Monday, 1 March 2010

The End of an Era…

It's been a while, hasn't it?

The fact of the matter is, I've been going through some major life changes and I really didn't feel like chronicling them here. Except now, of course, I'm going to completely contradict myself by blogging about it - at least in general terms.

Every day, I see messages hit my Inbox about the latest website to hit the streets claiming to be the saviour of music. And halfway down comes the immortal line "We can't pay you at the moment but we can give you loads of free CDs and tickets".

Rule of thumb here - if you can't pay me now, you never will. Sure DiS had a brief moment in the sun when Sky thought, for about half an hour, that it'd be nice to have a music site. They soon went off the idea when they realised there was no money in it.

Still, we all live in hope – and moreover, it’s really important that grass roots journalism isn’t allowed to die, after all, without Sniffin’ Glue in the seventies and Dissident in the nineties, we wouldn’t have discovered… well, loads of people really. (my perspicacity has suffered in my absence!)

But – and here’s the rub. Not only does the recession mean that pro-hacks like me can’t get paid, but the whole nature of the industry is being killed – Video Killed The Radio Star. Digital is killing the Video Star.

In an effort to save money – especially as digital piracy has left record moguls in masses of debt – the chances of getting an intern along to review a gig is dwindling fast, and bringing a friend? Forget it! Meanwhile, the glut of free CDs popping through the letterbox has turned to a trickle as more and more promo copies are mp3s, streaming websites, or worse still, being forced to sit in a room and drink tea while you listen to it and make notes.

What kind of lure is that for the interns and free writers that keep many of these print and online publications going? There’s no carrot for people to work for free – and so if the sites can’t afford to pay, there’s no content. And we all know, content is king.

The live music industry is thriving – but then at £80 for a Lady Gaga ticket, it would be. But recorded music and journalism are dying ducks. And that makes me very, very sad.

So, it looks like another music journalist is biting the dust. I just can’t afford to do it anymore….

music note While writing this, I was listening to "Crumbs Off The Table (Feat. Aaron Livingston) - Aaron Living" by Aaron Livingston, RJD2

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