Yo! RFT Raps  

Straight dope on the STL hip-hop scene

The fledgling morning shows on St. Louis' two hip-hop stations — The Beat (100.3 FM)'s Dee Lee Morning Show and Hot 104.1 FM's Craig Blac & The Hot Morning Show — have a lot in common. Both are less than eight months old, both feature riotous local comedians (Jessie Taylor and Arvin Mitchell), and both target the 18-34 demographic — specifically women. "Females listen the most and give the most word of mouth about radio," explains Craig Blac.

Each show also has edgy staple segments. The Beat's "Paternity Test Tuesdays" attempts to match up babies with baby daddies, while Hot 104.1 offers "The Racially Profiling Game" on Thursdays. "By the sound of your voice we can guess your race, what kind of job you got, how many baby mamas you have," explains Blac by telephone, offering an impromptu profiling of Yo! while he's at it: "I'm going to say you're Caucasian, you make between $25,000 and $30,000 a year, and you've got three baby mamas." (Hey, one out of three ain't bad.)

Blac is an afternoon veteran of the erstwhile Q95.5, and he's brought back DJ Charlie Chan Soprano and traffic guy Tony J from his old gig. Dee Lee, meanwhile, comes from a Clear Channel morning show in Philadelphia. The most recent Arbitron morning drivetime ratings in the 18-34 demographic put Dee Lee's show at number four in the market, with a 6.5 share, while Blac was eighth with a 5.0.

Lee credits his show's philosophy of "reality radio. If we're interviewing an artist or a celebrity, we don't shy away from tackling those Oprah-questions that you really wanna know." True — in a clip found on the Beat's Web site (www.100.3thebeat.com), crewmate Ebony is heard recently accusing T.I. of sporting a cold-sore in one of his videos.

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