South Florida's Adult Industry Radio Network Goes Live
DJ Platypus graduated from broadcasting school, got a job at a strip club to build up his on-air confidence, and never left.
Courtesy of Mike DeSuno
Amber is late to the party because she keeps screwing up her lines, laughing every time she gets to the part about the women who will "entertain [you] with their green knockers." She clenches her fists as she repeats the words, concentrating superhard on getting the commercial spot down for a St. Patrick's Day party promo.
As soon as she nails it, the veteran dancer with braided hair throws off her headphones and click-clacks on her vertiginous heels to the anteroom of the studio, where Mike DeSuno -- better known as DJ Platypus, or Plat for short -- is blowing out three candles on a Publix cake. It's his 39th birthday, and a posse of dudes with similar short, gelled haircuts are sipping cans of Michelob Ultra and grinning widely. They all have the same build, which comes from keeping odd hours, spending lots of time cooped up in DJ booths, and subsisting on strip club fare.
This is Plat's family. He is the president of Planet Platypus Inc., a radio network for which Amber is the operations manager. He's been the head DJ at Tootsies for 15 years, and he cohosts the network's eponymous neo-shock-jock program with another Tootsies DJ named Bobby Mac and the head DJ at Solid Gold, Johnny Walker. (The company is comanaged by Mac and another guy, Tony Batman.)
Planet Platypus has about 15 weekly shows in its stable, including one called Two Fat Bastards that's hosted by the head DJ of Sunrise's Goldfinger, and others by those who work at just about every club in South Florida. Ten years ago, competing DJs would never have interacted; the scene was too competitive and segregated, Amber says. But that's why Plat, Bobby Mac, and Tony Batman started this network, which caters to industry professionals and opens up dialogue within the adult entertainment scene.
"Up until we started, people besides the club owners never had a voice," Plat says. "We kind of invented a form of entertainment that is lighthearted and provides a platform we never had in our business."
It used to be kind of like Fight Club in that people never talked about what happened within the four walls of their respective workplaces. Now people from the clubs come to talk shop inside a recording studio in Davie that serves as a clubhouse. He describes his job as somewhat isolating because he works a nocturnal schedule and has a hard time socializing with folks who keep straight jobs. As he sees it, there's no reason that people dealing with these unique circumstances shouldn't come together and form their version of a fraternity.
What's more, "civilians" (nonindustry folk) can tune in to the radio show and humanize people who, Plat says, are vilified by society at large.
"We're the CNN of the strip club industry, and we want to let people see that we're just like everyone else, just with a unique job," Plat says. "Just like there are good and bad teachers and cops, there are good and bad people within our world."
On top of celebrating his birthday Tuesday night, they're also toasting to a new step for their rapidly growing program: They've just recorded live for the first time. Their goal is to find a place on Sirius Radio, where they can reach an even larger audience. Right now, their site boasts a higher Alexa ranking than that of Howard Stern.
"I think that to get where we are after only a year is quite an accomplishment," he says. "I would make a birthday wish, but it's already come true."
Send your story tips to the author, Allie Conti.
Follow Allie Conti on Twitter: @allie_conti
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