Streetz 94.5 radio personalities shift Atlanta culture in a new way

Ferrari Simmons, BT, and FlyGuyDC
Photo provided by JL Hatney

Atlanta is known as a city where dreams can become a reality, some call it the land of opportunities, while others consider it the new Black Hollywood. Meet three people who have taken full advantage of what Atlanta has to offer: Streetz 94.5 radio personalities Ferrari Simmons, FlyGuyDC and BT. These millennial influencers are a pure example of hard work and dedication. From hosting indie events to interviewing mainstream artist live on air, these young men have stepped up to be a positive example for others. Partnering with local charity drives, mentoring programs and concerts, Ferrari, FlyGuyDc and BT continuously find creative avenues to connect mainstream artists with everyday people. You can catch them on air Monday through Friday from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. shifting Atlanta culture in a new way on Streetz 94.5 radioRolling out recently spoke with the trio about their journey, the radio industry and how they stay inspired.

 

Instagram: @Ferrarisimmons
Photo by Keenan Kivinchy

Please define your personal brand.
Ferrari Simmons is my name, but RARI is my brand! RARI represents me, number one because it’s my nickname! I wear snap back hats every day even when I have a fresh haircut I just love wearing hats. So I put my name on a hat and everyone started asking me where could they purchase them. The hats turned into RARI Merch, which is a collection of hats, T-shirts and more. I always do pop-up shops at local Atlanta boutiques to help boutiques attract more consumers, but to also allow my listeners to interact with me and get some exclusive gear. I’m also very active in the community. I have a reading program called “Reading with Rari” where my team and I have been able to read to over 4,500 students in metro Atlanta. We go into the elementary schools and sit down and read to grades pre-K through third. We’re out here letting them know the importance of literacy and getting a good education. I also have a bicycle riding crew with approximately 100-plus people. We meet a couple times a week and ride through the Beltline, downtown, and Buckhead. It’s a group of men and women from different backgrounds and careers all meeting to network, socialize, and get a few miles in.

How do you map out your goals? How do you measure your success?
I do one-year plans, but I then break them down into monthly plans, which I then break down weekly. At the start of the month, I look at my checklist and so on. It’s an obsession and it works for me. My team has been able to adapt to this method and it allows us to plan and attack all the goals we have for my brand as well as personal goals.

Name your top role models in your industry.

That’s a hard decision to make. [There are] three significant people that are role models to me, but I also have friendships with [them] as well. I couldn’t say one is over the other, but they are all OGs in this industry so I truly value the insight they give me. Kenny Burns, Big Tigger and Greg Street. Outside of the industry would be my big sister Shereene.

What keeps you inspired?

My three kids — Bria, Sean Jr. and Chase — they keep me refreshed and inspired! Tackling my goals keeps me inspired as well. Being able to accomplish a goal on my list or elevating in my craft keeps me going.

What Scripture(s) are you leaning on?
Psalm 51:10 – Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. This Scripture teaches me to continue forgiving others and giving them the benefit of the doubt. I believe that learning how to forgive is a big step in growing as a person. Philippians 4:13 – I can do all things through him who strengthens me. This Scripture keeps me focused and helps through adversity.

 

Instagram: @IamFlyGuyDC
Photo by Healthy

How did you arrive at this career choice? Was it a deliberate decision or a gradual and natural evolution?

As far as hosting, I was a college basketball player for Clark Atlanta University. I played basketball my whole life. I used to club, but I didn’t club a lot. I went to Scores on a Tuesday (the one off Wesley Chapel). I used to play ball with some of the promoters Jamari, Thrax, Tizzy, Jroc, Jdot, Meezy and Fergie. They asked me to entertain the crowd by talking on the mic. This was my first time being introduced to the art of hosting. After I talked on the mic at Scores about 2-3 months later promoters started booking me and I didn’t think it was anything at first. I took it for granted and just played around with it. Then I got my first out of state booking, which was in Ohio by Rebel Visions (Tone and Benji). They paid for my travel, lodging and food. They really treated me like royalty and ever since then I started to take it real serious. I grew a passion for the craft of hosting. A few years later I was presented with a radio opportunity and it took me to the next level.

What separates you from others in your field? What is unique to the experience that you create?

There is so much that separates me from others in my field. For starters, I never imagined working in this field, never interned, or even trained for it. I’ve been successful with no experience. Also from the way that I host, how I carry myself, the memories I create when hosting and most of all I’m not a one-dimensional host. I have hosted an array of events; fashion shows, step shows, concerts, panels, and much more. Another important element that separates me is no matter how many people I’m still going to deliver the exact same way. I understand the craft of hosting and understand that it’s not about me. It’s about the crowd, the people, and the party. If everybody is having fun I will always remain relevant. The uniqueness of the experience I create is that anybody can be going through anything and come to an event hosted by me and forget about everything that’s going on at that time.

What affirmations do you repeat to yourself that contribute to your success?

There are many things that I repeat to myself that contribute to my success daily. First and foremost, I thank God, every morning that I open my eyes. I know that just as fast as all the success has come to me it can be taken away. I also believe in staying humble and repeat that daily to myself. Not being levelheaded can bring you back to reality quick. Also, the image that people portray you as when you are arrogant is not a good look. Finally, I tell myself daily that consistency is key, without consistency I wouldn’t be where I am today as a host and radio personality.

How do you stay at the leading edge of your craft?

I honestly stay at the leading edge of my craft because I worry about myself and myself only. I stay in my own lane and focus on what FlyGuyDC has going on. I also stay at the leading edge of hosting because
I understand and have a passion for hosting. I’m not in this field because of the money, females, or lifestyle. I’m doing it because I enjoy making people have a good time and relieving them of the stress at least for the time they are at an event.

How do you stay connected with fans?

I stay connected with my fans with interactions through my social media and being inside the community consistently. Reading to the kids, pep rallies, panels, career days, and on the radio daily. I’m not your average host or radio personality. I love and appreciate the people that I entertain. I interact consistently to keep the foundation and relationship with them because I wouldn’t be who I am today without them. The more I stay the same and never change, the more loyal they will be to me and stay following my journey.

 

Instagram: @Youknowbt
Photo by Visions x jb

How do you map out your goals? How do you measure your success?

I map out my goals by milestones. I set up goals that I want to accomplish and the time I think it will take me to accomplish them. I’ve always been the type of person [who] measures my success by happiness. I don’t think to have a lot of money or fame is a sign of success, if you wake up every day happy, that shows the true measure of success.

What keeps you inspired?

What keeps me inspired is waking up every day knowing that I’m living my dreams. There was a time in my life when I wasn’t in the position that I’m in today. It was killing me going to a job that I hated working at. Being around people that don’t have a dream or vision can become stressful.

What’s on your playlist?

My playlist is crazy! I feel like I’m an old soul. I have a lot of old-school R&B that I listen to. I know that’s not what you would expect coming from a radio personality on a hip-hop radio station.

What affirmations do you repeat to yourself that contribute to your success?

My affirmation that I repeat is to always remain humble.

What does it take to be iconic? In your estimation, who has achieved that status?

Personally, I think to become iconic is to leave a lifetime impression that affected someone in a positive and inspirational way. I believe that Muhammad Ali has achieved that iconic status.

How do you stay connected with fans?

I stay connected to my fans by leaving myself accessible and letting my fans understand that I’m no better than the next man. I think it’s really important that fans know this.

Lorenzo Gordon
Lorenzo Gordon

Imagination creates the image | Behind- the- scene guy



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