Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Arden Admits to 'Low Shots' in Fight over Calgary Station Shortening Pop Songs

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Arden Admits to 'Low Shots' in Fight over Calgary Station Shortening Pop Songs

Article excerpt

Arden admits to 'low shots' in radio rivalry


TORONTO - Jann Arden concedes that, in anger, she "threw some low shots" at the masterminds of a Calgary radio station that was dramatically shortening pop songs, but she argues that she needed to take a strong stand for young artists.

The station, 90.3 AMP (CKMP) announced Tuesday that it was abandoning its "QuickHitz" format switch, which involved truncating tunes in order to give listeners "twice the music."

Newcap Radio vice-president of programming Steve Jones said the strategy met with much "curiosity" as well as "numerous legal threats from a variety of different directions."

The scheme was also greeted by overwhelming online blowback, including from Calgary chanteuse Jann Arden, who launched a profane and days-long Twitter campaign against the idea.

After news that the station had abandoned its plan, however, Arden said she has "respect" for "all those guys" managing the station.

"I can't fault them for trying to make money, for trying to keep people employed, for trying to keep their building paid for," the friendly songstress said Thursday in a telephone interview. "I was mad. I was on Twitter hurling insults, but one of my (tweets) was: 'I will bully, I will intimidate, I will insult, I will do whatever I can to draw attention to what this is, and it's absolutely nothing personal to any of the people who work at the station.

"(They're) putting food on the table for kids, and are good people."

Still, the "Insensitive" singer's empathy hasn't lessened her disdain for the concept itself, which she calls "a disaster."

Though the 52-year-old stresses that she wasn't the one to shift her displeasure to the legal realm, she's also not surprised that artists would react unfavourably to having their work indiscriminately chopped up without their involvement.

(Jones told The Canadian Press on Tuesday that while no lawsuits were ever launched, there was much "swashbuckling" to that effect. He didn't immediately respond to an interview request Thursday.)

"I think before it got out of hand, everyone just kind of needed to take a step back and say, 'Hey, if you want to edit songs, I'm absolutely fine with it -- if the artists that you're playing have given you their permission. …

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