In the break room / kitchen at work, there is an 'appreciation board.' It's where anybody can post a note saying who they appreciate at work. Some people may appreciate the IT guys for making sure all the computers run smoothly. Others may appreciate the traffic desk for making sure Bay Area traffic is up to date in real time. One person in the building posted a note regarding one of the many Clear Channel owned radio stations in the building, to the dismay of another co-worker.
For those of you who do not live in the Bay Area, KMEL is one of the two "urban" radio stations, with Wild 94.9 being the other. Back in its heydey, they were self-described as "The People's Station" and pretty much catered to the people of the Bay Area. In elementary school, I remember everyone listened to Rick Chase (r.i.p.) right after school and tried to call in to his show to partake in his infamous 'screaming contests" or to just get clowned on by the man. He played weird audio from movies and funny novelty songs alongside the regular playlist. Even Bay Area rapper Motion Man did promo raps for Rick Chase.
After Rick's time slot, was another pivotal KMEL DJ by the name of Evan Luck. Evan's prime-time time slot boasted "Battle of the Rappers" where two callers would drop acapella verses at each other over the phone, with the winner (decided by the callers) being able to battle it out the next day. After the top 10 requested songs of the day, Evan ended his show with his "Love Lines" segment. With Moments in Love by Art of Noise as the theme music (later he used En Vogue's Love Lines), this part of the show was a hit amongst the high school and over crowd. Love stricken teens would call in for love advice or to dedicate the latest slow jam to their boo.
Other DJs from the Bay that had a chance to get down on KMEL were DJ Shadow (before Solesides), FM20 (the original Invisibl Skratch Piklz), Cameron Paul and King Tech. At the time, King Tech had won some DJ battles in the Bay, and was offered a weekly hour time-slot on tuesday nights. Having free reign to play whatever he wanted, Tech would play Malcolm X speeches, rare breaks, and underground hip hop into his mixes. He even had his emcees E-Vocalist (before he was with the B.U.Ms), Motion Man, Mysterme, Koo Kaz, and Sway get on the mic to rip shit. Tech's weekly mix show was the precursor to The Wake Up Show.
Nowadays, you're lucky if you hear any local talent on KMEL or Wild 94.9. Erik K. Arnold of SF Weekly wrote an engaging article on how radio politics have brought the demise of the "Hyphy Movement." Check out the article over here.