Skip

Sex, Drugs and Updating Your Blog
May 15, 2007 10:29 AM   Subscribe

Sex, Drugs and Updating Your Blog. The NYTimes Magazine on the convergence of the internet and pop music.
posted by OmieWise (24 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
Interesting, though slight, given the verbiage. I will say that MySpace is kinda a holy hell for those of us who liked the move toward real websites— many, many lower-level bands have dropped their real websites altogether.
posted by klangklangston at 10:59 AM on May 15, 2007


I found it interesting too. It's a new world out there:
All celebrities are accustomed to dealing with reporters; but fans represent a new, wild-card form of journalism. Franz Nicolay, the Hold Steady’s nattily-dressed keyboardist, told me that he now becomes slightly paranoid while drinking with fans after a show, because he’s never sure if what he says will wind up on someone’s blog. After a recent gig in Britain, Nicolay idly mentioned to a fan that he had heard that Bruce Springsteen liked the Hold Steady. Whoops: the next day, that factoid was published on a fan blog, “and it had, like, 25 comments!” Nicolay said. So now he carefully polices what he says in casual conversation, which he thinks is a weird thing for a rock star to do. “You can’t be the drunken guy who just got offstage anymore,” he said with a sigh. “You start acting like a pro athlete, saying all these banal things after you get off the field.” For Nicolay, the intimacy of the Internet has made postshow interactions less intimate and more guarded.
I wouldn't have predicted that, but now I see it's inevitable.
posted by languagehat at 11:15 AM on May 15, 2007


As someone who plays in low-level bands and also runs a small indie record label, I can say I completely agree, klangklangston. It's unfortunate, but the reality is that MySpace just happens to be the cheapest and easiest way for a band to establish an online presence, in terms of start-up costs, time investment and technical overhead. Plus, the social networking aspect virtually guarantees you'll get at least some traffic, which isn't always the case with a custom site. Tragically, my label's MySpace page regularly generates more traffic and is more effective as a marketing channel than our official website. And yeah, a lot of the bands I've dealt with have completely dropped their own sites in exchange for spruced up MySpace pages.

Great topic and thanks for this discussion, OmieWise!
posted by saulgoodman at 11:42 AM on May 15, 2007


I don't know how they can talk about Coultons rise without mentioning MeFi's own John Hodgeman.
posted by Megafly at 12:06 PM on May 15, 2007


by that I mean Hodgman
posted by Megafly at 12:11 PM on May 15, 2007


The myspace part is actually what made the article interesting to me. I have to confess that I find that site so visually disturbing and difficult to understand that I never go there and I hate it when bands locate their sites there. I can understand, it's free, the community is all about those kinds of things, etc, etc, but I lament it to.
posted by OmieWise at 12:39 PM on May 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


My wiife teaches classes on new media, and when she tells her students about how some artists (like the mega-awesome Jonathan Coulton) are using the web to cut out the record-label middle man, and aim for what JoCo calls in the article "a reasonable middle class living", they are astonished that anyone would forgo the chance for superstardom that the labels offer. Which to me is like saying, "Why would anyone work at a job when they could be out buying lottery tickets?"
posted by Horace Rumpole at 12:41 PM on May 15, 2007 [2 favorites]


I find that site so visually disturbing and difficult to understand

Me too. It's hideous. I really wish someone with some taste would take it over and give it a complete overhaul, or that it would just stop being so damn... so damn... well, relevant already.
posted by saulgoodman at 12:43 PM on May 15, 2007


Which to me is like saying, "Why would anyone work at a job when they could be out buying lottery tickets?"

exactly!

coulton's really gotta be working his ass off to be pulling in that kind of scratch, tho... the economics of the music industry are so distorted by the mass marketing of music that it's hard to do much more than scrape by as a musician. it can be done, but it demands a willingness to make a lot of personal sacrifices.
posted by saulgoodman at 12:47 PM on May 15, 2007


MySpace '07 = Geocities '99
posted by aaronetc at 1:36 PM on May 15, 2007


aaronetc writes "MySpace '07 = Geocities '99"

I just checked around on MySpace, and found quite a few bands I like using it. I never knew of any on Geocities. MySpace may suck like Geocities, but they're far from equivalent.
posted by Bugbread at 2:29 PM on May 15, 2007


There were plenty of bands on Geocities back in the day, doing much the same as many bands are doing on MySpace now, but without the automated music player/tour date stuff. The quality of the bands notwithstanding, the sites were awful, as are their contemporary MySpace equivalents.
posted by aaronetc at 2:58 PM on May 15, 2007


I agree on the site quality, but I really do think the quality of the bands makes a big difference.
posted by Bugbread at 3:07 PM on May 15, 2007


I liked the article and found the talk about losing the mystery of the rock star interesting, but doesn't it all seem a little too late? By about 4 years or so? It just seems a little strange to be saying that myspace helps bands at this point when it seems like a given.

I do want to say that any time someone can quit their day job and sit around writing a song a week, I'm both happy for and jealous of that person. Good on him.
posted by sleepy pete at 3:11 PM on May 15, 2007


great article, enjoyed
posted by Espoo2 at 4:01 PM on May 15, 2007


Is it me or does it feel this type of article shows up somewhere once every few months? Yes, we get it, the music industry is in a tailspin and people are trying to figure out what will be the new economics of music. Wake up me up when somebody has an answer.

That being said, if artists return to making a good, but not outrageous living off of their music, perhaps people will start believing them when they say, "It's all about the music."
posted by Cochise at 4:25 PM on May 15, 2007


Bring back the patronage system!!!
posted by ddf at 6:37 PM on May 15, 2007


Is it me or does it feel this type of article shows up somewhere once every few months?

Well, yes, but when it percolates up to the New York Times, that says something. Something about how important this has become to modern culture, surely, and about how it is viewed by the gatekeepers of official culture. It's really something of a given that if a trend is written about in the NYT, it's already been in existence for some time.

Anyway, is culture writing all about "Hey, I found this new thing! It's only existed for 5.75 minutes!" and then nobody gets to write about it anymore?
posted by dhartung at 9:06 PM on May 15, 2007


is culture writing all about "Hey, I found this new thing! It's only existed for 5.75 minutes!" and then nobody gets to write about it anymore?

I think you just described Metafilter, no?
posted by Jon Mitchell at 9:29 PM on May 15, 2007


That's true, dhartung, but even given that the Times is somewhat a little behind the times, writing about myspace and the music industry in 2007 (starting in 2006) still seems to be a little behind the culture, which is what I was saying and, I think, what Cochise was trying to point out.
posted by sleepy pete at 12:28 AM on May 16, 2007


Cochise writes "Yes, we get it, the music industry is in a tailspin and people are trying to figure out what will be the new economics of music. Wake up me up when somebody has an answer."

Er...ok. Wake up. At the top of this thread, Omie Wise has linked to a multi-page article with the answer you're looking for.
posted by Bugbread at 6:30 AM on May 16, 2007


Great read, thanks for posting this OmniWise.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 9:49 AM on May 16, 2007


I love it when people I know I are quoted in the Times. Even better when their quote is quoted in MeFi.
</namedrop>
posted by skoosh at 9:20 PM on May 16, 2007


Jonathan Coulton shares "How I Did It".
posted by Horace Rumpole at 4:12 PM on May 18, 2007 [1 favorite]


« Older The Shipyard   |   "I originally set out to try... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments



Post