Farewell to Channel [V], MAX, CMC, Smooth…

Four Foxtel music channels will come to a close on Tuesday after the Pay TV broadcaster announced an overhaul which introduces ViacomCBS music channels.

Channel [V] ends after 25 years, MAX ends at 20 years, CMC at 16 years and Smooth at 6.5 years.

Former presenter Osher Günsberg said, “No surprises when I tell you it was the greatest job that I’ve ever had with the greatest team that I’ve ever worked with both on and off the camera.

“The groundbreaking television that we were making from The Big Day Out to the Bus shows to just a regular Thursday at [V]HQ where another massive band would rock the socks off their fans.

“We were pushing the limits of what could be done with the audience and with the available technology every single day. We were doing things that other TV stations wouldn’t even think of doing for years. Thank you Channel [V]. You changed my life, gave me lifelong friends. You let be absolutely terrible with awful hair, well before I was anywhere near good.

“You gave me 10,000 hours of live TV flight time before I ever got near network television.

“You set me up for the incredible career that I’ve had since then. You gave this massive music fan. a front row seat for the ride his life.”

Molly Meldrum said after Countdown ended it was so important.

“It was one of the best channels ever,” he said.

Channel [V] Ch. 801

Launched in 1995, emerging from Galaxy channel Red, and operated by XYZ Entertainment. Closed in 2016 but [V] Hits became Foxtel [V].
Presenters included Danny Clayton, Carissa Walford, Andrew G, James Mathison, Jane Gazzo, Maynard, Jabba, Maya Jupiter, Kyle Linahan, Renee Bargh, Marty Smiley, Billy Russell, James Kerley, Andrew Mercado, Nathan Harvey, Molly Meldrum, Yumi Stynes, Toni Pearen, Leah Purcell, Deni Hines, Chloe Maxwell.

Highlights included Channel [V] Presenter Search, Channel [V] Oz Artist of the Year, Guerrilla Gigs, Channel [V] Music Bus, [V] Island Parties,  B430, Cash Cab, The Riff, whatUwant and Band in a Bubble featuring Regurgitator at Federation Square.

MAX Ch. 805

Launched as musicMAX in 2000
Highlights include The MAX Sessions, Studio MAX, My First Gig, MAX 1000 Greatest Songs of All Time, Later With Jools, MAX By Requests, The Know, My Top Eleven, MAX Superstar, Live Music

Country Music Channel Ch. 815

Launch in 2004
Highlights included CMC Awards staged in Queensland, CMC Rocks the Snowy, The CMC Top 30 Countdown, Spotlight which profiled artists, Rollin’ With…hosted by Steve Forde and Muster Masters, a game show hosted based around the Gympie Muster.

Smooth Ch. 806

Launched in 2013 in partnership with Nova Entertainment.
Presenters: Cameron Daddo, Marcia Hines,
Cameron Daddo recently told TV Tonight, “I don’t have anything to do with Smooth on Foxtel anymore and haven’t done for 12 months. I was bummed because I thought it was terrific and I loved working with Foxtel. When they said, ‘We’re just going to have it as videos, we’re not going to do any more presentation pieces, I thought it was a shame.People used to stop me all the time and say, ‘I saw you on Smooth.’

“I think that was probably the writing on the wall when they decided to do a channel share (with Foxtel Arts).”

Refreshed musical channels from July 1 are: MTV HITS, MTV Classic, Club MTV, CMT (Country Music Television) and Nick Music,


  1. I noticed MTV classic will play music from the 80’s, 90’s & noughties. How about the 70’s?
    Also I noticed MTV heavily censor their videos unlike V or Max. I wonder if this will occur?

  2. A while back I came across and watched the DVD of Regurgitator’s Band In A Bubble project, very amusing to see Andrew G and friends as they were back then (and to see Tony Barber singing “Polyester Girl”). I never got to see much of Channel V, but if the Bubble project was indicative of the spirit of the channel (not to mention the technical feats involved), it is a sad loss indeed for music lovers.

  3. I haven’t watched any of these channels for the past few months but they used to be regularly on in the gym and they seem to be a shell of their former selves for a number of years with many of the programs mentioned airing 5, 10, 15 years ago etc. I’m not sure what people are lamenting as the channels they seem to fondly remember actually died inside years ago. I remember on Max the shows with Chit Chat and the Max Sessions but don’t recall seeing new episodes or even repeats for a long time.

  4. They have some farewell videos on their websites:

  5. I’ve watched Channel [V] (and Red before it) since the beginning and the early to mid 2000s were prime Channel [V] time, great live music, countdown shows, great personalities and so much Australian pop music supported and championed. Even Nikki Webster got to perform a live set back in the day.

    It’s a shame this type of programming doesn’t happen any more, the music industry is now essentially run by Spotify and Apple Music playlists.

    • Andrew Mercado

      Nikki Webster became a part of the [V] family after an ARIAs when many artists made fun of her. We embraced her to tell everyone that it wasn’t cool to be rude to a little girl. If you look closely on her first CD, she gives a shout out to us.

    • A free-to-air music channel (most notably with Ten as they recently announced a new channel) has been discussed by various members of this forum, but the issues are rights and contents in music videos. And not to mention that some music videos won’t even get on the ABC as they have some advertising in it. Good idea, but doubt it will get off the ground.

      • There’s a reason MTV/VH1 got out of music on their main channels in the US, and there’s a reason Foxtel doesn’t want to continue in the music television business anymore.

        YouTube & music streaming have destroyed the business model. People aren’t going to watch 9 videos while they wait for 1 that they like. They will just look it up and watch/listen to it on demand.

        CBSViacom can make these work because they have the infrastructure from US/UK and don’t have to spend much.

        You don’t even see people complaining that MTV has lost its way and is now an entertainment channel anymore. People accept that it’s over…

        • harrypotter1994

          I totally understand what you are saying but I don’t often discover new music from artists I don’t know through Youtube. In the final days of Video Hits they were playing Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep” well before it was known by the general public here. Another song Hurts “Wonderful Life”, I never once heard on radio or discovered on YT but VH played it all the time and it’s a great song.

  6. Wonderful memories from these iconic channels and shows.. Sad this era in TV music will end..
    I trust the “MTV” replacements will cover much of what we are losing..

  7. daveinprogress

    This is very sad. Theres something special about music programs and when they come to an end. Video Hits on 10, Sound Unlimited (Sounds) on 7 and of course perhaps one of Australia’s best loved programs all time, let alone music shows: Countdown on the ABC.

  8. Sorry to see them go, our late son loved Channel V and the presenters and we won a $20,000 huge tv, sound system etc package on Max in the early years.

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