Lydia Stratus Fired, Along With Virgin's Jimmy T, Chris Biggs and Taylor Kaye

radioI don't listen to Virgin Radio 999 FM, but I hear they've recently purged most of their on-air talent. It's an Astral-owned company, so this isn't particularly surprising. Astral's been doing a lot of this lately, I just hope my buddy Humble is safe.

Joining Jimmy T, Chris Biggs and Taylor Kaye in the unemployment line is Lydia Stratus. The 999 Virgin Radio show listing is now primarily made up of imported syndicated shows, by Ryan Seacrest, Perez Hilton and Akon. The only actual local personalities left are the morning duo of Mad Dog and Billie, a lady named Kella and a gentleman named Adam Wylde.

Chatter at the SOWNY forum suggests these latest firings have little to do with ratings and everything to do with a salary dump. Someone there named ahl puts it like this:

It was explained to me by a person in a position to know that it's all about share holders getting a return on their investment. If they can't get it with improved ratings and higher sales then the next option is to cut expenses and the easiest target is salaries. With a few exceptions "spend to make" is gone from the corporate vocabulary replaced with "slash to make".

It sounds like Astral and Rogers employ similar radio management methodologies. Virgin Radio listeners, were Chris Biggs, Taylor Kaye, Jimmy T and Lydia Stratus good hosts? Does their absence have you considering another radio station?


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Comments (40 - click here to join in!)

andrew

Wouldn't want to have a job as DJ in radio now. TOO many changes & I'm sure more to come.
How many people have lost their jobs in last year or 2?
What station has NOT done any changes during this time? Q107 & sure it's going to happen with same old, same old songs.

July 4, 2010 @ 3:21 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@MitchFlagg on Twitter just wrote:

@torontomike - none of them had anything coherent to say and they won't be missed

July 4, 2010 @ 4:06 PM

Jeff

A salary dump explains it...They certainly didn't keep Maddog and Billy over Taylor and Biggs based on talent. The morning show does one rreative thing a day and then plays it at different times during the show and then for the next day. Wonder if they agreed to a pay cut to stay or if they were just under contract so they would cost them money regardless...At least this has given me a good reason to listen to Boom...A great morning show and great music...Just wanted to keep listening to new music but, I'm gradually getting over that. Humble and Colleen are awesome!

July 5, 2010 @ 9:18 AM

Hector

Perhpaps symptmatic of a larger issue facing terestrial radio. XM, Sirius, downloading etc...are all contributing to the slow demise of radio.

July 5, 2010 @ 10:23 AM

Cambo

The demise of radio has everything to do with lack of talent, and corporate greed.

Can you tell the difference between 92.5, 104.5, and 99.9?

The sure sign of radio in trouble is when they sign up for syndication. It used to be just overnights, then moved into evenings and days. It's very sad for local radio. I'd turn everything off before I turned to the dweeb Seacrest.

Creativity died in radio a long time ago. They just keep hashing out cookie-cutter stations. Astral has no vision for good radio like Standard did. Their plan is simply to slash and cash.

July 5, 2010 @ 10:42 AM

Sammi

Radio has been in trouble for a long time. It always amazes me how we (the common folk) saw this coming for years, yet those in charge forge ahead with their 'cookie cutter' over-programmed stations.

Does it really matter who they put on the air when everything around them is so carefully programmed?

July 5, 2010 @ 3:31 PM

Fascination

Astral has no vision. Agreed. They are about the slash and cash and they are about the no trouble and no arguments and no vision but the program directors and the general manager.

Standard had a vision and they had a family.

Astral has half-assed every ad campaign including their so called rebranding.

July 5, 2010 @ 9:28 PM

Mike

Jimmy t got fired because he was fixing all the contests so his friends can win...Trust me i know

July 6, 2010 @ 8:27 PM

Jeff Crawford

Taylor and Biggs were great in the afternoon (way better than the crappy morning show) they should have moved Taylor and Biggs to mornings and dumped the morning show which has had a noticeable decline in talent and content. 999 should take a page from z1053.5 and find stronger lead personalities for their morning show (although the morning show on 95.3 virgin radio in Vancouver blows any of the local radio shows out of the water all together)

July 9, 2010 @ 2:38 PM

Dylan

I will no longer have 99.9 on

July 10, 2010 @ 12:21 PM

Sarah

Finally back from holidays, I can leave my comment! ;-)

When will Astral figure out that the Virgin format is just not working in this market? I don't know anyone who likes this station now.

Many people I've talked to about it miss the Mix. It was a shame that Astral even thought to get rid of that format for this.

Bring back the Mix of yesteryear!

July 11, 2010 @ 11:11 AM

teekay

Agree with Jeff Crawford, Taylor and Biggs were entertaining. I always enjoyed the morning show more when Mad Dog and Billie would go on vacation and Taylor and Biggs would cover. Oh well, hope T&B land on their feet with a new gig.

July 15, 2010 @ 11:10 AM

Suresh

Taylor and Biggs were the best thinsg that station had going. I don't listen to 99.9 anymore. The morning show is terrible. I prefer Boom or 103.5 or 104.5fm.

July 21, 2010 @ 9:06 AM

Anonymous

I miss Taylor & Biggs! Way better than Mad Dog & Billie - I'm very much over them.

July 27, 2010 @ 11:46 AM

imfreckles

I miss Taylor & Biggs too. the sound they have now is just too young for me. I like some of the music but the DJ stuff is just too young and not entertaining enough for me

July 28, 2010 @ 5:30 PM

Nicole

Awwwww man....that sucks. Taylor and Biggs are hilarious. I am only an occasional listener, but not even going to bother at all anymore. Will just use the virgin website to check out new music and will download onto my ipod. Mad Dog and Billie are ok...but so repetitive. Annoying. Adam Styles stinks, so amateur sounding. I'm over Virgin.

July 29, 2010 @ 10:46 AM

Voice4Radio

Taylor has just started at Kiss 92.5

At the beginning when Virgin first went on the air it was not all that bad. Good music and fun personalities. Now they have started to get rid of all the good on air talent just to save money. I still believe in the saying "You need to spend money to make money"

July 29, 2010 @ 11:45 AM

<3 music

I listen to both virgin radio and kiss 92.5. I thought it was interesting how Adam Wylde went to Virgin from Kiss, and Taylor Kay to Kiss from Virgin.

I loved the Taylor and Biggs show. I can't believe they're fired. They were awesome.

I also like Jimmy T, but Adam Wylde takes his place on Virgin (he's my favourite dude ever)

As for Lydia Stratus, I don't miss her. Something about her comments on everything made me cringe.

July 29, 2010 @ 4:20 PM

Carmen

I am upset that Taylor and Biggs are gone, they were really the only reason I listened to 99.9--they were hilarious!
I won't be listening to 99.9 anymore.
Going to 92.5 now that Taylor is over there!

July 30, 2010 @ 6:07 PM

sad

I miss Taylor and Biggs I have stoped listening to 99.9 in the afternoons now. The morning show use to be good but I haven't liked it all that much over the last 3 weeks. I switch to 99.9 a year ago from 104.5 but I think I might switch back.

August 6, 2010 @ 4:43 PM

Missing Biggs!

I have been wondering for weeks what happened at Virgin! I really do miss 'The Rush' on my way home from work. They always made me laugh hysterically. I still listen to Mad Dog and Billie in the mornings, even though they are very repetitive. They do make me laugh though. Honestly, I really like to listen to Steve Roberts! lol When the music plays, I switch to Boom, and my drive home is Boom as well. Can't stand Adam's voice, sorry!

August 6, 2010 @ 10:07 PM

Alex

what's Jimmy T up to now? Loved his show.

August 13, 2010 @ 7:39 PM

Lydia

I miss Taylor & Biggs. I didn't know what had happened until I was swapping through stations & heard who I thought was Taylor Kaye on another channel. This made me do a quick Google search & now I see what has happened. I miss Biggs too..I couldn't stand him when he was on Z103.5, but somehow he seemed much funnier & less obnoxious on Virgin. Him & Taylor made a hilarious team.

As for Lydia Stratus, though we share the same name, I won't miss her. I didn't care for her at all.
Jimmy T could get slightly annoying, but I didn't mind his show.

I agree that MadDog & Billie are a bit redundant. I do listen to them in the morning, but mostly for the entertainment updates. Everything is else is cheesy.

Virgin has gone sorely downhill since it first came on air last year. They used to play a great mix of music from the 80s, 90s & 2000's...but now its all Top 40 all day long...I absolutely swear I heard Eminem & Rihanna's song "Love the way you lie" twice today in less than an hour...which is absolutely ridiculous. This is a daily thing & often makes me turn it off. They're losing me as a dedicated listener, that's for sure!!

August 17, 2010 @ 12:06 PM

Daniel Francis

I hear you Lydia. Virgin had to get rid of their music mix from the 80s, and 90s because their cousin radio station 97.3 became Boom FM which is playing the same 80s and 90s music that Virgin was playing before. It's only the music from the 2000s Boom FM is not playing. I also hate that Virgin is playing top 40 music all day. They should have a mix of early to late 2000s music along with top 40 music.

August 17, 2010 @ 7:19 PM

Kelly

I am going to miss Taylor and Biggs...they always made me laugh on my drive home in the afternoon :(

August 20, 2010 @ 1:18 PM

Kellee

I'm just back from holidays to find that Taylor and Biggs are gone. I couldn't wait until my drive home at the end of the day to hear them. Mad dog and Billy....not nearly enough to keep me tuned in. Billy...her laugh is like nails on a chalk board. Anyone recommend a new station where I can find awsome entertainment to and from work each day? Cause I'm done.

August 26, 2010 @ 1:44 PM

Paul

I am not listening to Virgin at all anymore. Taylor and Biggs was one of the best things to happen to Toronto radio in a long time, and Lydia was a staple on weekend radio (I was a big fan of the house party), I station finally got it right and they let it all go. Too bad, im back to Z103!

September 3, 2010 @ 5:52 PM

A Fake Jimmy T

@Mike, or should I call you 'Nick'?

I got fired for fixing contests LOL?! News to me. I was fired because I refused to bend over and take it in the ass when new management was brought in and screwed the entire vision of what Virgin Radio was supposed to be, up.

Fact is, it's an PD and APD with no idea of what works and what doesn't work in this market. No offense to Adam, but he's not ready yet. In 2-3 years, yes, but right now, no. I was slaughtering him in the ratings at night for his entire run at Kiss 92, so to replace the number one guy with the number 5 guy and think you're going to win, is just plain stupid thinking. The ratings have proven this since my last book at Virgin and his first book alone at night with Virgin. Love me or hate me, the numbers don't lie. He's losing already. He needs guidance, he needs structure, and he's not getting it there.

For the record, my ratings at night were number one in the city, so it had little to do with return on an investment. I made them shit tons of money with my numbers, as did Taylor, Biggs and Lydia. Our numbers were the highest the station had to offer and I assure you I was getting paid a fraction of the Breakfast Show salary. If you wanna cut, cut where you AREN'T making revenue, not your 3 best sources of it.

I could name off about 34 other reasons why that place is falling apart, and I assure you, it IS falling apart. Company morale has been at an all time low I'm told, even now. Ratings are dropping as well. Not a good sign.

I'm back on air starting Monday at Z1035, Mon-Fri 7pm-10pm, then Monaco is on after me. See? Smart companies can HIRE people without having to FIRE people to make changes. "Corporate" should have a look into how that happens and adopt some brains.

In closing, thanks to those who were wondering where I was, to those that didn't care, well, here's to hoping I can make you care in the future. And to "Mike" who clearly has no idea what he's talking about, stay out of the conversation and let the big boys and girls handle these issues.

September 10, 2010 @ 6:50 PM

jennajetta

Losing Taylor and Biggs was a huge mistake. They were the best thing about Virgin. Adam Wylde sounds like a newbie fresh out of broadcasting school. They had a good thing going, now they're f****d.

September 13, 2010 @ 12:20 PM

Christina

The only thing that made my commute home at night bearable was knowing that I had the banter of Chris Biggs and Taylor Kaye to look forward to. VERY disappointed with the new Virgin line up.

September 23, 2010 @ 8:05 PM

JEnnifer

I don't listen in the afternoon now. Taylor and Biggs were awesome, sorry to see them go. Where ever they end up, I will move to that radio station.
Good thing they kept Mad Dog and Billie, or I would be gone 100%. They should also look at playing more than the same 10 songs all day everyday....

September 27, 2010 @ 3:52 PM

Alex

haha! loved the post 'Fake Jimmy'...the new show is even more entertaining; and virgin sux s*@T! keep at it!

September 30, 2010 @ 12:26 AM

Debbie

Hate Mad Dog and Billie. They are not at all funny. Trying to be teenagers when they are really middle aged. Get a life. Stop being offensive. Try getting a brain.

October 6, 2010 @ 8:33 PM

Anonymous

Chris Biggs and Taylor Kaye were a great duo...very funny. Couldn't stand Jimmy T...so dry and boring!

February 14, 2011 @ 1:54 AM

AI1144

Mad dog and billie are horrible... It is funny to flick through the edge every so often and hear dean blundell rip on them for stealing material. Both 99.9 and 92.5 steal do it.

Taylor sucked. Biggs was decent. He is actually working on 97.7 (rock station) with Jason Barr (fired from the edge last year).

March 1, 2011 @ 9:59 PM

An OLD Jimmy Fan

Oh...Jimmy T Did fix contests for his friends....I should know. I called him up one day when he said that he was giving away killers tickets, and i said "I want to see the killers"...and i went and picked up the tickets the next day. Fixed contests? Maybe not always...but he Certainly did for me.

April 9, 2011 @ 12:05 AM

anonymous

Most radio announcers know that there's shadyness in the business will they tell u absolutely not they get paid ridiculous money for running their mouths Definately these contests are botched wouldn't surprise me if some listeners do more then just call to win prizes

July 1, 2011 @ 5:38 AM

anonymous

Who is jimmy t anyways he's moved from station to station prior replies say he's lied about contests why doesn't anyone call management I'm going to start calling myself punky brewster at work

July 1, 2011 @ 5:48 AM


Sigh

What happened to Maury? He and Billy gone from the morning show have killed it. Thank god for Steve

November 30, 2011 @ 6:58 PM

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