Memo to writers: if you have any skeletons in your closet, better close that door now. Above: the missing writer, who resurfaced on the boardwalk of Asbury Park.
By Uncle Blurt
Here at ye olde BLURT we go through bloggers like Spin editors go through young female interns, and while we ain’t proud of it, at least the body count is less than, say, what’s looming in Egypt re: the military dictatorship and the Muslim Brotherhood. (That’s a topical reference for those of you still recovering from SXSW and unable to muster any current events knowledge.) Still, as with the still-deepening mystery of Malaysian Flight 370 (hey! two topical, and potentially politically incorrect, references in a potential paragraph! does that make us The Onion?), we have remained flummoxed as to the fate of our erstwhile blogger Johnny Mnemonic, who for a year or so back in 2011-2012 regaled us with tales of his adventures in the music journalism biz. From backstage blowjobs rendered by copy-hungry record label publicists to scurrilous goings-on between magazine editors and the advertising execs who supply them with, er, editorial suggestions, Mr. Mnemonic was the proverbial Johnny-on-the-spot when it came to peeling back the curtain on how things got done back in the pre-internet era.
His pen name was a nom du scribe, obviously, as he was (and apparently still is) actively working within the biz; while he came to prominence during the late ‘80s and into the early ‘00s, he eventually moved to London where he was employed by the MTV empire (hence his reticence at revealing his true name). Yet after a series of pointed entries in his “Music Journalism 101” BLURT blog—in which his stated mission was to explore the foibles and failures of the fabled rock-write industry, aiming to unmask its hypocrisy as well as its hip-ocrysy over the years as he experienced it; comments posted by various industry types confirmed that he had ruffled his share of feathers—he essentially dropped off the radar (so to speak).
Turns out J.M. wasn’t dead, he was just—like the great Flaming Lips teeshirt once proclaimed—“only sleeping.” When we debuted our new series “The College Rock Chronicles” at BLURT today, the dude felt sufficiently energized to get back in touch and pledge his incoming participation once again.
“If you clowns are going to eulogize a bunch of losers from the ‘80s,” writes John, in a salt-water-soggy, encrypted email that may or may not originate from somewhere in another hemisphere, “I at least should be given a chance to offer some alternate viewpoints. I mean, seriously—you recently touted the greatness of Camper Van Beethoven, whose lone claim to fame was a novelty song about skinheads and bowling? Really? And Boston no-hopers Dumptruck? Say that band’s name a few times to yourself, listen closely, and ask yourself if it inspires you to rock. I was on hand when both of them, and loads others, had their flickering-lightbulb-moment-under-the-sun, and it wasn’t particularly illuminating, if you catch my drift. 30 years of retrospection (yes, I coin a term) doesn’t make them any better.
“I just got back last week from Austin, incidentally, and while I’d love to say that I was doing shots with Lady Gaga and snorting lines with the CEO of Pandora, let’s just agree that SXSW in 2014 was about as exciting as CMJ was in 1998. Some of your readers may actually get that reference. So my plans are to be reporting on that industry debacle and much, much more in the very near future. Not to mention challenging you every step of the way with your so-called college rock life. You’ve been warned.”
Indeed we have. Game on, Sir John.