BBC Radio 1 shake-up: Annie Mac exits, Clara Amfo revealed as new Future Sounds host

BBC Radio 1 shake-up: Annie Mac exits, Clara Amfo revealed as new Future Sounds host

Annie Mac has announced that she is to leave BBC Radio 1, as the station reveals details of a shake-up that will see Clara Amfo take over the Future Sounds show. 

Daytime star Amfo is now in the hotseat for Radio 1’s flagship new music show, home to Hottest Record In The World. Rickie, Melvin and Charlie will host Amfo’s Live Lounge, while Danny Howard is taking over from Annie Mac on Radio 1’s Dance Party.

The station has also revealed that Diplo, host of Diplo And Friends on Saturday nights from 11pm-1am, will be departing.

Annie Mac, a previous winner at the Music Week Women In Music Awards and renowned tastemaker and champion of new music, said: “After 17 wonderful years I have decided it’s time to leave Radio 1. This second home has been the thread that has run through nearly my whole adult life; I have grown up, fallen in and out of love, moved homes, climbed up the career ladder, got married and become a mother twice over.”

The DJ has not revealed any plans to move to another station, and Music Week can reveal that her next move is not yet confirmed. The DJ paid tribute to her listeners.

Working at Radio 1 has been like being at the best party ever

Annie Mac

“I have done this alongside you, my listeners, who have done your own versions of the same,” she said. “I will be forever grateful to you all for welcoming me into your days. I have never not walked out of the studio feeling lighter and happier than when I walked in and that is all down to you. Working at Radio 1 has been like being at the best party ever and it is a wonderful feeling to be leaving with a huge smile on my face. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!”

Head of Radio 1 Aled Haydn Jones described Mac as “quite simply, a legend”.

“She has been a hugely important part of the station for the past 17 years,” Haydn Jones added. “Diplo has brought some of the biggest names in dance to our listeners on Diplo and Friends, showcasing some now iconic mixes during the show’s run. I’d like to thank both Annie and Diplo for all they’ve done for the station, and I wish them all the very best for the future.”

Haydn Jones said that Music Week Award winner Clara Amfo “has long been one of the most influential voices in the music industry”.

Clara has an incredible affinity for discovering new music, which makes her perfect to be the face of it for the industry and for Radio 1,” he added. “We know our listeners will love what she brings to the show. I’m delighted that we’ll have Rickie, Melvin and Charlie taking on the late morning slot: their energy, knowledge and passion is going to make for an exciting new sound for the Live Lounge.”

Receiving the baton from Annie who I love and respect makes it extra special

Clara Amfo

Clara Amfo said: “Presenting mid mornings and The Live Lounge on Radio 1 has been one of the most edifying and special times of my career and personal life. As a nation of music lovers, the experience of it live is nothing short of magical and to have had the honour of welcoming some of the world’s most beloved and emerging artists in to The Live Lounge has created unifying moments that I and the listeners will never forget! I am beyond honoured and ready to start this exciting new chapter on Radio 1. I’m such a fan of this show, the artists that is has championed and to be receiving the baton from Annie who I love and respect makes it extra special for me. Massive big up to every single one of my daytime producers and The Live Lounge/smug life listener crew, I have loved hearing your stories and enjoying keeping you company with tunes in daytime and look forward to continuing that in September, so see you a few hours later!”

Rickie, Melvin and Charlie say: “To be given the opportunity to present the Live Lounge is just an absolute dream, a show we all adore and have so much love, passion and respect for. Celebrating great artists playing their new and live music on Radio 1 is a huge honour and we can't wait to put our RMC twist on it! Much love to Clara who has done an amazing job over the years and thank you for passing the baton - we promise not to break it!”

Haydn Jones has not been shy to change things up since taking over from Ben Cooper, and as part of the latest raft of changes, Future Artists with Jack Saunders will move forward into an earlier slot (8-10pm, Monday – Wednesdays) as will Radio 1’s Indie Show on Thursdays.

The Powerdown Playlist will become a standalone show for the first time, hosted by Sian Eleri on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday between 10-11pm. Eleri’s current role as host of Radio 1’s Chillest Show on Sunday evenings will continue.

With Danny Howard taking over as host of Radio 1’s Dance Party, Jaguar landed her own show, taking on the 10-11pm slot on Thursdays with Radio 1 Dance Introducing. New presenter Sarah Story joins Radio 1 to fill the Friday 8-10pm slot with Radio 1 Future Dance.

Jack Saunders said: “I can't believe the journey keeps getting more exciting. I love being on Radio 1 that to be given an earlier slot is so sick. I live and breathe this show and the music around it so to be on at 8-10pm is only going to empower the music I play and the energy I give it. Thank you to Aled and Lorna for believing in me. I can't wait for September!" 

Sian Eleri said: “Doing the Chillest Show and getting to know the Radio 1 listeners every Sunday is such a privilege, so I'm thrilled to keep the chilled sounds coming Monday - Wednesday too. Bring on September - can't wait!"

Danny Howard said: "I’m beyond excited to say these words... 6pm, every Friday will be home of the hottest dance and electronic music on the planet, think superstar guests and festival sized bangers on the world's biggest dance-floor providing you with all the energy you will ever need to get your weekend started properly! Thank you to everyone who’s listened to my radio shows so far, your support is amazing and I’m absolutely honoured to be taking the reins of this legendary slot."

Jaguar said: “I love that over the past year BBC Introducing Dance has become a centrepiece for emerging dance talent to be discovered. I'm proud to give these artists a bigger platform to grow, and I can't wait to discover the next big dance acts of the future!”

Sarah Story said: “‘I'm so excited to join the Radio 1 family on Friday nights with a brand new show, Future Dance! Friday nights on Radio 1 are iconic and they have not only influenced me as a broadcaster but as a music lover. It's an honour to be able to showcase the incredible dance music talent that we have coming through and I cannot wait to get started!’

Diplo said: “After nearly a decade of showcasing the world's best new music, I’ll be wrapping up Diplo and Friends on Radio 1 in September. Big thanks to everyone at the BBC - stay close for more projects during 2021 and into next year.”

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