WRIF DJ Stave Black spent several days in Columbus, Ohio at the 12th annual Rock On The Range Festival, yet in many ways it didn’t feel like he was far from home at all. Every time I left the media tent over the course of the 3 day mega-concert I saw a WRIF T-Shirt in the crowd or heard someone yell “Riff Baby!”
A couple of times I was even asked to join in a quick photo with the concert goers. It was additional evidence of the passion of our listeners and the power of the WRIF brand. Columbus is 213 miles from Detroit proper, yet we strongly factor into the makeup of the sold-out crowd.
Of 136,000 in attendance most are hometown fans as expected, 2nd in sales is Cleveland, a short 2 hour drive away. The Detroit area is 3rd, as we annually drive more fans to the festival than closer places like Cincinnati, Dayton, Toledo, Akron and Pittsburgh.
Michigan was also well represented on stage. Greta Van Fleet, Wilson, I Prevail, We Came As Romans and the new lead singer of Stone Temple Pilots, Jeff Gutt are all from our general region, which was noticed by the musicians as well.
Steve asked guitarist Steve Menoian from I Prevail how all the Michigan success has made him feel? He replied, “We tend to assume all the really big stuff is from L.A. or New York, so it’s really inspiring when you realize it’s happening right down the road from you.
“We are very aware of Greta Van Fleet, Wilson and Citizen Zero, but more so We Came As Romans as they’re more in our (musical) space. They have made an amazing career for themselves on a world-wide level, it’s very inspiring.”