Nice job: Far be it from us to take credit for something good, but man, K104 Uncut has to be our fault to some degree, right? At the end of 2005, we laid down a challenge to local hip-hop radio leaders 97.9 The Beat and K104: Put more local rappers on the air, pronto (Is This On?, December 15). We even suggested an Adventure Club-style show with a mix of local and worldwide indie rappers.
We thought 97.9 would be more receptive to such an idea, seeing as they're the perennial underdogs in local hip-hop ratings, but DJ Big Bink shot it down, claiming that his last attempt at such a radio show, Street Heat, was a failure. Well, of course it was, Bink--you admitted that you only played three local songs per hour on that show!
So it was a pleasant surprise to see K104--the ratings leader that, arguably, didn't have to do anything--up the ante and (we assume) take our advice. Every Sunday night at 11 p.m., DJ Steve Nice hosts K104 Uncut, an hour-long program dedicated entirely to local hip-hop. We'll admit it's not perfect--the show could last longer, and we wish it wasn't on the already-crowded Sunday night radio schedule. Right now, the song selection is rough, full of low-tech beats and lame "check out my new rims!" rhymes, but at least the talented Steve Austin repped on this week's episode.
The song selection isn't entirely Nice's fault, though--now that a real outlet for local hip-hop exists at K104, it's time for the local scene to reach out and hand him more hot tracks for the show. Media day at K104's studios is on Mondays from 10 a.m. to noon, and Nice is there to accept submissions and meet MCs.
"The big misconception from local artists is that we don't play their stuff," Nice says. "But we don't have it! They don't come up on Mondays."
Dallas Observer favorite Tahiti dropped his disc off this week, and he passed this advice along: "Bring an instrumental of the song you want him to play, because they like to play about 15 seconds of that so the DJ can talk over it and introduce you." We look forward to the next few weeks of K104 Uncut--hopefully, they'll take chances and play more out-there local material.
But if the show slacks off, we won't be nice about it.
Rock to health: Dallas musicians are some charitable folks. Benefit concerts aren't hard to come by, and disasters in 2005 brought out the best in local rock groups and hip-hop outfits. It's time for music fans to return the favor, and I'm not talking about buying CDs. Dallas country musician Jayson Bales has begun a grassroots effort to make free health care and legal counsel accessible to the local--and often uninsured--music community, inspired by a bad situation involving a good friend.
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"Salim Nourallah, his wife was in a very bad car accident, and they couldn't get to Parkland for a week," Bales says. "I made some calls and got her into a clinic--it was virtually nothing. Those resources exist, but your average musician doesn't know how to access them."
Bales has only begun planning an organization to make this happen, and he needs help. He's looking for physicians and CPAs who can volunteer their time to assist musicians and music industry people (managers, booking agents, club employees, etc.), and he's also looking for musicians and volunteers to help organize and get his idea off the ground. Contact him if you're interested at email@example.com, or see him in concert for free on Thursday at the Barley House.
Handstamps: On Saturday, the third incarnation of Spune Productions' all-girl showcase La Femme Qui Rock at Hailey's is spearheaded by the return of Regina Chellew's super-awesome Chao...Saturday also sees the Hourly Radio headline an Adventure Club showcase at the Cavern... The Undoing of David Wright reigns supreme at Rubber Gloves on Friday... Bosque Brown headlines a just-announced show at a venue in Fort Worth that we've never heard of, Untitled 1518, on Friday...Austin's incredible Weary Boys root 'n' toot through Adair's on Saturday.