I was too overwhelmed by tiredness and gratitude last night to comment on the birthday stuff so I will do so here. What excites me about it is the diversity of approaches – travelogues, anecdotes, analyses, hilarious rantings, confessions – that the contributors took to writing about something as simple and enormous as an ‘underrated pop song’. What also excites me is that so many of the contributors mixed up musical comment with personal memories – lots of the covering letters I got said stuff like, oh, I’m sorry if this is too personal. No, that’s the point. You don’t listen in a vacuum. You don’t listen with perfect blank ears. Who you are and where you are and what you’re thinking is important.

So what really excites me is that I’ve managed to find 26 sites which have started off in the last 12 months alone – and there must be tons more – who mostly seem to instinctively know this. Music writing shouldn’t be something which gets cut off from the rest of life. It shouldn’t be thought of as more or less real than writing about love or sex or the washing-up, particularly since music writing often is about love or sex or the washing up.

Twenty-six sites aren’t enough. Let’s have more! Anyone who’s ever kept a diary can write about pop music. Anyone who’s ever kept a diary and listens to pop music probably is writing about it. Somewhere along the line a ‘rock journalist’ turned from somebody who sold us the pop facts to somebody who sold us the pop opinions. Maybe Jann Wenner did it, or Richard Meltzer or that bloke who did Crawdaddy. Who cares? I don’t. We don’t need to buy any more opinions: we just need to listen to each others.

Here’s one tag: <body>

Here’s two more: <a href> <p>

Go and make a site.

New York London Paris Munich   Pop