HITS Daily Double
How is it that WHFS is able to sell so many tickets, when most PoMo stations are finding it a near-impossibility to even break even for their show?


Miss Adored Goes to DC, Where She Runs Into some of PoMo's Finest, Including Modest Mouse, Yeah Yeah Yeahs and, Oh Yeah, Jay-Z

SOMEBODY TOLD ME: You’d think I’d have tons of stuff to write about since we began to publish semi-weekly, but my mind remains as blank as ever. My compassionate boss, in a rare act of solidarity, would suggest I’m showing signs of senility, although I’m still younger than Robert Smith, Morrissey and most of Velvet Revolver. Unlike Morrissey, however, my most recent CD (if it existed) hasn’t already sold over 80k in two weeks, nor have I recorded a single as brilliant as "Irish Blood, English Heart," which everybody’s favorite PoMo pipsqueak, Seth Resler, finally added this week… I could certainly devote the entire column to praising those responsible for making the HFStival a massive success—65,000 people in attendance! How is it that WHFS is able to sell so many tickets, when most PoMo stations are finding it a near-impossibility to even break even for their show? As a "brand," the HFStival truly is as "world-famous" as the Weenie Roast, which at best means 30,000 tickets, regardless of the line-up. PD Lisa Worden’s ability to lock in The Cure provided the "tipping point" that pushed her show to a sell-out. Enormous credit is also due the promoters, I.M.P., who were handed the reins for the first time. In fact, I.M.P. honcho Seth Hurwitz has many reasons to strut, having also recently gained exclusive rights to the Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD. I’ll never forget Merriweather Post in the mid-’80s, when I tried to take WHFS staffers backstage after a UB40 concert, only to be asked by those friendly socialists, "What the fuck are you doing here?" Ah, the glory days of "alternative." But I digress. Instead of relying solely on on-air mentions to promote the festival, I.M.P. marketed the event through their other venues, like the 9:30 Club. Those who might not necessarily be active WHFS listeners viewed the festival as an opportunity to see Modest Mouse, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Taking Back Sunday and the other decidedly more "indie" artists that kept the Street Stage packed all day. The Cure’s set was completely genius, but the heat (or curfew) had definitely taken its toll on maybe a third of the crowd. In terms of sheer crowd volume and audience response, Jay-Z was the festival’s clear winner. The field was COMPLETELY PACKED with kids, all of whom were either singing along or crowd-surfing (or both). Needless to say, I felt ancient…. While I spent last week recovering from the flu, our friends at Columbia launched Midtown’s "Give It Up" to Most Added, including Y100, WXTM, WRZX and a dozen more! The label is also crossing Crossfade’s "Cold" to PoMo, having already established a huge Active base. Isn’t it nice to occasionally have another format provide a launching pad for a SMASH, instead of always having every other format cherry-pick your biggest records?… Also, while I was experimenting with every version of Sudafed available, Howie Miura and Christine Chiappetta were raking in the Killers adds, including WBCN, KTBZ, WSUN, Q101, KDGE, WXNR, X-96, WDYL and more! "Somebody Told Me" is the PERFECT PoMo summer hit!… The biggest song of the week was obviously the new 311 single, "First Straw," as nothing says "summer smash" like a new song from the band. The summer hits that are motivating your audience to BUY MUSIC are New Found Glory (who deserve to be massive), Hoobastank, Modest Mouse (we hail them), Yellowcard, Jet and everybody’s favorite "beach" band, Slipknot. Each of these bands, in their own right, is FINALLY taking the Active-lite sheen off the PoMo format. When the Beastie Boys can have a #1 PoMo single (any moment now), while Muse have one of the most requested songs at EVERY station, and Franz Ferdinand is selling over 20k/week, I believe the format is in the beginning stages of a true renaissance. Modest Mouse’s unmitigated success proves: 1) A long-range approach to career-building is the best bet; 2) Kids know what’s "important" (and it isn’t usually what tests well); 3) Joel Klaiman is a promotion god. With the first two thoughts in mind, pay close attention to Coheed & Cambria—they’re the next band to emerge from "the street," as it were…. Gary Spivack is working one of the coolest songs of the year, Bumblebeez 81’s "Pony Ride," so it’s no surprise that the "cool kids" (KROQ, WWCD, WBUZ, WROX) are already on board. Look, if PoMo’s ratings continue to decline, let’s make a pact that if we’re going to go down, we’ll go down BLAZING. At this point, what’s to lose in taking musical risks? We’ll all be asking the same question soon anyway (paper or plastic?)… SONG TO HEAR: Jump Little Children’s "Young America"…. PEOPLE TO WATCH: Sky Daniels, Steve Leeds, Geordie Gillespie, Violet, Sean Demery, Jay Harren, Bill Burrs and Lazlo.