Popular morning host Brian Oake and public radio station 89.3 the Current parted ways Friday after he was kicked out of a concert and responded with an angry, expletive-ridden Facebook post.
“Brian Oake is no longer with the Current,” said Angie Andresen, managing director for communications at Minnesota Public Radio. “We are grateful for his contributions over the past three years and we wish him all the best.”
She did not explain why Oake was out, and the DJ did not return a call for comment.
He has been off the air without explanation for two weeks.
Oake raised ire and eyebrows the previous week with a now-removed Facebook post detailing how he and his 20-year-old daughter were kicked out of a July 31 concert by one of his favorite bands, Tenacious D.
According to his post, a staffer at the Palace Theatre escorted the two out after Oake’s daughter was caught taking a sip from his drink. He contended his daughter was simply taking ice out of the otherwise empty cup to stave off the heat, and he publicly called out the First Avenue/Palace staffer who ousted them. He expressed remorse about that post in subsequent social-media messages.
Oake’s co-host, Jill Riley, also has been off the air. One of the Current’s longest-tenured staffers, she previously hosted the morning show for several years with Steve Seel, who is now in MPR’s classical department. She was on vacation last week, and fill-in hosts have been substituting this week.
Both her Twitter account and Oake’s have been suspended, apparently for posting songs in violation of the social-media site’s rules.
Andresen did not address plans for the show except to say, “We will keep our listeners updated.”
Oake joined the Current in March 2016 after leaving rival adult-pop station Cities 97. In his three years at the Current, he often quipped on air about the rigidly corporate environment at his former station, which is owned by iHeartMedia/Clear Channel. He launched his career in the 1990s at alt-rock station REV-105 after getting his start at the University of Minnesota’s adventurous Radio K.
“Brian’s on-air sensibility matches the music of the Current — curious, wide-ranging, influential and authentic,” Current program director Jim McGuinn said when Oake’s hiring was announced. He did not respond Friday afternoon to a request for comment.
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