It was tough being a Twins fan last season. Not only did the team have a difficult time on the field, but those attending games at Target Field were greeted by an unpleasant change in ambiance: Rather than a Minnesota-heavy mix of eclectic tunes played over the PA, a new music director was brought in from what was then known as 96.3 NOW (now K-TWIN) to serenade fans by blaring Top 40 hits by LMFAO and Ke$ha.
The change in soundtrack for the stadium went unnoticed by some but led to a big outcry from others, who longed for the days when far savvier music director Kevin Dutcher was at the helm. With the home opener coming up this Monday, it seems that local music fans aren’t the only ones disappointed by the switch — today, in an interview with CBS Sports’ Eye on Baseball blog, Hold Steady frontman (and avid baseball fan) Craig Finn says the Target Field experience hasn’t been the same since K-TWIN producer Dan Edwards was put in charge of selecting the tunes.
EOB: I’m assuming you’ve been at a Twins game at least, where they’ve played one of your songs, but what was it like the first time you heard your own song at a baseball game?
Craig Finn: It was at the Metrodome. The music guy there got in touch with me and knew I was going to be at the game and he played eight Hold Steady songs during the Twins game. And the other music he played was Bruce Springsteen and the Replacements. So I felt like I was being serenaded by my own mix, so it was pretty amazing. I feel like my relationship with Minneapolis is strong. I sing about it a lot and we get good crowds there. There are times where I always feel like I’m really accepted by the city and that was one of them. I’ve heard (the Hold Steady) once in Target Field. Unfortunately they let that guy go and they used to have amazing music at the dome, they’d play smart music, stuff you don’t always hear at the ballpark. I was disappointed they let him go and they got some sort of Top 40 DJ, playing Lady Gaga.
EOB: That’s terrible when you have a place like Minneapolis that’s so rich in music history.
Craig Finn: You want the park to be connected to the city both architecturally and vibe-wise. I thought when I’d go to a game and hear the Replacements, this is what makes our city different. That we really understand what we have musically and honor that. I thought that was unfortunate that it’s gone away. But whatever.
What do you think? Has the shift in music programming at Target Field affected your experience at Twins games?