Wednesday, April 03, 2013


We have a lot to look at this week so lets just jump right too it. Youth Lagoon holds down the #1 spot for the second week in a row with an even STRONGER showing than last week holding down 53% of the stations.   The Men and Devendra Banhart are neck and neck for 2 and 3 with 42% for The Men and 40% for Devendra Banhart.  I mentioned last week I thought we would see lots of change in the top 10 and we sure did.  Devendra, David Bowie, The strokes, Charles Bradley and Wavves all jump up into the top 10 this week.  We also see Low finally making a move I thought it would of made last week getting up to #11, Telekinesis with a nice first week to #21, and Born Ruffians coming in at #30.

But lets stay with the top 10. Here is a look for those of you scoring at home. 

11515YOUTH LAGOONWondrous BughouseFat Possum
24824THE MENNew MoonSacred Bones
3116133DEVENDRA BANHARTMalaNonesuch
45647FOALSHoly FireWarner Brothers
52117NICK CAVE AND THE BAD SEEDSPush The Sky AwayBad Seed
6156063DAVID BOWIEThe Next DayColumbia
711018573STROKESComedown MachineRCA
8132184CHARLES BRADLEYVictim Of LoveDunham
989211FOXYGENWe Are The 21st Century Ambassadors Of Peace And MagicJagjaguwar
1086-102WAVVESAfraid Of HeightsWarner Brothers
In just looking at the chart my first thought is Strokes is pretty impressive. Wavves a tad of a letdown.  Devendra very impressive as well.  I am starting to think that the window for The Men is closing fast. Not only are there newer records joining the competition for #1 next week but Youth Lagoon, as I mentioned before is even stronger than it was last week. The question is then is this the peak or will Youth Lagoon gain even more stations? In previous years with all the spring breaks and SXSW you would see a drop off of 30-40 stations for the month of March. This year March only lost 15 at the biggest drop so it was a lot steadier. I bring this up because in previous years those returning stations would of been late to the party on whatever big records there were and helped power them forward or keep them high on the charts.  So had this been last year I would say without a doubt that Youth Lagoon would gain more stations again next week and be pretty strong for a least another week.  
Right now though I am really torn as to what could happen. I mentioned that I think the window for THE Men is closing only because of how close Devendra is to them. I bet if 5 more  stations charted him that would be enough to get past The Men.   Foals getting to #4 I think should be it's peak and thats better than peaking at #6  but I doubt it goes up anymore. Bowie would most likely get top five if not for the Strokes and Wavves, as i think both of those jump up there next week.   Ok back to my first thought, The strokes. When I took a closer look at the numbers the difference between #7 and #10 is about as small as the difference between #2 and #3.  

When we get to things being this tight on the charts you have to start looking at who is working what. 
So in the top 10 AAM has 3 records they are working by themselves and one they are working with The SYN. The Syn also has 3 they are working by themselves and one they are working with AAM. A Man, A plan, A canal has one. Terrorbird has one. Distiller has one and one is being worked by just the Label.  I think the easiest path belongs to Terrorbird or A Man A Plan A Canal as with one priority to worry about in the top 10 you don't risk harming yourself. However having 2 indies on The Strokes makes them very interesting to me. While overall I feel having 2 companies on the same record does help, It's also hard to predict if both companies are going to say "this is IT" on the same week.  Also when you have #1 part of you wants to keep that spot even if it means not getting another record #1 if you are not sure you can do the switch. So that clouds things a bit as well. That is why you often see the top 5, when it gets really tight like this, stay unchanged.   Something that could also impact next weeks chart is the fact that WAVVES, while they missed out on #1 most added by 1 last week also made the most added list for the 2nd week in a row. A sign that perhaps the record did not mail in time and stations were still catching up on the record.  

Speaking of the ADDS list this week was a pretty even week where we saw 7 records get 60+ adds. That usually happens when there is no true runaway #1. This week the #1 spot went to the Reissue of the Postal Service record. The first Postal Service record went #1 easily back in the day but I would be shocked to see the reissue get it. I expect nostalgia will fuel this record pretty strongly but not enough with the amount of big records still on the way from Flaming Lips, The Knife and Yeah Yeah Yeah's to name a few.  There was really no other record on the Adds list I  see as being a contender in weeks to come though.   

The number one debut of the week comes from Mudhoney at #31 and the biggest move is Born Ruffians with a 170 point jump! There were 23 debuts this week around our weekly average for the year and our biggest drop comes from Sally Shapiro with a 70 point drop. 

This there were a few college radio things that I read that I found really interesting and I wanted to bring them up for discussion.   The first being an email I was forwarded by a station regarding .  There have been plenty of options to come and go as an alternative to CMJ charting. is another.  Both of them I think are welcome in our industry but neither of them is going to take the place of CMJ.  CMJ does have it's flaws for sure but the one thing it is not lacking in is the actual pulse of college radio.  You cannot accurately surmise what is happening in college radio by looking at 23 stations ( Dusted magazines sample size last week ).  I could take 23 stations and make my own chart as well and we could end up with Tegan and Sara being #1 forever, but how credible would that be?   Dusted though does provide a great forum for records that might be overlooked on CMJ and for that I say they are a good thing.  With CRC you are getting a slightly larger cross section of reporters but it still topped out at 71 3 weeks ago and averages just around 60 a week.  As a promoter the CMJ chart is the one my Labels want to know about. For some time we did put Dusted chart numbers in our report and in the past have included a few of the others that have come and gone and each time our clients would only be curious about the CMJ numbers.  I do think there is value in these other charts but not as a replacement to CMJ perhaps as a complement.  

And lastly I wanted to share a nice article written by one of the many reporters to CMJ  


Pretty provocative on face value and for sure a very worthy conversation to have. I had conversations with other EX md's and promoters about this for the last few days and wanted to bring that conversation to you.  You can also see my response to her article on her page. I think her argument is flawed but a very good conversation to have.  I also find it curious that the lack of female inclusive bands spreads to her own chart. Is this because there are a lack of female artists making music? I am not sure. 
One thing this article made me think about is if the gender gap on the charts is caused by the promoters and or the stations. So I took a closer look at the college radio panel and looked at every reporting station so far in 2013. Over these short 3 months there have been 414 reporters.  Of those stations the Music Director is Female at 41% of them. While it is not half it is enough that if they wanted to impact the chart in a meaningful way with Female artists they could.  That takes care of the stations. What about the promoters.  I mentioned briefly in my reply that of Pirates! first 4 employees 3 of them were female. I feel there is and has been a strong female presence at college radio. Terrobird, Distiller, Co-sign, AAM, The Syn, Planetary all fit this description. On top of that Jagjaguwar,  and  Merge the two labels that promote mostly in house are both fronted by Female promoters.   ( a late addition but it should be mentioned that Sub Pop and CMJ have a strong Female presence as well ) So really I do not see the problem being at a College radio level. If anything our small subsection of the industry is best suited to take on that kind of sexism that does exist in the world.  

I will say the point that really made the most sense was in the last paragraph:  

"The best thing that can be done about the lack of women on the college radio charts is to give female musicians a little boost (from both college radio music directors and just general band supporters), and if you’re starting a band, consider adding more ladies to the mix" 

I  look forward to sharing more articles like this in the future if you have anything to share please send it my way on twitter @theanimalarrg or start a conversation with the #cmjrecap  Until next time. 

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