Exclusive interview with the CEO of 5AB TV (Launching 08/03/2019)



5AB TV is a new Punjabi music channel that is launching online, in a bid to help promote Punjabi music from all parts of the world. We talk to the CEO of 5AB TV to find out more about the new channel, launch date and future plans. Check it out below:


Firstly thank you for taking time out to speak to us about 5AB TV. Let’s start from the beginning shall we, why did you decide to start a Punjabi music channel?


Thanks for giving us the chance to answer a few questions! We decided to start a Panjabi music channel because it’s something the Panjabi music scene needed right now. Yes, there are channels out there but just simply looking at their viewing data we can see that they’re not getting watched. The content on the channels isn’t great and there’s such a huge disconnect between them and their audience. The driving factor for us (as music fans) was that we wanted to create a channel that we (the founders) would watch; and that a whole generation of people would watch. The idea has been there for a couple of years and this year was the year we decided to bring it into fruition. The preparation work for us had finally finished and we were at the stage where we wanted make a dent in the Panjabi music scene as we all know it.


How can the the public watch 5AB TV?


The public will be able to watch 5AB TV from our dedicated website and our mobile apps from launch. We will not be broadcasting on Sky TV or Virgin TV as linear TV is changing. There’s a whole new generation of people who now look to their phones / the internet to find entertainment. We have a plan which involves a roll out of apps onto many different platforms/devices throughout 2019 and we are also in talks with worldwide streaming providers to fully maximise our online reach.


Will you feature music from just the UK or from India, Canada and the rest of the world? Also will you be showing English music?


We will play Panjabi music from all over the world. As a UK based company we do have a special spot for the UK Bhangra scene but will not limit our content to just that. There are many audiences in the world that we want to cater to and becoming country specific will not help us fulfil that goal. What we can say is that we will never, in any form, play English songs. This is not our business model and we would never reach the point where we feel that move is necessary.


What can you tell us about the format of the channel?


Initially the channel will be very music based, as we know that’s what our audience wants. We will have different programme segments which promote different parts of Panjabi music (new music, artists, old-school, romantic etc). We will meanwhile be working in the background on producing our own content as well as working with content creators to produce content.


Personalisation and fan interaction is key in any industry. How much input to the tracks that get played will the public have?


This channel will be a community channel. You can already see from our Twitter page that we invite conversation and also ask the views of our potential audience. This has been taken into mind when building our platform and we will have a vast amount of ways that viewers can interact with 5AB TV and make the channel feel like their own.


We believe the focus should be on the artist and the music, which is why we don’t charge the artists to promote their music on our website. From our previous conversation, it looks like you guys have the same idea and approach. What was the thought behind that decision and how will you guys generate money? Will there be paid advertisements and if so, how often will they be appearing on the channel?


The biggest issue for artists when it comes to releasing music is often the financial commitment that goes into it. We want to help artists promote the music that they’ve spent so much money on so we thought it’s only best to let them submit their music for free. Channels currently charge quite a lot of money  just to promote artists music and it’s time that changed. We’ve heard the complaints and we now want to offer a solution. We will generate revenue through advertising but for the foreseeable future, our video stream will not be interrupted by adverts/commercial breaks. Our content will play 24/7 for all to enjoy.


In a sentence, can you sum up what 5AB TV is all about.


5AB TV is a channel for the Panjabi music scene made by fans of the Panjabi music scene.


Do you have a list of presenters that will be featured on the channel?


We’ve had an outstanding response from presenters / influencers / artists who wish to work with us. We’re happy to work with anyone who we feel can work well on screen and that has a keen interest in what we do. We want our channel to feel diverse and community led so don’t really care about background – if they’re and have potential, we’ll create with them.


Certain artists have a lot of influence over what gets played on channels and radio stations and how much of their music is promoted. How are you going to work with artists and ensure that the content is fairly distributed.


This is an important issue for us. We will always treat all artists fairly. Every person who creates content is an artist in our eyes. Whether they’re at the peak of their career or just at the start; they will all be treated the same. We will never let an artist influence what is played on our channel. A key reason why we have chosen to remain anonymous is because we do not want those artists who know of us to feel as if they can influence what we do. Money does not phase us, ‘clout’ does not phase us. If you make good music, we will support you no matter what.


When is the channel officially launching?


We are currently looking at a launch at the end of February/very early March. All details will be made available on our socials shortly


Lastly is there anything else you would like to say to the readers?


Welcome to the future of Panjabi TV.


We’d like to thank 5AB TV for speaking to us and wish them all the best with their launch on the 8th of March 2019

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