Welcome to Geoff Wilbur’s Music Blog. I’ll do my best to introduce myself and my blog in this, my first post.
For more than 13 years, from 1989-2003, I was a widely published music journalist. The last 9 ½ of those years, I was the publisher of Geoff Wilbur’s Renegade Newsletter. Please see the “About the Publisher” page of this blog or read about my writing/publishing background here, on my personal website).
My primary career began to get in the way, and I’ve spent more than 12 years as a “civilian,” outside the music industry. But a little more than four years ago the first event occurred that began my journey back to music journalism, and in the summer of 2013 things really began to accelerate as I started aggressively seeking out great new music (in the couple of hours a month I could devote to it). The first several articles, in fact, will chronicle the sequence of events that brought me back to the fold, complete with reviews of recordings and performances by the great artists involved.
After that, the blog will settle into a mix of reviews and interviews, as well as, perhaps, some other music-related articles. I’ve received requests from some of my old Geoff Wilbur’s Renegade Newsletter writers, as well as others in the industry (either as musicians or on the business side) about writing for the blog. Indeed, I’ll write but also serve as publisher/editor, with regular contributing bloggers (and maybe the occasional guest blogger). In that respect, this will be like any other publication. The difference is that most of us have other “day job” obligations, so there will be no deadlines. This first week, as I roll out my “road back to music journalism” series, I will post one or two posts a day. But the blog doesn’t have any subscribers yet, so I don’t yet worry about overfilling anyone’s mailbox. At the conclusion of the “road back” series, I plan no more than one blog post per day (quite possibly zero on most days), so feel free to subscribe without worrying about being inundated with e-mails.
Since this will be an after-hours and weekend project for those of us involved, and because it won’t be a money-making venture (at least, unless you, my readers, make it a wild success and force my hand), there won’t be much promotion of Geoff Wilbur’s Music Blog. Therefore, I’m not sure how large our readership will be. But after more than a decade away from music journalism, I’ll be banking on the reputation I have with the music industry and music scene veterans familiar with my writing career and with the many years I published Geoff Wilbur’s Renegade Newsletter. I’ll hold Geoff Wilbur’s Music Blog to the same level of integrity. Therefore, I figure even if I don’t get a lot of hits, the reviews and interviews will at least be something from a respected source the bands we cover can link to, even if they’re nothing more than that. But I promise those of you who subscribe to or read this blog will be treated to coverage of some outstanding music. And like I said, hopefully a much larger following will discover this blog and turn to it as a resource for discovering great music.
For Bands and Publicists
For those of you looking for coverage in this blog, I suggest you reach out to me and my writers, but be patient. Since we all have other “day jobs,” we don’t have as much time to discover new music as we’d like. So please, suggest a song or two we can find online, and we’ll try to find time to listen and get in touch with you if we’d like a full collection of your songs to review. At that point, you can send a larger collection to us via e-mail (or send a dropbox link to our e-mail) or, if you prefer, you can send physical product – you can discuss that with the particular writer – and unless we’re surprised that we aren’t impressed, we’ll probably review you. Unlike Geoff Wilbur’s Renegade Newsletter back in the day, which strove to review every physical recording we received in a descriptive manner (allowing readers to decide if they wanted to further check out the music), we’ll probably just write about our favorites on the blog. I’ll leave up to each writer, of course, the level to which something must rise in their opinions before they review it. Even so, our goal will be to describe the music so you can decide for yourself whether or not you want to further check it out.
And if I or any of my writers fail to get back to you when you reach out to us, please cut us some slack. I’ve been unable to keep up with the musicians who’ve started following me on twitter when I was just a former music journalist; I can only imagine I’ll fall even farther behind now that I’m writing again. So if you don’t hear from us, give us a month and try again. And be kind. We’re just people with other day jobs and outside lives doing this because we love it, even though we really don’t have enough time.
Do We Cover Your Style of Music? Yes, We Probably Do
We plan to cover every style of music. In my years as a music journalist, I covered all styles of music and learned to enjoy the very best of just about every style in the process. My other writers may have broader or narrower focuses. We’ll assemble a page with writer bios that will attempt to address this. Or you can just look for writers whose reviews you’ve enjoyed in their prior Geoff Wilbur’s Music Blog entries.
As an aside to bands, this is also the reason we request you include band/artist bios and clippings (or links to them) when you send us material for review. Often, if a journalist is having trouble getting started on a review, he or she will turn to that material to jump-start the thought process. Sometimes the journalist will agree with what’s written and begin to hear those elements; other times it will spark a thought process about how he or she hears something different from what is suggested in the press material. In either case, it’s a helpful tool. Please do include that with your submissions.
For Industry Executives and Music Fans
Our goal is share some great music with you. Some of it will be unsigned and independent. (A majority of what I’ve discovered lately has been.) Some of it will be performers with record deals. We hope industry execs read our blog to discover great undiscovered music. We hope fans will read our blog to discover great music, period. As was the case with my publication many, many years ago, the goal will be to describe the music and allow you to decide. We’ll include links to help you sample the music online. And we hope you’ll enjoy reading the blog as much as we’ll enjoy writing it.
During the last decade-plus, I had set aside music journalism because of other obligations. This, however, seems like a way I will reasonably be able to resume that journey. I look forward to it.
So welcome to Geoff Wilbur’s Music Blog. Of course, a lot of the material in this introductory post will be duplicated and/or adapted for some of the informational pages elsewhere on this website. Don’t be surprised if you notice. And…
Rock on, everyone!
Geoff Wilbur, Your Intrepid Blog Publisher