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I connect to listeners on personal level, they shed their day’s baggage, so do I: Mumbai’s Red FM RJ Nasar Khan

“To do a show at night is like serving dessert. I am supposed to have light conversation with the listeners after they have had a heavy, hectic day,” says Red FM’s Nasar Khan.

Written by Rohit Alok | Mumbai |
Updated: January 16, 2016 12:21:32 pm
Radio Jockey Nasar Khan of Red FM. Prashant Nadkar Radio Jockey Nasar Khan of Red FM. Prashant Nadkar

Homeward-bound traffic is still heavy, but as the day winds down and before the night calm slips in, several thousand Mumbaikars choose the radio to unwind. Wishing to hear conversation as much as music, they tune in to listen to a radio jockey usher in the night.

“To do a show at night is like serving dessert. I am supposed to have light conversation with the listeners after they have had a heavy, hectic day,” says Red FM’s Nasar Khan (30) who has been a radio jockey (RJ) since 2007 and an RJ on the night shift since the past four years. It’s a journey he takes on air, five nights a week, from 9 pm to midnight, Monday to Friday.

The role of a nightshift RJ, Nasar believes, is to essentially connect with listeners on a personal level. “Besides being all ears to your callers, one has just got to have enough colour to tell tales through the night,” he says and denies that the night shift is for novices among radio jockeys. “Firstly, Mumbai does not sleep. Secondly, there are different time bands for different RJs,” he adds.

“Through the course of the day, Mumbaikars are riddled with problems which are discussed in the morning, afternoon, and at times, these even get carried into the evening slots. Most of the day is very agenda-driven. But by night, there is more scope to connect with the city on a personal level, mostly about how the day went and relationships. My listeners even know about my cats. They shed their day’s baggage and so do I,” Nasar says.

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Nasar hosts a phone-in programme and believes his listeners are mostly female between the age of 18 to 35 years, tuning in from hostels, homes and car stereos.

Depending on the RJ and the respective time band, the preparation for the show in terms of content and the audience varies, but the late night programming clearly stands out from the daytime fare.

“RJs in the day have to keep themselves updated with what’s happening around. But I am allowed to be liberal, we touch upon lighter topics. When I drive to work, I don’t prepare much,” Nasar admits.


“I have a few bullet points in my head but most of it is spontaneous. The hardest part, however, is the beginning of the show. The first line is the most difficult hurdle every time I am on air. Once I’m past that, everything naturally just fits in,” he says. “I don’t need to be any Raj, Vijay or Dinanath Chauhan, I just need to be Nasar.”
But this liberty at night, Nasar admits, does cost him dearly.

Night shifts take the usual toll on health and Nasar had to have Vitaminn D3 over several weeks. “I was weak and unwell and tests showed that I was not exposed enough to the sun and hence the deficiency,” Nasar says. Of course, the odd hours also affect eating and sleeping cycles.

“With my night shift, it is harder to commit to plans. I am always the last to arrive at a party. I am home by 1.30 am for dinner, asleep by 4 am after playing on the playstation and up by 11.30 am. When the world eats their lunch, I have my breakfast,” he said. “I only look forward to the weekends to sleep early by about 1.30 am.”


Nasar refers to RJs as entertainers. “Even at the end of the day, I am only a luxury not a necessity to my listeners. We take our audience very seriously. Consistency is everything for an RJ, regardless of whether it is night or day,” he says.

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First published on: 16-01-2016 at 03:27:43 am

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