Jake Rudh’s Transmission club night, featuring the best of post-punk, synth-pop, New Wave, brit-pop and indie, has become a staple of Twin Cities nightlife since it began in 2001. Currently hosted at Club Jager in downtown Minneapolis on Wednesday nights, Transmission celebrated its tenth anniversary last March. A few months later Jake launched a Transmission radio show on Thursday nights at 10 p.m. on The Current. This Friday, Transmission will celebrate its 11th anniversary with a special night at First Ave, with Chan Poling of the Suburbs featured as a special guest DJ. We caught up with Jake a couple days before the big night to hear about his favorite things about Transmission, what to expect on Friday and his favorite videos of all time (or at least the ones by bands beginning with “D”).
So how has Transmission changed over the years — whether it’s the type of crowd, your DJing style, etc.?
The thing I enjoy most about Transmission is that it’s ever-changing. New music continually is coming out that compliments and is inspired by the Transmission staple artists. So classic artists like Bowie, Devo, Siouxsie, Iggy and The Clash sound great next to Cut Copy, Interpol, Goldfrapp, White Rabbits and the Gorillaz.
What are some of the most-requested songs at Transmission? Are there any of those songs whose popularity has surprised you?
I’d say the most continually requested songs throughout the years by both long-time regulars and younger attendees just getting into the band or hearing the songs for the first time fall in what I like to consider the “classics category.” Depeche Mode’s “Enjoy the Silence,” The Cure’s “Just Like Heaven” and New Order’s “Blue Monday” just to name a few fall into that category.
What I’m pleasantly surprised about are the songs that barely hit the radar back in the day or if they did, didn’t stay in the mainstream too long. Songs like Material Issue’s “Valerie Loves Me,” Dramarama’s “Anything, Anything” and the Monroes’ “What Do All the People Know” not only pack a floor still but drum up a handful of cheers from the crowd each time they come on.
Do you have a favorite memory, or one particular favorite night, from the eleven years you’ve been doing Transmission?
This is an easy answer. The 10-year anniversary last March at First Avenue where we had close to 1,400 people (during SXSW) come down to celebrate and dance was easily the most magical gig I’ve ever hosted. Having my drumming hero Clem Burke from Blondie as my guest DJ just sweetened the deal. My gut feeling is that same vibe will be recreated at this Friday’s event and then some. I’ve seen the list of songs this year’s guest DJ Chan Poling (The Suburbs) will be playing during his set. That man has the ultimate taste in tunes.
How will this Friday’s event differ from last year’s 10th Anniversary party?
The first thing is that the entire night will be mixed using music videos. Chan Poling will be the guest DJ. I’ll also be hosting a proper Transmission salute to the best new wave band to come out of the Twin Cities…The Suburbs. I plan to play handful of Suburbs videos right before Chan’s set takes place. We’ll also be debuting Transmission’s first t-shirt. It’s something that folks have been asking me for ten years to do and finally it’s happened.
What are your picks for the top 5 videos of all time?
David Bowie — “Heroes”
Duran Duran — “Planet Earth”
Daft Punk — “Around the World”
P.S. Those are just the D’s…
P.P.S. It changes daily.
Don’t forget to head down to First Ave on Friday night for Transmission’s 11th Anniversary party. Get tickets and more info here.