Guest DJ Week On The Blaze

(Add / View Comments) (0)Tuesday, March 23, 2010 - 02:29:19 pm
(Posted Under: Tempe Music Scene Tempe Music Scene, Music Music)
So I really gave it to The Blaze regarding the website and lack on information on Guest DJ Week. Credit where credit is due, the schedule was updated a few days later. So why was I so harsh? It wasn't to be negative, it was purely through frustration, because Guest DJ Week is so good.

I've been listening each day, which I guess is easier being on the Arizona timezone. From the outset, there were only two guests listed that I were familiar with (other than Phoenix New Times writers), both of which I funnily enough know (to whatever extent) these days. But with that said, I've gotten something out of each hour thus far.

The week technically kicked off with Leah Miller with Sarah Ventre on Point Of Ventre on Sunday. Despite it being two hours pretty much of the Gin Blossoms with much talk of Doug Hopkins and some of the older scene scattered in there, it was pretty much a disheartening two hours. That whole 90's scene is how I got into everything, and you'd expect that it'd be a dream two hours coming over the airwaves (or technically streaming over the internet [wink] it's still just easier even though now I live within The Blaze's AM range) for me. But it really just made me mad. The focus wasn't on nothing more than how great Mill Avenue was, and virtually disregarding everything after Mill Avenue fell. The amount that it wrote off the old school musicians that are still out there night after night, the incredible new bands that are coming up through the scene, the venues and owners that are still giving these bands a home and everyone else in this town that gives a shit and supports local original music, despite the fact that it's no longer 1988 with the Del Montes playing at Long Wongs every Tuesday.

Leah's entitled to her opinion, but to get on a local radio show and simply lament your hey day and write off the later scene is in my mind pretty bad form. This is the second time I've heard her do this (both on the same local music radio show). I'd kept my thoughts to myself the first time around, but I don't see any point in doing so at this point. For a long time I looked at Leah as a local music supporter and afficiando. Clearly that was misplaced.

The upside is that it gives me even more respect for those supporters that didn't lay down and give up on it because some things about the scene changed. There are plenty of sed supporters out there. No one anyone is happy about Mill Ave, but there are plenty of people who didn't get over it after Mill Ave, and they're the reason why we're seeing music at least 3 times a week, and on many nights have delimas on who we're actually going to pick to see.

If you're not part of the solution, you're just part of the problem.

We did get a mention during the show. And I hold no ill will to Sarah for calling me "Chris". [wink] Luckily Katie doesn't know anyone called Chris, so I don't have any reason to get suspicious. [smile] ha!

First up yesterday was Chris Bianco, who played a nice mix of local and non local tunes. Of particular note were his last 3 picks - Lead Thoughts (Dead Hot Workshop), This Life (Jason Longo), Midnight Radio (Greyhound Soul). Great picks. I've heard Dead Hot a lot on The Blaze often listening to Point Of Ventre, but when you're not expecting it it's pretty exciting to hear a Dead Hot Workshop tune on the radio, even if it is on The Blaze. Points to Chris also for mentioning Teak's and the Dead Hot show on Friday.

I got a lot out of Chris Hansen Orf's hour, largely because he played a lot of artists that I hear a lot about here (especially out here talking to people) but don't really know well at all. Uncle Tuepelo, Calexico etc. Plus within the first 10 minutes, Chris went on to state that the scene these days are better than when the whole scene existed between 5th and University and every band sounded like the Gin Blossoms. What a refreshing point of view Chris! [smile] Not that a lot of the bands that "sounded like the Gin Blossoms" (or moreso came up in that scene - "sounds like the Gin Blossoms" is more a stereotype than everything) aren't a lot of my quintessential Tempe favorites, and I don't think either period is technically "better", but it was a delight to hear after Sunday! In all it was a good hour of artists that I know that my favorites are influenced by. Which makes for great radio - having someone hand pick this stuff for you, without having to go and do all the work. I don't know how much will become my favorites necessarily, but was quite useful and gave me a bit of an education that I was looking for.

Today the guys from AZPunk was another really cool hour. Not because I'm in the punk scene, but because there was a lot of talk about which was quite interesting, both from a music and a tech perspective. And we've been throwing around ideas for a local music website / portal for quite a while now. Plus, it's just nice to hear from people who have similar ideas and passions that have gone ahead, done it and been successful. Again, great radio in my mind.

More to come in the following days I'm sure...
Now Playing: The Blaze - Guest DJ Week

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