Minnesota Twins music director Dan Edwards is out
The Minnesota Twins have decided to take their in-game music in a new direction by letting go of music director Dan Edwards. So when the season begins on April 1, a new man with ties to another local sports team has been hired to fill the role.
The move was confirmed to Gimme Noise by Joe Pohlad, Director of Twins Productions & Creative Services. "Dan was a great music director for us, but his strength was in Top 40," he says. "We decided not to rely as heavily on that genre as in past, so we made a change. In regards to our plans for the future, our plan is to be flexible. Play music that fits that days game."
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Edwards, who at the time was programming assistant at 96.3 NOW (now K-TWIN), was hired a couple seasons ago, and immediately instituted a more pop-oriented format to the music accompanying the games.
As Andrea Swensson noted in 2011:
For starters, we can forget about any local music programming in the stadium. Last season, [former music director Kevin Dutcher] kicked off every game by spinning a song by a Minnesota band and displaying the band's name on the big screen. That tradition has been quietly phased out, only to be replaced by pregame "club mixes" by some of Edwards' DJ friends from 96.3 NOW. Additionally, the music played between innings and while the home players walk up to bat have taken a turn toward the mainstream.
Later, in a conversation with Minnesota Twins VP of Marketing Patrick Klinger, we found out more about the reasons for Edwards' hiring and he was asked if more diversity in the music selections -- including a return to some local musicians in the mix -- could be expected.
"We do need variety, and we're working with Dan on that very topic," Klinger told Gimme Noise. "The challenge is, you've got 40,000 people at every game, and 40,000 people with different musical tastes, so you need a little country, you need pop, you need some rock, we've even played Big Band in the past... And so there will be a variety of music played - hopefully an even wider variety of music will be played during the course of the season, once Dan continues to get acclimated."
So, here we are after two seasons, and it looks like the acclimation process never completed. A couple of months ago, according to Joe Pohlad, the Twins decided to hand the the music director job over to another guy.
Tim Miller, who is also director of music for the Minnesota Timberwolves, has been hired to fill the role for the Twins as well.
"We interviewed a number of people, " Pohlad says. "He's a season ticket holder, and it felt like the right connection. We had a long conversation about music in general and the direction we wanted to go in."
Pohlad is adamant that the new direction would be a chance to cater the music to different types of scenarios -- an afternoon game with a family crowd and a possibly more boisterous evening crowd. "A Tuesday day game is different from your Friday night game and different from your Sunday day game," he says. "If it's a tight game, the music keeps the crowd in it and can keep the intensity up. If it's a blowout or we're losing, we'll play a different type of music. The feel is different."
As far as how to do that, Pohlad says that the objective is not to pigeonhole themselves with a reliance on any specific genre. Expect to hear classic rock, country, and some top 40 at the games, but no mention of any locally inclined offerings -- or a Bob Dylan anthem -- just yet. "We'll even throw in a little disco," Pohlad adds. "No, I'm kidding."
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