Call me crazy, but there is nothing more rock n’ roll than a newborn baby. Up all night. Screaming. Drinking so much he pisses himself. In the first month of being a parent, I kept asking, “Where have I seen this behavior before?” And then it hit me: rock n’ roll, baby.
There are times when my son is crying and he looks at me in utter bewilderment, like Nigel from Spinal Tap folding mini-bread, as if to say, “This is a catastrophe!” Or when he’s in his sleep-rocker and wants us to hold him. He arcs his back and kicks his legs like a slippery Angus Young grooving on “Back in Black.”
But this is not a fair portrayal of my son. He is actually quite tame, especially now that he sleeps throughout the night and smiles throughout the day. (We wouldn’t mind one or two more naps during the day, but we’ll take what we can get.) And did I mention cute? He is the cutest baby in the world. Just look at him!
Coen came into existence during Behind the Setlist’s busiest month. Thankfully, I was able to step away and hand over the keys to our intrepid staff writer, J.T. Dawson, who did a phenomenal job as guest editor [read her wonderful Editor’s Note here]. Additionally, senior writer and BtS co-founder Jonathan Bautts doubled his usual workload, helping publish and post an incredible amount of content in addition to his usual stuff. Together, the pair kept the site moving and I was grateful for every “free” minute they gave me.
Oddly enough, it was this month—the month that I stepped away from BtS—when I was most proud of it.
As a founder, it was incredibly gratifying to see this passion project exist apart from me. Behind the Setlist was always meant to be bigger than its founders and writing staff. It was meant to be a vehicle for authentic music journalism and original storytelling, one that showcases hard-working, up-and-coming artists and spotlights looked-over industry-professionals working behind the scenes. A platform that doesn’t just tell stories, but inspires others to tell theirs.
In the month I was gone, BtS published more stories than ever before and continued to grow its audience base by a healthy margin. We told stories I was proud of, ones that stood apart from its makers, and that is all that a founder—or parent—could ask for.
As we continue to roll through August, I wanted to take a moment to pause and survey the site. We updated our menu and reorganized our categories, so hopefully it’s clearer. We altered our advertising and are still working out the kinks. Let us know if you see anything weird.
The writing remains strong. We’ve added a new contributor to our staff pool, writer and author Jim Beviglia, who has already penned two stories: A look back at Bob Seger’s ‘Live Bullet’ and a review of Conor Oberst’s recent performance in Wilkes-Barre. After a three-day stint at Summer NAMM, writer Colin Poulton profiled guitar pickup manufacturer Alex Avedissian of Avedissian Pickups. His upcoming story on Black 35 Guitars will be hitting internet stands soon.
J.T. Dawson remains as busy as ever, covering Warped Tour as well as interviewing the blues-rock sibling duo Jocelyn & Chris Arndt. Stay tuned for more from her. Craig Manning, Jonathan Bautts and James Battaglia also all have stories on the way.
And me? Despite sleep deprivation and diaper explosions, I have somehow managed to post five articles over the last couple weeks. My retrospective review of Guns N’ Roses’ San Francisco gig is one of my favorite pieces I’ve written for the site, but my profile on the music program in the Guatemala City Dump might be the most important. Stay tuned for my interview with Annie Hart, who recently appeared with her band Au Revoir Simone in two episodes of the INCREDIBLE reboot of Twin Peaks. (If anyone wants to talk Twin Peaks, email me. I’m dying to talk more about it.)
For now, I must step away. The baby is fussing and I swear, this sweet child o’ mine has a screech that could rival Axl Rose.
All the best,