RFFocus recently wrote about the changes taking place on the KBLX in San Francisco. The most noted was the demise of the 20-plus year morning radio show hosted by Kevin Brown. The show was replaced by The national Steve Harvey Morning Show and we are STILL getting angry emails (most that we can’t post) from fans who are tired of the cookie-cutter concepts being force-fed to them by many corporate stations nationwide. The biggest complaints are extremely limited variety and outrageously tight playlists or in laymen’s terms ‘All the radio stations sound the same.’
Urban stations have been getting flack mostly from seasoned artists like Brian McKnight who just experienced major backlash, complaints and compliments for his Adult Mix Tape of a song “If You’re Ready to Learn.” The controversial line that comes directly before that, “Let me show you how your P$*+y Works” is what got McKnight the most attention. Fans wanted McKnight to remain in the classy balladeer vain and some thought it was a desperate attempt for attention. One of my FaceBook friends even asked people to pray for McKnight because he was not mentally well. After listening to his interview on Reach Around Radio yesterday, there is nothing wrong with Brian McKnight at all, he is tired of not being free to be creative and while talking about certain subject matter may offend some of his previous fans the amount of attention he got from this concept is probably the most publicity he’s gotten in years. The last time I heard about Brian McKnight he was working at one of the most boring stations on the planet KTWV in Los Angeles. He’s currently selling his controversial single on iTunes.
LL Cool J, Chuck D and Tank have also expressed their dismay at various times about the significant changes that have taken place at urban leaving the listeners starving for more and artists fewer spaces to promote product. I have stated many times in this blog that the day urban radio started depending on research is the beginning of the end. Urban radio does not FOLLOW trends urban radio once gave birth to them. Without going too far back into the history, urban radio was once the main resource for African Americans for not just entertainment but news and information. All is not lost, there are still some great urban stations out there that still take chances and still provide the community with much needed programming, new music, news and information, some of those that immediately come to mind are WBLS/New York, KKDA/Dallas, V103/Atlanta and KJLH in Los Angeles.
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