ETown hosts show on campus

Nov 102010
Authors: Michael Elizabeth Sakas

Variety radio show eTown visited the Griffith Concert Hall at the UCA on Wednesday night, hosting artists Josh Ritter and The Hold Steady. The show was taped live in front of a sold out crowd.

“eTown draws a great crowd in Fort Collins, and we’re always looking for opportunities to bring the show to this community,” Nick Forster, host and founder of eTown said in an e-mail to the Collegian. “We have a great radio affiliate, KUNC, and loyal listeners who really seem to appreciate the live eTown experience.”

As the show started, the audience was prepped for the live recording. The importance of cooperation, participation and silenced cell phones was highly stressed as hosts Nick and Helen Forster took the stage.

Audience member and frequenter of eTown, Don Douglas, was there to celebrate his 50th birthday.

“It’s different, it’s fun. They involve you as an audience as a part of the show, and it’s a lot more music than what you’d think,” Douglas said. “The interviews are fairly short and you really get a lot of entertainment value.”

Usually attending the tapings in Boulder, his two CSU-attending children are what brought him to this Fort Collins show.

“It’s personal, which is kind of cool,” said Blake Douglas, a junior mechanical engineering major. “They talk to the audience which is neat.”

“I like that it’s recorded live, and that you are there to witness it,” said Morgan Douglas, a undeclared freshmen.

“I’ve never heard of these guys, so it would be cool to hear a new band and get interested in them,” Blake said.

One audience member was familiar with the artists and was excited to get the show started.

“I’m mostly excited because I really like Josh Ritter, and so I’m excited to see him because nobody cool like him ever comes to a place like Fort Collins,” said Jay J Matott, a senior liberal arts major.

After playing a few of his folksy tunes, Josh Ritter was interviewed by host Forster about his new album, his band and his novel set to be released in 2011.

“When I finished [my book] I thought, ‘this is the great American novel’ and then I read it, and I realized that it was not, and that I needed to do another draft,” Ritter said. “And then I realized that really, it’s exactly the same as song writing, which is that every single word matters.”

The Hold Steady performed next and played a special acoustic set to fit the Griffith Concert Hall.

“Sometimes when you set up live with a big huge band, it’s so loud it’s not appropriate,” said Craig Finn, lead singer of The Hold Steady, in an interview with 90.5 KCSU.

This Fort Collins eTown show was special, but will not be the last one.

“We are committed to visiting Fort Collins regularly. We don’t have another show on the books presently for Fort Collins, but it won’t be long before we return,” said Forster in an e-mail to the Collegian.

Staff writer Michael Elizabeth Sakas can be reached at

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