One of morning radio’s longest-standing duos is breaking up. Gene Baxter, aka “Bean” of “The Kevin & Bean Show,” announced his move to a very different radio market at the top of Wednesday’s show. “Thirty years is a good time to stop,” he told surprised listeners.
“Just announced on the @KevinAnd Bean Show, after 30 years I am leaving the show at the end of the year to move back home to England, the ninth largest island in the world,” Baxter tweeted midway through the broadcast. “Much more to come on this.”
Baxter and partner Kevin Ryder began the morning show in 1989. The two have rarely done their broadcasts from the same room since the late 1990s, when Baxter moved to Seattle, while Ryder continued to man the fort in Los Angeles. Baxter has worked from home in Seattle or, ultimately, New Orleans for more than 20 years.
On the air Wednesday morning, he emphasized that he is not retiring but looking to find a radio gig in the UK. The show tweeted out a photo of Baxter wearing a UK T-shirt and “rocking his future home.”
In 2018, Baxter took a medical leave from the show, later telling audiences that he had been under care for mental health issues and urging others to do the same. “It was a really hard decision, because you kind of just feel like you should just push on,” he said at the time. “I think that many of us, me included, think that you just deal with it. … I felt like it wasn’t possible for me to continue to give the show the attention that it needed and also spend the time getting healthy.”
Baxter and Ryder were inducted into the National Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame in 2015.