Radio veteran Lupi Ngcayisa slams 'ego-driven' DJs: Radio is not your vanity project

Lupi Ngcayisa shares his thoughts on the state of radio at the moment.
Lupi Ngcayisa shares his thoughts on the state of radio at the moment.
Image: Lupi Ngcayisa Instagram

Radio veteran Lupi Ngcayisa has been around the radio block and has weighed in on the current state of broadcasting in the country, claiming that too often DJs treat radio like their own vanity project.

Lupi, who will host a star-studded Standard Bank Joy of Jazz event at the Sandton Convention Centre this weekend, started out on Umhlobo Wenene before making moves to YFM, Metro FM, 702 and Radio 2000.

Speaking to TshisaLIVE ahead of Saturday's event, Lupi claimed he had been watching the radio landscape and believed that all is not well.

“There is something lacking right now. There was a time when black radio understood its place to transform, to push the human side. There seems to be a move towards self-indulgence. Where it is now about the personality and not what the medium can do to make a change.”

He gave a shout-out to Anele Mdoda for her work in building toilets at schools where pit toilets were the norm, but said that too often DJs use radio as their own “vanity project”.

“There is not enough tangible change. The radio show now benefits the individual DJ more than the community they serve. I am looking for more user-driven content than the self-indulgent content we sometimes hear. Personalities are incredibly powerful and need to make a change, like Anele has made with her initiative to build toilets. I want to hear more of that...”

Despite the struggles on radio, he said he has no plans to make a radio comeback.

“I am too old. Black radio has changed. I can’t be excited about Cardi B’s this and that. Imagine an old a*s man discussing such?” he joked. 

He urged those who “hog the space” to step aside for other talent who can make a real change.

“I think there is merit in knowing when to let go. There are many young talented broadcasters who deserve the space,” he added.

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