Rock 100.5 morning duo Bailey and Southside suspended after ‘failed attempt at humor’

Jason Bailey and "Southside" Steve Rickman have been working as a morning show since late 2014. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/ rho@ajc.com
Jason Bailey and "Southside" Steve Rickman have been working as a morning show since late 2014. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/ rho@ajc.com

Credit: Rodney Ho

Credit: Rodney Ho

The joke revolved around child molestation and legal settlements.

The morning show duo of Jason Bailey and “Southside” Steve Rickman on Rock 100.5 was suspended this week after they made insensitive jokes Monday on their broadcast.

The joke was basically that Rickman would be fine allowing a famous person to take advantage of his child purely for the settlement money. It was part of a segment about how much money the estates of dead famous people make that aired around 9 a.m. Monday.

Here is the transcript:

Rickman: “If Michael Jackson was still alive and I met him, I would let my kid go stay with him just so I could sue him later. Just you know.”

Bailey: “You’d be OK with your child being traumatized for the rest of his life in order for you to have a payday correct?”

Rickman: “You’re [expletive] right because we can afford counseling. I know this is a golf course joke or whatever, You, you and the boys, we’ll get through it, and we will profit from it.”

Bailey: “I think, I think you’d be stronger if you set your kid up before he goes over there. ‘Look there is a chance, and when it does, let daddy know, not gonna be pleasant, gonna be a long run for a few years, but you’ll never have to work!’”

Rickman: “I need you to record everything that happens the second that you walk in. Here is the device. I’m gonna put devices on you in various areas, and once it happens you call me and we, will get through it together. We’ll get through it.”

This portion was subsequently removed from the podcast of Monday’s show.

Sean Shannon, who oversees the radio station as president and market manager for Atlanta-based Cumulus Media, said in a statement that the company “operates from a clearly defined set of programming principles, and it’s no question that Bailey and Southside’s recent failed attempt at humor has no place on any of our stations.”

Bailey was suspended three days and returned to work Friday while Rickman will be off-air for two weeks. Bailey on-air did not explain their absence but said they are on vacation next week.

Each of them will “undergo sensitivity training to ensure this does not happen again. They deeply regret the incident and apologize sincerely for their offensive comments,” Shannon said.

Neither Bailey nor Rickman responded to texts requesting additional comment.

The morning team has been together since late 2014. Bailey came from 92.9/The Game, while Rickman was a long-time member of the defunct Regular Guys show, which was on Rock 100.5 before the current morning show.

In the most recent monthly radio ratings, Bailey and Southside ranked seventh among morning shows for men ages 25 to 54.

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