Clip: CMJ/Rock Hall of Fame festival in Cleveland
Ready to rock
100 cutting-edge acts to perform at 3-day, 4-night music festival
Friday, June 03, 2005
Plain Dealer Pop Music Critic
Get some rest this weekend, music lovers.
You're going to need it once the inaugural CMJ/Rock Hall Music Fest is
under way, with 100 acts - mostly of the cutting- edge variety - performing
over three days and four nights.
The event cranks up the volume Wednesday evening with two concerts by the
groundbreaking alt-rock band the Pixies and runs through Saturday, June 11.
If you want to make the most out of the festival, it's important to
formulate a plan of attack and to pace yourself, says Robert Haber.
He ought to know. Haber is the founder of CMJ (short for College Music
Journal), the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum's partner in the
festival. It's modeled after the CMJ Music Marathon, held annually in CMJ's
hometown of New York City since 1981.
"You can't see everything, so I always say: See a little of a lot," Haber
says. "Try to get a taste of as much as you can.
"Take a chance on something unknown, too, which is always a delight. If you
like a particular club, go there even if you've never heard of any of the
bands, because inevitably there are great surprises."
You might find yourself wanting to be three or more places at once,
especially at night, when you'll be able to choose from an array of shows
at the Beachland Ballroom, the Odeon Concert Club, Peabody's and other
Do you check out the recently reunited jazz-rap group Digable Planets at
the Agora Theatre? Or neo-new-wavers the Futureheads at the Grog Shop? Or
the cosmo- pop band Brazilian Girls at House of Blues?
With so many options, it's hard to go wrong, says Steve Dobo, the Rock
Hall's senior manager of promotions and one of the festival's chief
"We have something for just about everyone, a couple times over," Dobo
says. "It's wide- open, so you'll be able to experience all types of music."
The offerings range from alt- country to old-school hip-hop to alt-metal.
Regardless of genre, the emphasis is on new music, whether by up-and-coming
acts or established artists.
"We've touched on just about every musical base," Haber says. "It's all new
music in terms of a willingness to push the envelope."
By day, potential next big things are set to play on two stages at the
Festival Village on the grounds of the Nautica Entertainment Complex in the
Flats, amid tents with displays by festival sponsors.
More than 1,100 acts applied to perform in the Festival Village, Dobo says.
The 30 finalists (including such hometown faves as This Is Exploding,
Rosavelt and Amps II Eleven) were chosen by CMJ, with input from the Rock
The club shows were booked by the venues themselves.
Also on the agenda are various events at the Rock Hall, including
question-and-answer ses sions with hip-hop pioneer Grandmaster Flash, Sire
Records co-founder Seymour Stein (who launched the careers of Madonna and
Talking Heads, among others) and punk progenitor Richard Hell.
The museum will be host to a poster show, too, featuring works by artists
from the book "Art of Modern Rock."
Finalists in Guitar Player magazine's "Guitar Hero" competition also will
strut their stuff at the Rock Hall for a panel of judges, including Joe
Starting Thursday, the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Au thority is
providing shuttle service between the Rock Hall and the Festival Village,
as well as between venues and downtown hotels. You can ride free with a
festival pass or for $1 with an Ohio Lottery ticket.
Terry Stewart, president and CEO of the Rock Hall, hopes 20,000 to 30,000
people turn out for the music fest.
"Logistically, everything is coming together," Stewart says. "Now we just
have to see if the public digs it."
2005 CMJ Music Fest Schedule
Schedule subject to change
(Check with individual venues for time and ticketing information. Listed
prices are for single purchase-tickets for individual shows only.)
# Pixies (Rock Hall 7:30 PM, $35)
# Pixies with the Bell Rays (Scene Pavilion 9:30 PM, $35)
# Digable Planets Planet, Grandmaster Flash, The Procussions, Lab Rats,
Jugoe (Agora 7 PM, $22/$25)
# Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks (Beachland 9 PM, $14)
# Futureheads, High Speed Scene (Grog Shop 9 PM, $12)
# Misfits (Peabody's 7 PM, $18)
# Brazilian Girls (House of Blues 9:30 PM, $15-25)
# Lucero, Heartless Bastards, Honorary Title and Cory Branan (Odeon 7:30
PM, $10, $12 day of show)
# Powerman 5000 (Peabody's 7 PM, $15/$17)
# Keoki, Frankie Bones (Peabody's 11:30 PM, $15)
# Spoon, The Clientele (Beachland Ballroom 8 PM, $15)
# Red Wanting Blue (House of Blues 9 PM, $10/$11)
# Orgy, Project .44, Disown, R.U.O.K.? (Odeon 7:30PM, $15)
# Abe Duque (B-Side Liquor Lounge at the Grog Shop 10PM, $5)
# Mushroomhead, Mindless Self Indulgence (Scene Pavilion 7PM, $25)
# Chuck Prophet (Beachland Ballroom 9PM, $12)
# From First to Last, Emanuel, Halifax, H is Legend, A.P. showcase (Grog
Shop 6PM, $10)
# Nashville Pussy, Paybacks (Grog Shop 10PM, $12)
# Lucky Artist Booking Showcase featuring: El Pus, Whole Wheat Bread,
Streetlight Manifesto, June and special guests Gym Class Heroes (Agora,
June 11, $13/$15)
# Agent Orange (Pirate's Cove, $10)
# The Clarks and Kate Voegle (Odeon 8PM, $15, $16 day of show)
# Rogue Wave, Helio Sequence and the Six Parts Seven (Beachland Ballroom 9
# Kenny Wayne Shepherd (House of Blues)
# 30 Seconds to Mars (House of Blues Cambridge Room, 9:30PM, $9.23-$11)
# The Grog Shop will also present events at the B-Side Liquor Lounge.
# Festival Village Bands: A total of 30 bands, selected by CMJ and the Rock
and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum out of more than 1,100 bands that
submitted, will play on the MGD Stage and Gibson Stage at the Festival
# List of bands performing at the Festival Village: Lab Partners,
Alternative Champs, Elevator Action, Riddle of Steel, Cantinero, The
Avatars, Big Buildings, The Talk, Rosavelt, Roger Hoover and the
Whiskeyhounds, 60 Second Crush, Rambler 454, Cloud Cult, Modena Vox, The
Holy Fire, this is exploding, Giant Wow, The Dreadful Yawns, Plasma,
Planeside, The PB Army, Murder Your Darlings, Marat, Like Yesterday, Jimmy
Vigilante, Brian Fitzpatrick, Character, Olympic Hopefuls, Swim.