Today is my first day as the Music Editor for Brooklyn Magazine so I’d like to introduce myself. I moved to New York in 2011, and have been writing about music in various capacities for the past four years at sites like the now-defunct AOL Music hub, Complex and Pigeons & Planes, Noisey, Village Voice, Rookie, Buzzfeed, Consequence of Sound, MTV News, Billboard, and most recently, at Stereogum. My tastes tend toward folk and country music, rap and hip-hop, female songwriters, and shoegazey post-punk. Of course, my coverage doesn’t only extend to my own immediate inclinations.
Aside from genre, I’m also prone to scrutinizing lyrics and writing about music from a personal, subjective position – that’s always felt like the only way for me to do it authentically. I’m thrilled to bring all those experiences and my own perspective to Brooklyn Magazine. This will not be a music website that focuses solely on stuff that happens within the actual geographical confines of Brooklyn, though it will include hyper-local stories when they are compelling and interesting enough to merit the coverage. We will not be repurposing every news story of the day for the sake of yardsticking our competitors. I am just experienced enough to be sick of the ways the internet blogging complex is broken, and just young enough to think I can change it. Maybe I can, maybe I can’t. But I’m going to fucking try anyway.
In every way that I can prevent it, there will not be clickbait. I won’t publish content that seeks to incite negativity, but I will publish things that provoke. If a viral news story is unfolding on social media — or elsewhere, though there seems to be little elsewhere these days — I do plan to cover it. This may be Brooklyn Magazine, but our borough is just as much a national stage as any other, and our community is just as concerned with the international as they are the local. That’s a great segue to note more about covering the hyper-local. As grand as the national stage the internet allows is, I do live in Brooklyn for a reason. It’s a community I fiercely love, and one I want to cover with the kind of loving curation many platforms do not afford. Brooklyn Magazine‘s music coverage will afford it.
The coverage will highlight the long-silenced voices of women, people of color, and artists who embrace queer identities and sexualities. I hope to inject voice and tone into our news coverage. Plenty of pieces have been written about the dearth of female music writers (although we are here, by the way), or the abuse that we face on a daily basis, and we will seek to combat the incessant stream of sexist tripe that seems to spill into the music industry’s coverage, representation and culture every single fucking day. In such cases, the goal will not be objective reporting, but reporting that destabilizes the heteronormative, patriarchal capitalism we have all been socialized in. Yet, I don’t anticipate this will be the bulk of the stories and commentary that are published here. I won’t be out looking for trash, but when it washes up on my shore I will identify it as such, bag it, and burn it.
Instead, the bulk of our stories will hone in on the messy, tangled qualities of music itself instead of focusing on rote celebrity. We will also treat pop music like it deserves as much analysis and attention as indie or classic rock (because it does). My purpose is to focus on lyrical, emotional writing about music. If you’re familiar with my writing scope and style, expect to see that expanded here; pieces that focus not so much on the music’s technical process, but why and how it arrived, through what spiritual means and what its creators hope it will achieve. Thanks for reading.