I listened with a heavy heart this morning as I listened to the last broadcast of "The Cliff Winston & Diana Steele Show" earlier this morning. When Cliff signed off at 10:00, the official programing at V100 the R&B Station ceased to exist. Oh, the official last day of the station isn't until this Friday(As I write this I am listening to a musical best of that will play until the end) but for all intents and purposes, the station is no more.
For many of us here in the Los Angeles area, this is a sad turn of events for Black Radio. The station was formely 92.3 and then later 100.3 the Beat and was primarily a hip hop playing station. The R&B format was adopted in late 2006 and was extremely popular with the listening audience. The programming included radio personalities such as long time radio person Cliff Winston, Shirley Hayes, John Monds, Myke Julius and of course the ever popular "Micheal Baisden Show." So an almost 20 year tradition is gone.
What really upsets me is that another Black owned station is now gone from the radio landscape. For those that do not know Radio One, a Black Owned media company founded by Cathy Hughes, purchased the station from Clear Channel Broadcasting in 1999. On March 24th the company sold V100 for 137.5 million to a Morman Owned Broadcast company. Yes you have read correctly, to the Mormans. Given the less than stellar history that the Morman Church has with Black people, you probably know that the new owners will not be playing R&B music. You can read more about the sale of the station here.
What really disapoints me is the sale itself. I know thaty in a sense it was business, the quote "Money talks-Bull** walks comes to my mind. But a company that has done many good things as Radio One and Cathy Hughes has done, really seems like a slapn the face to the community. I know that there is more to this and may seem unfair but it is how I feel. Now there is only one Black owned radio station in the Los Angeles area: Stevie Wonder's KJLH 102.3 and God help us if anything happens to that wonderful station.
However there is a sliver of good news: KDAY 93.5 has entered into an agreement with Radio One to syndicate many of its programs and they have pledged continue having events like "A Taste of Soul" and the upcoming "Superfest Concert". They have also pledged to be more involved with the community as V100 was. That is good news.
However I am still saddened at the loss of a station that has become so much a part of the Black Community. There should be room for stations like KDAY with its hip hop and r&b programming and a station like V100 to exist together and complement each other and present variety to the listeners.
So V100 joins other beloved Black Radio stations that have passed on like KACE, KGFJ and the old KDAY. Its just a shame.
Farewell V100 and thank you for all the years of service that you have provided over the years.