Why set up shop in Madison, WI? Why not L.A., New York or Chicago? Because it’s original. It’s on the fringe. It’s where idealists, intellectuals, and dreamers cross pollinate creative and re-mix the old into something bold. It starts trends, sniffs out fads and postulates ideas that aren’t fashionable elsewhere until next Spring. It’s Madtown. It ain’t like anywhere else.
Need proof? For starters Frank Lloyd Wright learned to hate the straight line here, it’s where Orson Wells lost his sled, it’s the Birthplace of Grunge – sorry Seattle, but you had to come record at Smart Studios to get that flannel sound; it’s the Birthplace of The Onion, Birthplace of The Progressive, Birthplace of the oldest continually run radio station in the country; it’s where Rock legend Butch Vig, Jazz legend Ben Sidran, Blues legend Richard Davis, Comedy legend Chris Farley, Art legends Georgia O’Keefe and John Steuart Curry all called home along with Platinum album wielding, Grammy Award winning, James Bond theme song singing mega band Garbage, the one and only Funky Drummer, Clyde Stubblefield, masterblaster of the biggest, baddest, boldest, brash beat on the box; it’s where literary lions Jacquelyn Mitchard, Lorrie Moore, David Maraniss, the pioneering political blogger, John Nichols and dramatic brother-in-arms Thornton Wilder all first roared; it’s where Bob La Follette started fightin’, where Mary Sweeney and David Lynch find inspiration; where Michael Feldman started asking questions, and where that crazy thong caped scooter man tools around town; it’s where Olympians Debbie McCormick, the Hamiliton kids, Casey Fitzrandolph, Eric Heiden, and grand master hockey genius Bob Suter all fell in love with ice; it’s where Jerry Kelly, Andy North, Steve Stricker, and Sherri Steinhauser first shagged balls, and where John Muir, Aldo Leopold, Gaylord Nelson first hugged trees; it’s home to the world’s biggest brat festival, and speaking of brats it’s where Oscar Mayer made the hotdog a god damn American institution.
So, yeah, that’s why Madison.