Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

'Party with a Purpose' Airs Live Radio Show Host in Tune with Black Community Visits First Coast

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

'Party with a Purpose' Airs Live Radio Show Host in Tune with Black Community Visits First Coast

Article excerpt

When radio personality Tom Joyner came to Jacksonville yesterday, he brought a national audience, a sense of humor and a commitment to social causes.

The live performance before a crowd of about 3,000 fans in the Prime Osborn Convention Center was one of 30 Joyner does each year with his four cohorts.

"We thank you for all the love here in Jacksonville," said Joyner, whose nationally syndicated Tom Joyner Morning Show airs weekdays from 6 to 10 a.m. on WSOL (101.5 FM).

Joyner and his crew -- J. Anthony Brown, Myra Jaye, Sybil and Miss Dupree -- crack jokes and do antics such as Brown slapping his exposed, overflowing belly. But they also raise funds for historically black colleges and promote voter registration, the federal census and other issues.

"The whole crew is off the chain," said Roger Ransom, 33, of Jacksonville. "He helps a lot of black colleges, they give you a lot of black history, and they are funny."

Joyner says his "party with a purpose" comes from the tradition of black radio, when he started as a disc jockey in the late 1960s.

Black radio was the source for information about the civil rights movement, including where to march and what to boycott, Joyner said.

"I'm just doing what I was taught in my early years in radio: getting involved, bringing up issues, trying to empower them [listeners] and helping them make a difference in their community," he said.

Joyner's show serves as an outlet for black communities to reach out to each other, his fans say.

"It's connecting one black community to the black community all over the nation, bringing people together with laughter and fun," said Carol Alexander, executive director of the Ritz Theatre & LaVilla Museum. "I was dancing and laughing with people from all over the city."

"He keeps the community together," said MaVynne "Beach Lady" Betsch, an advocate for the black resort area of American Beach in Nassau County. "That's what you need. We have enough division. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.