After 20-plus years in the Twin Cities media market, radio/TV personality Tony Fly has won over plenty of fans. The longtime radio DJ at 101.3 KDWB and, most recently, 96.3 K-TWIN, recently felt that love in a major way, as his supporters flooded the social media feeds of new throwback hip-hop/R&B station 105 The Vibe.
The #HireTony campaign proved successful. Vibe, which was launched in August by Cumulus Media (93X, KQRS), hired Fly this week, with plans to have him helm the drive-time slot (4-7 p.m.) every Friday beginning December 4. Up until now, the station has relied on a roster of nationally syndicated DJs to yack between spins of Ginuwine's "Pony" and Nelly's "Country Grammar."
City Pages checked in with Fly on Monday to get details about his latest gig.
City Pages: How'd this new gig with Vibe 105 come about? Your supporters have rallied behind you on social media before — was that part of it?
Tony Fly: I reached out to the folks at Cumulus to let them know that I’d be interested in working with them. I mentioned to my friends on social media that I contacted the owners of this new radio station, and they just kind of decided to help by flooding 105 The Vibe’s Facebook page with comments about me, and what a perfect fit I would be for the classic hip-hop format. I am so grateful to those friends, because I’m sure the sheer volume of comments was a big factor in how fast this deal came together.
CP: What drew you to Vibe?
TF: A few things. The music, obviously. I was the first Twin Cities radio DJ to play just about every song on the Vibe playlist. The fact that this format is on three strong radio signals — 105.1, 105.3 and 105.7 — covering the entire metro. The fact that the audience for this radio station is comprised of the same people I’ve been hanging out with since the '90s. We’re all grown up now, and we all still love this great music.
CP: Are you the station's first local DJ?
TF: Yes. I don’t think there were any plans to hire locally until my friends blew up The Vibe’s Facebook page. Good job, you maniacs!
CP: Any special, cool, or unique plans for your time slot at Vibe?
TF: We’ll start with all these great classic hip-hop and throwback R&B songs while everyone’s stuck in Friday afternoon rush hour traffic, and we’ll grow from there.
CP: Are you still planning on making your My29 TV show, On The Fly (11 p.m. weeknights)?
TF: Absolutely! I’m having the time of my life doing my little local TV show, and hopefully my audience for both radio and TV can grow together.
CP: You've been in the local radio game for a long time. What's your take on the current Twin Cities radio landscape?
TF: There have always been dynamic personalities on the radio in the Twin Cities, including a bunch of them in the Cumulus family. Tommy B on KQ, those 93X wackos ... There’s plenty to listen to while sitting in traffic. I just hope that people will spend some of that time with me on 105 The Vibe. I can’t wait to get started!