Radio 1 launches Relax music stream with ASMR and mindfulness sessions

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Image caption,
Presenter Sian Eleri will champion artists making "the best chilled music out there"

If you're looking for the Ultimate Banger or Hottest Record in the World - you've come to the wrong place.

Instead, think tingles, soothing soundscapes and music to help you unwind as Radio 1 launches its new Relax stream on BBC Sounds.

The idea is to help listeners deal with life's challenges - especially after the tough times many of us have had throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

It's also an attempt to stay relevant to younger audiences.

"The challenges of the last year have meant more young people than ever are seeking out content centred around well-being and relaxation," says Radio 1 chief Aled Haydn Jones.

The 24-hour stream won't just feature chilled-out music.

There'll be mindfulness sessions, tips from musicians, sport stars and other famous names on how they maintain mental fitness - as well as advice on staying motivated in difficult times.

The Youth Index, published in January by the Prince's Trust, tracks the well-being of young people aged 16 to 25.

This year's report found more than half of young people were always or often feeling anxious - the highest level ever recorded.

For people struggling to power down at the end of the day, the Relax stream will have dedicated Deep Sleepscapes - including sounds from David Attenborough's series Seven Worlds, One Planet, with listeners taken on a journey across seven unique continents from Antarctica to Africa.

There'll also be an hour of ASMR - those sounds that make you tingle, even if you don't quite know why.

Media caption,
The music artists using ASMR

Getting younger audiences to engage with the BBC is becoming increasingly hard, with fierce competition from other broadcasters and social media content creators.

People also want to be able to listen to whatever they want, whenever they want.

Radio 1 Relax is the BBC's second curated stream for BBC Sounds, following the launch of BBC Radio 1 Dance in October 2020.

Both streams are designed to give younger people more flexibility to listen to their favourite content outside of the more traditional schedules.

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