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Hello, My Name Is Richard

| November 30, 2007 | 0 Comments

Hello, My Name Is Richard
Q&A With WXRT’s Richard Milne

IE: Have holiday submissions to “Local Anesthetic” started coming in yet?
Richard Milne:
I’ve gotten e-mails from people asking clarification on what I’m expecting or telling me that it’s done or close. They just need to remix a vocal. I know people who’ve encouragingly started early on this — if they’re talking about they have to remix a vocal they’re putting some effort into it.

IE: It’s probably better now with home recording, but how was quality in the past? A lot of hissy tapes?
Yes, I would say in the early years fidelity wasn’t — in my mind — as critical. I have things that were recorded on single-track, hand-held cassette decks. But it was the performance and you could tell. I’m thinking of things from The Handsome Family and The New Duncan Imperials, and I went to the Urge Overkill apartment when Blackie [Onassis] and Nate [Kato] were still living over on Damen, I went over and recorded it myself.

IE: How rigid are you when it comes to the rules?
Should I tell you? [Laughs.] I request that they go 30 to 45 seconds and if someone’s going a minute, a minute-and-10, it’s fine. If they go two minutes — once again, if the quality of the performance is of such a high level, I will overlook other aspects. The key ones that I ask are for you to identify yourself, mention the radio station, some sort of holiday greeting. Even if it’s obvious you don’t care one iota about the season, that’s fine, as long as you express something.

IE: Has anyone committed several infractions but you let them on anyway?
I would say no. No. And some names come to mind, but I won’t mention them. Significant figures, [too].

IE: What are some of your favorites from years gone by?
My favorites are all obscure. I get the best performances and most memorable greetings from bands nobody’s ever heard of. Bands that perhaps people have heard of — there is a group called The Chuckleheads who come up with I’d say borderline-brilliant greetings every year. Usually it’s based on a classic rock song. The Wombats always came up with extraordinary, quality efforts.

— Steve Forstneger

Richard Milne hosts “Local Anesthetic” on WXRT-FM (93.1). You have until December 12th to submit to his annual holiday program, rules for which can be found at www.wxrt.com and www.illinoisentertainer.com.

Category: Columns, Monthly

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