It started with a noon news show in 2001-Fox let me come on and talk about Fugazi and Rocket From the Crypt and some shoddy little band from Cowpoke, Nowhere, that had a great demo. For six years, we put underground music on mainstream TV. When we started, there was no MySpace. Satellite radio was still just a promising fetus. FM radio sucked ass. Modest Mouse was playing sold-out shows at 1,000-seat venues and no one was playing their music.
All told, 61 San Diego bands performed on Fox Rox-their performances broadcast in every corner of San Diego and Tijuana. There were national bands, too-TV on the Radio, Peaches, Badly Drawn Boy, The Buzzcocks, M. Ward, The Hold Steady, Deerhoof, Gomez, Calexico and more-that rarely, if ever, get radio or TV exposure.
With essentially three people, we did what we could to expose music deemed too weird, too "underground" or too unmarketable. Some people hated it-I've been told someone should rape me in a Disneyland bathroom and then write a song about it. Other people loved it and would stop us on the street to say thanks for introducing them to The Black Keys or Grand Ole Party or whomever.
But it isn't about us. Never was. Underground music is more alive now than when we started. And now, thanks largely to the Internet and publications like CityBeat, you can readily discover it.
I hope we turned you on to something. I hope you have at least one gem in your record collection because of Fox Rox.
Thanks to the bands, to producer Scott Richison, editor Jacquie Bazinet-Tolsen, music encyclopedia Patrick C. Sheehy, Mark Jacobs, Miranda Brown, Fox general manager Richard Doutre-Jones, M-Theory Records, CityBeat and everyone else who helped us do it this long.