Follows On-Air Speak-Out Against Inner City Liquor Stores
R&B singer Tyrese Gibson recently got the boot from a Delaware radio station after voicing his opinion about liquor stores in the inner city.
According to Delaware Online, Gibson appeared on Wilmington’s WJKS (KISS) 101.7 FM to promote his new album. He explained that he had just visited East Side Charter School in the city and was displeased that there were liquor stores close to the institution.
“Get them cats out of here selling alcohol right across from your kid’ school,” Gibson said on-air. “Y’all know how to put pressure on cats selling in your hood.”
The station’s manager Tony Quartarone was out of the office, but was listening to the broadcast. He said he thought the singer’s tone sounded condescending and had him removed off the show during a commercial break.
“These liquor stores got zoning from somebody and a liquor license,” Quartarone told Delaware Online. “If these liquor stores have been there for years and parents haven’t done anything about it, I don’t expect him to be a politician and talk down to my audience that it’s up to them to stop this from happening.”
Quartarone added that the singer was trying to rile everyone up before he mentioned his book deal and appearance at a local university, which was not approved before the show.
Shortly after Gibson was removed from the show, the singer Tweeted about the incident, which later spawned a string of national news stories.
Quartarone said Gibson’s music will not receive any airplay until he receives an apology. But the singer told gossip site TMZ that he didn’t care if his music was taken out of rotation.
Yourblackworld.com commentator Dr. Boyce Watkins sided with Gibson on a recent post and called for the station’s closure.
“Unfortunately, too many famous Black men are enslaved by the corporate machine and made to believe that ignorance is the key to success,” Watkins wrote. “Let’s go shut down these liquor stores, and I’d love to see an end to WJKS.”