Wednesday, August 2, 2006
This column by Chris Dahlen makes an interesting argument: "pop culture today is primarily a technology story. And we don't know how to write about technology." He's arguing that the reason why there is no Hunter S. Thompson or Lester Bangs of cultural journalism these days is because they got to write about drugs, which was the driving force behind pop culture in their time, and writing about drugs is easier than writing about technology.
But I don't know ... it seems to me that there are plenty of people at least thinking about what technology does to us, at least in academic fields. And, in fact, plenty of people are writing about what blogs are doing to the world of labels, our own Curtis McCrary included (and if you know of other articles, post 'em below!).
I think perhaps there is no Hunter S. Thomspon or Lester Bangs because there are so many music publications that it's hard to single out one or even two be-all, end-all sources, and hence, hard for one writer to emerge as a voice in those be-all, end-all sources. There are too many bands and too many magazines for one or two voices to rise above the din. And why do we need one or two voices to tell us what to think? We have loads of brilliant music writers who postulate and suggest and make us think about what we should think, which is always better.
And who's to say everyone thought Thompson and Bangs were so important when they were writing? Everybody always believes that things were better way back when.
And here concludes my deconstruction of a Pitchfork column. Go watch that Jaguar commerical with a Spoon song in it and be confused. Lord knows I am.