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She was introduced to Justin Bieber initially by “Kidd Kraddick In The Morning” on 97 BHT. Little did 14 year-old Alex Buchinski know that she would later be introduced to Justin, literally, by his manager Scooter Braun.

This isn’t your average meet-and-greet tale.

Buchinski is a 97 BHT listener and Archbald, Pa. resident. Like many of her peers, she loves “The Bieber.” Matter of fact, she wasn’t satisfied by just professing her admiration by missing two days of school to see Justin perform inside The Mall at Steamtown. Nor did winning passes to check out Bieber on “Good Morning America” satisfy her, um, sorry – Bieber Fever.

Nope, instead Alex wanted to see her favorite artist on “Saturday Night Live.” Step one: take to Twitter.

“I was just sending (links, comments) out there, like I didn’t send it to ‘Saturday Night Live’ or NBC or anyone like that,” explained Buchinski on “The Ralphie Radio Show” – a radio show that Bieber has been interviewed on twice. “I was just sending it out there, trying to get more followers to support the idea, and it worked.”

In no time, Buchinski found herself in the center of a viral marketing campaign to land Bieber on “SNL.” Alex’s account, “BieberOnSNL”, has close to 10,000 followers. Bieber himself has “at replied” – or mentioned Alex’s name in a Twitter update, on three different occasions. Yet, Buchinski still has no idea how Bieber or his team figured out that she was one of the forces behind it.

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“He ‘tweeted’ me back, like 6, 7 weeks ago, saying that he was going to be on ‘Saturday Night Live’ April 10,” she said. “I don’t know how he found out that I helped him.”

But Justin did, and offered Alex four VIP tickets to check out his performance the following afternoon. Bieber taped an edition of “Walmart Soundcheck” at the Highland Ballroom in New York City. The teenager made the trip to the concrete jungle with her parents and younger sister. Her father, Chris, didn’t know what to expect when he arrived. But upon stepping foot in the front door of the venue, the dad was immediately taken aback.

“We went out there, and I thought it was gonna be just a run-of-the-mill kind of thing,” Mr. Buchinski admitted. “But I went to the door and I said ‘I’m looking for Scooter.’ He was right there, and he took me right in.”

Bieber’s manager immediately handed over wristbands for VIP access for the family of four. Then, Braun took them all backstage, to meet Justin and the band in their dressing room.

“It was phenomenal,” Alex’s dad said. “(Braun) was really, unbelievable. He even gave me his e-mail address to keep in touch; I mean he was a fabulous guy.”

But the VIP experience didn’t end there. During the taping, Bieber performed “One Less Lonely Girl.” Let’s just say, the only girl that did not feel lonely in the crowd was Alex, who spent the duration of the song literally just a few feet away from the pint-sized pop star.

“He sang ‘One Less Lonely Girl’ to me on stage, in front of like, hundreds of screaming girls,” recalled Buchinski. “It was just amazing.”

“Walmart Soundcheck” featuring Justin Bieber will premiere on May 15 online and throughout Walmart stores across the country.

The wait is almost over for legions of Goo Goo Dolls fans everywhere: the Buffalo, NY band completed its ninth studio LP, for real this time.

“I’m going to New York tomorrow to do the mastering, so I guess it’s finished,” revealed lead singer John Rzeznik. The front man along with fellow founding band mate Robby Takac sat down on “The Ralphie Radio Show” Sunday afternoon. Takac added that he’s heard a June release is planned, but is unaware of an official date. The LP is entitled, Something for the Rest of Us.

Even though the band has sold over nine million albums in the states alone, the standard for a successful LP hasn’t changed too much.

“I think at this point it’s one of those things where, you just have to be satisfied with the work that you did, and hope that you craft it into something that you’re proud of,” said Rzeznik. He then reaffirmed his first statement, but added, “That’s fine, but it would be really nice if it sold a bunch of copies. That always helps. If it gets on the radio… but, we’ll see what happens.”

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Yes, the music landscape has changed quite a bit since the ’96 release of Let Love In. In an interview last September with The Buffalo News, Takac noted that radio isn’t “there the way they were before.” Certainly the influence of the medium has decreased a little, but Rzeznik feels the airplay can still play an instrumental role in the band’s success moving forward.

“Even if you don’t sell a lot of records, getting played on the radio, yunno, keeps your touring business going and then you get out and play, make a living on the road.”

When I caught up with The Goo Goo Dolls, the band was in the midst of doing exactly that. The Goos extended the current tour to over 40 dates, playing mostly smaller, theater-type venues. Rzeznik confirmed that after the LP’s release, summer dates at primarily outdoor venues will be announced.

Coincidentally enough, my third concert ever found me sitting on the lawn of Artpark in Lewiston, NY watching The Goo Goo Dolls – right before Dizzy Up the Girl hit stores, in August of 1998. If I need another reason to head back home and visit the parents, Rzeznik did confirm that the show for the nearby Darien Lake Performing Arts Center is already booked.

V.V. Brown called in to “The Ralphie Radio Show” to chat about her single, “Shark In The Water.”

Part 1: “Shark In The Water”, Fearing Big Bird


Part 2: Touring with Pink


14 year-old Alex Buchinski created a Twitter account called “BieberOnSNL.” The Archbald, Pa. native helped teen star Justin Bieber land on “Saturday Night Live.” Bieber repaid Alex by giving her four tickets to his private performance the next day for Walmart Soundcheck. She shared her story on “The RRS.” The full interview will air Tuesday at 7 p.m.

In an exclusive interview on “The Ralphie Radio Show” after his performance Sunday evening at Marywood University, Ryan Cabrera revealed that he is still dating “The Hills” cast member Audrina Patridge.

“You know how the media is, they’ll take whatever they want and have a hay-day with it,” replied Cabrera after I brought up stories that emerged from the couple’s trip to Las Vegas over the past week. Various sources cited the two headed to “Splitsville” after both were seen in public without the other. “I think people use that stuff as entertainment, but they should also know that it’s just a bunch of crap.”

Cabrera chuckled when I mentioned that watching this upcoming season of the MTV reality show would have been awkward if the two were in fact broken up. The singer is featured in the trailer for the final run of episodes, set to premiere Tuesday, April 27. After mentioning that he likes to keep his personal life just that, I asked him if he was not single, to which he answered, “Me? No, I’m not.”

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The couple created quite a stir on the campus of Marywood, a small Catholic school in Scranton, Pa. with an enrollment just over 3,000. Cabrera is in the midst of about 15 hand-selected dates, as he prepares for his return to a major record label. After selling over two million copies of Take It All Away, and about a half million with You Stand Watching, Cabrera left his trademark spiky hair and deal with Atlantic Records behind. In 2008 he released The Moon Under Water, an independent project that only moved 15,000 units. Now after a couple years of touring and writing, the singer seems poised to jump back on the radio airwaves and sales charts. He even brought back the spikes, ditching his long hair and mustache.

“The last record was just kind of like a darker period, where I was just trying to rebel against my record label,” admitted Cabrera. “I think (the new release) will be a lot more like the Take It All Away record.”

Don’t worry, if you’re wondering what Cabrera’s latest project will sound like, you won’t have to wait too long: Ryan revealed that the first single from his forthcoming LP could hit radio as soon as this summer, with a 2011 release planned for the entire album.

Cabrera did say this album would not be released independently, although declined to say which record label he would land with, only noting that he is still in talks “different labels.”

It started with a random idea hatched during class to score attention for YouTube videos. It’s safe to say that 22 year-old friends Ryan Leander and Michael Wekall have accomplished that, and by the time their mission is complete, YouTube hits might not be the only thing they have to show for their work. Leander and Wekall created AHugFromTaylorSwift.com. The goal is just that – be hugged by singer Taylor Swift. Yes, Swift knows of the website, and is offering challenges to the students via her own YouTube account. After completing the first task of helping senior citizens across the street, the duo will premiere a video that incorporates the number 13 in to good deeds. Leander told me on “The Ralphie Radio Show” that they’ll upload the clip on April 13. Yes, 13 is Taylor’s lucky number.

“We never saw it getting this big,” remarked Leander, who called in to “The RRS” from Alabama. Wekall is a student at Auburn University, while Ryan takes on-line courses. “It’s definitely hard to concentrate with school and this going on and just like a whole other separate life that you have to keep going.”

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Visit AHugFromTaylorSwift.com.


Leander said that they keep in touch with a middle man who works with Taylor Swift, although he would not reveal the man’s identity or job title. It was this person that discovered Leander and Wekall on-line and alerted Swift. Apparently the songstress was flattered, and now the story is gaining national attention. Although their mission is now transforming in to a feel-good tale, Leander admits they were a little afraid of coming off as creepy.

“That was one of our major fears because I’m sure she gets a lot of that stuff,” said Leander. “We’re just two average guys, just wanting to have fun.”

But when will the fun come to a head, with a hug from Taylor? Leander has no idea.

“Your guess is as good as ours,” he replied. “Hopefully there won’t be too many (challenges), we’re both trying to graduate and get some jobs.”

In this day and age, that task might even be harder than scoring a hug from Grammy-award winning superstar. The students will surely find out soon enough.

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TMZ’s Dax chatted on “The Ralphie Radio Show” about Tiger Woods’ comeback at The Masters, including the premiere of a new Nike commercial and a prankster from above.
The Nike commercial


The plane flying above The Masters


Catch Dax on TMZ TV, local listings here.

As successful as Rob Thomas is, both on his own accord and as the lead singer of Matchbox Twenty, he still isn’t too cool for a “geek out” moment when interacting with fellow musicians. Take the recent Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony for example, which Thomas performed at.

“The day after the awards, Jann Wenner, the founder of Rolling Stone, called me and told me that he was hanging at a party the night before and Bruce Springsteen was talking about my performance and how much he liked it,” recalled Thomas. “And I wet myself.”

Given his genuine excitement level, you might think the Matchbox Twenty front man was only half-kidding. But all kidding aside, Thomas stays true to his art by embracing his inner-fan.

“I think if you stop being a fan of music, you should get out of the business,” he bluntly stated. “If you think you’re above it, then you don’t get it.”


Part 1: Ralphie’s 2nd Concert Ever, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Radio Promo

Part 2: Mad Season, Someday EP, New Matchbox Twenty LP



Thomas doesn’t feel above it, and totally gets it – his actions speak for themselves. I caught up with the Grammy winner amidst a radio promo tour of mid-major markets. Yes, even after selling more than 80 million albums between Matchbox, solo works, and collaborations with the likes of Santana and Jagger – the singer/songwriter still makes the rounds, performing acoustic music sets for small groups of listeners who win access to the events.

“Radio promo for me is, hanging out with some of my best friends in the world, you know, traveling around the country, playing music for people,” he explained. “It’s what I do for a living, so to me yeah, it’s a really good time.”

Thomas latest project is his second studio LP, Cradlesong, along with a four-song EP, Someday. This summer he’ll embark on a “Storytellers”-type tour, playing venues ranging from 400 to 3,000 seats and performing acoustically while chatting about the songs and his career in between riffs. Then this fall, he’ll begin to work full-time with the rest of Matchbox on the band’s fifth studio album.


97 BHT, Atlantic Records, The Mall At Steamtown, and F.Y.E. proudly presented Matchbox Twenty front man and Grammy award winner Rob Thomas, with an intimate, acoustic performance at the 97 BHT studios.

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Dr. Robert Melillo called in to “The RRS” on Friday to shed more light on “World Autism Awareness Day.”

Dr. Melillo authored the book, Disconnected Kids.