Hum – commercial or no

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They’re still a great band.  A goofy grin overtakes me when that Cadillac CTS commercial comes on.  I’ve had a great time this afternoon doing searches and reading several good forum and blog entries talking about Hum or the song “Stars.”  It brought back a lot of memories.

In case you never heard of them before, Hum was a 90s alternative band from Champaign, Ill.  They never made it huge, but I think it may have depended what area of the country you lived in.  I lived in Lawrence, KS, from the 1994 to 2000 and we had one of the best alternative radio stations in the country, KLZR (105.9 FM), who played them in solid rotation.  They also graced us with several concerts over that period of time.

They were just a bunch of guys that liked to play and in some ways their concerts almost felt as if you were sneeking into their band practice.  The first time I saw them my favorite local band at the time (Outhouse) was the opener.  One of my friends and I went to the show just to see Outhouse.  A co-worker was there to see Hum and had attempted to build them up, but I didn’t really ‘get’ them at all that time around.

I don’t remember how I got drug to that second show, but at that point the light bulb above my head came on and I slowly became a diehard Hum fan.  Maybe another track had surfaced on the radio between that first and second show.  Whatever the case I saw them at least a couple more times.  The Hurricane show was crazy and one of the most crowded I’ve ever attended. 

I think the last time I saw them was KU’s “Day on the Hill” in Lawrence.  It was one of my favorite shows I’ve seen as it was outside and a little more relaxed than a club gig.  They were amazing and it just felt like the notes were washing over you from the PAs.

Here is another track that always puts a smile on my face, “Green to Me”

Now that I’m totally distracted let me get back on track – Billboard contacted lead singer Matt Talbott to get his take on the surprising success the visibility of “Stars” has had to their digital downloads over the last couple of months.  Their situation with their label and deal with the advertiser was not what I expected.  They didn’t get a wad for use of the track.

He talks about how he first saw the commercial and what they are doing now – though he wasn’t specific.  When the Hum train pulled back into the Champaign station they told fans they were looking to stay closer to home, family and their life there and that’s exactly what it sounds like they’ve done.

I don’t look for a reunion, but I’m very happy they (or their tracks) turn up every so often to fill up my ears with goodness.

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