Best Indie Radio Personality (2011)

Beef Vegan, The Morning Fidelity

KWSS morning man Beef Vegan has a gravelly baritone that sounds a lot like a young Wolfman Jack. It's doubtful, however, that Jack would push things quite as far as Beef does — even during his outlaw years in Mexico. Accompanied by a pair of sidekicks known as Big Buddha and Shorty, Beef mans the morning show on a low-power FM station audible inside the 101 loop. In an era when most of Phoenix's radio personalities seem to be playing it safe, hoping to lay low and avoid the axes wielded by the corporate conglomerates that own them, Beef is a breath of fresh, if pungent, air. The scruffy DJ (real name: Brad Pfirrman) doesn't have much to lose, which may be why he has a lot to say. Beef's station has only a low-power license that doesn't allow for ad sales, and he doesn't get paid to do his show, so he'll gladly play music outside his station's indie rock format or antagonize guest comedian Adam Carolla to the point that Carolla dedicated eight minutes of his own Internet radio show to dissing him. Sure, there are some rough edges on Beef's show, The Morning Infidelity. For example, it's probably not strictly necessary to put every caller on the air, even when they're totally unintelligible and possibly drunk at 7 a.m. But, hey, that's all part of the fun. You never know what you're going to get from Beef, which is a great reason to tune in.

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