Baltazar and Pebbles— two of Boston’s most well known on-air personalities — have been reunited on Morrissey Boulevard after 12 long years apart, teaming up to host a radio morning show on HOT 96.9 FM.
The two originally paired up on JAMN 94.5 for the Baltazar & Pebbles Morning Show from 1995 to 2001. After Baltazar left the station and went on to work for CBS Radio’s NOW 100.5 in Sacramento, Pebbles remained at JAMN and was paired with Ramiro Torres, forming the Ramiro & Pebbles Morning Show. The two co-hosted the morning show together until 2012, when Pebbles was released from her Clear Channel contract and was hired by 96.9 FM. The station transitioned from a talk format to pop/R&B earlier this year.
Shortly after Pebbles – whose real name is Susan Semedo – was hired, it was announced that Baltazar Ibanez would be joining the morning show as well.
“He really was the first choice, the ultimate … It was like, ‘How can we make the best show possible?’ And it was obvious, ‘Let’s bring back Baltazar,’ because we had a lot of fun together, and we had great chemistry,” Pebbles said. “People over the years have asked me about Baltazar, so it was good. Since he’s come back, people are so excited that we’re back together.”
“Everybody wanted to make it happen. I wanted to make it happen so bad,” Baltazar said. “I’ve been trying to get into Boston for the last 12 years. The way it all happened, the conclusion, it wasn’t written the way we wanted to finish the final chapter.”
The Baltazar & Pebbles Morning Show on Hot 96.9 FM officially debuted on March 4.
The Baltazar & Pebbles Morning Show “round 2,” as Baltazar called it, marks its one-month anniversary next week. While the duo didn’t have anything particular in mind to celebrate the occasion, they did say that they’re trying to keep things in perspective.
“We’re taking it one day at a time, it’s really a marathon, not a sprint,” Baltazar said. “But it’s really special [to have been back together] for a month. Everyday we get new callers and to them, it’s the first day. It’s trickling down little by little.”
The two also acknowledged how radio has changed since the last time they were together.
“Radio is different in the way that people receive it. People would be listening in their car, or at home. Now there are so many other ways that people can listen,” Pebbles said. “Not only that, but there’s just more interaction, like through Facebook. When we leave here, when we leave the show, those interactions continue throughout the day.”
Baltazar added, “Before, people just called the radio station. Now they reach out on Facebook or Twitter, so these bonds are happening a lot quicker.”
The duo also said the first week they were back together was “amazing” from all of the reactions from excited listeners.
“I sort of know how Elvis would feel if he ever came back,” Baltazar said. “Or Tupac.”
So what can listeners, old and new, expect from the new Baltazar & Pebbles Morning Show? Essentially, a lot of the same – like the BaltBuster, the crank call segment that started on JAMN – but with a few new twists thrown in for good measure.
“We can’t really reinvent the wheel,” Baltazar said. “We had a good formula, and now we’ve just gotta add a couple more spices.”