One of the longest-lasting radio marriages in South Florida’s broadcast history is headed for Splitsville.
“Young” Ron Brewer, the grumpier half of “The Paul & Young Ron Show,” announced Monday he is leaving the show after 26 years alongside co-star Paul Castronovo.
Brewer’s last morning is scheduled to be Dec. 16, the year’s last live show.
Castrovono tells Gossip Extra he is returning Jan. 2 for a solo gig on “The Paul Castronovo Show” until he and Big 105.9 FM decide what’s next.
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Brewer, who is 61, called his departure “an extended vacation” during his announcement, but chances are he is retiring for good.
“I’ll miss radio, but I’m looking forward to not being on a schedule after getting up at 3:30 a.m. all these years,” Brewer said in a statement after Monday’s program. “I don’t have any specific plans, maybe I’ll buy an RV, but I’m going to enjoy life and fulfill some bucket list items.
“The best part is that Paul won’t have Ron Brewer to kick around anymore.”
Gossip Extra reached out to Brewer for comment but was told he isn’t doing any interviews about his departure.
“He’s lazy,” Castronovo said. “What you hear on-the-air is how Ron is in real life.”
Former executive producer Steven Harmon called Brewer a true professional.
“There is not a more humble and nicer man to work with,” Harmon said.
Castronovo said he had just lost a job in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1990 when he started lobbying officials at WSHE-103.5 FM in Miami to hire him.
Castronovo said Brian Krysz, the program director at the time, flew him down so he could meet another DJ who worked midday at WSHE, Brewer.
“We went to Burt & Jack’s in Fort Lauderdale [Burt Reynolds’ old restaurant], and Ron and I had the whole table cracking up,” Castronovo recalled. “So they decided to try us hosting a morning show.”
With their trademark banter about entertainment, idiosyncrasies of life and Miami sports as well as celebrity interviews, “The Paul & Young Ron Show” moved five years later to Zeta 94.9 FM then to its current home in 2004.
“I feel like I was gut-punched,” Castronovo said about Monday’s announcement. “It is definitely like we’ve been married for 26 years. Some days, you hate him. Some days, you love him.
“We just signed a new contract, but I guess he had an escape clause.”
As for their chemistry, Castronovo says it’s their ability to carry on the age-old comedy duo format of Abbott and Costello and Laurel and Hardy.
“It’s the big guy picks on the little guy,” Castronovo said. “There were a few times where I might have gone a little too far, but it was never intended to be mean-spirited.”
As for Brewer’s nickname of “young,” Castronovo said he came up with it because Brewer looked old even 26 years ago.