Radio, Radio

Wanna relive the glory days of the early aughts when musicians still played guitars? Listen to Ali’s radio demo from her time on the air during the early aughts for a flashback.

Ali was plucked from the halls of MTV to be an on-air personality on the new radio station Indie 103.1 FM. She was the voice and writer of The Gig Guide with Ali MacLean. A competitor to the alternative rock station, KROQ, Indie promised to play less corporate music and more obscure, less playing acts, kicking off with musicians like Elvis Costello, The Pixies, The Ramones, My Bloody Valentine, The Replacements, The Stooges, The Buzzcocks, Morphine, Matthew Sweet, The Cult, and more. The station boasted shows hosted by musicians such as Steve Jones of The Sex Pistols, Dicky Barrett of The Bosstones, Henry Rollings, and Camp Freddy (Billy Morrison and Dave Navarro).

Ali became an unofficial A&R scout, and was out every night at shows, scouring for new acts for a local music show she proposed to the station manager. She pitched SoCal bands such bands as Rolling Blackouts, Giant Drag, Vagenius, Airborne Toxic Event, Tsar, Shiny Toy Guns, Louis XIV, The Strays, Etc. and brought to the attention of the program director her favorite NY and London (+ other cities) acts such as The Mooney Suzuki, The Fever, Spoon, The Von Bondies, Band of Skulls, The Natural History, Hot Hot Heat, The Walkmen, The Donnas, The Libertines, Wolfmother, The Raveonettes, The Secret Machines, The Darkness, Art Brut, Ted Leo, British Sea Power, The Black Keys, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, The DirtBombs, OK Go, and more. Many of these bands did, in fact, make it on air, however the show she proposed to host was appropriated by music director Mark Sovel.

Although Ali traveled across the nation, and the pond, to watch and interview hundreds of bands during her time at Indie 103.1 FM, Sirius, Little Radio, Vlaze TV, Music + TV, Urb TV, AntiQuiet, Camp Coachella Magazine, Buzzbands, and all the other music outlets she wrote and hosted for, she eventually returned to her roots, performing and writing for TV and for the theater. Although her radio days are currently behind her, music remains a strong theme throughout her work. Ali recently completed her Zombies Plays Trilogy, plays prompted by songs by the 60s rock group The Zombies. They have already garnered many awards and she recently began collaborating with Hold Steady front man Craig Finn on a musical.


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