Two deejays from WAMO 106.7 FM land top jobs right next door to each other. Anji Corley and LaKeisha “Kee-Kee” Brown have left the steel city to take their careers to the next level.
Corley entered a contest called “America’s Next Top Jock” with the legendary Donnie Simpson in D.C. at WPGC 95.5FM Jams and won the top spot, and Brown was fortunate enough to have people in the know and landed a nice gig in Baltimore at 92Q Jams WERQ 92.3FM.
|KEE-KEE BROWN AND ANJI CORLEY
“I found out about the contest from my cousin Denise who lives in Maryland. She sent me a link saying that Donnie Simpson, from WPGC 95.5FM Jams, has this contest for “America’s Next Top Jock” and you should enter. I filed it away and wasn’t thinking about it. Then I said to myself a little later, let me send off some stuff such as air checks and information on me. A couple of months later I got a call from the show’s producer who said I was in the top 20 and the next step was to see if I was still interested. He is the morning show producer and Donnie Simpson’s son. Then it went to the next step where when I went online and found out I was selected.”
Corley had to figure out where her audition would progress from there. Simpson went on a vacation for two weeks so she had time to prepare her show, which the audience could listen to from D.C. and also everyone could go online and listen.
She put her spin on it. This was not a secret, but because it was a D.C. station, she did not feel the need to broadcast it. There was no outlet to tell people in Pittsburgh anyway.
“It’s like a job interview where you don’t tell the world what you’re doing,” she said. “You just have to put your thing down and stay focused, and that’s what I did. It’s just like any interview where I had to stay focused. Sometimes you could put yourself in a position where you can doubt yourself. It’s not personal and has nothing to do with you, but you wonder, “Where do I fit in?” With the changing of the market and the radio industry, you have to say to yourself, “Is this something I really want to do?” You really start to reevaluate yourself and your career choices. I have so many passions and I focus on so many different things such as broadcasting, television, radio, modeling and my mentoring piece which is my involvement in the community.”
Brown’s passion for radio was something that was available to her from birth. She was let go from WAMO in July of 2008 and in September was contacted by her agent Nikki House who found a spot for her in Baltimore. House used to do nights at WAMO and she is like a big sister to Brown. She is the program director at 92Q.
Other radio stations in Pittsburgh would not return her calls and she thought she needed to leave.
“I feel comfortable being in Baltimore. Right now I will be doing weekends and middays. I’m still the midday chick. Prayerfully, I will have the midday position because Nikki, who is my mentor, is moving to another station. That means I will have to prove myself and I know that I can do the job and they know I can as well. It’s all in God’s hands right now,” said Brown.
She started her position Sept. 5. She did a special weekend show and then moved to Baltimore permanently. The weekend spot is when everyone will be listening. You can allow the listening audience to become more familiar with you. The weekend spot is something she can take advantage of and get out there in the community and let people get to know who she is. She believes they will welcome her with open arms.
“I’ve never relocated before so I’m doing this all by faith. If you’ve never had faith where you’ve had to depend on nothing but God, this is it. The four-hour drive is going to be me and God. I believe that God is telling me I need to move because if I stay here I may regret it. This is not to put Pittsburgh down, but I’m depending on God,” she said.
Corley never met Simpson before so when she went to the audition, she was elated.
“I was like, “Oh my God.” Of course you think of “BET’s Video Soul.” You look in his eyes and think that you’re going to be mesmerized and can’t walk straight. It was exciting for me. However, he was so humble and welcomed us with open arms. He deserves to be a diva having 32 years in the business. He was a genuine friend and the meshing and jelling on my audition day felt natural. That doesn’t happen often because I’ve worked with people for over a year and half and it wasn’t pleasant always. Since day one, it was real, genuine and incredible,” said Corley.
Both deejays were happy to know that they will be next door neighbors in the D.C., Baltimore area.
“It is amazing that Kee-Kee and I are going to be neighbors. In the DMV, you can hear her station, 92Q. So it will be me in the morning and her in the afternoon. Even though my physical location has changed, Pittsburgh will always be a second home for me. I will continue to cultivate and love this community. People in this city have loved and supported me to a point that I had no idea, but life goes on. I am willing to accept the challenge, but I will never forget Pittsburgh because I have roots here,” said Corley.
“It’s a blessing and it’s hilarious that Anji and I are moving next door to each other. We are sisters in Christ and the airwaves, but we will be competing,” Brown said. “What’s so funny is that my mentor is programming a station that competes with WPGC in D.C. It is very ironic. It will be awesome to see my sister in a new place.”
This show is exciting because it’s going to be the “All New Donnie Simpson Morning Show.” It’s going to be full of life and flavor we are going to laugh and have a good time for all the time I’ve known he never had a co-host. You have to become innovated and respond to what the community wants. There was a comedian that was a part of the show, but he left. I will be the first woman co-host that Donnie Simpson selected. No one wants to wake up in the morning and be a grouch, so this show is going off the chain.”