HITS Daily Double


It's Off to HFStival for Ivana, Bug
Repellent in Tow
LONG DISTANCE RUNAROUND: Until a few weeks ago, I thought cicada was merely the name of an LA restaurant which has been the site of many beautiful weddings and post-Grammy parties. Thanks (or no thanks) to www.cicadamania.org, I now know as much about this every-17-years assault of bugs, as I do about other things that give me nightmares, like getting on a plane, or this year’s American Idol finalists. I’m not about to let a few BILLION crawling insects deter my annual pilgrimage to the HFStival—not even plague-like conditions can keep me away (at least D.C. won’t be as brutally hot as Coachella). The WHFS audience doesn’t seem the least bit affected by the thought of sharing the perimeter of RFK Stadium with their four-legged friends, and with tickets nearly sold out (all 55,000 of them), kids may actually outnumber arthropods. Although headliners The Cure probably weren’t thinking about cicadas when they wrote “End of the World,” the song may take on new meaning for those who’ve never experienced this phenomenon (like Lisa Worden). Geffen’s Gary Spivack had another incredible week at PoMo with The Cure, landing some of the “harder” stations like WXNR, WJBX, KKND, WSUN, WLRS, KROX, KHBZ and KFTE this week. As much as I loathe bugs, I love Bumblebeez 81, the band Gary is launching at PoMo on June 1. KROQ added “Pony Ride” last week, MTV has the video in “Buzzworthy” and you will be next. It reminds me of Tones On Tails’ “Go” meets Violent Femmes’ “Gone Daddy Gone,” which must mean that “Pony Ride” is going!... If I wasn’t leaving town on Thursday (the aforementioned “annual pilgrimage” always begins with a stop in Boston for the WBCN Rumble), I might’ve exerted my so-called “executive privilege” and declared today a holiday, in honor of Rick Wakeman’s birthday. I thought that was the reason Jim McGuinn was calling me this morning, although he had a far weightier topic in mind. It seems as though WEQX, a truly independent and legendary PoMo station, is losing its reporting status from the “B-thing.” After 20 years as a beacon of musically adventurous radio, they’re being shoved aside so another station in the market can gain “status.” Unfortunately, without the perceived value of WEQX’s airplay counting towards chart positions, most labels will cease to support this station, despite its actual value of not only supporting new music, but as a breeding ground for some of PoMo radio’s finest talents (like McGuinn). With WOXY tragically ending its historic run, the owner-operated radio station is nearing extinction. It’s not as though WEQX’s ratings are any worse than those posted by many-major market PoMo powerhouses. In this particularly “challenging” time in PoMo radio, it’s better to err on the side of inclusion, or we’ll soon be back to a 20-station panel… Wow, the view isn’t so bad from my soapbox. I’ll leave my perch momentarily—I must buy Morrissey’s new CD today! Since you haven’t asked, my favorite songs (besides “Irish Blood, English Heart”) on You are the Quarry are “You Know I Couldn’t Last,” “How Can Anybody Possibly Know How I Feel?” and “Come Back To Camden.” I haven’t been this excited about a Morrissey record since, well, EVER!… Being a “fan” of bands, songs, designers, or anything, for that matter, is an exhilarating experience. Collective “fan” momentum is contagious—“word-of-mouth” is how that buzz is spread. Modest Mouse sales (35k this week) are indicative of exponential momentum, which Epic has harnessed into Top 10 airplay for “Float On.” We all need to be fans of this kind of success, which Jacqueline Saturn and her team can now spread to Franz Ferdinand and Phantom Planet… At the sold-out Muse show at the Mayan a few weeks ago, I was blown away by the crowd’s reaction to the band. The audience was on its feet the entire show, even in the balcony, while I looked around and wondered if the twenty-somethings loved Muse as much as I do, because they’re, well, PROG. I continued my “musings” on the drive home, enveloped by the sounds of Brain Salad Surgery on the car stereo… We bribed PoMo promo goddess Kris Metzdorf with promises of access to her favorite Dodgers if she’d spend a few days a week at the HITS cesspool making us look good. For some bizarre reason, she acquiesced, so you can reach her here, until she comes to her senses. I will do everything I can to make her happy, even if it means sacrificing playing my beloved Darkness CD on repeat… SONG TO HEAR: The Streets’ “Fit But You Know It”…. PEOPLE TO WATCH: Bill Carroll, Marc Young, KLEC, Ted Volk, Geordie Gillespie (who is putting the “breaking” in Breaking Benjamin), Oedipus, Bill Burrs and Tim Bronson.