As I write this in preparation, the weather outside here in Dallas Fort Worth has been cold, cloudy and gloomy. It’s been like that since Wednesday, and that’s not surprising to me.
For it was Wednesday that the new management at my favorite radio station, 105.3 The Fan, dealt me and many other loyal listeners a blow that has us depressed and up in arms.
Jasmine Sadry, the very popular “sidekick” on The Fan’s morning show “New School,” announced that afternoon that The Fan was not renewing her contract. That morning was her last day on the air.
And the resounding cry of Fan Fans was loud and clear: “WHAT… THE… HELL?????!!!!!”
Radio and media is a volatile business; I get that. I have friends who have worked in the field, so I know all too well that turnover is very high in their line of work. But you would expect them to make good decisions. And this is not a good decision.
They just up and kicked out someone who had a large and loyal fan base, kicking those fans in the crotches in the process. And they got rid of someone that I truly consider a friend.
It was roughly 13 months ago that I first met Jasmine in person. I was at the Fan Sports Lounge on one of those nights when she agreed to come on and get heckled by Arnie Spanier when he was at The Fan. When she came in that night, I saw a Jennifer Aniston lookalike (think Rachel circa Season 3) that made me say “Wow.” I couldn’t stop myself from jokingly confusing her for Ms. Aniston; when she laughed back, I could tell she was a fun person.
(For the record, I have since dropped the Aniston comparison. She now reminds me more of a grown-up Amy Jo Johnson, AKA the original Pink Power Ranger, which is better because A. I had a major crush on that Ranger as a kid, and B. Jasmine admitted to me she wanted to be the Pink Ranger as a kid.)
Let’s get this out of the way: I knew early on I would have no shot with her. She now is in a relationship with Jake Runey, and even though she’s joked about “being in a relationship isn’t what it’s cracked up to be,” I can tell they’re happy, and I’m glad for both of them. Still, I could never stop flirting with her, since it’s probably the closest thing to a relationship I’ll ever get, and the fact that she always went along with it just showed me the type of person she is – as beautiful on the inside as out.
I love The Fan, been a loyal listener almost since its launch. But this decision has really tested my patience with them – the management, not anyone else on the air.
Sources have told me that certain on-air personalities (I won’t say who to protect them) were not to even mention Jasmine on the air, citing the risk of “legal issues.” This is complete bullcrap. During Bruce Gilbert’s term running The Fan, the station underwent quite a bit of turnover, getting rid of Ben & Skin, Jagger, Barskey and Gregg Henson. But all of them (to the best of my knowledge) were given enough advance knowledge to say their own goodbyes on the air, and the remaining talent was allowed to wish them well also. No legal recourse was taken as a result as far as I know. It was one of the reasons I came to like The Fan’s organization in addition to its broadcasts.
I’m not just venting all this because of any personal feelings I have toward Miss Sadry. From a business perspective, this makes no sense.
New School’s ratings were on the rise last I heard, and you can’t tell me Jasmine wasn’t a big reason for it. It takes something special for DFW to warm up to a show hosted by a Redskins fan and a Yankees fan, and she was it. Not just because she was a local product and UNT alum; her vivaciousness and humor on the air, whether it was giving publicity to online sports talk hosts or hilarious impersonations of ESPN’s Doris Burke, gave people a reason to get up early in the morning.
Jasmine will be back on her feet – I have absolutely no doubt about that. She is too talented, too charming and too charismatic to be off the air for long.
But 105.3 The Fan was just dealt a huge blow by a new management team that apparently wants to “make its mark.” And it could take them a long time, if ever, to recover from that mark.
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