Guys! We are officially in week two of big-name artists (funny how it’s selena gomez and justin bieber) trying to outstream Roddy Ricch’s infectious, instantly repeatable song “The Box”. There aren’t as many shows this week, but I always strive for quality over quantity. Take a peek! Instead of a formal discourse section, where I usually do a micro-syllabus on a topic, I’ve decided to just do a review of this week’s music industry news (there is a ton).
By the way, if you live in NYC then you know that it has been incredibly cold these past few days! Everyone spare a little prayer for all the smokers who will be lining up outside of venues in the frigid air between sets.
Anyways, one of the shows I listed today is a Crywank show. It’s their first time (and last) time touring the US, so I thought I would feature one of their tweets:
upcoming shows 🎟️
You can find out what shows are happening this week in here!
1/22 | Lola Pistola, Bloom, Holy Wisdom LLC, Beeyotch @ Saint Vitus Bar ~ 21+
1/24 | Kimu, Late to My Funeral, Bodycam, Francesca D'Uva, Kizu @ Honey’s ~ 21+
A NY Immigrant Freedom Fund Benefit show to help pay bond for immigrants detained by ICE
1/25 | Dream Crusher, Deli Girls, Bitchney Boys Fellowship, Black Ergot @ Rodrigue’s Coffee House ~ free, all ages!
1/28 | Cole Haden (Model/Actriz), Poppies, Red Ribbon, Castle Pasture @ The Dance ~ 21+
1/30 | Dan English, Poppies, Turtlenecked @ The Windjammer ~ 21+
2/8 | Been Stellar @ House Show ~ dm for address, stripped set
They also announced three other Feb show, I just like house shows
3/28 | Crywank & Chastity w/ Dandelion Hands @ Market Hotel
Crywank’s last NYC show, they break up in June after one last tour
4/4 | Balkans Reunion in NYC w/ Patio, Hypoluxo, Navy Gangs @ Market Hotel
in my queue 🎶
Saw them play at The Five Bells (rip) when people kept offering me pints so the fact that their set is etched into my memory is impressive AND a testament to how good it was. Put this song on when you are feeling down, instant good mood music. Also adore how jazzy it is, and the zany vocals.
Songs that open with clapping? Nearly unbeatable. Crickets is touted as a "super-group" featuring JD Samson of Le Tigre, Roddy Bottum of Faith No More and Michael O'Neil of Princess. A fun blend of electronic music (see: synths) and, dare I say, post punk (the vocals I think evoke this). The lyrics are mostly two or three phrases getting repeated, which makes this an easy song to get hooked on. The uWa uWa of the guitar pulsing over the drum track…it’s huge. Instant dance track.
what i’ve read 📖
I’ve literally been thinking about what this article addresses for the past two years! The number of times I have had to wade through StanTwitter embarrassingly attacking their “faves” for not releasing music on their schedule is ridiculous. And it doesn’t just apply to pop music, nearly every genre experiences this sort of entitlement to what is honestly someone’s creative output. Think about the amount of stress this places on artists, who often have to work around the rigorous touring schedule (one of the few ways they can make real money) in order to produce albums/music in order to fulfill fan expectations. And this isn’t necessarily good music! Drake regularly releases music, and while certainly, every album manages to capture his fans’ attention, what longevity does it have outside of that particular cultural moment? i.e. if you keep demanding music to be released in short amounts of time, you might not get quality music (however you define that). And how horrible is it that if you want to keep your audience’s attention it’s practically an expectation that you release music yearly (if not sooner). Not that anyone should feel entitled to someone’s music.
“As our own personal expectations for success have become greater and greater, and the minuteness of our collective attention span pressures artists into turning out projects faster than ever before, we have created a system in which relevance can seemingly only be achieved through a continuous presence. There is no place for an absence or moment of catharsis that is not in the public eye. Through this behavior, we, as fans of music, have collectively given the middle finger to a genuine creative process.”
“In the formative days of this new decade, a record release seems to be less about the piece of themselves that artists put into the body of work and more about satisfying their fan bases. Fans should crave honesty and detail from their favorite musicians instead of supposed timeliness and quick delivery.”
keywords: the entire article needs to be seared into my brain
Penny Fractions: A Musician and Their Patreon ~ by David Turner
Do you remember that giant newsletter I sent out with all those reading recs? One of them was a Rolling Stone article about music industry predictions for 2020, and I spoke about how I had noticed that artists were using Patreon a lot more (that and I’ve seen venmo/cashapp as well). For this week’s Penny Fractions edition, David Turner spoke about this topic in depth. I didn’t know prior to this that Patreon was made for musicians, so I learned a lot from this article.
“The current system of music streaming is a catch-all that wasn’t created with the interests of musicians in mind. Rather, it was just a way to further abstract music from the original creators and put the power in the hands of copyright holders. The patronage model, whether via a Patreon, Ampled, Mixcloud for DJs, or even Bandcamp, can open new doors to new possibilities.”
keywords: patronage, anti-labor, platform capitalism
If you haven’t realized by now, let me say that this section is kind of ever-changing. Generally, it’ll be where I talk about topics in-depth with links to tons of sources (like a mini syllabus of sorts). Today, I want to talk about some of the industry news that came out this week because there is a lot to parse through.
First: Billboard-The Hollywood Reporter Media Group’s portfolio is changing. Stereogum is being bought back by the founder, and SPIN is being sold to Next Management Partners. There is actually a wonderful debrief on the SPIN acquisition in the Music Journalism Insider if you’d like to know more.
According to NPR, the former Recording Academy president and CEO Deborah Dugan was put on leave last week and yesterday news came out that she was filing a discrimination complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Dugan has said that she was put on leave because of an internal memo that she circulated, while the Recording Academy says that she was put on leave because she created a toxic workplace. The Recording Academy puts on the Grammy's, which will take place this Sunday. You can read the complaint here, or if you want a TLDR read this Pitchfork article.
Last but not least! Radiohead has released a “Public Library” of archival material from the band. Crack Magazine has come out with a handy guide of what material should not be missed. If you’d rather just dive in and discover some gems yourself, check it out the library here.
Not to plug, but I actually interviewed a NYC-based band that did this with a Google Drive. They had set up an entire archive of their music, photos, videos, etc in a public drive (you could download whatever you wanted) as well as demos/recordings of music they were working on, uploaded in live time. You can read that article about The Britanys here.
What kind of music do you play to relax?
I usually play instrumental, more down-tempo music to relax. Either that, or I have an entire playlist of safe for work music (actually safe for the family, but whatever) that features old RnB, blues, etc to help me relax. I can’t listen to what I normally do, because sometimes punk isn’t the best thing to play when trying to unwind.
concluding remarks ⌛
This week’s newsletter is kind of short, but maybe that’s a relief after the massive one I sent out last week? I’ve been getting pretty busy now that school and work are ramping back up, which means I’m often occupied with readings/assignments for that instead of writing this. You might see some of the topics I discuss in class make their way here (not that you would know unless I tell you). In that vein, next week I’m going to be trying something different.
I’m taking an Audio Reporting and Podcasting Journalism course, and every week we have to complete a recording exercise. I thought it would be fun to include some of the work I’ll be doing for that in this newsletter. I’ll talk about it more next week, but I thought I’d preface it here.