Roxie From 102 Jamz Knows Radio From The INSIDE Out
Raquel “Roxie” Wadelington is a radio personality for 102 JAMZ in Greensboro, NC. She attended college at Winston-Salem State University and is best known for her wit, humor and bubbly spirit on air during the Morning Mafia Morning Show.
Where were you born, and what was your childhood like?
I was born in Raleigh, North Carolina. My childhood, it was great. I have great childhood memories. I’m the oldest of four girls. So me and my sisters are all really close. The early part of my childhood, I remember a lot of moving, traveling, because my dad was in the military. The later parts when we settled here in North Carolina is kind of where we laid roots. Like I said, just a lot of fun. Me and my sisters are close. Playing outside with the neighborhood kids. Like it was just, you know, no social media or anything like that. So outside was our thing. I remember being outside, playing with my sisters, my friends. Just a carefree, easy life.
How were you different in your twenties than as a teenager?
There may not have been much difference….ha ha. As a teenager, I was like, you know, a know-it-all, not really wanting to listen. In my twenties, I was still a know-it-all, not wanting to listen. Probably in my later twenties when I had my son, that’s kind of when I started to mature and rise up and take life a little more seriously. Early twenties was a party though. A party honey.
How would you describe your college experience?
It was a wonderful experience. I love Winston-Salem State University, and even as someone who was a non-traditional student, it was just a great time. Like being on campus, Hall-Patterson was where I was most of the time because I was a mass comm major. It’s like a family. It’s like a big little university. It’s spread out. It seems really sprawling when you first get there. It’s really like a family. You just get to know everybody. It’s fun. Just campus activities like the Breezeway, Fried Chicken Friday. It was just a really good experience. I loved my time at Winston.
When did you realize that FM radio was your dream career?
I would say I’ve always loved radio, and it’s always been something that I thought I wanted to do. It was between TV and radio. I knew I could do one or the other. I knew it would be radio my freshman year in college. I actually started at Hampton University in Virginia. When I was at Hampton, I did an internship at a TV station. At that time, I’m young. My hair was short and pink when I started at the TV station. I remember one of the producers saying, “If you want a career in television and cable news, you might want to be a little more conservative with your hair. That’s not a look that will get you far if you want to be in front of the camera.” I was like, okay. I’m not really wanting to hear that. Like I said, I’m young. I’m dyeing my hair all kinds of colors, piercings, all kinds of stuff.
That summer, when I came home, I did an internship at 102 JAMZ where it does not matter how you look because nobody’s seeing you. You come to work, however. Nobody sees you. Nobody cares what you look like. I just really fell in love with the fact that I could authentically be me when I was on radio. I didn’t have to look a certain way. I didn’t have to act a certain way. I didn’t have to have a certain opinion. I could just truly be me, and that’s when I knew it was radio for me.
What do fans say when they meet you for the first time?
When fans meet me for the first time, they are surprised that I’m my size, I guess I should say. People think I’m big or bigger, I guess because they call me Big Rock. Like, every time I meet somebody, they say, “You ain’t big” or “You small” or something like that. They’re always surprised at my appearance. And I have people like, “Oh my God, you’re actually,” like I’ve had people say, “You’re actually pretty.” I’ve had people say that. And then I always say, “Well, what did you think I looked like?” Like, I don’t know if I should be offended or if that’s a compliment. Like, what did you think I looked like? It’s very difficult to respond to. You just don’t really know how to respond. Like, what does that even mean?
How is ‘Radio Roxie’ different than the mom & wife?
Radio Roxie is actually like the same mom, wife, Roxie. A couple of minutes ago I was just talking about how in radio you can really authentically be yourself. So the person you hear on the radio is pretty much the person that you’ll meet in real life. Like it’s not like, you know, all rah rah on the radio, and then you meet me and I’m like, no, it’s pretty much the same person. What you get on the radio is what you get in real life. And that’s why people, when they meet me, they say, I feel like I know you. And I’m like, you do know me. Like, if you listen, you do know me. It’s the same person.
What impact has basketball had on your family?
Basketball has actually had a great impact on my family. And I didn’t think it would. I’m actually like a real live basketball mom. My husband, Chris, he coaches JV at Grimsley High School. He also has a business called House of Handles where he teaches young kids basketball fundamentals and like, you know, how to dribble, you know, strengthens their handles. And he really teaches them the game of basketball. And my son, you know, being around that so often with my husband, he has actually gravitated towards basketball and he loves the game. So it’s really had a positive impact on my family because it’s something that we can all do together. Basketball is something that, you know, we spend time going to the games whenever my son has a game. My husband coaches his team. They’ve been able to bond in that way over basketball. And so it’s really been great. I didn’t think I would ever be into basketball, but here I am. That’s what happens when you have kids and a husband.
How is Chris’s music playlist different from your own?
It’s awful. It is not good. It is really bad. I consider myself a music head. I like all types of music across all genres, across all time periods, you know what I’m saying? I’m not boxed into a particular genre or a particular period of time. I like a little bit of everything. Chris likes Drake. That’s it. So I obviously think my playlist is much better than Chris’s playlist.
What radio moments do people tell you about most?
Lately, it’s been our Throwback Thursday trivia game. People love that game. And the guys are really bad at it. So the responses to the questions I ask them are always very hilarious. And so that’s been a lot of conversation lately when I get to talk to our listeners. And then we have a character on the show, Bonquisha. She’s always a topic of conversation.
Is North Carolina music better or just more popular now?
Hmm. I think North Carolina music is just more popular. I think people are, because of social media, I think artists are able to reach an audience more than they were back in the day. I hate to say it, back in the day, but back in the day, North Carolina music has always, in my opinion, been really good. That’s always because I work in radio, like a topic of conversation. Obviously, local artists will probably never feel like the radio supports them like they should. But there is great music here, and it’s always been good. But I think that people just have more ways of reaching larger audiences now than what they had back then. And hopefully, a stronger platform for local artists is something that we’ll be able to develop in the future. That’s always just a conflict because it’s like which came first, the chicken or the egg? Does an artist get popular because they’re on radio, or does radio look for an artist that’s already popular? I always tell people, radio, we want what’s hot. Radio really isn’t in the business of making an artist, you know what I’m saying? Or breaking records like it used to. It’s very different now. Music directors and program directors, they’re looking for music that people like because they want people tuned in. And the science of radio, wow, I won’t even get into all of that. That’s a long conversation.
When we go to the high schools and do lunch takeovers, the students request songs, but they’re only waiting for a certain part of the song. They’ll turn up for that part of the song, and it’s like, next. Like, they’re getting shorter and shorter. We literally have a baby song that’s a minute and 36 seconds for the whole song. The whole song. It’s like hook, and then that’s it. You can’t even call it a verse.
Do you love social media, hate it or love hate it?
I love-hate social media. I like to be a spectator more than a participant, if that makes sense. I’m not a very active poster, especially when it comes to Instagram because I’m not like a picture person in real life. So I’m not like a person that is always videoing or recording or trying to think of ways to get content, even though I should be. I know that’s horrible to say as a person in the media. But Twitter, I really love. Now, that’s my favorite app. I love Twitter because, I mean, if you’re on Twitter, you know how it goes down on Twitter. It’s just funny. It’s so hilarious the things people come up with. But, you know, just tweeting something quick on my mind, you know, that’s more my jam than pictures and videos. And I don’t even have a TikTok. TikTok is a strange place. I downloaded it one time and scrolled for about 30 minutes and was like, you know what, I can just uninstall that. I’m not interested.
How has it changed radio and just music in general?
Oh, wow. So social media has changed radio and music drastically, especially TikTok with trends. Like you have DJs that can make a blend, and the blend can actually become a hit like Beyonce’s “Cuff It Wetter” remix. Then you have old songs that can, you know, get new life because of a dance or a trend on social media like Chris Brown’s “Under the Influence.” Like that song is old. But because it was a trend on social media, he made a video for it in 2023 and released it, and it’s like charting now. So it’s changed it in that way. Trends really influence the music that we play. But the problem with that is people only want to hear that little part where they can do the dance, and normally that’s only like up to 30 seconds, and then they don’t want to hear the rest of the songs. So songs are becoming shorter and shorter and shorter and shorter because the artists are just trying to make something trendy. And so it’s really, I don’t want to say difficult to pick hits, but the hits don’t last as long. Like people don’t want to hear like, you know, songs used to be a hit for like a whole summer. Like think about Bodak Yellow, Cardi B’s “Bodak Yellow” for months. Like it was a hit for months. Like I can’t think of a song that’s had that type of longevity in a while. Like there’s just not a lot of longevity in music right now because everything is so trendy.
What’s the best movie you have seen so far this year?
I can tell you the worst off RIP was that House Party, trash. I can tell you that. Now, as far as the best, I would say, oh, I just keep thinking of the bad ones I’ve seen. Let me think because I really didn’t like that Whitney Houston movie either. And I haven’t seen John Wick yet, so I can’t say that even though I heard it was really good. The best, I would say MEGAN, that movie MEGAN. It’s about like an AI artificial intelligence doll that like she developed a mind of her own. It was actually really good.
Which shows have you binge watched by yourself?
I binge watched Harlem by myself. And Harlem is really good. It’s an Amazon Prime show about four women that are all very different, living in New York, you know, just trying to figure out life, child. But it’s a really good series. Two seasons in, I binge watched that one by myself.
What was it like for you in radio during the pandemic?
Radio during the pandemic was awful. I was working from home, and that was problematic in itself because I’m part of a team. I’m part of a three-person team. And one of the things people love about our show is they say our chemistry is great and we really get along. We’re really friends. So working together was something I really enjoyed. Like being in the studio, laughing and talking and, you know, just enjoying each other’s company. That is something that I really missed during the pandemic because we were working from home. So that was awful. All of our events were canceled. That was awful. Being in the community and being able to go in schools and being able to like, you know, just interact with our listeners in person. That was out. So like everything that I really love about radio was taken away during the pandemic.
So it was a really awful time. It was a really awful time. Like pre-recording shows and just not being able to take phone calls and talk to our listeners like our listeners. If you’ve ever listened to our show, they’re like a fourth of our show. They’re like the fourth member. We are always talking to our listeners. So not being able to do that. That was awful. It was just bad. It was just bad. But I was grateful. You know, I was grateful to still have a job because a lot of companies were, you know, cutting back drastically. And some people, you know, didn’t make it through the pandemic with their job in radio. And so I was glad to still have it. But it was just very different.
What would you do now if the world shut down again?
Oh, if the world shut down again? I mean, I’d just be at the house. I guess. I mean, like, you know, it wasn’t all bad. Like I started a virtual business during the pandemic that is successful. And that, you know, that’s been great. But I mean, what do you mean? What would I do? Like, would I cry? Probably. It was awful. Yeah, it was awful. Like, we were all at home trying to do the show. And so nonverbal cues, like we use a lot of nonverbal cues when we’re on the air. Like, if you see somebody wants to say something, you’ll tell them, “Hold on,” then you can bring them in. Or there are so many nonverbal cues we use. I mean, that was totally out. So like, everybody popping over one another. You can’t see each other. It was just very different.
Do you have any podcast or film/TV projects coming up soon?
I do have a project coming up soon that I cannot talk about. My lips are sealed. I cannot.
What is it like being on the other side of the interview?
Being on this side of the interview is cool, but I’d much rather be on the other side. I like to be the one asking the questions, but I’m also comfortable on this side as well. But I would switch with you in a minute.
What you get on the radio is what you get in real life. And that’s why people, when they meet me, they say, I feel like I know you. And I’m like, you do know me. Like, if you listen, you do know me. It’s the same person.