I had first come to this site back in July of 2010 with the intention of starting to do some blogging then. Obviously I never did anything beyond that, but have now decided that with the coming new year, I am going to jump into the world of blogging in a big way.
With my blog, I intend to do several things that include using the format as an online journal of sorts to talk about things going on in my life, to comment upon things going in my life and in the world at large.
As a freelance journalist–I am also planning to start doing the sorts of stories on many topics that I want to cover, in the way I want to cover them without concern over whether I will have any newspaper, magazine or whatever that will agree to publish those stories.
I have many interests in life that range from music, to politics, to history, travel, food, and many other topics.
When it comes to music—the primary music genre that interests me is the “Americana” or “American Roots” music. That genre is a bit broad and not really an easy one to pin down, but I care to categorize it as music done by serious musicians that wish to make music influenced by music from the past harkens back to earlier and more pure forms of folk, “country western,” and bluegrass that does not fit the narrowly confined parameters set by the record company executives in places like Nashville’s Music Row.
Modern popular country music is so far removed from its roots that it is hardly recognizable any longer. It has become highly formulaic with the music having to hit a “punch list” of points that are so narrow and restraining. Instead of promoting true musical artistry, the goal of the industry is to produce “stars” who sell large number of record, can go on tour to large scale venues with the “stars” performing to huge crowds.
I simply do not care for this sort of music, preferring the music done in simpler and “purer” ways. Some of the main performers who do music in the “Americana” style do range from well known artists like Willie Nelson who went from being a more mainstream Nashville artists to becoming one of the leading lights of the “Outlaw” bastion of this style of music. Others in this class include the late Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings, Glen Campbell, Merle Haggard, Hank Williams, Jr and his son Hank 3-who is really out there along with Waylon’s son, Shooter. Other hardcore Outlaws are Ray Wylie Hubbard and David Allan Coe.
Other softer Americana stars of note are Emmylou Harris, John Prine and John Hiatt. Newer members of this genre include The Civil Wars, Hayes Carl and Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit.
Here in my part of the country, near the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky area, we have our own set of individual musicians and bands whose music falls into the “Americana” category and it is my intention to begin to interview these artists, posting the interviews on here.
With my interest in politics, I hold a BA degree in Political Science, and with 2012 being a presidential election year with Ohio nearly always playing a pivotal role in the election of our presidents, I also want to get out there and cover the political happenings in this battleground state.
To be totally open about my political leanings, I do tend to nominally be a Democrat and by the standards of the day—I am mostly a “liberal/progressive.” That said, when it comes to the reporting I intend to do, I will do that straight up, done in as an objective manner that I know how giving each side their due.
I will however do my share of blogs expressing my opinions, views, “takes” and such on the political scene and when that is the case–it will be very clear that those are “editorials” and not reportage.
There are other things I wish to do with this blog in the future, like plans to include adding links to audio stories and videos.