The Success Story of RJ Sayema, the Retro Radio Queen!

4 minute read
The Success Story of RJ Sayema, the Retro Radio Queen

“If you stop deciding, you will stop surviving.” A common mantra of every successful person is they carefully make choices and know the power of choices and consequences. Similarly, choosing a career can be the most pathbreaking decision and who’s better to inspire us about career change, then the very own RJ Sayema who took a life-changing turn from AIR to Radio Mirchi following her passion for radio. This blog brings you the success story of ‘Purani Jeans’ fame RJ Sayema (@mirchisayema) who carved her presence in the late-night radio storytelling with her calming and soothing voice and soulful conversational style!

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Becoming RJ Sayema!

Courtesy: Stars Unfolded

Aspiring to become a lecturer as a young girl, Sayema wanted to follow the footsteps of her father who was also a lecturer. Being a brilliant student, Sayema was amongst the 0.5% students who topped in 12th Humanities across the country. Since she wanted to pursue her bachelors in English Literature, she was devasted to find that her score in English was just 64 marks. She decided not to pursue English Hons. yet work behind the scenes on her English as well as knowledge of English literature while pursuing Sociology Hons.

She loved the introduction of news on All India Radio as her father used to listen to the radio news, and as a kid, she would always try to narrate news in the same manner with her name as the host. When her father bought a karaoke mic system and asked everyone to stay away from it, Sayema somehow found her way to the room and tried to read news in the same manner as the AIR host. Her father was impressed by her style of presenting the AIR news, mistaking her voice to be that of the host. Thus, Sayema’s father was first to see her passion for radio and anchoring and supported her dream of making a career in radio. She went to AIR and made it to the teenage radio audition because she was still in 12th grade. Picking up pace despite all the hurdles, Sayema then went on to become the AIR news anchor.

RJ Sayema went on to complete her MPhil at the University of Delhi and even wondered about becoming a lecturer inspired by her father’s academic career. An ardent fan of the incredible 70s and 80s Bollywood music, she landed the late-night radio show, Purani Jeans, on Radio Mirchi in 2003 and now this show has become synonymous with RJ Sayema herself! She has built a strong fan base with her unique voice and soulful storytelling and has even acted in ‘Vicky Donor’ in a small role!

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Courtesy: Sayema Rahman

A Spicy Breakthrough from AIR to Radio Mirchi!

Courtesy: Radio Mirchi

Our decisions can either result in a breakdown or a breakthrough, thus the risk is indispensable when you want to become something great in life. RJ Sayema followed her heart and embarked upon the journey of becoming an RJ from a news anchor. She landed the retro radio time in Radio Mirchi which can be hard for an RJ to build a following on, but she persevered and with her passion for 70s and 80s music as well as stories, she made Purani Jeans her breakthrough!

Courtesy: Sayema Rahman

Purani Jeans hosted by RJ Sayema is one of the most prestigious, renowned and longest-running shows on Radio Mirchi 98.3 FM and its core content is retro music of the ’60s, 70’s and 80’s era and further new segments were added to it like ‘Legends special’, and “Superstars Ki Jung” where the music of the golden Bollywood era was aired. The show over the years has attained a cult classic status.

Lessons on Life, Career & Passions by RJ Sayema

Courtesy: The Quint

Making it in the radio industry of India, RJ Sayema has truly come a long way building a fan following throughout the country. She is a big fan of Manto, loves reading The Little Prince and is an amazing tennis player! Let’s learn some key lessons from her inspirational success story:

  1. Stay Honest with Yourself: By making the choice of staying true to her passion for radio jockeying over an academic career, RJ Sayema was able to foster honesty in her life. While honesty with others is always the best policy, putting the same honesty towards your own self is difficult and yet truly worth it!
  2. Always Choose Your Heart!: In an interview with Josh Talks, Sayema talked about choosing between her passion and a more professional or secure opportunity. It was the dilemma she faced between becoming an RJ or pursuing a career as a lecturer. But ultimately, her heart wanted to work in the radio, which is still considered an unconventional choice.
  3. Find out What Makes you Unique!: It’s all about how unique you are from the crowd of people and embracing that uniqueness just like RJ Sayema utilised her unique voice into something amazing! RJ Sayema’s story also teaches us to love all the unique talents we have and turning them into a passion worth living for!
  4. Value And Respect Others: RJ Sayema is the epitome of greatness who always respects and values her listeners and considers them as her real earnings because in the end, it is people who either help you succeed or just simply write you off.
Courtesy: TEDx Talks

Thus, RJ Sayema is truly a delightful retro radio queen who embraced her love for radio into a soulful career! Confused about your career choices? Sign up for a free counselling session with our Leverage Edu mentors and we will help you find out the best career that suits your interests and aspirations!

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  1. I love this hauntingly beautiful voice of DJ Sayema. Ive never heard a more enchanting introduction to the golden age songs. She can rightfully take her place right by the great Ameen Sayani.She makes my afternoons in New Jersey.

  1. I love this hauntingly beautiful voice of DJ Sayema. Ive never heard a more enchanting introduction to the golden age songs. She can rightfully take her place right by the great Ameen Sayani.She makes my afternoons in New Jersey.