Exclusive: Streetz 94.5 signs The Breakfast Club from NYC, drops Rashan Ali

Hip-hop station Streetz 94.5 is dropping Rashan Ali's local morning show for the hot syndicated Breakfast Club out of New York City.

They start on Streetz Monday, March 31 from 5:30 a.m. to 10 a.m.

Steve Hegwood, the owner of Streetz, informed me this morning right after he let go Rashan Ali and her morning crew, including former V-103 morning entertainer Miss Sophia.

"The Breakfast Club will fit the station really well," Hegwood said. "It's doing really well in Houston, New York and Norfolk."

The Breakfast Club – DJ Envy, Angela Yee and Charlamagne tha God – began in 2010 and went into syndication nationally last March with a weekend highlights show, then expanded to morning syndication in August. It is now heard on about 20 stations around the country including Seattle, Detroit and Miami. They dub themselves "the world's most dangerous morning show."

Rolling Stone recently dubbed Charlamagne, a South Carolina native, as the "self-styled hip-hop Howard Stern." All three have TV experience. Charlamagne hosts an MTV2 late-night talk show "Charlamagne and Friends."  DJ Envy hosts MTV2's "Sucker Free Countdown." Yee was part of a single season of "The Gossip Game" on VH1.

Learn more about them here where I interview both DJ Envy and Angela Yee.

You can learn more about them on their page on Power 105.1 in New York, where they're based.

I spoke with both Envy and Angela on Friday afternoon. I'll post the interview Monday.

"It's a very tough decision," Hegwood said. "I love Rashan. She's a wonderful young lady. I contemplated this for more than six months."

Ali, who has worked at Hot 107.9 and V-103, joined Streetz in its relative infancy in October, 2012.

She has been through this routine of getting bumped for a syndicated show before. She was let go from Hot 107.9 when that station decided to go with Rickey Smiley's syndicated show instead.

Rashan Ali has now worked for all three Atlanta hip-hop stations; V-103, Hot and Streetz. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

"It's the nature of the business," Rashan said in an interview this morning." I know this feeling all too well. We gave it a run. What I don't feel like is we failed. We did our very best in the little time we had. I'm grateful for the opportunity to get back into radio. It's something [the late] Wayne Brown and Steve Hegwood wanted to see come to fruition. I helped it get off the ground. I'm glad I played a part."

"We are shocked," she added. "It hurts. Of course. I wouldn't be human if it didn't hurt. I tried not to allow myself to fall in love with radio. I was falling in love with it again. Maybe I should stop this pattern!"

Rashan still does some work for 11 Alive on "Atlanta & Company" at 12:30 p.m weekdays  and said she has "other stuff brewing."

But for now, she said she's going to have to just let it go and move on.

UrbanInsite was correct last month when it said the Breakfast Club was coming to Atlanta, specifically Power 96.1. They just had the wrong station, Power, instead, opted for a local show featuring Scotty K and Riley Couture, which began March 17.

For a station with a very modest signal, Streetz has done very well for itself. In February, the station ranked 13th among 18 to 34 year olds, although in the competitive morning hours, it ranked 17th. (Streetz tied for fifth in that demo in the evenings.)

Streetz has taken a chunk of audience away from V-103, which has lost its once dominant lead and now loses to Hot among 18-34 and sometimes falls behind WSB and Kiss among all listeners.

Syndicated personalities now dominate urban morning radio in Atlanta. Majic has Steve Harvey. Kiss has Tom Joyner. Praise has Yolanda Adams. Hot has Smiley. The only local morning show in that space? V-103's Ryan Cameron with Wanda Smith.

Here is an interview the Breakfast Club did recently where Charlemagne had the temerity to criticize Kanye West to his face. It has received more than 1.5 million views:

Past stories about Rashan Ali:

10/31/12: Streetz hires Ali for morning show

10/13/12: Catching up with Ali

3/24/11: Ali leaves V-103 after a year

4/23/10: Ali joins Ryan Cameron at V-103

5/21/09: Rashan Ali leaves Hot

9/25/08: Rashan moved out of mornings on Hot

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About the Author

Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.