Tuesday 24th JulyJuly 25, 2012
I’m sorry, no post tonight. I am really quite exhausted after a couple of long tough days at work and not getting much sleep last night, primarily due to the horrible humidity that suddenly hit us yesterday after many weeks and months of rain. Tonight I sit and type this while close to just falling asleep here at the keyboard. i do have a virtually complete review of Michael Pisaro and Toshiya Tsunoda’s recent collaborative album close to being able to publish it, but quite frankly I don’t think I have the wherewithal tonight to do even as much as add the final touches to a nearly complete review.
It has been preying on my mind for a while about where to take this blog in the future, and this might be a fitting time to ask some questions. Obviously, writing here daily has a considerable impact on the quality of what I post here. This is something I always realised and have always accepted. While the general rule of thumb out there for most people is to strive for quality over quantity, I have quite deliberately attempted to force the quantity levels high, specifically so as to provide an outlet for music that perhaps wouldn’t have five hundred words spilt on it otherwise. I have written about the Pisaros, Rowes and Prévosts of course, and written about them a lot, but I have also found room for music that perhaps might not be read about so much without my efforts. I have obviously don’t my best to also try and keep the quality high alongside the quantity, but inevitably and understandably I hope, there has to be a trade off.
Reducing the number of times I write a week is something I have constantly thought about for the last three years. I am in no doubt that writing less frequently would increase the quality of my writing. The main reason I have shied away from doing this is that I do not manage to write about even two thirds of what I receive here as it is now, and reducing this percentage even lower would sadden me. Politically, and morally, while many would disagree I personally think it important to give a tiny glimpse of coverage to the lesser known musician as much as the more well known names. I worry about not being able to do this as much.
One idea buzzing around my head, which has been amplified a little this last week following Dan Warburton’s announcement that he will no longer publish the Paris Transatlantic reviews magazine is to widen The Watchful Ear out to a magazine style format and welcome in other writers, leaving me scope to write three or four times a week maybe, but also to bring in other voices. The end of PT is sad to me, and while I fully understand Dan’s reasons for stopping his work there, I think there is a need for music reviews still, and a music reviews site. New ventures in online publishing such as the forthcoming Surround site look like they will lean away from standard CD reviews. This is great, and that kind of more varied, creative music journalism is very much needed in this area of music, but I think while music is still “released” as a final product, be it on CD or as a download of some kind there is room for, and I think, a need for, reviews of the music.
So, taking TWE to some kind of post Bagatellen/PT site is one option floating around my skull, perhaps with a more personal blog from myself embedded within it. Another option is just to reduce the number of days I write here, perhaps to four days a week, regularly published on specific days. This option would remove the need for the admittedly pointless filler posts my current daily schedule demands, and probably wouldn’t see me write that many less CD reviews that I currently manage, which usually averages about four and a half a week.
So, I would appreciate people’s thoughts on this. Though my apologies if I don’t get to read them for a day or so as I am soon off to bed… I am certainly inclined to do something a little different with the site before too long, perhaps on my return from my annual break, which will be in September. In the meantime, here’s a picture I took at the weekend.