'Slants' examines the relationship between the music industry and the media in Ireland.

Philip King reports for the programme 'Slants' on the central role that the media has played in the development of the music industry in Ireland over the last 20 years. He speaks to some of the key players from bands, management and media including Bill Whelan, Barry Devlin, Jim Lockhart, Terry O'Neill, Paul McGuinness, and Marty Whelan. 

Newspapers and magazines, radio and television are so bound up with the purveying of music that it's almost impossible to separate them.

In the 1960s the popular music scene in Ireland was dominated by the showband. In the days before the importance of the press and before the birth of the music video, a full dance floor was a sign of success for a band. However, it wasn't long before the bands and dancing were replaced by disc jockeys. As the popularity of the showband declined, groups like Horslips replaced them. Horslips success was based on 

Records, air-play, press coverage and television appearances coupled with live performances.

Horslips members Barry Devlin and Jim Lockhart speak to Philip King about their success and how the music industry and the media operate. Philip King also visits the Baggot Inn in Dublin where many young bands begin their careers, and many go no further.

Publicist Terry O'Neill, whose job it is to get as much media coverage as possible for the acts he represents, describes the difference between advertising and publicity. 

Paul McGuinness, manager of U2, is acutely aware of the importance of building a good relationship with the media if a band is to achieve success and describes how U2 courted the media. 

The media would be the means by which we informed the world that we were in business and we were anxious for their attention.

Making records is essential to the success of bands - to get air-play, to play gigs, and to get international interest, which is what most bands hope to achieve. 

Radio DJ Marty Whelan also describes the selection process for what ends up getting played on our airwaves. 

This episode of 'Slants' was broadcast on 2 February 1986.