By Brandon Robinson
The ability for a person to actually follow their dream takes fearlessness and comfortability in one’s own skin. Often deemed risky, rare and unpopular, those who actually follow their dreams possess an uncanny amount of chutzpah. If you’re radio personality Laura Stylez, the execution to follow her dream embodies all of those aforementioned traits. Yet, it appears so effortless–but she’s a natural, so it makes sense!
One third of New York’s Hot 97 Morning Show airing weekdays from 5 AM-10 AM, Stylez holds it down with Ebro Darden and Peter Rosenberg. The first lady of the morning show also appears midday on Sirius/XM Radio hosting a midday Latin hits show, but it wasn’t always this grandiose.
Los Angeles born and raised, Stylez moved to the Big Apple when she was 19 to pursue her dream of being ‘the ma’am’ on the radio waves. Most folks, including her own father didn’t believe that moving to New York was the best viable option for her, but she stayed the course. “It goes to show you that you have to claim your destiny sometimes and believe in yourself,” Stylez told Pynk.Stylez went to school and interned at radio stations to earn her keep. Although she’s Guatemalan, homegirl worked three jobs like a Jamaican to pay the rent, keep the lights on and keep food on the table.
Initially, Stylez began as an online digital producer at Hot 97 in 2013. There she’d host live streams and assist former Hot 97 personality and radio legend, Angie Martinez. Stylez credits Martinez for planting seeds in her life and encouraging her to stay true to herself. “She’s truly been a mentor to me and took me in and really just believed in me,” she said.That advice would pay off. Stylez whipped her radio chops into form and built trust with producers so much so that she’d fill in on the morning show with Ebro, Cipha Sounds, Rosenberg and Shani Kulture. “I’m living the dream and I’m thankful every day,” she said.
Her presence as the only woman talent on the show is great. Even greater is her distinct rapport with the stars that appear regularly on the show. “I’ve always felt that I’ve never been on the radio and said something that I never believed in,” she said. “Her boobs,” joked Hot 97 Morning Show co-host Peter Rosenberg. “No seriously, she’s incredibly honest. Ultimately what makes good radio is honesty. The people that aren’t effective in radio are the people that try to be something that they’re not. Laura is incredibly vulnerable on the air.”
“Laura is always positive and upbeat,” Hot 97 co-host Ebro Darden tells Pynk. “It’s easy to have people who are super negative all the time. Laura is never, ever, ever down and that’s dope.”
Stylez knew her potential and maximized it; or as Drake would say, she ‘knew her worth.’ The road to success came with sacrifice, experience, learning from folks who had been there and staying true. “Every day we’re put on this platform to open up and I just can’t be someone who sits there and says something that I don’t believe in.”
Photo Credit(s): Getty Images
Brandon Robinson is a sports and entertainment writer. Follow him on Twitter @SCOOPB and Instagram @Scoop_B.