In the shocker news of the year in the radio industry, a media outlet has reported that the incomparable, legendary Tom Joyner Morning Show will be forced off the air in 2017.
The report states that Joyner, the first African American to ever become syndicated nationwide, will have his unceremonious ouster coincide with the end of President Obama’s second term in the White House, which will officially conclude in January 2017.
What’s the rationale for such an alleged power play against Joyner?
Radio One, the Daily Mail is reporting, wants to go younger host. Joyner, 65, is to allegedly be replaced by Russ Parr, 56.
Now here’s the shocker: the source told the Daily Mail that the decision to get rid of Joyner was made by former business associate and best friend David Kantor.
Kantor, whom this writer interviewed this past spring while aboard the Tom Joyner Cruise (officially known as the “Tom Joyner Fantastic Voyage”), is said to have encouraged Joyner to sell shares of his company Reach Media to radio conglomerate Radio One. Kantor, of course, gave no indication during that interview that such a seismic move was underway
Another shocker is that the story claims that Radio One plans to move syndicated host Russ Parr, 56, into Joyner’s time slots in Washington, DC and Baltimore starting in January 2016, a year before Joyner is supposed to be supplanted by the younger man.
This is all news to Joyner, who has used his vast platform of 8 million listeners in 105 markets daily to advocate for social uplift, particularly when it comes to black history and education. Joyner is unarguably America’s premiere and fiercest protector of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) and uses the Tom Joyner Cruise as one of the main vehicles to raise money for students to attend such schools.
‘Tom isn’t ready to go and hasn’t even made plans for life after radio. Radio is his passion and it’s all he knows,’ source tells Daily Mail Online
Joyner also took to social media to vehemently refute the reports, according to Straight From the A:
We will all be waiting with bated breath for the word for the godfather of black radio on his official status with Radio One now and into the future.
To further dispel the rumors, Reach Media released the following statement:
“Any stories that suggest major changes to the Tom Joyner Morning Show are inaccurate. Tom Joyner is under contract with Reach Media until the end of 2017. We expect that Reach will continue to syndicate Tom’s show beyond that date and for as long as he would like to be on the air. There has always been refinements and updates to the show, as well as market changes due to local conditions, and there may be some in the future; but Tom Joyner and the Tom Joyner Morning Show continues to be strong and is a daily Party with a Purpose. Reach is committed to Tom Joyner for the long term who remains committed to radio, his audience and the future.”