Headkrack’s morning show replacing Rickey Smiley at Hot 107.9 next month

Rickey Smiley's morning show, which joined hip-hop station Hot 107.9 in 2009, will move Jan. 11 to R&B oldies station Classix 102.9. Headkrack, who used to work with Smiley, will take over the Hot spot the same day. Paul Anderson, Headkrack’s agent, said his morning show is now on dozens of stations nationwide in markets such as . Chicago, Washington D.C., Dallas and Philadelphia. He also remains a host on the daily syndicated TV show “Dish Nation,” seen locally on Fox 5 (WAGA-TV) at 7 p.m. K.D. Bowe will be leaving Praise 102.5 as midday host on Friday, Dec. 18 after nine years at the gospel station. He will be replaced by Krystal Lee, who had been working on Willie Moore Jr.’s show on Praise

Smiley goes to Classix 102.9 while K.D. Bowe leaves Praise 102.5

The sands of time have caught up with Rickey Smiley, who is now 52 years old. His morning show, which joined hip-hop station Hot 107.9 in 2009, will move Jan. 11 to R&B oldies station Classix 102.9.

Headkrack, who used to work with Smiley, started his own morning show a year ago out of Atlanta and will take over the Hot spot the same day.

“It’s good to be home!” said Headkrack, 43. “When I moved to Atlanta 11 years ago, this city has shown me nothing but love. When my mom died, the people hugged me in the streets. That made me feel like I was part of a community during the darkest time of my life... That’s an investment, an investment I plan on returning to the city time 100.”

This is not a surprising move. Urban One, which owns Smiley’s show, moved Smiley onto dozens of Tom Joyner’s former R&B stations last year. (Joyner retired.) But management kept him on Hot because his ratings were so strong in what had been his home market.

Unfortunately for Smiley, Hot’s ratings took a major nosedive during the pandemic. Smiley ranked 12th (2.8) in the most recent Nielsen monthly ratings book overall and in eighth place (4.4) in the 18-to-34-year-old demographic. Smiley was in the top two or three in that demo just two years ago.

Hot’s target audience is between the ages of 18 to 34 while Classix gears itself for those between ages of 35 and 64.

Paul Anderson, Headkrack’s agent, said his morning show is now on dozens of stations nationwide in markets such as Chicago, Washington D.C., Dallas and Philadelphia.

“We couldn’t be more pleased with the partnership with Urban One and Reach,” he said. “Headkrack is a very unusual mix of right brain and left brain. He has an extraordinary capacity for creativity and productivity.”

Headkrack, whose real name is Lester Raynel Ruffin, also remains a host on the daily syndicated TV show “Dish Nation,” seen locally on Fox 5 (WAGA-TV) at 7 p.m.

Smiley’s studios were moved from Atlanta to Dallas a year ago, but during the pandemic, Smiley has largely hosted his part of the show out of his hometown of Birmingham.

Classix will drop the Russ Parr syndicated show in favor of Smiley.

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KD Bowe of Praise 102.5 at the Canathon. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com
KD Bowe of Praise 102.5 at the Canathon. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

Credit: Rodney Ho

Credit: Rodney Ho

In other radio news at Urban One, K.D. Bowe will be leaving Praise 102.5 as midday host on Friday, Dec. 18 after nine years at the gospel station.

He will be replaced by Krystal Lee, who had been working on Willie Moore Jr.’s show on Praise.

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