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With all due respect, I have to wonder how you get an article so awful published on any website. Granted, it's only hitsdaily-double, but really.

THE MAD & THE GLAD

Believe It or Not, People Read This Crap.
More Often Than Not, It Pisses Them Off.
Below is some of our recent fan mail, most of it in response to Roy Trakin’s take on Madonna’s latest album, American Life, which appeared in the May 2 edition of Weakend Planner, and a Bud Scoppa-written Rumor Mill item, also posted on May 2, about the opening of the Dixie Chicks tour in Greenville, NC, along with what was described as an “anti-Chicks show” in nearby Spartanburg.

To Roy Trakin:
It takes much more than just the unconditional love of gay men to keep a career like Madonna's—or Cher's, for that matter—afloat. In fact, most of the people I've spoken to who are "annoyed" or, at best, ambivalent, to Madonna's latest record are gay men. The reason Madonna continues to be successful is because her appeal transcends demographics. Your generalizations border on offensive. I happen to agree with many of your points, but I suppose I'm tired of reading about how gays are single-handedly keeping Madonna's career alive. Lord knows it was tough being a fan during the Erotica period—and yes, if you haven't figured it out by now, I am gay. It's not because gay men support any ol' icon blindly, but because she continues to say and do things no one else will. Not to mention, the music is still a hell of a lot better than most other "pop."

An avid HITS reader
Sal Cinquemani
Slant magazine
NYC

With all due respect, I have to wonder how you get an article so awful published on any website. Granted, it's only hitsdailydouble, but really. Who are you that you think you can make blanket (and really inaccurate) comments like Madonna has been "abandoned by both hipsters and wannabes"? Since when do you have the demographic info for all of her albums sold or think you can even begin to guess that these nebulous "hipsters" and "wannabes" have "abandoned" Madonna? Then to go as far as to say, "leaving her first and natural constituency—the gay audience that continues to support the careers of pop divas like Cher"?! Madonna does have a huge gay following, yet they are not at all the only people buying a woman's music that has sold over 150 million albums and the last three albums being some of her biggest selling, even after 20 years of being in the business? I don't write for a magazine, I work in the music business at a label but if I did, I wouldn't make idiotic inaccurate statements in an article that people will read. Stating your opinions about Madonna having an "identity crisis" is one thing, but state it as such, your opinion, don't act as if you know what you are talking about or are in the psyche of her or the sector of the record-buying public that buys her albums. I'm not a militant Madonna fan mad that you criticized her, it just annoys me when people word things in such a way that skews the story in an inaccurate direction as if to back up your opinion or as if to prove a point. It's bad taste, and it comes off as very obvious. Good luck with your writing career.

D

The “local DJ” you referred to in your article has a name—Mike Gallagher. He isn't local, and he isn't a DJ. He used the opportunity of the Dixie Chicks kickoff concert to create a very positive event, from which both American military and the Dixie Chicks gained benefit. He raised over $102,000 for American military families, and gave over 3,200 people, who could have potentially been protestors at the Chicks concert, a positive place to be. The 100 Dixie Chicks tickets that were traded for this event [comprised] a “trade-out.” There were only 100 tickets marked for trade, and they were snapped up. The “Anti-Chicks” concert, as you like to call it (we prefer “pro-military”), was as sold out as the Chicks concert. It was held at Spartanburg Memorial, which has a significance—Spartanburg Memorial is named for fallen troops. It was a win/win for both events, and the biggest winners were families of American military. If it weren't for Mike Gallagher, you [might] have had to write an entirely different story. If you're going to bother to do a story, you should take the time to write a fact or two in it.

Regards,
Pam in SC

Hi Bud,
Thanks for responding to one of my listeners who was upset by your article about our "anti-Chicks" concert. For the record, she is right—from day one, we only blocked 100 "VIP" tickets for those Dixie Chicks ticket holders to trade their tickets for our show starring the Marshall Tucker Band, Shiloh and Ty Nelson. Those were snatched up quickly, with many, many more Dixie Chicks ticket holders wanting to get into our event. We sold out the Spartanburg Memorial Auditorium with $35 and $40 tickets and raised $105,000 for military families thru the partnership with Feed the Children and our show. So it's safe to say that we had over 3,000 protesters in a positive reaction to Natalie Maine's negative comments about our president. By the way, contrary to your article's headline, there were LOTS of boos heard in Greenville/Spartanburg, SC, over the Chicks—you should heard the crowd at our place! She's also right that I'm not local to Greenville—I’'m a nationally syndicated talk host based in New York City and Dallas. Info about our show (and the concert) is available at our website, www.mikeonline.com. Click “Gallagher's Army.” Thanks for being fair in your coverage about our event. We're awfully proud of the way it turned out.

Mike Gallagher

Dear Bud,
You have been so attentive, and so efficient, and so kind in this matter. I want to thank you for your prompt posting, retrospective feedback, and for your generosity in editing my e-mail. :) I also want to take back the last sentence of that e-mail. Had I any idea that message would have been so well-met, it would never have contained that passage. I assumed you'd ignore it. My fault for making assumptions, even when based on experience. I often love to be proven wrong. It's always wonderful when everyone can win. You are a winner now, too. Thanks again.

Best regards,
Pam

Bud,
I just read your nice words about our Caesars record [Astralwerks] on hitsdailydouble [Weakend Planner, May 9]. Thanks! It's nice to see that the record is making sense to people (i.e., not being regarded as simply another garage band). They'll be in L.A. in June.

Best regards,
Thaddeus Rudd, Feisty Management

Hi Bud!
I'm not sure if you remember me. In case you don't, I'm a music lawyer at Warner Bros. who used to be a photographer. You might remember my Big Star photos. Anyway, I wanted to let you know how much I enjoy the Weekend Planner column in Hits Daily Double. I especially enjoyed your blurb about KSUR. I'd been listening to it before seeing your item on it but was embarrassed to admit to my friends that I was. It's good to know I'm not alone.

Kind regards,
Lisa Margolis
Burbank

Mr. Trakin,
What an amazing interview with Holland-Dozier-Holland. I just finished reading and wanted to drop you a note to let you know how much I enjoyed it. I spent a lot of time with them during their/our press days, and had the opportunity to hear snippets of their conversations that gave me goose bumps. After reading your article, I noticed you got some things out of them that some of the others hadn't. It has been a joy working with people who are such a tremendous part of my history... Hats off to you on a fabulous read. Thanks, Roy.

Ellen S. Ratner
BMI
L.A.

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ADELE ADELE ADELE ADELE
(Adele.)
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