“Radio is my passion,” he says.
“Though people always thought my expertise was being on the air, it is really what happens behind the scenes that I’m good at, such as identifying new ways to bring content to people.”
It was recently announced that Mansfield, after a four-year hiatus, will return to radio as part of X-Stream Visual Radio’s (XVR) new syndication model, and his chief role is on the business side.
“As a partner in the company, I’ve been working on this project for two years now. It really is a ground-breaking way of doing radio,” he says.
“Everyone kept asking me, ‘Why don’t you do a show?’. I never really wanted to, but they convinced me. The new model suits my current lifestyle. At least I won’t have to get up in the early hours of the morning to be on the air – I can come in and record whenever I want. I want to do a lot more travelling and this will allow me that pleasure.”
This new method of programming, never done in South Africa before, will involve producing and packaging a diverse range of content for syndication to several commercial and community FM stations (26 properties in total) countrywide, with programmes suited to each station’s particular audience.
Each of the shows has been sponsored by different enterprises that will receive their fair portion of airtime, allowing material to be distributed to the stations free of charge.
And because it will go out to a diverse range of stations, the programming itself will be notably varied. It will be cut up into different segments, including changing music selections where needed.
Together with Mansfield, a number of other high-profile personalities, such as Nick Mallett (rugby), Jake White (rugby), Mark Fish (soccer), Astrid Ascar (business), Kurt Darren (music), Hayley Owen (entertainment) and more, will join the existing team, which includes Sasha Martinengo, IanF, Darren Scott and Hugh Bladen hosting their own shows in their different fields of expertise.
“I have only ever broadcast to a Johannesburg and Pretoria audience. It will be interesting to see how the rest of the country takes to me,” Mansfield says.
“My show, a two-hour segment, is designed as a lifestyle show and will involve many of the features and characters I have used in the past.
“I will also have a lot more leeway than I had at Highveld, the freedom to do whatever I want or, more appropriately, what my audience wants.
“Finally! I have my own toy to play with and don’t have to play with someone else’s.”
Mansfield will also be inviting a host of high-profile South African and international icons onto his show every week.
Despite the association with Internet radio (Ballz Visual Radio), it is has not yet been decided whether the shows will be available for live streaming online, though Mansfield confirms that the content will be made available online in some or other format.