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A Letter To Modern Music Analysis

Some words from the owner on the state of the publication

Dear readers and writers of Modern Music Analysis,

I joined Medium in December of 2020, in the midst of the pandemic. As many did at the time, I needed an outlet for creative expression and maybe a little extra cash on the side. Initially just writing okay poetry, I had little idea of what would come with time. My first piece, about The Weeknd, was the spark-plug for what would become the Modern Music Analysis publication. One day in January, I finally decided to make the seedling of an idea I had for a publication come to fruition.

I had my apprehensions at first: would anyone bother reading? What’s the point? Can I even do this? At first, things started really slow. Trying to navigate an unfamiliar website and being in charge of every aspect of a “business” was frustrating. Having to create a logo, color scheme, mission statement, purpose, and a derivative motivation took a lot of perseverance. At some points, I was fueled by spite. But patience eventually came as the views started to come along with writers for the publication. A lot of our traffic came from reviews on the latest albums, usually covered by one of the editors. After Hours, Call Me If You Get Lost, The Off Season, The House Is Burning, Happier Than Ever, Donda, Certified Lover Boy, The Melodic Blue, and LP! were all big successes and some of the best albums of the year.

To the readers, your dedication to reading our works, leaving great commentary and feedback, and your mutual love for music was essential to the continued drive I’ve had in keeping this publication running. I don’t know how many new readers our work has reached but I hope we’ve captivated enough eyes with our in-depth writing to keep you coming back. Since its creation, Modern Music Analysis has amassed over 60 thousand views, with an average of 300 unique visitors a day. This breadth is something I never imagined would happen.

These reasons are why it’s hard to make the following announcement: the publication Modern Music Analysis will be taking a step backwards, rather than forward. What does this mean exactly? To be perfectly honest, I don’t know. One thing I’m certain of is that the publication will continue to exist. However, it will not exist in its current state for much longer. I want to say minimizing is the best word for what will happen. We’ll still be here, all the works will remain submitted if you allow them to be. I will be still submitting here and there as well. The most obvious changes will be the end of the MMA podcast, the MMA newsletter, the website, and most likely the social media pages.

Why? I’ve thought on it a while now, and there’s still no exact reason I can place my finger on. Do I think this publication can be a smash hit? Definitely, maybe one day. There are some personal factors though. Right now, I’m in college and don’t have as much time as I used to when I first started this journey. My motivation isn’t as headstrong as it once was to create a premiere publication on Medium. While I have zero regrets for doing so, the resources I’ve put in to make it all happen have started to take its toll. Once, I was determined to make progress every single day to make this publication better. That turned into every week or so, and even less so now. I consider this publication my baby and I would hate to see it malnourished. Also, I find that there are plenty of other great, even better, options for reading and submitting music related content. Namely, The Riff. If you haven’t check out that page, go check it out! They’re the leading music page on Medium as of right now. As a result, I have come to the terms that this may be the end.

Unless something drastic changes, Modern Music Analysis will be a shell of what it is now. Beautiful, in-depth analysis will still be the trademark, just not as often as I would like it to be. As much as I hate to admit that, I think it is only fair that I openly confront it rather than letting the infrastructure collapse slowly over time leaving writers and readers confused alike. I’m trying to be as candid as I can about no longer endeavoring on this journey. It’s hard to let go, especially since it was something that I singularly focused on for so long. I believe this experience has opened doors for my future and has clarified my path forward and who I am as a person.

Do I still love writing about music and sharing my perspective with you all? Most definitely. I would still love to see your work on the publication, still see the love for music flow through each of our writing. If not, then that’s okay as well. Life moves on whether we want it to or not. One day in the future, I will be revisiting the prospect of keeping this publication running at its height.

Until then, thank each and every one of you.

Josh Herring

If you have any questions whatsoever regarding this statement, feel free to reach out to me. The Modern Music Analysis email is still open, or you can reach out to me personally through the comments or private notes.

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