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The Current has announced three new additions to its on-air staff, including the return of former host Barb Abney, whose KFAI departure was reported by Bring Me The News at the weekend.

The Minnesota Public Radio-owned station that broadcasts at 89.3FM in the Twin Cities is adding the trio of new hosts to its "on-call team" who will fill open spots on the schedule on an "as-needed basis."

It comes after the station announced Ayisha Jaffer would become its new evening host, with the former Nashville radio host taking up the new role on April 18.

The new hires are:

Barb Abney


Abney, a native of Ohio, is a familiar voice on 89.3 after working as an on-air host at The Current between 2006 and 2015.

She was fired from her 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. slot by the station in 2015, and soon after joined Go 96.3 FM, which let her go around 18 months later.

Since 2017 she has been the Morning Drive host on community station KFAI, and bid farewell to her listeners on Friday morning.

Jessica Paxton

Jessica Paxton

Paxton is a former drive-time host at KYMN Radio (95.1FM and 1080AM), the independent station based in Northfield, where she worked for almost 13 years.

In 2021 she moved back to Minneapolis, where she became the talent buyer at the revitalized Parkway Theater at 48th and Chicago.

Prior to this, she had been handling the booking and marketing for the theater since 2018.

Chaz Kangas

Chaz Kangas

Like Abney, Kangas is another former Go Radio employee. He was both an on-air and off-air worker at the now defunct-station's Go 95.3 FM hip-hop station.

He also worked on the Go Radio website as a writer, and has had other written pieces published in The New York Times, LA Weekly, Village Voice, and City Pages.

(The Current doesn't mention this in its announcement, but Kangas has also written freelance pieces for Bring Me The News.)

He's also a freestyle rapper, as this footage from 2004 shows when he was involved in a rap battle with the man now known as Childish Gambino, Donald Glover.

Note: Bring Me The News was owned by Go Media at the same time Abney and Kangas were employed by Go 96.3 and 95.3.

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