The music industry is a tough one to get into, requiring a seemingly endless amount of hard work and dedication. When a door gets slammed in your face its often hard to open the next one, yet its the only way to reach the career you desire! The story of Triple J’s ‘Good Nights‘ presenter ‘Bridget Hustwaite‘ is a true emblem of how a love for music and a ‘can do’ attitude can turn a dream into a reality.
Just four years out of High School, Bridget was recognised for her music knowledge and talent when she reached the final 2 of 2012’s V channel presenter search! Though she did not claim the role, she did manage to stand out ahead of 6000 other applicants without any prior experience in front of a camera! She was incessant in her approach moving forward, volunteering as a contributor to the renowned Australian Arts/Music/Media publication ‘The AU Review,’ and presenting on SYN 1700 before making the jump to radio. Hustwaite produced and presented multiple shows on the SYN (Student Youth Network) radio station whilst working on her own program called ‘The Spotlight,’ giving audiences a one hour long Melbourne Music Guide, predominantly driving attention toward support acts!
In 2015 Hustwaite joined the Triple J team as a mid-dawn presenter over the summer, and continued to fill in on multiple programs including Lunch, Weekend Lunch, Weekend Breakfast, House Party and Home & Hosed. She was inducted into the role of host of ‘Good Nights‘ in 2017 where she still resides today, proving that persistence and ambition are some of the key qualities required in todays music industry.
We are so thankful to Bridget for running us through her week and crafting such informative responses, read below.
– A job description in your own words
I am your friendly host of Good Nights on triple j, which basically means I have the honour of bringing you the best new music releases, every weeknight from 6pm. I get to premiere a bunch of excellent new releases from both Australia and around the world, hang out with exciting up and coming talent and of course, chat with listeners about their fave new tracks.
– A brief daily journal over a week (Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday)
I start off every week with an aircheck, which means I sit down with my producer and my executive producer and listen back to particular talk breaks. We focus on on a specific theme each week – my intro’s, music news segments, interviews etc. I then try to catch up on emails and new music releases from the weekend, so that I can plan my playlist with Nick Findlay (triple j’s Music Director). Next thing is scripting and recording my promo, which gives listeners a heads up as to whats on the show that night, followed by show prep and next minute, it’s time to hit the studio! We broadcast a Live At The Wireless set every Monday night at 8pm, so whilst that is playing out I like to call listeners who have texted in and record their new music requests.
Tuesday – Thursday:
Every Tuesday afternoon we have a fun music meeting where the programmers and presenters get to share our fave new tracks and discuss what’s been sounding good on air. Aside from that, my mid week routine is pretty much the same. Start work in the early arvo, script and record promo, lock in premieres and playlist, listen to all the music, suss out and review additional tracks from the triple j Unearthed website, source music news to discuss in the show and brainstorm different angels to present these stories. Suss out the textline for any artists that have been in demand so we could get them for an interview. Have a quick cross with Tom Tilley at the end of Hack and then, showtime baby!
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My show is an extra hour long on Fridays, but it’s a really fun show. Not only do I recap the weeks best new music, but I also get to play a bunch of throwbacks and party jams to get everyone in the mood. And of course, Windows Down!
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Challenges and accomplishments in your week:
I don’t have a Producer on Monday and Friday evenings, so more multitasking is required when it comes to pre-show preparation, as well as when the show goes live, like planning talk breaks, finding callers and keeping an eye on any breaking music news. It’s a challenge I enjoy and it feels so good leaving the studio knowing you can nail a DIY show!
Highlights of the week:
The best thing is being able to introduce listeners to new songs which end up having a big impact on them. It’s also such a special thing to give artists their radio moment. Having their song premiered on a national broadcaster is a really big deal so I want to give each premiere the love and recognition it deserves. Being able to do that makes me feel like I’m Santa or Oprah!
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Lowlights of the week:
Too much music and so little time! I am constantly swimming in emails but this really is a good problem to have.
Words of wisdom for people considering a job in your field:
Firstly, you really need to love music if you want to have a crack as a music presenter. It’s a grind and landing a job isn’t something that happens overnight. For me, it took 6 years! So it’s important to have that genuine love and passion because that’s what gets you through. Presenting always felt like a hobby so it’s a real dream that it’s actually my career now, and I think that’s a really good attitude to have about it. Also, be kind! You never know who you’ll meet and who may be your future colleague or boss one day. Everyone starts from the bottom, so it’s important to build and maintain positive relationships throughout your journey.
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