Opinion » Note

Note: Stirring the Music Pot


We've had some heady discussions around the office lately. We've talked at length about the arts, including the function of fine art organizations in a community as well as alternative means of funding them and what sort of larger conclusion can be drawn about our community based on the successes or struggles of the arts. We've hypothesized about what a Tea Party nation would look like. And we've talked some about the dust Josh Gross kicked up with his blog post about bands he saw over a recent weekend.

On all counts, we were assessing the merit of editorial content, published and yet to be reported. As editor, I consider not only merit, but also the ways in which that content incrementally pushes the boundaries of what we do already. Leaning on those boundaries is important; without that effort we'd stagnate. Based on the negative reaction some BW readers had to Gross' blog post last week, it looks like maybe we haven't been leaning on those boundaries enough in our music coverage.

In Noise, we write about what we like. We interview the bands we know our readers are psyched to see come to town. We dole out attaboys to locals done good because there are some good things coming out of the scene here. But, in all honesty, we don't have a whole lot of objectivity on local music. Those of us who've been here a while have interviewed local bands many, many times. We drink with them, we've gone to school with them, we've known some of them for years and we've watched them evolve. Among the comments I was most dismayed to see written about Gross' reviews was "who is Josh Gross," as if he needs approval from the scene itself in order to pass judgment. Gross moved to Boise in March from Portland, a town that sets a high bar for its local musicians. He's a musician himself. And he has a very narrow window of opportunity to be objective about music in Boise before the small-town nature of this city sucks him in. Expect him to continue writing about music in Boise. Disagree with him if you want but at least do it based on more than knee-jerk emotional reaction.

And hopefully, you'll get just as riled up about our upcoming arts coverage.