It’s 9:30 at night and the dedication you requested on the radio for that special someone will be on any second. You’re excited, scared and confused, all at the same time. Will they like it? Will they finally understand how you feel about them?
All of these thoughts run through your mind until that moment, when finally, the dedication plays on the radio. The phone rings; it’s your sweetheart, and they loved it. “Damn I’m good,” you think to yourself.
While that may be true, you should really be thanking the person that put more emotion in conveying your love to that special person in your life than you did writing them.
You should be thanking JJ Kennedy.
For over 25 years, JJ Kennedy has been a fan favorite in New York City radio, working for a variety of stations like WPLJ, WBLS and for the past 18 years, WLTW 106.7 Lite FM, where she hosts the “Lite At Nite,” playing dedications for millions of love hungry New Yorkers, Monday through Friday, from 8 p.m. through midnight.
While her immense on-air talent was already established when she came to Lite FM, hosting the “Lite At Nite” has cemented her place in New York City radio and has given her an opportunity to change people’s lives.
“I just really love it, said Kennedy. “ I come to work with a smile every night; I just love coming to work. That’s amazing after 18 years in the same place. I never get bored; it’s always full of surprises. I just love what I do. It makes me so happy to get on the air and communicate with people. I really feel that at night, there is a special connection, people are in their homes, mostly and even those that are at work just listen differently late at night. They let you know, too, that you’re really part of their lives.”
It’s this connection with her listeners, sharing the love they have with the people they care about that gives Kennedy the level of satisfaction she feels and makes her work extremely worthwhile.
“That’s [love] what I think everything in this world boils down to, because that’s how people function and that’s what they’re looking for. What does a person even want money for? It’s for love. Everything goes back to that.”
In addition to hosting the “Lite At Nite,” Kennedy also volunteers her services when she’s not on the air, reading for the blind and as a therapist to the elderly and students.
Many will also be intrigued to know that Kennedy recently got her Masters Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy and is licensed by New York State, proving she truly knows how important love is in the life of her listeners.
Kennedy believes love has played a huge role in her life as well, giving her son, Matthew and her husband, Charlie, to whom she has been married to for three years, credit for changing her life, making her a better person and a better disc-jockey in the process.
“The most important thing in my life is definitely my family. I have a wonderful husband and son. My son changed my life so totally. Having a kid really changes the way you look at things. Your whole perspective changes; I never thought it would,” said Kennedy.
“You just want that person, that love, to be as happy as possible and to have a fulfilling life and to get on a good path. I think it [having her son] made me more compassionate. It makes me see so many things from different angles that I didn’t see before as a non-parent.”
It is this ability, to truly understand the meaning of love, through both knowledge and personal experience, that make Kennedy and her show something that is not only extremely unique, but something that will be around for many more years to come.
This article was originally published in May 2006.