HITS Daily Double

By Karen Glauber

Happy summer to you all. I’m feeling a bit of “June gloom” right now, but there’s something to be said for turning on the radio and hearing a song that “lilts,” which is defined by, “a rhythmical swing, flow, or cadence.” Summer just hits different. My favorite example of a song that “lilts” is Good Neighbours’ “Home,” which is nearing 200m on Spotify. I’m obsessed with hearing this one on the radio—it changes my mood immediately.

Also in that category is Royel Otis’ “Murder on the Dance Floor,” which should be #1 at Alt, were it not for Green Day and Imagine Dragons. In a short time, Royel Otis has established itself as the band for the next generation of alternative listeners. Glass Animals is another band that should be considered “core” for the format, and “Creatures in Heaven” is another smash for them.

With every bit of my heart, I believe that Bleachers’ “Tiny Moves” is a radio hit, even if you guys and your ridiculous call-out tell me otherwise. MScores for this song have been incredible, especially as time progresses. None of you are playing songs enough to know what their real potential is, especially when there’s a myriad of “known” artists with new singles each week. Most of you admit that you’re not sure if the new songs by known artists are any good, but it’s easier for you to play them than take a risk on a new artist.

To make matters worse, you’re all a book away from flipping to “Classic Alternative,” which is why it’s imperative on the industry’s side to help radio look as healthy as possible. Artist engagement is key. Bleachers just did a session at 101X in Austin, and Lynn Barstow received 1,200 entries for the 35 slots. The fans loved it. Also, Papa Roach spent an evening on a boat in Washington, D.C., with DC101 listeners, playing songs for the 200+ attendees and presenting Elliot, the morning host, with a signed guitar. The night before Jacoby did the same for WRFF (on land) and began the week at WRRV. The week closed with a session at WKQX, and more happy fans were “meeted and greeted.” Every label and artist has to make the effort to show up for radio. I’ve been doing alternative promotion for 42 years, and I’ve watched the ebb and flow of the format. If the format moves to Classic Alternative, we’re all out of jobs. My intention is to die at my desk, whenever that might be.

If you’re looking for something to do on 9/21, might I suggest the HFStival? Yes, IMP and consultant Bob Waugh are bringing back the HFStival at Nationals Park. The lineup isn’t yet announced, but you can likely expect to see bands that have played the event in years past. I’ve been throwing out band names to Bob all week, but he won’t tell me. I spent every Memorial Day weekend at the HFStival from 1991 to 2006. I remember watching The New York Dolls from the side of the stage with my then-teen niece Emily. Now, she works at Domino Records in London, and will definitely hear the new Wet Leg before I do.

Speaking of Wet Leg, there’s a new Offspring single out today called “Make It All Right,” which features a female vocalist that everybody swears is Wet Leg. It isn’t, but we need Angelo Scrobe to tell us who it is!... This is also the time of year when female voices cut through on Alternative radio. What sounds more like summer than beabadoobee’s “Take a Bite?” It’s already Top 20 at AAA, and we’re going to take a swing at Alternative on 6/17. Rick Rubin produced this album, and you will love it.

Speaking of love, especially if you’re in the Heartland, the new Vacations song is called “Midwest.” Nick Bedding is impacting it on 6/25. This song was already a smash for XMU (the station I listen to the most), and some of you played their first single “Next Exit.”

In the meantime, I hope everybody carves out time for a vacation. It’s fun to see Nick Attaway’s photos from Iceland. Once home, he’ll impact Sum 41’s “Dopamine,” which everybody thinks is a smash. Ted and I have no idea what a vacation is, but I wish better for you.

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