Thursday, March 02, 2006

Coalition of the Willing

In the past couple of weeks we've almost tripled our average daily readership, and we've started to get all kinds of positive feedback from bands and local music fans that dig what we are doing. Honestly, we can't believe that people care enough to come on here every day, and we're really glad that people use the comments as a forum to express some of their own opinions about music in DFWD, even if their opinions are sometimes dumb. It has really been quite a thrill. Thanks.

But enough with the sentimental crap. Because of this new interest in the site, it has obviously become much more work to keep up with everything every day. So we've decided to do two things. The first is to form a loose partnership with the podcasters over at dconstruction. We like what they do over there, and even if we don't always agree with everything they say (although we agree with much of it), we think they are smart guys that have some exciting ideas about what local music media can be all about, and we want to play a roll in that. In short, this partnership will consist of the following:

1. We will write a bi-weekly column for their site
2. We will make a weekly concert pick and put it on their site
3. We will compile our own "We Shot JR Music Podcast" which they will put together and feature on their site. This will be a podcast of local music selected exclusively by us, and we think it is going to happen once every couple of months.
4. We are going to plan some dconstruction/weshotjr concerts for some time in the near future

In the interest of full disclosure, we should tell you that one of the dconstruction guys, Robert, is the owner of Summer Break records. We will restate this fact every time we mention any of the bands on his label, and we certainly will not let this affect our opinions on his bands (he doesn't know who we are either, so he can't track us down and kick our asses or anything). If we say something negative about any of them, then you'll know that we haven't let our relationship with dconstruction affect our review in that particular case. If we say something nice about one of his bands, I guess you'll have no way of knowing if we are being honest or not, so you can believe whatever you want. We will always post the disclaimer, however, just to remind you of what is happening. Hopefully that doesn't bother anyone. We will say that the guys at dconstruction don't know who we are, and this will not change.

This leads us to the second thing we are doing. Since the design on this blog is really pretty basic (we didn't really design ANYTHING, did we?) and the space we have is quite limited, we are going to make a move in the next couple of weeks to a new website, This will allow us to have more room to do more things, not to mention the fact that we will (with the help of dconstruction, who is providing the site for us) get some actual web design done on the site, making it a little more pleasing to look at. The important part, however, is that we are going to expand what we do. In addition to my regular writing and the It List, we're going to try to get a few other people on board to: take pictures at concerts, do an occasional concert review here and there (to help us save some gas money), write a regular column on local visual art and galleries, etc. and have an occasional writer or two that we like come in and write about books, media, and other things that interest us. The site will still be ad free, and will pretty much be the same thing, just bigger and better. We're not sure about all the details yet, including when this move will take place, but we'll let you know when we find out.

So, we ask two things from you:

1) If you want, go on to this comment thread and provide us with any suggestions you have for making this site better , along with any other ideas, criticisms, or questions you might have concerning what we do or what we are planning to do.

2) if anyone is interested in taking pictures or videos for us REGULARLY, or is interested in doing a little writing ( including a REGULAR local art column with text and pictures), please email us at No real experience is necessary, just a knowledge of (and good taste in) music, as well as access to what you need to do the job (your own camera, etc). We can't afford to offer you anything in return for you work (other than making you a little more cool, and probably getting you into some concerts for free), so you'll just have to look at it as a little exposure and some experience.

We also will not meet in person with anyone we work with, since this can all be done over the internet, and we figure we don't want to get to know any of you anyway. Just kidding, but we feel that it is important for the site to remain anonymous, so that is how we're going to keep it.

Hopefully everyone likes where this is going. We do. And you should always listen to us.


Blogger Chris said...

why is it so important that you guys remain anonymous? just curious, it seems a little odd or that you have some hidden agenda or alliance...

and i wouldn't change the "blog" format too much by making it too website-y. that's part of what people like about your site, i assume.

9:31 AM  
Anonymous zak said...

I like what you guys are planning and teaming up with dcon for some podcasts sounds cool.

I agree with Chris, as long as you keep up the daily blog part where you guys can freely discuss and post and it stays loose like it is now, it should be great. The website part will allow you to do more with the space provided, add more features and navigation possibilities. You could add a streaming radio player if the bandwidth can handle it.

I do think you should always stay anonymous... at least until season 2 or something where you all get outed at some show... But, if we do find out who you are the site and work will still be important. I personally like the mystery though.

10:56 AM  
Blogger jonofdeath said...

Yes. Keep the blog! We love the blog. It keeps me going all day. I never go a day without weshotjr blog or expired eggs.

11:09 AM  
Blogger said...

We're very excited by the prospect of working with WeShotJR, but it seems like we should clarify something: WeShotJR will remain a blog. It is a blog, will be a blog. We're collaborating to get it into its own space, with its own look and with a few extra bells and whistles. Do not fear, loyal JR-vians, doesn't have the will or authority to make changes you would disapprove of.

11:16 AM  
Blogger stonedranger said...

well the main reason why we do it is to avoid making friends with the bands that we talk about, because we feel like that might influence how we cover those bands, whether we like it or not. We kind of wanted to stay outside of the politics of local music, at least as much as we can while still making the site worth going to. We don't know how long we will be able to stay anonymous, and if we are "outed" like Zak says, we will probably keep doing it.

Also, we kind of thought it would be good for our personal lives too, since we wouldn't have people coming up and talking to us about the blog or getting mad about things we say on here. Maybe that is kind of wimpy, but we are in fact wimps.

And we really don't have any hidden agenda... we really don't get anything out of the site whether we compliment everyone or talk a bunch of shit. But I guess we could in fact be members of Undoing of David Wright or some other band that is just out to promote our own stuff, and I guess we have no way of proving that we aren't. But other than that scenario, us being someone that benefits from good publicity on here (and we doubt whether it really has that much of an effect anyway), there really isn't any other way we COULD benefit from this site becaue no one knows who we are, and therefore, no one can really hook us up with anything in exchange for anything we do or say around here.

And don't worry, the blog will be the EXACT same as far as content, other than that we hope to add more pictures, have a better look for the blog overall, and add a couple other voices now and again just to help us out (and we will tell you who is saying what, obviously.) Other than that, same old shit.

11:54 AM  
Blogger stonedranger said...

also, the fact that we didn't really understand the difference between a "blog" and a "website" might show you that we do in fact need some help.

12:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anonymity is their gimmick.
gimmicks sell products and shouldn't influence industries or scenes.

marketing misdirection shouldn't be confused with protection of privacy.

clearly the connection between dconstruction & weshotjr is older than they note. the domain was bought by dconstuction and forwarded there until this week.

and if you were to connect with anyone, dconstruction is irrelevant. talking with josh and other dallas chumps 9 times in 9 months. that's not success or influence, that's apathy and boring.

i guess it doesn't matter though, because in the end, not enough people read or listen to dconstuction /weshotjr for them to be taken seriously.

12:24 PM  
Blogger willdowdy said...

Hey.... sounds like some fairly positive changes going on. me and my buddy have been planning on filming local bands anyway (we've done a few and are always looking for more) so depending on if we can get editing etc done in a timely fashion (i don't do the editing) i think that'd be something that we'd love to do.


12:34 PM  
Blogger said...

Yes! More bashing! We love it.

A few points:
1.) the / conversation started on February 1. We bought the domain on February 8, as a favor and to protect the WeShotJR identity. The anonymous authors of WeShotJR own the domain, by agreement. We should have had it pointing to the blog from the beginning; that was my (Lindsay's) oversight.
2.) I have *no clue* what you're talking about when you accuse WeShotJR of marketing misdirection. Even if it were a marketing gimmick - and we're staking every ounce of our irrelevance and apathy on the fact that it is not - I'd say, "brilliant!" If we need to be sarcastic and scornful of commerce, then surely there are better targets than a local band or not-for-profit website.
3.) I think this is funny: "Anonymous said...anonymity is their gimmick."
4.) You're probably right about being irrelevant. We don't have a huge listenership (but are proud of that which we do have), don't post that often and have had some bum guests. I'll admit to all of that. But be careful with your reasoning. You wouldn't dare apply the "not enough people listen to -insert-obscure-indie-band-you-and-only-you-love-here- for them to be taken seriously." This is of course a spurious comparison (art to criticism), but I don't believe it's too far off. Feel free to disagree. You seem good at that.
4.) I find it very curious that, despite your vociferous claims that we are indeed irrelevant, and that you so clearly hold WeShotJR in contempt, that you insist on this conversation - and come to it so quickly and well-informed. Why the sourness, Anonymous, Web-Stalking Lurker?
5.) In general: is anyone else as amazed as I am at the vituperative character of these discussions? Really, we are talking only about air. True, these movements of air by speakers or instruments are truly important to me (us), but, come on: air? Creates all this?

1:01 PM  
Blogger said...

Please: no one accuse me of being incapable of counting. I see the mistake, and it was just that: a mistake. I can just hear the furious typing of some bitter misanthrope, burning to prove how much an idiot I am...

1:05 PM  
Blogger stonedranger said...

first let me say to Will:

That sounds great, email me with your contact information:

2:23 PM  
Blogger stonedranger said...

And I guess I didn't really think to spell out every detail of our agreement and when we met, but I'd like for you to point out anywhere that I imply that we JUST decided to do this, and then to point out how that affects anything that we have done or said.

And believe me, we know that not enough people read this site. Everyone should read it because we are really bad ass and know more about music than everyone you've ever met put together. Duh! Of course more people should read it. And I'm not sure what number of people would have to read it before it becomes important, either. Could you tell us? If we ever hit that number, we'll be sure to let you know.

And about the gimmick thing, I guess you should probably note that we aren't selling anything on here really... and you know what, it kind of IS a gimmick. Of course the reasons we gave for not wanting to give our names are true, but I must admit that I did think people would have fun trying to guess who we were. That was a secondary consideration to the issues of privacy and a kind of fairness that I mentioned earlier, but if you want us to admit that it ran through our minds that being anonymous might create a little buzz about the site, then you win. Because we did. But if that is the main reason why the small number of people who read this site do, then I think you can rest assured that they will probably lose interest soon enough, and this site will go away forever. I seriously doubt we will be able to maintain the interest of people around here for much longer if the only reason they come on is to figure out who we are.

2:36 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

whoa, i wasn't insinuating anything w/ my comment, hope i didn't start all of this. i was just wondering your motive for remaining anonymous.

4:10 PM  
Blogger stonedranger said...

no problem Chris, I asked people to ask me questions and offer criticism, and this is exactly what you did... and in a thoughtful way I might add. Thanks.

And also, every time I go on GVB or see one of your comments on here, I can't help but try to figure out in my head exactly what that little kid sounds like when he screams "THATS RACIST!" I laugh my ass off just about every time.

4:14 PM  
Anonymous jason said...

anonyimity yields impartiality. kudos to you for keeping it that way even though at times i'm sure you would love to introduce yourself to random people/bands you see or write about, you don't.

it helps keeps this real and not sugar-coated or biased. keep it up. me and my bandmates love reading this blog.

4:26 PM  
Blogger stonedranger said...

thanks jason.

5:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

keep doing what you are doing. You guys have integrity and good taste. I read your blog almost religously now and will continue to do so. YOu actually inspire me to go see more local bands that other local media outlets consitently overlook. I checked out that David Wright stuff and I am shocked that I had not read anything about them before. Such a unique band with impeccable taste and good tunes. How did they slip under the radar?

5:16 PM  
Anonymous ntbb said...

they slip under the radar cause the "media" here doth sucketh. i mean, the Observer? the Observer? gimme a break!

6:42 PM  
Blogger willdowdy said...

yeah, i gave up on the observer a long time ago.... i mean, they wonder why MAX CADDIE (sp?) doesn't have more fans @ their shows but only mention The Undoing... when it's part of someone else's quote.

...their finger is not on the pulse of dallas at all. deffinately seems to have more to do w/ who buys the adds or somehow pays their bills.

random but i felt like sharing this: has anyone else seen it?

April 14th, Austin (unfortunately they get this line-up) @ Flamingo Cantina.
Zom Zoms, The Strange Boys, The Undoing of David Wright, Cry Blood Apache, and Attractive and popular. that show for real? cause, i mean.... DAMN

9:21 PM  
Blogger stonedranger said...

yeah, that sounds like a pretty damn good show.

9:57 PM  
Anonymous zak said...

man, somehow I missed the end of that other debate about TXGigs. Good stuff there. Obviously this is making an impact...early, new, yeah... but it will grow even more.

2:39 AM  
Anonymous clay said...

just wanted to applaud the use of the word...vituperative.

9:26 AM  
Anonymous ntbb said...

Sam M equals the record store geek (CD Source) who no one would ask any questions of because he didn't know anything. Check that fact. I don't even want to know what he did for Wilonsky to land his gig as "Music Editor". No, I don't wanna know! The visuals are so horrible!

3:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I personally believe that one of the morons behind the sparrows is involved in this somehow... oh wait... nevermind. That would require intelligence and taste.

2:55 PM  

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