People often think the life of a music writer in the 12th largest city in country is glamorous.
Limos, backstage passes, gourmet meals, massages, trendy clothes, good drugs, tour buses and swanky hotels.
The reality: most of the musicians I write about travel by hatchback, play in venues that barely have a stage – let alone a backstage, drink the crappy beer in my fridge and sleep on my sofa.
I write a lot of previews: promoting the shows and giving people a glimpse of the musicians. I do most of my work online and via e-mail and telephone, often in my jammies. It is mostly a solitary and occasionally frustrating job. Musicians, venues and publicists campaign for coverage in the papers that I write for. And often then disappear – not returning phone calls or emails.
I write a column about music for the Broad Ripple Gazette a twice-a-month paper with a great reputation and ever-growing readership.
I often see things that have been covered in the Gazette later get covered in a larger paper.
For NUVO Newsweekly I mostly write music previews and profiles. I sometimes review shows and have worked on several feature stories. NUVO is known for its coverage of music, arts and social justice issues.
I am also part of a panel that votes on the Top Ten Live shows each week. The Top Ten list is published in INTake Weekly, a division of the Indianapolis Star – a Gannett paper.
It is pretty amazing that I’m in NUVO and INTake each week. No one else is.
There is a perceived competition between the two, I’m not sure how real it is.
I make it a point to see as much music as possible, which I think it is necessary in order to write about it. I know that I’m see at least, if not more music than most music writers. Not that I am faulting them – I don’t have a family and other obligations that other folks do.
Anyway, all of that said, I often feel like the chopped liver of music writers. Since I don’t write about the big sexy shows, I don’t often get invited to the parties.
That all changed last night -- I was invited to sit at the big kid's table.
I was invited to the kick-off party to introduce the summer line-up of Verizon Music Center (Deer Creek), our large outdoor venue.
There was valet parking and a red carpet. The party was on the stage, lots of food, tasty beverages and ice cream for dessert. They took photos that were given to us, but I could not resist a few of my own photo ops.
Nora on stage, mid air guitar solo.
Nora with the classic rock-geek hand gestures.
My friend Tammy (or in the guest list lexicon, my PLUS 1) rushing the stage.
We also got to tour the dressing rooms.
They were not as exciting as I thought they might be.
No swings or beds.
I was not impressed until I checked out the bathroom.
No comment about the guitar players that I've dated.