Beyond Chron has been deluged with letters in response to Harrison Chastang’s May 1st story on the termination of popular
longtime KBLX morning show host "Your Cousin" Kevin Brown. Loyal listeners are urging the Pennsylvania-based Entercom Corporation to reinstate Brown, and many believe his firing is part of a larger trend leading to the dismantling of African-American radio stations serving listeners over 40. We have set forth below some of the many insightful letters on the injustice of Brown’s firing and its national implications.
I have been listening to KBLX forever, and truthfully it’s the only way I can manage to get through traffic in the morning. I can always count on an interview with whichever comediene was coming to town, and know that I would be cracking up on any given Friday.
Trying to fit East Coast shows into the West, has not worked in the past. It was tried with Tom Joyner for this time zone, and it was dismal. Once again, listeners are on the losing side, just like when KKSF disappeared as a Jazz station.
Sometimes in the morning, you just need some Anita Baker, Al Green and D'Angelo to make it down the road. I don't think Steve Harvey can help me down HWY 80.
We need KBLX and Kelvin Brown and other Black DJ's to stay on the air in San Francisco. This is a very needed program. I start my day with this program and feel informed and connected to other black people. I will not listen to this station without them.
I am pissed off that yet another favorite local station has been ambushed. I loved Kevin Brown, Nicci and Joe. They made a great team and they included local events and artists in their programming. Along with the Hollywood minute, sponsered jams this radio station kept me tuned in everyday. From now on, I will not be tuning in. Yup, Renel gets my ear from now on. SO MAD THIS IS HAPPENING
Although we can only get KBLX when going into the Bay, I agree with your concerns and stance. Write the letter to the FCC with on line signers or petition. Just do it, and you are right as with the housing market where black people are being pushed out so goes the radio stations (even Religious ones).
The sale of KBLX radio station is a great loss to the Bay Area Community!!! The Kevin Brown Morning Show with Nicky Thomas and the crew was a staple of this community and well listened to by all ethnic backgrounds and not just the African‑American community.
I'm very saddened to hear that the format will change as I had always awakened to this radio station each and every morning and always looked forward to the format given by Kevin Brown, especially 'Hollywood Minute'.
What a tragedy that we will no longer be able to hear Kevin Brown and his crew amongst the many other DJs who have entertained and contributed to what was the original 'KBLX radio station after so many years of being on the air.
I'm saddened by the change in format at KBLX. "Cousin Kevin Brown" made KBLX what it is today. The new owners have no regard for the listening audience and have totally disrespected the African‑American community.
I like Steve Harvey, but he doesn't live in the Bay Area. We want live radio in the Bay Area not delayed syndicated radio from the East Coast or Texas. What can be done to stop this madness and the dismantling of Black radio stations that target listeners who are 45 years and older.
I mourn the loss of KBLX, and will no longer listen to the station.
Mr. Chastang, this is an excellent article, and I hope it will be distributed nationally. We need to begin a serious dialogue, to tell the FCC that this is unacceptable. The implications are far reaching and very scary to say the least. Thanks to Beyond Chron for providing the platform to sound this Alarm, and to you, and Mr Tatum for your ongoing efforts to keep our community engaged and informed.
With KBLX gone there will be no need to listen to the radio in the morning, afternoon and most of all at night when you are relaxing and trying to create a mellow mood. First KSOL, KDIA, KKSF and now KBLX. What more can they take from our community?
I will no longer be tuning in to this station!!!! Kevin Brown was one of the main reasons I tuned in daily. Any concerts sponsored by this station I will no longer attend.
This sounds like a subtle yet hostile takeover of the local radio airwaves by a company offering empty promises to not tamper with the "successful urban format" while all the while seeking ways to shamelessly undermine the intelligence of African‑American radio listeners.
We know what we like both when we see it and hear it! And, those of us with a keen ear to notice the difference between a local, almost organically developed programming versus a highly‑glossed, slickly commercialized radio program (taking nothing away from the importance of the Steve Harvey Show), are not easily amused or appeased.
Bring back a radio show format that "fits" the San Francisco Bay Area and is not thrust down our throats because of the bottom line of it being a more money‑making business deal.
I bet if you follow all the proverbial dots of this travesty of a story, you'll find at the base of it all that one thing in our society that tends to tear us apart more than bring us together: money. Big companies like the one that has consumed KBLX's original radio show format may not lack it (money), but they greed for it.
The only upside to this story is that at least an African‑American (Steve Harvey) stands a chance at getting some of it, I suppose. Still, and to borrow a musical lyric from a popular black music superstar, (God rest and bless her soul) "it's not right, but it's OK." Bring back the O'Jays, the Temptations, the Spinners, the Whispers, Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston, Carl Carlton, message music from an era gone by when music was really music.
The thing is Kevin Brown didn't just broadcast from here, he lives here. Brown has supported community agencies and their events for more than a decade, putting a familiar voice and face to causes that needed help. With the firing of Brown, we all lose.
San Jose, CA
This is awful, I've been riding with Kevin to work for 15 years. He is the Bay Area's cousin. Steve Harvey is ok, but we are more interested in what is going on in the Bay Area in the mornings. Kevin, Niki and Joe are a great team. I know change is hard, but this was not broken, so why did you need to fix it? Kevin Brown is radio in the mornings. You can put Steve on in the afternoon for the drive home.
I agree completely with this article. It's a shame that this has happened. Most of us (African Americans) grew up on KBLX and our children followed our lead. In most African American families in our area, everyone loves our cousin Kevin Brown.
I recall having some pretty dark days when I was laid off from work in 2009 and I would listen to Kevin on my way to my destination and he would make me laugh even when I was sad. I will surely miss his humor, warmth and most of all my cousin!
Thank you for this informative article. I tuned in today and was dismayed to hear the change. KBLX and Kevin Brown especially, is a Bay Area institution. He will be greatly missed by his loyal fans. If this is true I will no longer listen to KBLX, we need to make our dissatisfaction (anger) known to the new owners.
Why mess with success. I love Steve Harvey, but not for my local morning drive!! Deregulation of radio means minorities lose! Deregulation means no diversity and the same old folks with power will continue with the power. It's a sad day.
It is so unfortunate that after over 20 years, my husband and I, as well as other KBLX listeners within the Bay Area, will now have to find another morning drive station (evening as well). Why try to fix something that is not broken???
The ride in this morning was extremely dull and boring. There are some of us who need a little more stimulation in the mornings and we go to face our 8 hour plus days, a little 'pick me up and go,' which was not at all the case today!
Is this what we have to look forward to? We are fans of Steve Harvey, but not at all impressed with his radio program. We need current and relevant information pertaining to our Bay Area. Who is going to provide us with information pertaining to the upcoming concerts, shows and events in the entertainment world and current events that affect our surrounding communities?
We need current relevance. I feel for our Bay Area, but mostly, for those that provided us with their personalities for so many years, current events, entertainment updates, contests and music per our requests. It is a very, very sad time in the Bay Area!!!
Daly City, CA
I am thoroughly disappointed that Kevin Brown, Nikki Thomas and Joel McConnel are gone. I look forward to traffic report. Bloomberg report. Horoscope report. The local programs that Nikki hosts, Kevin's comments and interviews with local artists, the way they interact, the "dumb bunny of the day", etc. I look forward to listening to their personalities interact.
They should not have been fired!!! The show needs to have African‑American owners!! or co‑owner!!! The personal, interactive local format needs to remain!!! Who's going to do the stone soul pic nic and keep us informed about African American health with Dr. LeNoir and local African Businesses and non‑profits!!!
Kevin and Nikki care! This was not a good move. Something should have been done to "save" KBLX from having a need to sell!
Cousin Kevin and his morning crew was one of the reasons I listened to the radio in the mornings. He was very in tune with what was going on in the black community. His concern for the children and the charitable organizations he supported was a big help to us. We need someone like Kevin to speak up and continue to help the community.
I am very disappointed. I will tell all of my friends to boycott KBLX. Cousin Kevin and the morning crew will be missed. We need people who really know the needs of the Bay Area – not outsiders trying to assume what best for us.
I have listened to Kevin Brown and KBLX for over 20 years and although I am among those listeners who have discovered Pandora, Tune‑in Radio and Sirius radio, I ALWAYS turn back to KBLX. No music program or station can ever replace the feeling of family and community. Cousin Kev as well as the other hosts have been in this community with us for 20 years. They know us. They are our family. Now what??
Walnut Creek, CA
Today, is a day of mourning for all KBLX listeners. I am a homegrown native of Oakland, California. I have grown up listening to KBLX. I remember the days when the Bay Area had KSFX and KSOL.
I am a Latina that has deep roots in the urban community. Kevin Brown and the entire KBLX family was a part of my family, even if we were not related by blood. Music brought us together in good times and bad.
How more generic can KBLX sound with a robotic sounding entrance of a voice, welcoming KBLX listeners to the new KBLX. Steve Harvey vs. Kevin Brown, "NO CONTEST."
Unfortunately, Mr. Kevin Brown did not come out the victor in this media takeover. All KBLX listeners will miss the "real human" connection that we experienced, when we listened to the Gospel music on Sunday morning to the "Golden Oldies" on Sunday afternoons.
So much for the "Stone Cold" concert I look forward to each year. New is not always better, and the grass is not always greener on the other side. I wish the entire (former) KBLX family all my best.
I have listened to KBLX and Kevin forever. There is no other kind of music market here. This is incredibly sad and disgusting. These people do not know our market or care it appears. The Bay Area is home to all perspectives and not just one "tomfoolery" audience.
Do they think we are dumb sheep and will follow just as long as it is a black voice? What an insult. This decision lacks any understanding and will probably end in another sale of the station and another (not needed) radio format of crap music.
I am so sorry for Kevin Brown and the team they will be sorely missed.
San Leandro, CA
I am not of African American descent, but I don't think that my race plays any part in the music I enjoy and the morning personalities that can make or break my commute. This is INSANE to fire one of the most fun, funny, and entertaining radio personalities I have ever spent my morning with. You SUCK KBLX and I have been an active listener for 32 years. I have to rethink where I may head in the morning.