Sunday, September 23, 2018

(press bio)

Alan K. Stout is a rock music journalist based out of Northeastern Pennsylvania who has written extensively for the Wilkes-Barre Times Leader and The Weekender, a popular arts and entertainment newspaper in Northeastern Pennsylvania. He was voted Northeastern Pennsylvania's "Favorite Newspaper Columnist" in 1997, 1998, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2008 and 2009. In 1998, he was awarded a "Keystone Press Award for Excellence in Journalism" for his music coverage. In 2011, he was presented with the "Best Special Event/Achievement Award" by the United Way of The Wyoming Valley for his charitable work with the annual "Concert For A Cause." In 2014, he was presented with the "Lifetime Achievement Award" by the Steamtown Music Awards, which were a part of the Electric City Music Conference.

Music journalist and radio host Alan K. Stout
Stout began covering music for The Times Leader in 1992 and his weekly column, "Music On The Menu," appeared in The Times Leader from 1994-2005. In 2000, he was named music editor at The Times Leader. In 2005, "Music On The Menu" moved to The Weekender, where he served as editor until 2007 and where the column appeared until 2011. His concert reviews are still published by The Times Leader. The Weekender and the Bold Gold Media Group.

Stout's focus in the Northeast Pennsylvania region has often been on the local music scene, which has produced national recording artists such as The Badlees (1995) and Breaking Benjamin (2002). He was among the first writers to profile these bands and continues to write about local talent in the NEPA region. In 2004, Stout launched his own weekly radio show, "Music On The Menu," on 102.3-FM, The Mountain. In 2013, the program moved to 105 The River (104.9-FM), and as his column did for nearly 18 years, it continues to showcase local talent. From 2004-2013, Stout hosted of the monthly "Weekender/Mountaingrown Original Music Series," a live radio broadcast which allowed local musicians to showcase their songs to a wide audience. In 2014, Stout began to host a new original music series, "Music On The Menu Live," which is broadcast live on 105 The River from Mohegan Sun t Pocono. In 2017, Stout, in cooperation with SSPTV and the Bold Gold Media Group, launched a monthly television version of the "Music On The Menu" radio show which aired on Comcast and Service Electric Cable TV throughout Northeastern Pennsylvania.

Stout is also known for his concert coverage and reviews. He frequently reviewed shows at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Wilkes-Barre, The F.M. Kirby Center in Wilkes-Barre and the Montage Mountain Amphitheater in Scranton. He also sometimes covers major concert tours that visit Philadelphia and has reviewed shows by The Rolling Stones, Paul McCartney, U2, Bruce Springsteen, Madonna, Plant/Page, Sting, Eric Clapton, The Who, Dave Matthews Band, KISS and Billy Joel. In addition to appearing in the Wilkes-Barre newspapers, Stout's reviews have also appeared on the national entertainment newspaper wires, in papers from coast-to-coast, and - if favorable - on the websites of the artists he covers.

Stout's interviews include conversations with Billy Joel, Steven Tyler, David Bowie, Eddie Van Halen, Gene Simmons, Paul Stanley and Don Henley.  Many of these interviews have also appeared on national newspaper wires and have appeared in various newspapers across the United States. Many can now be found on YouTube.

In 1997, Stout broke a news story regarding the Lackawanna County Commissioners office and its decision to possibly end its relationship with the Metropolitan Entertainment Group. Metropolitan had promoted concerts at the Montage Mountain Amphitheater in Scranton, had run the facility, and had brought some of the biggest names in music to Northeastern Pennsylvania. The county, however, had concerns about the facility, particularly what it deemed as Metropolitan’s poor management of concert traffic. Stout’s news coverage of the situation led to a mass movement by the public to save the concerts at Montage. Radio stations organized petition drives, elected officials were lobbied, and eventually, a new agreement/contract was made between Metropolitan and Lackawanna County, with Metropolitan committing to make improvements, including, in 2000, constructing a new and improved multi-million dollar amphitheater. Stout’s ongoing coverage of the situation, which was deemed fair and balanced by both parties - combined with his commentaries/editorials, concert reviews, album reviews and coverage of the local band and club scene – resulted in his receiving a Keystone Press Award for Excellence in Journalism for his music coverage.

In 1999, Stout worked with the band Mötley Crüe when the group released digitally re-mastered versions of its entire CD catalog. Titled "Crucial Crue," the series featured all new liner-notes for each album, written by Stout with the band. He is credited on each album.

Also in 1999, Stout helped found "Concert For Karen/Concert For A Cause," an annual charity event held in Northeast Pennsylvania that united the region's entire musical and media community. The annual event, held each April, featured dozens of local bands, plus full sponsorship from the local print, television and radio media. A rock auction featured autographed items from John Mellencamp, KISS, Mötley Crüe, Dave Matthews, Elton John and Bob Weir. Since 2002, the event also included a limited edition companion CD for which Stout often contributed a track. His recordings for the "Concert For A Cause" albums included covers of The Beatles' "Blackbird," Bruce Springsteen's "Happy," John Lennon's "Watching The Wheels," KISS' "Sure Know Something," John Mellencamp's "What If I Came Knocking," Elvis Presley's "His Latest Flame" and U2's "Walk On." In 2008, the "Concert For A Cause 6" CD spent five weeks at No. 1 on the NEPA album chart. In 2009, "Concert For a Cause 7" also spent several weeks at No. 1 and in 2011, "Concert For A Cause 9: The Final Show," also hit No. 1. In 2009, to note its 10th anniversary, the mayor of the City of Wilkes-Barre declared April 22 "Concert For A Cause Day." As of 2011, the concert and the CDs had raised more than $204,000 for regional charities.

In 2003, one of Stout's original songs, "Summer Days," received critical acclaim from others in the NEPA media and the Billboard Magazine Songwriting Panel. Featuring members of The Badlees, as do all of his recordings, it received airplay on 14 radio stations, hit the Top-5 on the NEPA singles chart and also appeared on the "Concert For A Cause II" album.

In 2005, Stout organized "We All Shine On: A Tribute to John Lennon." The sold-out show was held on December 8 on the 25th anniversary of Lennon's death. It took place at one of Wilkes-Barre's most popular music venues and featured an all-star lineup of NEPA artists performing Lennon's songs from both his time with The Beatles and his solo career. It was also broadcast live on the radio. Proceeds benefited The John Lennon Scholarship Fund.

Stout's stories have appeared in the Boston Globe, San Jose Mercury News, Chicago Tribune, Philadelphia Daily News, San Diego Tribune, Dallas Morning News and Miami Herald. He currently serves as a music correspondent for The Weekender, The Times Leader and the Bold Gold Media Group. Through that work, and through his weekly radio show and music blogs, he continues to provide insight into the musical climate of Northeastern Pennsylvania.

(This bio was first published by The Times Leader and also appears on Wikipedia.)

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