ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE)- If you’re a fan of local radio, you’ve probably heard the news. Two, long-time broadcasters are off the air. iHeartMedia made the announcement Monday. Buck and Dex no longer have a morning show on 104.1 the Edge and many are wondering why.
The news came as a shock to many, including Buck and Dex. They say, after more than 13 years, it’s difficult to let go.
“It’s going to be weird not being there with these people, you know, with our army,” said Aaron Buck Burnett.
“It’s tough, you know. The Edge is embedded in me. It’s going to be hard to let that go and start over somewhere else,” Dex Toth said.
The two say they received an email to meet with their bosses after their morning show on Monday. When the two got to the studio, they say the general manager was there with two envelopes. The pair says iHeartMedia was reorganizing the station and they wouldn’t be a part of that.
They say it was like a dream, but reps with iHeartMedia say they put a lot of thought into their decision. They told KRQE News 13 this really began more than six months ago while analyzing the show.
They say this decision was made locally- ratings were down and it was time for a change.
“I thank Buck and Dex for their years of service and the job they did and it’s time to move forward for all of us, and we provided them with a nice severance package, if they choose to take it and we move on,” said iHeartMedia Regional President Chuck Hammond.
Hammond says there are no plans to change any other line-ups on their stations but that they’re always analyzing. KRQE News 13 asked him why there was no forewarning. He says they didn’t want anything to be said on the air and that’s the way it has to be done in radio.
Many have strong feelings about iHeartMedia’s decision to cut long-time hosts Buck and Dex from their morning line-up and they haven’t been shy about letting the world know. Now, many of the shows fan’s are taking it a step further.
News 13 asked Hammond if he predicted this sort of reaction from listeners.
“We always encourage our talent to bond with their audience and this shows that they did bond with their audience, and they’re responding in kind,” answered Hammond.
Hammond says he’s seen people at the station, rallying for Buck and Dex. Yet, there has been an even bigger backlash online. Many are pleading for the show’s return, while others are boycotting the station and iHeartMedia altogether.
News 13 even found an online petition and, Friday morning, close to 200 people have RSVPed for a Facebook organized protest.
Yet, there are also a number of local radio listeners who say they’re glad to see the duo go.
Buck and Dex say the posts in support of the pair make this blow a little easier to handle for them.
“Some of the things we’ve read. I don’t know about you, but I tear up,” said Dex as he glanced over at Buck. “Just to see the impact we’ve had on the community, it’s inspiring, it’s encouraging and it makes me want to get back on the air as soon as possible.”
“It’s just totally overwhelming,” Buck said.
Buck says he has no ill will against iHeartMedia and the two tell News 13 they’d like to work together again if it’s the right fit.
A new radio show begins Monday morning- Baxter and Janae with Orio.
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