Thursday, May 10, 2007

If you look back to Monday's post here, you'll know that not just the Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area but the entire state of Minnesota lost what was essentially the only commercially supported outlet for alternative-rock radio in the state and the only commercially supported radio station regularly spinning the tunes of local (metro area) artists.

So today I am steering away from my main musical passion in general and lending my rather small amount of support to these bands and artists and the listeners in general who relied on the station formerly known as Drive 105 for five years of ever-evolving music.

Thanks to a certain intern at the station for keeping people (as well as myself) updated on the goings-ons. This is something that would have been impossible the past two times that the alternative rock format was unceremoniously yanked from the airwaves of these three radio stations which comprise Drive 105.

I know that for out of state readers that reading this will mean very little if anything but remember that if you are interested and invested deeply enough in something that it is most definitely worth remembering, celebrating and fighting for even though changing a large corporation's mind is a rare occurance but this petition set up and the over 2,000 e-mails received at ABC Radio's Minneapolis offices voicing support for the return of Drive 105 is reportedly are having an impact. And if that wasn't enough, a MySpace page has popped up in support of bringing Drive 105 back to the airwaves of the MSP Metro area.

The bands need support and the DJs who kept the station alive for the past five years on a shoestring budget and little more than their love of their jobs and the music deserve to be congratulated regardless of where they eventually land in the wake of the format flip.

With that being said, there is news on which DJs are going where. Morning guy and Program Director from Drive 105 Chris Rahn has taken the same role with the new station. Midday jock Joni is staying on as well. Afternoon guy JP The Radio Slave has moved next door to rocker 93X and will apparently be heard in some time slot there. Night DJ Jeremy is also staying on and is accepting the challenge of working with a new format that from the outsider's perspective may not seem like the best fit, I personally applaud his ethic because that shows just how much this guy loves radio as a whole. No news as of yet on overnight guy Ben or any of the weekend talent who worked the most unenviable shifts of all.

And now the bands. Yes, Drive 105 was corporately owned but what isn't in the world we live in? Even with the pressure of one of the biggest entertainment corporations in the country likely watching their every move, the little station that almost did played local artists and without a radio home, these are the people that need the support of music fans not just in Minnesota but across the country.

Without a doubt, my favorite local artist on Drive 105 had to be Tim Mahoney. Every time one of his tunes came on, I turned it up just a bit more and was overjoyed when I heard the new single "Piece of You" from "Stay/Leave" earlier this year. Show the man some love and give his tunes a listen at his MySpace page. If you live in the Twin Cities, take a trip west a bit to Waconia and see a solo performance at The Boathouse Friday night at 9 PM and buy his latest CD -- it's at Target stores in the immediate Twin Cities metro and at Best Buy as well.

The other local artists played both need and deserve our support. The Hold Steady wouldn't be where they are today if it weren't for the love that the half-local band got on the metro airwaves. Sure, they are nationally known now as they have been featured in 'Spin' magazine and are playing the upcoming Lollapalooza festival this summer. If you want to see the band, they swing through Milwaukee on May 17 in support of their latest disc, "Boys and Girls in America", and you can download their version of "Take Me Out To The Ballgame" which honors hometown team, the Minnesota Twins.

Lastly, The Hopefuls are a band that I, personally, probably would not be aware of if it weren't for Drive 105 breaking the band a couple years back. Get out and see "The Hopefuls" on May 24 at the Triple Rock Social Club in Minneapolis. The band is still touring hard on the local circuit in support of their latest album, "The Fuses Refuse to Burn". Hey, if they've been featured on 'The O.C.', they are good!

We can't forget about the fabulous local music show which is now homeless. "Homegrown" had made the move over to Drive 105 from classic rock sister KQRS and host Dave Campbell now finds his hour long show without a radio home. It is one of only a few times in the show's ten year history, this Sunday, that they will miss a broadcast. There's no word currently what will become of 'Homegrown' but the show is deserving of a home on the local airwaves and will hopefully land on its feet very soon.

With all this said about the bands, DJs and a show that are all homeless in the wake of the untimely departure of Drive 105, what can YOU do?

Sign the petition.
Send a comment to Drive 105's replacement.
Call ABC Radio in Minneapolis at 612-617-4000 or the Love 105 Studio Line at 612-331-5083
If you are a MySpace user, add "Bring Back Drive 105" as a friend.
Support all the local bands in the metro area. There are too many to name but they are all amazing! Click here for a great collection of area bands worth of your attention.

Fight for what you believe in, this is what makes me most proud to be a fan of this music genre, this station and a resident of the communities that make up the Twin Cities. The support for Drive 105 is amazing and keep up the great work! Fighting a good fight is half the battle and knowing that the fight is for something worthwhile is a great feeling no matter what the outcome is.

If you are supporting the cause and are reading this, drop a line and tell me what you are doing to further the movement. Feel free to shout out to the bands and songs that you miss and can't hear on the radio after this latest move by ABC Radio.

1 comment:

H said...

Thanks for finding me! I signed the petition last night and joined a group on Facebook. I'm not sure what good it will do -- but I can't imagine not doing anything at all.