No, not The Stray Cats (6/8a)
Peso's stacks of pesos (6/8a)
Surging stars and emerging trends (6/8a)
The Hyde Park equivalent of Coachella (6/8a)
Lipman-mania. (6/8a)
The astonishing first half-century of a world-rocking genre.
Who's next to grow the profile of Seoul music?
Are we about to see new attendance records set?
He signed Elvis.

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By Karen Glauber

The solution is obvious: The Mediabase charts we use as our weekly report cards should be based on audience, weighted so that a spin in a Top 50 market is worth more than a spin in a market without a bus station. In their current state, a spin that has the impact of the sound of one hand clapping counts the same as a spin in L.A. There are stations on the Alternative panel that have no audience, while stations like WRIS and KJEE have a loyal and active listenership but fail to be added as reporters year after year. Why does the chart matter? Because it’s a snapshot of what our chosen format has chosen to support.

Does anybody care besides Ted and me that beabadoobee’s “The Perfect Pair” will peak at #11? Unlikely, but it makes me feel like a failure, especially since her profile couldn’t be bigger right now and she sold out L.A.’s Greek Theatre in five minutes. That’s also part of the problem—there’s never a consensus where the format collectively decides to support an artist who didn’t have their first hit in 2003 or doesn’t have a monstrous streaming story or can’t avail themselves of the endless rounds of promo most international artists are unavailable to participate in. STILL, and I believe this wholeheartedly, the best bands WILL win, but ONLY if programmers are willing to free themselves from the tyranny (habit) of call-out. NEW ARTISTS DON’T CALL OUT (unless there’s a massive sync or the song is a giant for other reasons).

I will continue to bring up Lovejoy’s “Call Me What You Like” as a prime example. The band’s singer, using the name Wilbur Soot, is a popular gamer, with over 9 million YouTube subscribers and 5 million Twitch subscribers. My kid started following his Minecraft livestreams and discovered Lovejoy soon after. The band is currently on a sold-out U.S. tour. Given Wilbur’s massive following, a smart programmer should be setting up a tour promotion to tap into that base—for the Alternative demo, gaming is a huge deal. Want to attract new listeners? They already know about Wilbur, even if you don’t. Dave Lombardi and his AWAL team WILL get this record.

Although many (most) of you program in opposition to the possibility that women could (should) be loyal listeners of your radio station, there are songs women have decided they love that are too big for you to ignore. Rosa Linn’s “SNAP” was a great example of a song that became an Alt hit because of the tenacity of Lisa Sonkin and Lisa Worden. Now, Marisa DiFrisco has a GLOBAL SMASH with David Kushner’s “Daylight,” and you’re absolutely missing out on a massive hit if you can’t figure out a way to play this song. You want call-out? Here you go.

A few weeks ago, Christy Taylor hit me up about Yves Tumor. Her timing was perfect—I just got a new mix of “Echolalia,” which will be serviced next week, and I was able to offer her a spot on the artist’s guest list for the sold-out show this weekend. I’m not sure there’s a more exciting artist in the world right now than Yves Tumor.

You know what it’s like to hear a song and just KNOW it’s going to be a big hit? I was listening to the upcoming Arlo Parks album, landed on the song “Devotion” and had to play it five times in a row. This is the song. The lyrics mention both Deftones and Kim Deal, adding format-friendly relevance to the best song of the summer. Very excited for you to hear it.

Happiness is a weekend of music, including the Cruel World Festival in Pasadena on Saturday. I’ll be bouncing among Gang of Four, ABC, Adam Ant and Echo and the Bunnymen—but most excited for Iggy Pop, of course. This is Coachella for those of us who did college radio in the ’80s.


By Karen Glauber

We are the sum of our influences, even the bad ones (thanks, Mom). Radio programmers have airplay as the ultimate expression of their fandom and gratitude for the artists who inspired them—obviously, not as their “own personal jukeboxes” but as true influencers.

My allegiance to artists runs deep—last night in Philadelphia, I was able to guestlist Garett Michaels, Jim McGuinn and Amber Hoback for a show by Hoodoo Gurus, a band I first worked with in 1984. My first #1 record during my A&M years was the Gurus’ “I Want You Back”—a girl never forgets her first.

While in college, I was deeply in the Violent Femmes’ orbit. The band is playing sold-out shows in the area this week in celebration of the 40th anniversary of their game-changing debut. I’ve got my kid this weekend, so I’ll unfortunately have to miss it, but I’ll be at the Crowded House show on Monday, decades after working with Split Enz and being on most of the first Crowded House tour with opener/A&M artist Paul Kelly.

In a few weeks, I’ll be in Montclair, N.J., to see Todd Rundgren and Daryl Hall in concert—it’s like chasing a fix. What makes us feel like our truest selves, especially after ongoing health issues for those of us with long COVID, and what makes us happy? How do we show gratitude for the artists who defined our lives?

If you’re reading this, you have the wherewithal to help an artist’s career, even if it’s as basic as buying merch after a show. We know that nothing new you play is going to call out unless it’s a novelty record (like Weezer’s cover of “Africa”) or a new single from a band you supported in 2003 (long live Foo Fighters). Collectively, we can break artists and create cultural moments—or at least respond to pop culture and acknowledge the “hot topics” with your audience. Like, for example, whomever Taylor Swift “might” be dating, or Rage Against the Machine being inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

Speaking of the Hall of Fame (as I often do), I was on the phone with Kate Bush’s manager yesterday, sharing with him the countless times that Kate’s music made me feel like I wasn’t the weirdest kid in the world, starting when I first heard “Wuthering Heights” in 1979. I’m hardly alone—so many of my friends, male and female, consider Kate to be an important influence. To hear that Kate is “overjoyed” to be voted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame made me tear up. By my estimation, Kate, Dusty Springfield, Christine McVie and Annie Lennox will be the only British women in the R&RHOF. God bless the Queens.

Congrats to our old friend Marco Collins on his new gig doing afternoon drive at Seattle Triple-A WPNW. We hope he thrives there for many years!

Also, massive huzzahs to our new friend Christen Limon on being named music coordinator for ALT 98.7!

Shawn Lucero, our heroine during her years at KRXP and KILO, has joined Willobee at NonComm powerhouse Indie 102.3 in Denver, where former WHFS programmer/air talent Dana Meyers has been slaying as the morning-show talent extraordinaire. Sisterhood is POWERFUL!

Thundercat’s “No More Lies” (featuring Tame Impala, as all songs should) is streaming more than almost anything on your playlist. PLUS, he was featured on Gorillaz’s recent #1 Modern Rock smash, “Cracker Island.” If there was such a thing as an indie rock layup for the format, this is it.My kid first played Peter McPoland for me. He’s signed to Columbia and is originally from Vermont. I’ve been fangirl-ing over his music all week, especially “Digital Silence,” which reminds me of Arctic Monkeys’ “I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor” (which I worked). Michelle Rutkowski’s niece told her about Peter, and she added “Digital Silence” this week at WLUM! It’s the summer. Add records because they make you feel something!

So excited to see the plethora of adds that came in for Lovejoy this week. This one is undeniable, even for cynics like you. Lovejoy will be playing sold-out shows in the States all summer, including Lollapalooza and Outside Lands. Wherever they go, you’ll see me and my kid.


By Karen Glauber

Do you wake up hours before dawn on Record Store Day? I’m in the process of upgrading my turntable, so my plan is to hit the first store on my itinerary at 6am. My wish list includes the 50th Anniversary box set of Nuggets: Original Artyfacts From the First Psychedelic Era (1964-1968) and the 50th anniversary reissue of Todd Rundgren’s masterpiece, A Wizard/A True Star (replicating the original die-cut cover), plus special RSD releases from The 1975, Beach House, Husker Du and Ivy. Records are your friends.

Starting today (4/21), Mercury is in retrograde, which means that communication is a bit wonky and could be the reason why my Internet isn’t working. Like Elon Musk’s $3 billion SpaceX launch, my brain is experiencing “rapid unscheduled disassembly,” which I hope to mitigate by listening to new music and feeling the rush of identifying the next crop of hits. Amanda and Drew at Republic launched a new AJR song this morning. “The Dumb Song” is classic AJR, and repeated listens amplify my unwavering love for this band.

With the announcement of additional tour dates, anticipation was building for a new Foo Fighters single. “Rescued” arrived yesterday and became the most-played song of the day at the format. How quickly will Gary Gorman take this to #1? Will Rob Goldklang have a window to get Gorillaz (the darlings of Coachella) to #1 first?

Our beloved Cannons are back with a new single called “Loving You,” released on the eve of their debut Coachella performance. Response to the song has been exceptional, of course. Lisa Sonkin has both Depeche Mode and Rosa Linn in the Top 10—huge!

Columbia band blink-182, on the heels of their surprise Coachella performance last week, will now be holding court on the main stage this Sunday, replacing the ailing Frank Ocean. 10 years ago today, I stood next to Frank on the Outdoor Stage, while Tame Impala played in front of 40,000 during the worst sandstorm I’ve ever experienced. Working “Elephant” before Tame Impala signed to Interscope, is a career highlight that I share with Ted Volk. Back to 2023, will blink-182 have new music this summer?

Will you be at The Gathering in Las Vegas next week? I agreed to moderate a panel, because I’m very fond of Patty, Tracy, Chuck and Drew. Unlike SXSW, where I can command my panelists to play songs of my choosing, this time around there will be a chair at my side; a “hot seat” for my radio and record friends. Due to the pandemic, there will be people in attendance I’ve never met, so it will be an opportunity to share our achievements, goals and frustrations. There has to be a tipping point where Alternative radio is all-in on a song that is performing as a hit for the majority of the panel. Unwarranted ego and armchair A&R opinions from programmers make our jobs infinitely harder than necessary. Pay attention to what’s going on in the music business—now is not the time for entitled behavior.

Apparently, I wasn’t the only one who Shazamed Bakar’s “Hell N Back” when I saw the trailer for the upcoming Pixar film Elemental. Remember when the trailer for Slumdog Millionaire featured MIA’s “Paper Planes,” and the song exploded? “Hell N Back” was a Top 10 Alt hit a few years ago—will it go Top 5 this time around?

Marisa DiFrisco, my emo princess, just serviced David Kushner’s “Daylight,” which debuted on the Spotify Global Chart at #6, with over 28 million streams in the FIRST WEEK. Based on recent social-media posts, it appears that David is currently collaborating with Wesley Schultz from The Lumineers. Radio needs to be all over this record.

Not since Windser, whose “Memory” will get its due, have I fallen for new artists like I have for Blondshell on Partisan (check out “Salad” now) and Billy Tibbals, whose Stay Teenage EP came out today. Billy reminds me of my favorite Paisley Underground bands, like Three O’Clock and Rain Parade. The Byrds’ influence in music is eternal.

SONG TO HEAR: beabadoobee “Glue Song” (f/Clairo). Happy Record Store Day!


By Karen Glauber

So many milestones since we last spoke: My 33rd anniversary in the “career cul-de-sac” known as HITS; my 31st sober birthday; the 40th anniversary of the English Beat/R.E.M. show I booked at Oberlin College in 1983, followed a few days later by the 40th anniversary of R.E.M.’s epic debut album, Murmur, which is as important to the indie kids from the ’80s as Nevermind is to those who came of age in the ’90s. My social media has been filled with my peers recounting how Murmur changed their lives.

April 13 was the 40th anniversary of The Violent Femmes’ self-titled debut—another record that changed the landscape of Alternative music. My history with the Femmes dates back to seeing them open for Richard Hell at the Bottom Line on my 21st birthday. Played their demo on my college-radio station; booked their first Cleveland show; sat in the front row for their Carnegie Hall show the week I moved to NYC, and 40 years later, we’re still friends.

Now, in 2023, what does Alternative music look like? I think I found the answer a few weeks ago at the Arlo Parks show. Nominated for two Grammy Awards in 2022 for Best New Artist and Best Alternative Music Album, Arlo had one of the coolest and most diverse audiences I’ve seen in ages at her sold-out show. Here’s the thing about Arlo’s music: Every song sounds like an immediate classic, especially her new single, “Weightless.” Of course it won’t test—I’m seriously tired of “bad call-out” as an excuse.

Of course you’re familiar with country superstar Luke Combs, right? He recorded a cover of Tracy Chapman’s “Fast Car” that is about to be everywhere. What does that have to do with Arlo, you might ask? Like “Fast Car,” which is truly a song for the ages, Arlo’s songs have the same timeless, deeply emotional appeal. “Fast Car” is having a renaissance right now—even my kid knows it.

Unless there is artist identification with your call-out, nothing new will ever work. It’s impossible to form an opinion about an unfamiliar 10-second hook without artist identification, especially when it now can take a year for a song to become familiar. Glass Animals’ “Heat Wave” would have never been a hit based on initial call-out. beabadoobee’s “The Perfect Pair” sounds like a hit. The song is streaming 1.5 mil/week, and she’s on tour with Taylor Swift. Whatever your call-out is telling you is wrong. Ted brought up an interesting point today: Since new music only comprises 10% of your playlist, wouldn’t this be the part of your programming where you actually take risks? “The Perfect Pair” was added into iHeart “Custom” this week. If all goes well, beabadoobee will be the first female indie artist to have a Top 10 hit at Alternative since girl in red’s “Serotonin”.

I’m not going to Coachella this year because I’m trying to avoid getting COVID for the fourth time in a calendar year, but I would love to be there to see artists who embody Alternative music including blink-182, Gorillaz, Yves Tumor, Wet Leg, boygenius, Lava La Rue, Christine and the Queens, Bakar, Horsegirl, The Breeders, Blondie, Snail Mail, Bjork, Alex G, Sleaford Mods, Weyes Blood and, of course, Cannons.

Thank you, Amanda, for playing me the new Post Malone single, “Chemical.” If there was ever an in-the-pocket/out-of-the-box Alt hit, this is it. Did you catch the “Seven Nation Army” reference in the lyrics to the chorus? Also on deck for Amanda and Drew is a new AJR single. Love, love, love.

My kid and I are going “on tour” this summer to see their favorite bands. First on the list is Lovejoy, whose “Call Me What You Like” should be a priority for programmers everywhere. We also bought tickets to see Noahfinnce’s upcoming sold-out show, as well as tickets to see Cave Town in July. Weezer/Spoon is high on their list, as is Lollapalooza (Lovejoy for them and The 1975 and beabadoobee for me), Guster, Addison Grace, Tears for Fears and AJR. I can’t wait.

SONG TO HEAR: Wallice’s “Best Friend.”

Post Toasted Index
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