Welcome to Local Music 'Mericans, where we'll be meeting some people behind the local music scene who aren't necessarily members of a local band, but are more behind-the-scenes folk.
Most rock-jocks' physical appearances tend to be a jarring opposite of how we picture them in our heads. And then there's KEGL-97.1 FM The Eagle's Angela Chase.
Chase isn't only easy on the eyes, but she has the know-how to deliver many a concise, fluff-free break on the radio, whether it be in reporting a wreck on Stemmons or debuting a new cut from The House Harkonnen.
In other words, she's not just a hottie given a break for her potential in ogling-websurfer clicks.
Chase, actually, carries herself rather professionally. And, in working as a Clear Channel traffic reporter and as the host of the Eagle's Monday night local music show, "Loud and Local," she readily showcases her skills, talents and ears for some of the area's best new hard-rocking sounds.
But "Loud and Local," which airs at 11 p.m., isn't Chase's first experience with local music. After the jump, Chase shares with us her earliest and favorite local music experiences.
What was your first real endeavour into the local music scene?
My brother, Eldin, is a drummer and 14 years older than me. Some of my earliest memories are of his band rehearsals on visits in Dallas on the late '80s and early '90s. They all had long hair and tattoos, and listened to Guns N' Roses. There would be two or three guys sharing an efficiency, or they would rent out a room from this chick who had a house named Sherry. My brother and his bandmates were always really nice to me and they would put up with me wanting to tear out pictures of Sebastian Bach from their issues of Rolling Stone. Last year, I brought Eldin with me to The Basement Reunion. At one point, he walked up with a flier and said it was for his friend's band. The friend was Dereak Messer. I'd been playing MESSER [on the radio], but had no idea Dereak knew my brother.
Were you overwhelmed with band submissions when it was first announced that KEGL would, again, block out an hour of programming time for local rock?
I wouldn't say I was "overwhelmed." I got a lot of help from [KEGL program director] Chris Ryan. He had the local show before me and suggested a few bands that were still active. KEGL.com has a place where artists can upload their music, so I went there and started listening. Once the show kicked off, I got a lot of mp3s and CDs. I had to create a separate email address for "Loud and Local" because the files were so big they would lock up my KEGL account.
Do you continue to be overwhelmed with submissions? What's your method for processing all the material you get?
The show has been on the air for about a year and half now, so I probably have at least 60 -- maybe many more -- bands in the rotation. Just when I think I've found every rock band of this type, something new will come along. It takes time, and a fair amount of money, for these bands to produce the music into a great recording, so I don't expect to have 1,000 new submissions every week. Even DFW is only so big. I get new music from a lot of different sources. I check venue websites for new bands, or I look in The Observer. People send emails, CDs, and I'll get tips on Facebook. Sometimes bands will make a recommendation, which is really cool -- it says a lot about the supportive spirit of the local music community. Last but not least, there's the old-fashioned (and most fun) method, which is to check them out for myself. Once I get the music, I listen for the quality of the recording. If the quality doesn't do the band justice, it's not fair to them to play it on the air. The music also needs to at least loosely sound like the type of rock that is heard on KEGL. Not that we have to keep the association close, but, honestly, it's my hope that someone will be in their car listening to a song on my show, love it, and then realize the band is local. Then they can check out a show for a cost much less than a touring concert ticket, and they can more than likely meet the band.
I'm sure you've been invited to a lot of great local music shows since you started doing the show. Are there a couple that really stand out in your mind?
That's an unfair question because I'm live on the air until midnight on Saturday nights, so that eliminates a lot of shows. There are some bands that get a lot of airplay, are well-known as being amazing live, and I love their songs, but I've never seen them because it seems like their area shows keep cropping up on Saturday nights. That being said, I saw Meridian and Reckless Intent play at Trees on Friday, and thought they were both excellent.
Are there some local submissions you've recently gotten that you're especially excited about?
Of course, but that's my secret! If the music is on the show, then I stand behind it. I post a calendar of upcoming shows with "Loud and Local" bands at KEGL.com. If they're on the page, that means I feel that Eagle listeners will enjoy their music.
It looks like "Loud and Local" is starting up its own showcase with a recurring live show. What's the deal?
It's going to be at The Horseman Club in Fort Worth. The Horseman is mostly a country music venue under new ownership. The new owner loves rock and wanted to work with "Loud and Local" to get some bands there on Wednesday nights. I'll be at the Showcase once a month to announce the bands and KEGL will be there with lots of giveaways. That area of Fort Worth doesn't have a lot of rock clubs, so it's exciting to see this kind of growth for local rock.