On my radio · Trivia

Pop Master: 20 more minutes in my day

There are dozens of posts on this Blog that mention the music quiz Pop Master. Until March 2023 it was on Ken Bruce’s BBC Radio 2 show at 10.30am every weekday morning. Ken moved to Greatest Hits Radio last month, and Pop Master went with him.

My most recent piece with “Pop Master” in the title was this one, in February. As its title suggests, it was published in recognition of a personal milestone, “Pop Master: 1,000 maximum scores”. Over the course of six years and based on nearly 3,000 rounds of the quiz, I had achieved the top score of 39 a thousand times.

Other pieces on this Blog that have Pop Master in their titles contribute over 60,000 words of text to the million-plus that have been posted here since December 2015, still freely available for anyone with a web connection and a screen. There will be no more for the foreseeable future. As I wrote in an update to that most recent piece about it, “I am living in a post-Pop Master world”.

I have not followed Ken and his quiz to Greatest Hits Radio. I spend less time listening to Radio 2 than I used to, and there are no more Podcasts to deal with. I used to download them and store them in folders divided into months and years. I started doing this in May 2020, after missing a round of the quiz the previous month. The iPlayer (or the BBC Sounds App, if that was already in place by then) only gave you 30 days to go back and listen. A downloaded Podcast is, I assume, yours as long as you want to keep it.

In the last weeks of Pop Master I was less diligent about this task. I am missing a week’s worth of Podcasts from February. I heard the quiz more or less live each time and then forgot to download the episodes afterwards. I am saving a little bit of time now that I do neither of these things, at least 20 minutes, five times a week. The clock no longer ticks down to 10.30am every weekday.  I do not tune in to the new quiz at that time on Radio 2, “10 To The Top”. 100 minutes a week, over 400 minutes a month, the equivalent of a whole working day. There aren’t many habits that I have given up in recent years but this is one of them. I am living in a post-Pop Master world.


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