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Thursday, 25 January, 2001, 11:22 GMT
Virgin drops teen groups
Westlife
Westlife are definitely off the Virgin playlist
Virgin Radio is dropping boy and girl groups from its music playlist to concentrate more on its core audience of 30 to 40 year olds.

The national commercial station, which has traditionally focused on mainstream rock music than chart pop, said it was taking the move to halt the creeping growth of teen pop acts in its playlist.

Robbie Williams
Robbie Williams makes the Virgin playlist
The decision means groups such as Westlife, A1, Spice Girls, Atomic Kitten and All Saints, will no longer be played on the station.

A spokeswoman for Virgin Radio told BBC News Online: "We never played them much anyway."

Out
Westlife
Five
Boyzone
A1
All Saints
Atomic Kitten
Spice Girls
Ronan Keating

Virgin Radio has taken the decision after research showed a growing group of "musically disenfranchised" 30 to 40 year olds.

The new playlist is aimed at "redressing the balance between real music versus chart hits currently played on radio stations".

The station wants to distance itself from other pop and rock music stations which are seen as being dominated by teen pop acts.

"We did play All Saints last year but we won't be playing them any more," said the Virgin spokeswoman.

Even songs which make a big splash in the charts will not necessarily be aired on the station.

"Our research found that our listeners really do not care who is number one and what is in the charts."

In
Robbie Williams
Travis
JJ72
U2
The Police
David Bowie
Stereophonics
The Corrs

Also off the playlist are Ricky Martin, Boyzone star and solo singer Ronan Keating, and rappers Puff Daddy and Eminem.

"We did play Ronan's Rollercoaster last year, which was a great single, but we won't be playing him anymore," said the spokeswoman.

Virgin said it would not rule out ever playing another single by Ronan Keating or the Spice Girls, for example, but said they would be heard with a much "reduced frequency".

Bands and artists which feature on the current Virgin playlist include U2, Mansun, Texas, Aerosmith and Coldplay.

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