Jan. 23 2012 12:00 AM

Radio host tenders resignation in surprise announcement

swami

John “Swami” Reis caught the local music scene by surprise on Saturday, announcing that he's done with Swami Sound System, his weekly show on FM 94/9

“I'm doing my last SWaMiSounDsYStem on fm949 tonight,” he said in a brief message on Facebook shortly before the show started. "[H]uge thanks to goes out to all the turbaned devotees for lending a kinky ear. [I]t was an awesome 7 years of ear bashing!"  

It's unclear why he's ending the show. Reis did not respond to phone calls and emails seeking comment. Garett Michaels, the alt-rock station's program director, said he was not warned about the announcement and hasn't decided how to fill the empty time slot.

"John's a good character, and he's a class act, and he put on a great final show, but he decided that he did not want to give any advance warning," he says. "A lot of the greats go out that way.” 

The show isn't necessarily over yet, Michaels says. He's meeting with Reis this week and hopes to convince him to continue doing the show after taking some time off. 

"We spoke early on Sunday morning," he says. "It was one of those things where the door felt like it was still open." 

But Michaels acknowledges that the legendary local rocker has a busy schedule. Reis co-owns Bar Pink, plays in The Night Marchers and recently reunited the legendary indie-rock band Hot Snakes

“I get it. There's a lot of demands,” he says. “I could see how he'd want his Saturday nights back.”

Known for his mythic monologues and obscure tastes, Reis has gained a reputation as one of the city's most cutting-edge radio-show hosts. Musicians and music fans alike admire the man called Swami. After Reis made his announcement, many of his fans left comments mourning the end of the show. Some left notes like "NOOOOOOOOOOO!" Others wondered what would become of their Saturday nights. Still others said his show was the only reason they listened to the radio. 

"I am going to sorely miss my earballs being assaulted by your bombastic arsenal of punkness," Bryan Blake wrote. "Maybe... you could post what you're listening to from time to time? I know that I am adding several groups to my Pandora from what you were playing on 94/9."

But some commenters also hoped that this means Reis will spend more time making music. As Ben Reed put it: 

"[T]his means you're taking time out to write more songs right??!"

Calendar

  • Visit one of the 70 participating restaurants, bars, coffeehouses and nightclubs in town on this night and 25 to 50 percent of sales will go to local HIV/AIDS services and prevention programs. 
  • Anthony Bernal and Chris Ward, who are vying to replace Todd Gloria on the San Diego City Council, will discuss urban issues, such as parking, homelessness and new developments
  • The new exhibition designed by Dave Ghilarducci is made from hundreds of rolls of packing tape and bound together by layers of plastic shrink-wrap. Visitors can navigate their way through cocoon-like passageways...
  • The renowned Mexican black and white photographer presents an exhibition exploring the principal themes within three groups: "Bestiarium"," Fantastic Women" and "Silent Natures."
  • Presented by Pacific Arts Movement, the sixth annual mini film fest features 14 film programs from 10 countries that includes everything from docs to romantic tearjerkers. See website for full lineup and...
  • The San Diego County Bike Coalition hosts this monthly bike-in happy hour event to get biking residents involved in their communities and discuss bike projects planned for that specific community
  • Debunk some of the stereotypes surrounding cannibalism at this new exhibition that takes a hands-on approach to the subject. Includes video games and interactive activities where patrons will have to decide...
  • So Say We All's monthly storytelling night features stories about those jobs we took because we had to take a job. Featured readers include Allison Gauss, Annmarie Houghtailing, Cecile Estelle, and more
  • Artists from the all-abstracts group show will talk about their work and techniques. Artists include Edwin Nutting, Danielle Nelisse, Leah Pantea, Lenore Simon, and more
See all events on Thursday, Apr 28