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DJ Ace to leave BBC Radio 1Xtra after 21 years

BBC Radio 1Xtra host DJ Ace is leaving the station after 21 years, it has been announced.

The presenter – real name Ashley Asomani – said that it was time to “move on” from the longtime gig after more than two decades, according to the BBC. His final R&B show is set to air on Saturday, January 20, 2024.

“I’ve loved my time at 1Xtra and have so many proud moments to reflect on,” he said in a statement. “I’m very thankful for all the opportunities I have had.”

The radio DJ joined 1Xtra back in 2002, have presented shows including Weekend Breakfast and 1Xtra’s Live Lounge over the years.

Alicia Keys, Usher and John Legend are among artists he has interviewed on the station throughout his 21 years.

Announcing the news, 1Xtra described Ace as “an integral part of the station over the years, hosting some of the most iconic moments”.

Fans of the presenter paid tribute to the radio veteran on social media, calling him a “true legend” and a “champion of R&B”.

1Xtra breakfast presenter Nadia Jae, meanwhile, called him her “hero” on X/Twitter.

In an Instagram comment, Radio 1 presenter Melvin Odoom wrote: “I don’t think people fully appreciate the levels here! 21 years is no joke! Honored that I had the chance to work on your show as your broadcast assistant at the start of my career and you have always been one of my favorite presenters! Big up Denton!”

Earlier this year, it was announced that his weekday slot would be taken over by DJ Day Day.

Now, Chuckie will also be joining 1Xtra as the new host of the R&B Show (Saturdays, 11pm). His first show will broadcast on Saturday, February 24.

In the interim, No Guidnce – who NME this year said “have the potential to become British R&B icons” – will be hosting the R&B show for four weeks from Saturday, January 27.

Ace, who notably spent almost three years waiting for a kidney transplant in 2021, has advocated for a more open dialogue about organ donation amongst people from Black and Asian backgrounds.

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