Getting to grips with Grimmy

He’s one of the bright young things of the broadcasting industry, so Source just couldn’t say no when we were given the chance to talk to Radio 1 and T4 hottie Nick Grimshaw…

We hear you’re not just a pretty face Grimmy – you’re a graduate of Liverpool Uni too!

Yeah, at uni I did business… Oh wait, did I? I did communication and business studies. That’s what it was called. I literally don’t know what it means! I wish I’d done something more creative, like an art degree or music degree. If only I could turn back time!

What were you like as a student?

Not very studious. At all. I preferred going out, doing student radio and writing for the student paper. I was proactive when it came to doing what I wanted to do – radio stuff and writing – but I wasn’t very good at staying in and revising macroeconomics, which I failed seven times.

How did you get into broadcasting?

The first thing I wanted to do when I got to uni was get involved in student radio, and I did that for the full three years I was there. That’s how it started.

How did it feel when you got the job at Radio 1 in 2005?

I’d always wanted to work on Radio 1, even when I was little. I’d never say I wanted to work in radio, I always said: ‘I want to work for Radio 1’. It was really surreal. I remember spending my first show being absolutely petrified, being thrown in with Annie Mac and just sitting there thinking: ‘What is going on? Why am I on Radio 1?’ It was really insane. I still feel weird about it!

Do you still get nervous before you go on air?

I definitely still get nervous. I think everybody does; people you wouldn’t think would get nervous, people like – I don’t know – for example Florence from Florence and the Machine. She’s been doing gigs before where she is petrified and you think to yourself that the whole world loves her… But even she still gets nervous.

What’s the best thing about radio?

The thing I love about radio is the storytelling element of it that you don’t get on TV. TV is very scripted. I love that on radio – you never know which way the show’s going to go. It sort of evolves. You can end up talking about the most random things ever, like custard. I like the fact that natural stories occur unplanned.

You do a lot of TV work as well. Which do you prefer?

I think radio is a lot harder than doing TV because it’s just down to you, whereas on TV you roll in on a script, you can practice and you can do it again. It’s easier. Well, it’s not easier, it’s just that radio’s a bit more challenging than TV. I love them both. I go through phases – one week I love radio more and think ‘Why do I even do TV?’ But then I’ll get in the studio and love TV again, so it just depends really. They do feel like really different things.

What’s been the best TV show you’ve worked on?

I love working at T4, I love the show, I love the whole vibe there. Everyone’s really young and fun and you literally just mess around for your job. I love the whole crew. There’s probably about 60 people that work at T4, it does feel like a proper family there. You get to hang out with your friends every day and make a mug out of yourself on television.

Who’s been the best person you’ve interviewed?

I loved interviewing Beyoncé. It’s funny when you interview someone who’s big, a super famous American star like Rihanna or Beyoncé and you think they’re either going to be really interesting or maybe like: ‘Ok, we’ve been doing interviews all day, we get it’. But they were both really, really fun; both of them. Really natural, lovely, really funny.

Who would be your dream interviewee?

I want to meet James Franco. Missy Elliot. I would like to have a mash up actually of Missy Elliot, Snoop Dogg and James Franco please… If you could make that happen.

We’ll see what we can do! You have to do some pretty crazy stuff with T4. What’s been the weirdest?

Dressing up as Nicki Minaj. She turned up and she had this sort of diva persona about her. She had this huge entourage, like seven suitcases of clothes being wheeled in. She was a little bit grumpy and I’m thinking: ‘Oh god, I’m going to have to dress up as her and rap to her. She’s going to hate it’. But she was great actually. She took it really well and got quite into it. She had literally just arrived in the country, but once she got on TV she turned into another person. That was really weird. Dressing up as someone and then performing to that person – a female rapper of all people.

Where do you see yourself in ten years’ time?

Hopefully still doing radio. I would love to do some daytime stuff. I don’t know, just carry on doing what I’m doing.

Have you got any advice for young Scots who fancy making a career in broadcasting?

Radio is something you have to practice and you’ll get better and better at it. Make sure you’re doing student radio, and that you’re being proactive in listening to other shows, listening to yourself and noticing little things you love and the things you hate. And just really annoying people. Send anything in that you’ve done,
send demos in, do loads of work experience. Seeing your hunger for it is an attractive thing to employers.

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