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Fun Fun Fun?: Thirty Years Chronicling Austin Music

In 1986, in the wake of MTV’s The Cutting Edge crashing the Austin music scene, then-Austin Chronicle columnist Michael Corcoran penned an infamous screed declaring “Austin Music Sucks!”. If ever there was cue for hometown hate mail at The Austin Chronicle, this was it. As The Austin Chronicle celebrates its thirtieth anniversary and the publication of The Austin Chronicle Music Anthology, we want to take the opportunity to look back at how both the Austin music scene and the role of music criticism have evolved over the decades. Scouring a colorful history of anecdotes, journalism, fandom, and flaming, we’ll use Austin and The Austin Chronicle as a microcosm to look at how local music scenes get born, blossom, break big, and burn. Slicing through the passion and the perils of covering the hometown scene, this panel will explore the changing landscape of music journalism from an historical perspective and the inevitable love/hate relationship that evolves between local publications and the music they cover. How do journalists deal with the potential conflicts of interest in criticizing scenes with which they are so intimately involved? Is it better for a band to start with local traction, or aim nationally? Do local music scenes, and the publications that cover them, breed creativity or unproductive competition? And what is future for cultural community publications like alt weeklies in the shifting media landscape?


MODERATOR Doug Freeman Austin Chronicle

Michael Corcoran Austin American-Statesman

Margaret Moser Music Writer N/A

Award-winning rock journalist MARGARET MOSER is senior editor and writer for The Austin Chronicle, and has been a commentator for NPR as well as writing for Sony Records and MOJO magazine. Moser directs the Chronicle’s annual Austin Music Awards show during SXSW and serves on the Austin Music Commission.

Raoul Hernandez Music Editor Austin Chronicle

RAOUL HERNANDEZ has been Music Editor and a Senior Editor at the Austin Chronicle for 17 years.

Austin Powell Lead Music Columnist Austin Chronicle

The co-editor of The Austin Chronicle Music Anthology, AUSTIN POWELL has served as the local weekly’s music news columnist since 2007. He hosts The Daily Dose on 101X and regularly guests on KUT’s Texas Music Matters. His work has also appeared in the Houston Press, Chicago Reader, and AP Magazine.


Friday March 18



Austin Convention Center

Room 10A

500 E Cesar Chavez St




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