Friday, June 05, 2009

Sign Of The Times?

The rumoured demise of JazzTimes — as yet not addressed by anyone associated with the venerable jazz magazine — is probably the worst news that anyone in the business needs to hear. The story, broken by Howard Mandel this week, created an instant storm of response on Facebook because industry insiders realize that the failure of a linchpin like JT can have wide-reaching effects... none of them good.

A followup piece by Howard speculates that Jazz Times itself fell victim to the death of yet another industry linchpin, the JVC-sponsored New York City jazz festival.

What impact this might have on Jazziz — already down to four issues a year — and DownBeat — currently celebrating its 75th anniversary with a commemorative issue — remains to be seen. Clearly, instrument manufacturers and electronics companies — the bread and butter advertisers for these publications — will re-direct some revenue to the remaining magazines, but experience tells me that when a big tree like JazzTimes falls in the forest it's a sign that something is deeply wrong in the woods.

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