R&B singer K.Michelle released her third album, “More Issues Than Vogue” (Atlantic Records) on Feb. 19 and the CD’s title may have been a foretelling of what was to come.
The Memphis-bred artist—whose birth name is Kimberly Michelle Pate—has a big issue now in real life because the broadcast conglomerate Radio One owned by media mogul Cathy Hughes has issued a mandate across all stations to yank her music from their playlists.
Several Radio One executives spoke to AlwaysAList.com and confirmed that you will no longer hear any songs by K.Michelle—past, present or any artist that features her on a collaboration—due to her bailing on several Radio One promotional events while she was in the Washington, DC earlier this month.
Apparently, Radio One’s WKYS 93.9 FM’s new morning show, “The FAM with Lil’ Mo and DJ QuickSilva” was hosting a fan breakfast for 50 fans of K.Michelle that was going to be broadcast on the air. Because the event was scheduled to take place on April 1, the co-hosts—Lil’ Mo, DJ QuickSilva and Britt Waters—and the 50 fans that gathered at the studio thought it was an April Fools prank when they were told that the “Love & Hip Hop” star decided to no-show.
Reps for the 32-year-old singer told Radio One that she wanted to stay a Ritz Carlton Hotel in Washington, DC the night before the appearance, but because the property was sold out she had to stay in the nearby city of Baltimore, Maryland.
Supposedly, K.Michelle did not want to wake up early and make the hour-long commute to Silver Spring, Maryland where the WKYS studios are based “because she wanted to sleep,” her rep also told the Radio One team.
There was one K.Michelle fan in attendance that revealed that she had decided to skip her chemotherapy treatment that morning for a chance to meet the singer. She was devastated the booty-enhanced belter was so dismissive of her supporters.
AlwaysAList.com checked out the playlists for Radio One stations across the country through MediaBase and K.Michelle is not listed on most of them. The only Radio One station we could find still playing K.Michelle’s latest single “Not A Little Bit” was Detroit’s Hot 107.5 FM. But as one Radio One executive told us: “someone is going to be in trouble if they are playing it!”
“Not A Little Bit,” written by R&B singer Kelly Price and produced by Blac Elvis (Usher/Beyoncé), was one of radio’s most-added songs when it was serviced to stations eight weeks ago.
Now, on the Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop National Airplay Chart tracked by Nielsen BDS, the song has dropped from no. 20 to no. 22, down another 199 spins this week.
On the MediaBase Chart, “Not A Little Bit” dipped from no. 20 to no. 24, down 231 spins this week. (There are two separate radio charts to track song impact and determine what stations are playing because some stations report to BDS and others to MediaBase, as well as the stations that report to both indication companies.)
Radio One is not the first station group to pull K.Michelle’s music we learned. New York’s Power 105.1 FM, which is an iHeart Radio station, has also pulled of the singer’s music due to her on-air spat with “The Breakfast Club” co-host Angela Ye. A query of their station playlist through MediaBase confirms they’re not playing her either.
AlwaysAList.com reached out to Radio One for comment on the K.Michelle ban. At press time, they had not returned our request for comment.
Though they initially declined to comment, a rep for Atlantic Records then acknowledged there was “an issue in DC” then said that the our story was “incorrect.” The spokesperson indicated that in addition to what we previously reported about Radio One’s Detroit station is still playing K.Michelle, she is still in rotation in Richmond, VA; Raleigh, NC and Houston, Texas as well.