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‘We can bring the community closer together’

February 14, 2018 by  
Filed under Feature


Michael Baisden, one
of America’s top syndicated radio

In recognition of Black History Month, it is only appropriate to remember the history of KCEP 88.1 FM radio — which will soon be home to Michael Baisden, one of America’s top syndicated radio personalities.

Now over 40 years old, KCEP was founded as a non-profit by the Economic Opportunity Board of Clark County. The call letters — which stand for Concentrated Educational Programming — were coined by Dr. William H. “Bob”  Bailey, who was hired to establish KCEP as a training ground for young people interested in radio broadcasting. Bailey’s daughter, Kimberly Bailey Tureaud — who hosts “Enterprising People” every Tuesday morning on KCEP — contributed to the station’s growth by spearheading a grant to fund the relocation of KCEP’s antenna to Black Mountain, which has broadened its reach statewide.

Black Image spoke to Baisden about his new show on the historic outlet, and what he hopes to bring to the Las Vegas community.

How long have you been in Las Vegas?

I came to Vegas this past August, and a number of things brought us here. My relationship with KCEP was established when I utilized their studio for my syndicated radio show. We have built out our own studio here, and I wanted to be close to Los Angeles because of the aspirations I have to work in film and television. Vegas is now my new home.

With the African American demographic in Las Vegas being a little over 9%, how do you think your radio broadcast will be received?

I love Las Vegas. I have been trying to move to Las Vegas for seven years. I spent a long time trying to find the right home for the right price. I was happy to find a nice place in the Summerlin area.

How do you differentiate between your syndicated radio show and your new KCEP 88.1 FM radio show?

Well, with technology we are able to produce the nationally syndicated show and do that live. If necessary, we will produce aspects of the syndicated show and the Vegas show live because of the time difference.

How will your show be supported with listeners and finances in Vegas?

Just like any other radio station, our performance will dictate the amount of support. The KCEP sales and advertising department will secure finances. When the station makes money, they will be happy and keep the show on the air. They have a chance to promote what I do locally and nationally. Everybody wins.

How will your advertisers deal with underwriting your show on KCEP 88.1 FM with restrictive guidelines because it is a non-profit station?

That’s a question more for the KCEP sales department. My interest now is getting on the air so listeners can hear a quality show — and so I can be here in the market and talk about the things I am trying to do in the local community. Right now, finances for the show are not an issue for me. We make plenty of money through our syndication. Primarily we just wanted to be on the air here.

When will your show air on KCEP?

We come on February 5 from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. It’s a three-hour weekday show.

How did you connect with KCEP?

Craig Knight, the general manager, is a longtime friend. I didn’t come here to Vegas with the intention of having a radio show on KCEP — I just used the studio for my syndicated radio show, and someone I trusted took care of me and my staff. It just happened to turn into this. It was timing.

So you told Knight you wanted to do a local radio show?

Yes — I told him if he needed me, I’m here.

What do you think Power 88.1 FM will bring to the Michael Baisden brand?

Wow! I think we will both bring something to each other. It will be a reciprocal relationship. I get a chance to work with Craig Knight and everyone else at the station — and I specialize in content and training staff. We will help them improve the quality of everything they are doing at Power 88, and they are giving me a platform to reach the people here in Las Vegas — so we can bring the community closer together. There are a lot of gaps here in Las Vegas that can be filled, and I think the radio can fill those gaps because it has immediate impact.

What is the best thing about the Michael Baisden show?

I think it’s fun, informative, and entertaining. I am a very energetic person. Fifty is the new 35. The one thing that I think is missing in urban adult radio — which we bring like no one else does — is energy. We are very energetic.

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