going.
Ashleigh: I’m gonna definitely be basic and say ‘I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor’ by The Arctic Monkeys.
What’s your favourite song to cry to?
Ashleigh: I don’t listen to a lot of sad music. I think I actively avoid it. The only thing that ever comes up on shuffle on my phone that makes me really sad is old MIKA songs. So that makes me cry firstly because they’re sad, but secondly because I’ve still got them.
Carolyn: When I was younger, I used to cry to Dido a lot. I used to sob. I was in high school and I had a lot of feelings.
Trent: Me now.
How was your show Off Beet birthed into the world? Ashleigh: It was completely Carolyn’s idea.
Carolyn: I roped Ashleigh into it*, but I knew [she] would like the idea. We like a lot of the same music, so I knew [she’d] be the perfect radio buddy. I think I just saw the ad on Facebook from Farrago for Radio Fodder hosts. And I hadn’t really heard of Radio Fodder, but I looked into it and it just piqued my interest.
*(Conspiracy theory: Carolyn is holding Ashleigh hostage…)
Over the course of your show’s two seasons, what’s been a highlight for you both?
Ashleigh: A highlight for me would be when we started having live performances in the studio. It took a while to get all the logistics together, but once we got it going, it was just lovely. And we were essentially being serenaded.
Carolyn: We had Hotel Fifteen Love come in and they played in [the studio], and I think they were the first ones who played live. That was definitely a good moment.
What’s one of the biggest challenges of presenting a show?
Ashleigh: Thinking on your feet. We’re in here doing all of the mics and playing the music ourselves. And sometimes things go wrong. You have to be able to fix a computer at the same time as talking, while keeping your guests happy and hoping that whoever is listening has no idea.
What can listeners expect from season three of Off Beet? Carolyn: More live performances.
Ashleigh: Yeah definitely. We’re gonna try and make that a regular feature of the show.
Carolyn: We’ll keep getting bands in every week. Ashleigh: Yeah, more local bands… More awkward jokes
Carolyn: And me. Those are the only jokes I know.
Your ears can be held hostage by Off Beet every Monday from 7 to 8pm on Radio Fodder. You can follow Off Beet on Facebook. Their shows are also available on Mixcloud.