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BBC Radio Welcomes Vet. Reggae DJ After KissFM Split

Veteran reggae broadcaster David Rodigan is to join BBC Radio 1Xtra, just weeks after he quit an award-winning show on a commercial station after 20 years. The 61-year-old, who is the UK's foremost reggae presenter, walked out on Kiss FM in protest at the "marginalisation" of his music when his programme was shunted to a midnight slot. He has now signed up to host a two-hour Sunday evening show on Radio 1's digital sister station from February 17, and will also return to Radio 2 to host a 13-part series in the summer.

Rodigan said: "I am absolutely delighted to be joining BBC Radio 1Xtra where I can share my passion for both new cutting-edge reggae and classic cuts, reflecting a genre of music which continues to play a paramount role in urban bass culture music."

The presenter, known to fans as Ram Jam, received an MBE a year ago for his services to broadcasting.

He left his Kiss show in November after 22 years telling his fans he wanted to "make a stand for my passion".

The DJ has often acknowledged he is an unlikely-looking champion of reggae.

Recalling a live appearance in Jamaica, he said: "I walk out and you hear this stunning silence, several hundred Jamaicans stared, aghast.

"They saw this white bald-headed man standing on the stage, because many Jamaicans presumed I was a black Londoner."

Ben Cooper, controller of BBC Radio 1Xtra, said: "David Rodigan is a legend in broadcasting and it will be great to listen to him on Sunday evenings on BBC Radio 1Xtra.

"It's fantastic to welcome someone with his unrivalled knowledge and passion for reggae to the BBC."

Rodigan - who began his radio career on BBC Radio London more than 30 years ago - has been inducted into the Radio Academy Hall of Fame and has won three Sony Gold Awards.

SOURCE: independent

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