Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Blogs struggle as America holidays

Is it just because it is the 4th of July, or is the steam going out of the music blogging bandwagon? Despite bullish media predictions and Technorati tracking 46.8 million blogs and 2.6 billion links it seems like an awful lot of music blogs are slowing down, going into hiatus, or just plain disappearing. (Among the notable exceptions, of course, is a blog called On An Overgrown Path.) But one trend which is emerging is the corporate music blog, which we first saw with the Naxos blog hosted by my friends on Sequenza21. Now we have the Gramophone hosting blogs from violinist Daniel Hope, music publicist Albert Imperato (who happens to represent a magazine called the Gramophone in the US), and violist of the Pacifica Quartet, Masumi Rostad. All are certainly worth a browse. But the problem is, as with all blogs written by industry 'insiders', it is difficult to separate the message in the lines of text from the agenda between the lines of text.

Some fascinating revelations from the Gramophone blogs:

* I took the Fifth Symphony out for a jog on my new iPod shuffle and I was amazed once again by how great Beethoven's symphonies are for a 30 to 45 minute run! No matter how my ass is dragging on a jog, when the finale of Beethoven's Eroica or Fifth or Seventh kicks in I take off like there's no tomorrow: (Albert Imperato).

* I didn't pay for the Gary Bertini Mahler cycle I took to the country this weekend, but listening to the Scherzo from the Fifth Symphony and the complete Fourth Symphony was a revelatory experience (thank you Mark Forlow of EMI Classics for sending the set to me!): (Albert Imperato).

* I’ll start off the day with one of my favorite ‘unknown’ pieces: Dudley Buck’s ‘Festival Overture on the Star-Spangled Banner’. What an ingenious, entertaining and fun little gem. With any luck you’ll find it on an EMI Classics compilation somewhere: (Albert Imperato, whose company 21C Media Group happens to represent ... EMI Classics)

* I am on vacation right now. I can't seem to stop sleeping: (Masumi Rostad).

But it does get better, particularly Daniel Hope on the Pope, Auschwitz, and the music of emotion.

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8 comments:

Phillip said...

"as with all blogs written by industry 'insiders', it is difficult to separate the message in the lines of text from the agenda between the lines of text." Amen. I'm inherently skeptical about "sponsored" blogs. But it looks to me like there are an increasing number of blogs by individual performing musicians, including many who fall a bit outside the mainstream, defy easy categorization, or cover territory other than the obvious urban centers.

Pliable said...

Philip, I totaly agree that 'it looks to me like there are an increasing number of blogs by individual performing musicians, including many who fall a bit outside the mainstream, defy easy categorization, or cover territory other than the obvious urban centers.'

Recommendations for interesting blogs by performing musicians welcomed here in the form of comments. But the standard health warning, self-promotion of irrelevant sites will meet the usual fate.

Pliable said...

That was quick ...

Roger Bourland is a composer, professor of music at UCLA, and also a reader of On An Overgown Path.

So I can't refuse to link to his blog Red Black Window can I?

Pliable said...

And the New York Times seems to agree with On An Overgrown Path.

Pattyoboe said...

Well gee, I'm not taking a break! I continue to post in typical pattyramble fashion ... despite the fact that I'm unemployed all summer long, aside from my private studio. Sigh.

I suppose I ought to stop blogging and take care of our overgrown yard.

But that would be physically taxing work. I'm not sure I'm up for that, and I am up for blogging. Always. :-)

(But is this a shameless plug for me? Probably. Delete me if you'd like! I can handle it.)

Pliable said...

Patty, you most certainly won't be deleted - professional musicians always welcome here.

But you undersell yourself, here is a link to the real thing - oboeinsight, a great music blogs that is alive and posting with a July 4 story.

Pliable said...

Here's another great musician blog which I came across today via a Technorati link to On An Overgrown Path.

The blogger is concert pianist Paul Kenyon from San Diego, and this is the link.

kenwoodscc said...

I'm with Pattyoboe- this is a good time of year for musicians to work on their blogs. Please come and visit mine, if you're at all curious, with appologies for the self promotion. http://kennethwoods.net/blog1