Seattle transplant, and former DJ at KEXP, Lisa Wood is the host of a new local music show, on hard rock mainstay KUFO. Viva La Luna, named after the legendary club formerly on SE Pine, will air every Sunday evening at 9 pm. Wood takes a minute to talk about the format, and what to do with metal bands from the suburbs.
Since KUFO is a rock station, are you limited to what local bands you can play? I assume you couldn't play something by Laura Gibson, Horse Feathers, or even the Decemberists, right?
I don't think that KUFO being a rock station limits the local show. I want to play bands that are really good, that are working hard, that are out there playing shows and touring. It's not going to be all hard rock, or all metal, or any one thing, really. I listen to every single CD that I'm sent and honestly, the guideline for me is if it's good or not. I am mindful of the audience, who are listening because they like the rock, but I give them credit that they can also appreciate an acoustic number or something that may lean a little more [toward] pop.
Given that the show's name is an ode to the well-regarded club, will the playlist feature older bands from that era?
I'll definitely be going back, playing the legendary bands from Portland. It adds relevance, helps people connect the dots from back then to now. Being a brand-new show, I'm building the library from the ground up. Bands like the Wipers, Dharma Bums, Team Dresch, Hazel, Thirty Ought Six, Crackerbash, and Dead Moon, to name a few.
Be honest, if you get a demo from a nü-metal band from the 'burbs, will you play it?
Absolutely, if it's good. One of the abilities I've gained being in music and radio is being able to recognize that something is really good, even if I don't like it personally. This show isn't about my personal taste, it's about playing great bands from the Northwest. If it's good, it's good. Sure "good" is subjective based on whom you ask, but I've been doing this for a long time. I have a good ear and a good grasp on what would sound good on a show and what wouldn't. I don't care if a band is considered "cool" or "popular"; that doesn't even cross my mind when it comes to doing these shows. I want bands to dig each other based on their music, support each other, and to get the listeners into them and keep a real sense of community around it all.
Viva La Luna airs every Sunday evening at 9 pm on 101 KUFO.