Make us your home page

Bubba The Love Sponge Clem is off the air at Tampa Bay's WBRN-FM 98.7

Radio host Bubba the Love Sponge Clem, shown here leaving court after being cleared in a 2013 defamation suit, is now off the air in Tampa Bay. EDMUND D. FOUNTAIN   |   Times

Radio host Bubba the Love Sponge Clem, shown here leaving court after being cleared in a 2013 defamation suit, is now off the air in Tampa Bay. EDMUND D. FOUNTAIN | Times

Tampa Bay WBRN-FM 98.7 listeners will hear Christmas music during the time usually allotted for Bubba the Love Sponge Show this month. And come January, Bubba the Love Sponge Clem's show will no longer be broadcast on Beasley Broadcast Group's WBRN in the Tampa Bay area, according to Clem's lawyer, Todd Foster.

"Beasley has elected to perform a format change," Foster said on Monday. "If you turn on the channel now you'll hear Christmas music. After the new year, it will be a new music format."

A spokeswoman with Naples-based Beasley Media Group confirmed the change.

"Beasley looks forward to continuing its relationship with Bubba and The Bubba the Love Sponge Show on WRXK / 96K-ROCK in Ft. Myers, Florida," said Soni Dimond, a spokeswoman.

But what's next for Clem's radio career in his hometown of Tampa Bay is unclear.

"These days, you can broadcast from anywhere," Foster said. "There shouldn't be anything barring him from broadcasting elsewhere after this."

Radio shock jock Clem has been at the center of several controversies in recent years. Clem is currently embroiled in a ratings-tampering lawsuit filed against him by Nielsen, which is claiming $1 million in damages. Clem admitted to the ratings tampering charges at a news conference last year.

"We are still in the discovery phase," Foster said, adding that he doesn't expect much movement in the case in the next few weeks. "We're just waiting for the court to rule. We'll see what happens."

Read More: Could ratings-tampering scandal take Bubba the Love Sponge off the air?

In 2001 Clem was charged with animal cruelty for the castration and slaughter of a pig on air. He was later acquitted. Three years later he lost his job at Clear Channel after racking up $755,000 in fines for indecent behavior from the Federal Communications Commission.

In 2006, he recorded a video of Hulk Hogan having sex with Clem's wife, a tape that was later leaked to Gawker. Hogan and Clem settled a lawsuit out of court. In 2013, he won a high-profile and vicious defamation suit against a rival DJ, Todd Schnitt.

Bubba The Love Sponge Clem is off the air at Tampa Bay's WBRN-FM 98.7 12/12/16 [Last modified: Monday, December 12, 2016 2:22pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. SeaWorld cuts 350 jobs across company, including in Orlando


    ORLANDO — SeaWorld, which has struggled with declining attendance, announced Wednesday it is cutting 350 positions.

    Kalia, a 12-year-old orca whale, during rehearsals for the upcoming Orca Encounter at SeaWorld San Diego, on May 18, 2017. [Howard Lipin | San Diego Union-Tribune/TNS]
  2. As Clearwater Marine Aquarium expands, it asks the city for help


    CLEARWATER — When Clearwater Marine Aquarium CEO David Yates saw an architect's initial design for the facility's massive expansion project, he told them to start all over.

    Clearwater Marine Aquarium Veterinarian Shelly Marquardt (left), Brian Eversole, Senior Sea Turtle and Aquatic Biologist (middle) and Devon Francke, Supervisor of Sea Turtle Rehab, are about to give a rescued juvenile green sea turtle, suffering from a lot of the Fibropapillomatosis tumors, fluids at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium Wednesday afternoon. Eventually when the turtle is healthy enough the tumors will be removed with a laser and after it is rehabilitated it will be released back into the wild.  -  The Clearwater Marine Aquarium is launching a $66 million renovation to expand its facilities to take in injured animals and space to host visitors. The aquarium is asking the city for a $5 million grant Thursday to help in the project. American attitudes toward captive animals are changing. Sea World is slipping after scrutiny on the ethics of captive marine life. But CEO David Yates says CMA is different, continuing its mission of rehab and release, it's goal is to promote education, not exploitation. JIM DAMASKE   |   Times

  3. One of the best places for investing in a rental house is in Tampa Bay

    Real Estate

    Two Tampa Bay ZIP Codes are drawing national attention.

    . If you're looking to invest in a house to rent out, few places are better than  ZIP Code 34607 in Hernando County's Spring Hill area, according to ATTOM Data Solutions.
 file photo]

  4. Tampa Chamber of Commerce announces small business winners


    TAMPA — The Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce selected the winners of the 2017 Small Business of the Year Awards at a ceremony Wednesday night at the David A. Straz, Jr. Center for the Performing Arts. More than 600 attendees celebrated the accomplishments of Tampa Bay's small business community.

    Vincent Cassidy, president and CEO of Majesty Title Services, was named Outstanding Small Business Leader of the Year by the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce.

  5. International array of artists chosen as finalists for pier project

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — A diverse group of six artists will compete for a chance to install their work at the city's multimillion-dollar Pier District, expected to open in early 2019.