It List: Thursday
I want to take some time out of my busy day to address a few things. This website was started by Stoned Ranger almost four years ago, in January of 2006, so it will reach the four-year mark next month. That's a lifetime on the internet, and we've seen a lot of bands, venues, writers, local music editors, and blogs come and go, a lot of obscure artists rise to the top, and a lot of chest-puffing booking people, DJ's, promoters, songwriters, and bands fade into obscurity after being promised that they would really "be somebody."
We really like a lot of you. Seriously. I've personally met a lot of great people, especially since we've been less and less anonymous over the years, and I am grateful to all the bands, DJ's, and behind the scenes types that make our lives easier. A common claim is that we are simply promoting our friends that are in bands or our friends who are DJ's. Like I said, I have met a lot of people through the blog, and in most cases I had no idea who any of these people were before I heard their music. So that's it in the chicken or the egg argument, I was almost always a fan first. If any of you are stupid enough to believe that we could possibly be friends with the thousands of people we've covered on this website, then so be it. I have very often put people on this site who I don't care for personally, or whose music I didn't care for, because it's still worth mentioning. It's not always about me. If we are actually friends with these thousands upon thousands of creative people, well, as someone once sang, "I can't help it if I'm lucky."
All that being said, it has come to my attention more often, and especially in recent weeks in particular, that some people expect certain things from us, whether it be in the form of favorable opinions, including this or that show, or making sure we list every single promoter and presenter, when they are often the organizer of an event, and that's all well and good, but it's the artists that people go to see. We have often been left out of the story ourselves when we present something, and sure it sucks, but it's understandable.
This blog has never and will never be about altering our content at the behest of anyone, but especially not promotions people, who seem to be the main culprits when it comes to this particularly aggravating act. Some people want us to tone things down simply so we can give away a few tickets here and there. Some people want us to promote whatever they do, well, just because. I don't want to name names and I don't want to really call anyone out, but let me give you a few examples of the kind of thing I'm talking about to give you some insight (all responsible parties have had their names deleted):
"We have noticed that a lot of the content regarding the bands that play at -DELETED- (or in the area for that matter) is (sic) discussed in a negative light by WSJR."
"It is house policy to support those who keep it honest and kind but above all respectful."
"Can you shed light on how giving tickets away correlates with our mission here at -DELETED-?"
"It is difficult on our end to explain to a band's management why we are giving away tickets to a show, when the writer has nothing positive to say about the band or show."
"U always either don't mention the event and if u do leave out -DELETED- or talk shit to create a buzz on ur site"
"Ur such a hater it's funny cause ur readership is falling and we r growing bigger n bigger lick a grundal u lil bitch"
All very charming. We don't make any money doing this; if anything, we have lost an obscene amount of money by continuing to do the site for as long as we have, through various life changes, employment changes, people moving away etc. So as you can imagine, our obligation to anyone except ourselves and our readers is minimal. We will always gladly work with anyone who wants to work with us on giving away tickets, mentioning shows etc. as we always have, but we would be doing everyone a huge disservice if we decided to alter our content on behalf of such relationships. Nobody expects local publications, news outlets, or other blogs to change their content, so why should we?
As for those who have asked us for help, simply to turn around and tell us how unpopular the site is, well, that's baffling behavior for sure. If the site is so unpopular then why were you demanding favorable coverage in the first place? For the record, the site's readership has grown by 20 percent over the previous year, every year since 2006, with the trend looking to continue after this month. That isn't bragging, that's just what Google Analytics tells me. Look, I don't necessarily get it, and I know there have been times where the site certainly reads better than other times, but I am really grateful to those who have stuck with us, and I'm just as grateful to those who have just come on here to bash us. Everyone counts here, so thanks. I hope you are all making it through what is usually a miserable and grueling time of year. -DL
Onto the list:
Skinny Puppy/Vverevvolf Grehv (The Granada): I've always been more of a Killing Joke kind of guy if I had to choose between aging Industrial pioneer bands that still exist, but I do think it's cool that Skinny Puppy had White Mice open for them on their last tour, a group that before that had played at House Of Tinnitus suddenly found itself at House Of Blues. Hilarious. At least this time, they'll be at The Granada. Fans of The Faint should also check this out to see Vverevvolf Grehv, which is a Faint side-project.
80's Night With DJ G (Hailey's): DJ G has had what is arguably one of the all-time most successful runs for a weekly dance party in North Texas, and so I have been a little saddened by the fact that he will be retiring as the resident DJ for 80's Night come New Year's, but it looks his last show will be a great one: Italians Do It Better act Twisted Wires, Vulgar Fashion, and more will be performing with him for his New Year's Eve swansong.
Wild In The Streets (The Amsterdam)
Billingham's Defense System (Fallout Lounge)