Saturday, August 09, 2008
Death and transfiguration of the journalist
Is it surprising that we keep hearing of the death and transfiguation of the music journalist? Take the gushing profile above of Gustavo Dudamel by Guardian chief arts writer Charlotte Higgins which took up half a page in the paper's main news section on Friday.
Where are the insights that could not be gleaned from reading a few press releases? Where are the opinions from anyone other than three hardly objective members of the UK culture club, all of whom have booked Dudamel to conduct? Where is the balance among the fawning endordements? Where is the information that the author of the profile went on a trip to Italy to hear Dudamel conduct that was funded by his record label? Where is the information that the author of the glowing profile was also commissioned by the same record label to write the booklet notes for a recent Dudamel CD release?
Maybe the death of music journalism and its transfiguration into blogging has nothing to do with the often cited dominance of the internet. Maybe it's because bloggers (with a few notable exceptions) don't receive agent's press releases, don't receive free review CDs, don't receive complimentary concert tickets, don't get invited by record labels to write sleeve notes or travel to far-away places and don't have the direct dial numbers of culture club members in their BlackBerrys.
Now read about a great music journalist who wasn't afraid of having an opinion - even if it was sometimes wrong.
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