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Campus Activities Magazine® during the late 90's and early 2000 became the destination vehicle for artists and agencies throughout the country. It not only offered exposure for legendary entertainers who exclusively worked the campus market, but became the door for developing national acts to capture a youthful following.
During this time in the campus entertainment market, not only would the magazine introduce acts like Dave Chappelle, Mark Curry, Jeff Dunham, Jamie Foxx, George Lopez, Carlos Mencia, Joe Rogan, Caroline Rhea, Shawn Wayans, Nick Swardson, Jeffrey Ross, Jim Norton, The Legendary Second City and Daniel Tosh, but new faces like Howie Day, Gaelic Storm, Randy & Jason Sklar, Edwin McCain, Dale K, speakers like Shawn Decker & Gwenn Barringer plus the best in traditional campus music, comedy and novelty performers.
The February 1999 issue featured one of the campus market?s most loved comedians, Spanky, as his "Men Are Sluts" tour was gaining prominence. Plus perhaps one of the most booked segments of the market was featured: Novelty Games. Games were big business and campuses were buying. Manufacturers were actively developing new concepts and colleges had an unlimited selection to choose from. From the arts sector, there was an exceptional interview jazz legends Diane Schuur and Maynard Ferguson. And Harris Goldberg, Adam Tobey and Kat Widden told buyers how to plan a major concert.
March 1999 featured Campus Activities Magazine's now Nationally recognized Reader's Choice Awards and for the second consecutive year, Mike Rayburn was the unanimous choice for Entertainer of the Year. Mike also took the nod for the Best Club Act. Jen Cohen won Best Small Venue Entertainer, : The Tribute won Best Large Venue Performance, Trisha Yearwood won Best Major Performance, James Malinchack won Best Lecture Performance, Spanky won Comedian of the Year, The Spencers won Best Performing Arts Performance, Craig Karges won Best Live Novelty Performance, Wax Hands won the Best Novelty Game and the Joey Edmonds Agency won Agency of the Year. As a bonus, there was an exclusive interview with jazz legend, Herbie Hancock by Michael Brannon.
April 1999 took readers on a behind-the-scenes look at comedian Margaret Cho. In this exclusive interview she talks about her own personal demons, growing up in San Francisco and her multi-cultural background. Margaret was the reigning campus comedy queen in the 80's before she left the circuit for the bright lights and big hassles of Hollywood. In an interview that was down to earth and truly inspirational as she delved back into a market she always loved, she said "I feel really good about myself and comfortable in my own skin. I feel lucky to be alive. I could have died so many times."
August 1999's comedy edition headliner was a real coup for the magazine. We were able to interview Dave Chappelle just as his career was hitting amazing stride toward stardom. At 25, he had set Hollywood on its head. He has positioned himself as a scene stealer with Nicholas Cage in Con Air and was Tom Hanks' sidekick in You've Got Mail. He starred in and co-wrote Half Baked; he played Reggie along side Eddie Murphy in The Nutty Professor and landed a role in Mel Brook's Men In Tights after crushing the Montreal Comedy Festival. As we talked with him, he had just signed a development deal with Walt Disney, taped an HBO stand-up special, had two new movies coming out that fall and was slated to star in and co-produce King Of The Park with Ron Howard and Brian Grazer of Imagine Entertainment. But this was a story about Dave and how he grew up and how he emerged at the top of his game and may have been some of the best eight pages we have ever written.
But this issue had a triple whammy. We also introduced you to Train and Aware Records as they launched their first big hit (Remember "Meet Virginia"?) Plus readers got a first look at MTV's Dr. Drew and the scoop on his Loveline show with sidekick Adam Corolla.
September 1999 featured a comedian from the tobacco fields of Virginia who had already made his mark in the campus market. Colleges had already been clamoring for Anthony Clarke, a young comic with a soft Southern accent, whose honest, blue collar brand of humor and earnest manner catapulted him to the top.
It is amazing how many real stars have found their roots in the campus market and Anthony Clarke was one of them. This story was about his success on college campuses that gained him the attention of Castle Rock Entertainment. and a deal for a mid-season sitcom.
Plus in this issue you got to meet a new music sensation, Howie Day and the high-energy band from the film Titanic, Gaelic Storm.
October 1999: This year's music issue was a tribute to Aware Records, A company that successfully launched the career of many developing music artists. The starting point for many artists under the Columbia/Sony Music brand, readers got to find out just how the company operated. Aware alumni included Rob Thomas of Matchbox 20, Pat Monahan of Train and Adam Gardner of Guster. We also delivered a feature story on the Christian music of David Kauffman along with contemporary picks Smash Mouth, Soul Coughing and Citizen King. Other top picks included Red Hot Chili Peppers, Tom Petty, Marcy Playground, Chris LeDoux, David Ball, Steve Wariner, Angry Salad, Saffire, Mary Wilson w/ The Supremes.
November 1999's cover story was a feature on Brent Scarpo's Journey To A Hate-Free Millennium with special interviews with Dennie & Judy Shepard, the parents of James Byrd, Jr. and responses from the Colombine High School Memorial. We also had a special feature on Black Artists with an introduction to Marlena Smalls and the Hallelujah Singers.
January 2000 covered the world's most famous comedy dynasty, The Second City. No other organization in history has delivered so much laughter from its alumni. There was a special feature on one of NYC's funniest people, Lewis Black and the fresh Christan sound of Bebo Norman.
February 2000's cover was the history making coast-to-coast bicycle ride of campus comedian and musician, Mike Rayburn. And we featured some of the best current speakers including Wendi Fox, Bob Harris Famous Amos and more.
March 2000 honored the Reader's Choice Awards winners. The Spencers took both Performing Arts Artists of the Year and the coveted Entertainers of the Year. Beth Wood won Best Club Performer; 1964: The Tribute again won Best Large Venue; Teresa won Best Country Performer; Faith Hill won Best Major Performer; Creative Dating won Best Lecture; Craig Carmean won Best Comedian; Craig Karges became one of the most-winning artists in the awards by taking Best Live Novelty Performance, Best Novelty Games was Wax Hands, Campus Program of the Year was University of Akron RHPB and Agency of the Year was Auburn Moon Agency.
April 2000 featured Weird Al's campus tour and we went back in history with Al Franken as we talked about his history with SNL and the message he was bringing to college campuses. We also went on the road with Craig Karges.
August 2000 included not only a special interview with Shawn Wayans but a clean, silly and funny look at Buzz Sutherland. We offered out comedy picks for 2001 and did a special look at a young comedian, Eddie Ifft and his success in the campus market.
September 2000 presented a special limited engagement college tour of Eric Saperston & Edwin McCain. What may have been an unlikely partnership became an interesting journey. Eric's show, The Journey, included film clips and anecdotes of his experiences talking with people like President Carter, Woody Guthrie and the head of the CIA, was combined with the Legendary songs of Edwin McCain. Campuses had the rare opportunity to hear lessons learned and words of wisdom gather from powerful people along with incredible music.
October 2000 featured Elektra recording artists Lucky Boy's Confusion. One of the hottest bands in the Chicago Indy music scene, they quickly developed a following in the campus market. Plus the WWF was out to recruit the college market. A special promotional package for the WWF on college campuses via satellite was offered.
November 2000 introduced you to Comedian Mark Curry, best known for his starring role in the ABC sitcom, "Hangin' with Mr. Cooper." "I'm a black comedian, if you want to label me like that, but the first question you should be asking is, 'are you funny'? A good comedian can play any room, no matter where it is."
This issue also brought you "Love, Life and AIDS." College students learned the real facts about a very preventable disease. And Michelle Rathman authored an article on "How To Select A Speaker." This taught you how to avoid pitfalls that could send your entire program down the toilet.
January 2001 was an opportunity to revisit Jay Mohr. One of the campus market's most enduring successes, this strategic interview took him from campus shows to Hollywood production lots and how he attributed the market for aiding in his success. Plus you got an inside look at two campus treasures, The Amazing Jonathan and Adam Ace.
In February 2001 we continued our look at the new revolution in contemporary Christian Music. Caedmon's Call had gained monumental success and was the appropriate follow-up to our story on Jars of Clay.
We also gave you a personal look at everyone's favorite airhead, Victoria Jackson. Her hilarious performances on SNL and Comedy Central made her even more appealing to college audiences.
And while we were an official sponsor of Mike rayburn's historic bicycle ride, in this issue we give you his own first-person chronicle of that adventure from San Diego to Coney Island.
March 2001 The third time is always the charm and nothing could be more satisfying for Mike Rayburn as he took Entertainer of the Year for an unprecedented third time. Bass/Schuler Entertainment won Agency of the Year, which was also noteworthy for an agency that was still practically brand new but had a huge following. Central Michigan won Best Campus Program. Other award winners were: Buzz Sutherland won Best Comedy Act, Christopher Carter took Best Performing Arts Performance, David Coleman won Speaker of the Year, Dave Matthews ban won Best Large Venue Performance; Mike Super won Best Live Novelty Performer, ThinkFast won Best Novelty Game; Faith Hill won Best Country Music Performer and Eric Saperston/Edwin McCain won Best Major Performance.
In April 2001, CAM brought you a very different Bob Saget. Forget about "Full House" and "America's Funniest Home Videos". He's a mile-a-minute kind of guy with a surprisingly caustic, raid-fire wit, who thrives on the freedom of stand-up comedy and is proud of his reputation as a clean-cut looking guy with an incredibly foul mouth.
But cheer up. We brought you a look at the popularity of hypnotism and great ones like James Mapes, Jim Wand, Ricky Kalmon, Chuck Milligan, Tom DeLuca, Dan Larosa, Sami Dare, Michael Anthony, Dale K, Frederick Winters and others.
August 2001's Comedy issue featured MTV's Andy Dick. His wildly offbeat brand of comedy made him successful. He was impacted by the loss of his drinking buddy and one-time addiction group sponsor, Chris Farley in 1997 - an incident that led him to rehab for the first time. When he did a sexually explicit show at The University of North Florida, he was booed offstage and then reportedly ran through the audience mooning and taunting students. If was after this professional embarrassment that he started really trying to get his act back together. He told us "After two years of sobriety, after crashing my car, going to jail, being chewed up and spit out by the media, let's hope I learned something. I alway send potential colleges the good and the bad reviews. I want to be totally upfront."
In September 2001 Comedy Central's The Man Show was a phenomenon on television and one of the hottest campus tours. Jimmy Kimmel and Adam Corolla taped their Comedy Central show with their cast of "Juggies" before a live audience and the youth culture embraced it.
AND we introduced you to the man that would later become a legend. We gave you John Mayer first and college campuses became his faithful followers carrying him to a huge national audience.
PLUS we gave you our first introduction to Jeff Dunham. Colleges were the first supporters of a ventriloquist with unrivaled talent and crazy funny bits.
October became a month where we unveiled our picks for music for the next year and October 2001's Music Issue was no different. The feature story was on The Mighty Might Bosstones: Ben Carr, Joe Sirois, Dennis Brockenbough, Kevin Lenear, Joe Gittleman, Tim Burton, Dicky Barrett and Nate Albert. That's a lot of band. Starting out as a local Boston bar band, they soon got the national reputation for the band you needed when you really wanted to rock out! They were the ultimate College Band.
We also gave you a look at The Dark Star Orchestra (A real life experience of The Grateful Dead) and The Nadas, a band Playboy Magazine touted as "the next great college band."
November 2001 focused on the comedy of Bill Bellamy. With a sensational movie career and a new HOT sitcom, he was one of the hottest tickets in the campus market. He hosted MTV Jams, worked with Al Pacino in Oliver Stone's blockbuster Any Given Sunday, appeared in the romantic comedy Love Jones, did a stint in Def Jam's How To Be A Player, starred in Scree Gems comedy "The Brothers" and had just landed the starring role in a sitcom hand-crafted for him on the WB Me, Women and Dogs."
We also featured MTV's newest sex and relationship expert for their Loveline show, Diane Farr, Barry Scott as Dr Martin Luther King and the start of a great career for The Evasons.
January 2002 not only brought readers a preview of APCA's National Conference in Jacksonville, but gave the an exclusive behind the scenes look at The Simpsons through the eyes of 3x Emmy Award Winning writer Mike Reiss. Mike's career spanned writing 60 jokes a day for Johnny Carson to writing for National Lampoon to writing for the film Airplane II, the television show ALF, The Gary Shandling Show and finally finding a home writing for The Simpsons. He created "The Critic", the online comic "Hard Drinkin" Lincoln and the Showtime short "Queer Duck." Reiss' lecture was applauded and critically acclaimed by colleges and universities across the country.
And we took you behind the scenes with Robert Earl Keen where "The Road Goes On Forever And The Party Never Ends."
That completes the first decade, but there is a lot of great entertainment still on the way as in next issue we begin looking back on the second generation of Campus Activities Magazine®.PLEASE LIKE, COMMENT AND SHARE BELOW!!