Labor of Love

plenty of shows to go around, and labor reading to boot!

Hey! Hope you all have been enjoying the unseasonably warm weather in NYC this week. It’s Valentine’s Day this weekend, which I mostly just use as an excuse to party. If you do the same, make sure you pour one out for 4-month old The Dance, which announced it would be closing as a music venue this week. If that’s too much of a bummer, we at least have a new Strokes album to look forward to?

upcoming shows  🎟️

You can find out what shows are happening this week in here!

2/14 | Nastie Band, Lilith, Sähd Wyte Guyz @ The Broadway ~ 21+

2/15 | Deer Scout, Soft Idiot, Teenage Halloween, JW Francis @ Kirby’s Castle

2/16 | Turtlenecked, Poppies, Alexander @ Purgatory

2/16 | PAZZI PROM II: Native Sun, YAASSS, Kahiem Rivera, Gift @ Baby's All Right ~ 21+

2/20 | Grim Streaker, T.V.O.D., Ashjesus @ Planet X ~ 21+

2/20 | Tony or Tony, Album Release Show @ Baby’s All Right ~ 21+, free

3/13 | Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs w/ Stuyedeyed @ St Vitus Bar ~ 21+

  • All these pigs and more come stateside for the first time this March. Apparently tickets are selling fast so if you wanted to see their NYC debut act fast.

3/26 | Palberta With Secret Guest @ Lola ~ 21+

The next few shows are part of the New Colossus Festival. You might consider getting a pass instead of buying individual show tickets. Please note: The line-ups below may not be the complete line-up for the day/night, as for some of the listings I have only put the artists that I would go to see.

Check the ticket link for full line-ups, and if you see an artist here you want to see but can’t make that day, then please check to see if they will be playing again.

3/12 | The Van T’s, The Petrol Girls, Halfsour, L.A. Peach, and Parliamo @ The Delancey ~ 21+

3/13 | Kiwi Jr., Ducks Unlimited, Honey Lung, Tim Burgess, Ali Barter @ Berlin ~ 21+

3/13 | A Place to Bury Strangers with Public Practice, LIFE @ Bowery Ballroom ~ 21+

3/13 | Weird Milk, The Orielles, Honey Lung @ Pianos ~ 21+, free

in my queue 🎶

V Day is coming up, so I’ve compiled a few of my favorite love songs in this playlist:

But in terms of what I’ve actually been streaming on repeat this week:

Pottery actually just announced a debut album! Crowd Favorites “Hot Heater” and “Take Your Time” are gonna be on the new album, but for now stream their amazing (and underrated) ‘No.1’ EP. My favorite is “Worked Up”, but most of this EP is easily among my most played songs.

what i’ve read 📖

The California law that pits artists against Uber drivers ~ by Patrick Redford

  • Okay, you have to read this. If only because it tracks a real problem (the gig economy) and a potential solution (CA’s AB-5). Freelancers not getting paid is a real issue, and one that needs fixing, but how? For freelance creatives, whose status as freelance is only so that the company won’t have to give them benefits like a full time employee, AB-5 should have worked. Read some labor news!

  • I also feel as if reading this was like watching a really good movie because there was a big reveal in the middle.

  • “The key innovation that made FedEx into a shipping giant in the ‘80s, for example, was the mass hiring of contract labor over full-time employees. This practice is now ubiquitous. A 2016 study found that almost all the net job growth in the previous decade was from these so-called “alternative work” arrangements.”

  • “The resurgent media union movement is largely a reaction to this atomization of the industry. Those eliminated Vox gigs were not jobs, though across the network they accounted for a reportedly “significant” amount of SB Nation traffic. AB-5 hurts right now, especially with its confusing standard for exemptions, but it is a genuine attempt to correct for the sort of exploitative practices that ruined so much of the industry in the first place.”

  • keywords: labor, gig economy, AB-5, freelancer

‘We Can’t Have All Our Artists Die’: How the Music Industry Is Fighting the Mental-Health Crisis ~ by Nicole Frehsee

  • A good follow up to the articles we read about Juice WRLD a few weeks ago, and the Music Industry report I wrote about as well. Artists and almost anyone in the music industry who get overworked and underpaid need more support from the people around them. The article details a lot of the different efforts in the industry and on the non-profit side, so give it a glance:

  • “Lately, it’s become clear that the number of artists suffering is staggeringly high. In a 2018 study from the Music Industry Research Association, 50 percent of musicians reported battling symptoms of depression, compared with less than 25 percent of the general adult population. Nearly 12 percent reported having suicidal thoughts — nearly four times the general population. According to a 2019 study published by Swedish digital-distribution platform Record Union, the numbers are even starker: It found that 73 percent of independent musicians have battled stress, anxiety, and depression.”

  • keywords: mental health, touring, music industry

Musicians Can and Should Organize to Improve Their Pay and Working Conditions ~ by Joey La Neve DeFrancesco

  • Literally a history of the labor movement in the music industry and all the different iterations it has gone through over the years. A decently deep dive.

  • “While actions like Swift’s call-outs of Big Machine and the private equity behind it are heartening, it seems more likely that any redistributive change will necessarily come not from music’s highest paid artists, but from musicians in the industry’s lower economic strata.”

  • “To adapt John Steinbeck’s observation, musicians see themselves not as an exploited proletariat, but as temporarily embarrassed pop stars. Each musician is taught they will make it big with their unique combination of hustle and talent; a united movement to fight for their collective interests is nowhere on their radar. The result is a vast pool of cultural workers battling one another for increasingly small resources as the top earners rake in unprecedented profits.”

  • keywords: labor, union, American Federation of Musicians, organizing


Best love song ever?

That’s the question! I don’t think I’ve heard it yet, have you?

concluding remarks

lots of shows but I kinda skimped on the articles this week. I was busy reading an actual-factual (fictional) love story: Normal People by Sally Rooney. It was really good, I highly recommend because it’s not overly cheesy. I think the best part of it was the voice of Rooney, who is very focused on the interior lives of her characters, who she switches between for the narrator of the story. Other than that, things that I wish I had more time to write about but didn’t: wtf happened at the NME awards. Seriously.