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NO DEPRESSION(A guide)

In this article, we will discuss the history of “No Depression,” its journal, and the website.

You will also find some information about one of the first editors of the journal: Peter Blackstock, and about the publisher Kyla Fairchair.

You can learn a little about Americana music too, in case it is strange to you.

The Journal of Roots Music “No Depression”

“No Depression” is a quarterly, and ad-free journal on roots music. The FreshGrass Foundation publishes it.

In the press, “No Depression” is a publication focused on long-form music reporting and in-depth analysis that connects modern artists with the chain of American roots music.

The content of the journal is for printing. Each issue of “No Depression” presents original articles, illustrations, music artists, and professional reporters and critics, as well as remarkable photography.

The magazine started in 1995 and lasted till 2008. On the occasion of the 20th anniversary, No Depression returned in 2015.

The Website of “No Depression”

Since 2009, nodepression.com has been a living square for roots music fans.

Starting as a community forum, it became a specialized media demonstrating the best in roots music and music journalism.

“No Depression’s” History

For the first time, “No Depression” was printed in 1995, when founding co-editors Peter Blackstock and Grant Alden launched a quarterly magazine named in honor of an online message board that served the flourishing alt-country movement.

That message board was named after a Carter Family song that leading alt-country band “Uncle Tupelo” made the title track of its 1990 debut album.

Blackstock and Alden thought the phrase “No Depression” complied with it nicely like the way roots music grows its branches.

They wanted to ensure their magazine did not just capitalize on a trend but set out instead to go deeply into the links between old and new, tradition and innovation, and lighten the links that hold the music and the music community together.

The editors Peter Blackstock and Grant Alden, and publisher Kyla Fairchild were full of passion for the music and high quality, long-form journalism, so they developed “No Depression,” giving to it a long 13-years of an unbeaten print run.

By the time “No Depression” became a force and helped to bind the importance of Americana and roots music on the national stage.

In 2008, when record stores closed and advertisement sales dropped, the team consisting of the mentioned editors and the publisher, decided to move on.

Blackstock and Alden published three bookazines in the University of Texas Press, and Fairchild guided “No Depression” into a new area with a community website.

During the first five years, from 2009 to 2014, the community of “No Depression” did not have editors or writers on staff.

A group wrote all the content of active users and managed by publisher Kyla Fairchild and community manager Kim Ruehl.

At the beginning of 2014, Fairchild sold her ownership of “No depression” to FreshGrass LLC, which steered it back to print in 2015.

About the Publisher Kyla Fairchild

Below you can find some information about ND’s publisher Kyla Fairchild, taken from her Linkedin account:

Kyla Fairchild has been working in the music industry since 1995.

She was co-publisher of music magazine No Depression, the definitive authority on the past, present, and future of American music.

No Depression is the leading brand in Americana music and has received Utne Reader Independent Press Awards and was cited as one of the nations top 20 magazines of any kind by the Chicago Tribune in 2004.

Fairchild ran the business overseeing advertising, distribution, marketing, and business development.

Over the years Kyla did deals to create a No Depression branded listening booth at Borders, oversaw development of a nationally syndicated No Depression radio show, No Depression branded compilation CD’s with Starbucks and Dualtone Music, two No Depression music festivals at Seattle’s Marymoor park and a No Depression book series with University of Texas Press. 

When the magazine went out of print in 2008, Kyla bought out her two business partners and transitioned the magazine into a thriving, sustainable online music community with top-notch content and over 30,000 members and 150,000 unique visits per month.

She also digitized No Depression’s 75 print issues into the most comprehensive roots music archive on the internet.

Freshgrass LLC acquired no Depression in February of 2014.

Through her many years in the music industry, Kyla has deep contacts with record labels and music industry professionals.

Fairchild regularly attended the SF Music Tech summit and is well connected in the music tech industry.

Kyla is currently on the advisory board for Seattle Interactive Conference and helped found the Americana Music Association.

About the Editor Peter Blackstock

The editor Peter Blackstock wrote the following information about himself on his Linkedin page:

After working as an assistant to a literary scout in London, scouting for nine foreign publishers and Film 4, in 2011, I moved to New York and began working at Grove Atlantic, assisting the Publisher, Morgan Entrekin.

I am now a Senior Editor, acquiring around 8-10 books per year, as well as paperbacks and reissues.

Notable acquisitions include:

-” The Sympathizer” by Viet Thanh Nguyen, winner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, plus author’s following books: “The Refugees” (named the best book of the year by NPR, San Francisco Chronicle, Esquire, and others) and “The Committed” (forthcoming)

-” Miss Burma” by Charmaine Craig, longlisted for the National Book Award for Fiction and Women’s Prize

-” The Finance Course” by Nicholas Shaxson, acclaimed author of TREASURE ISLANDS (forthcoming)

-” The another Revolution” by Rosamund Bartlett, a cultural history of early twentieth-century Russia (forthcoming)

-” Bream Gives Me Hiccups” by Jesse Eisenberg, the debut from the Academy Award-nominated actor

-” The Accusation” by Bandi, a collection of stories by a dissident North Korean writer, longlisted for the Aspen Literary Prize

-” Freshwater” by Akwaeke Emezi, a debut novel by a Nigerian-Tamil writer

-” Convenience Store Woman” by Sayaka Murata, winner of the Akutagawa Prize (forthcoming)

-” The Marrying of Chani Kaufman,” longlisted for the Booker Prize

My list is broad – I am interested in literary fiction, particularly anything with an international setting, and a wide range of non-fiction including culture/arts, international history/current affairs, reportage, and literary memoir.

I am in charge of the drama list at Grove Atlantic and acquire plays and screenplays and work on the backlist.

I read German, Russian, French, and Bulgarian, and am interested in acquiring works in translation.

I was a Zev Birger Jerusalem Fellow in February 2015 and a Frankfurt Book Fair Fellow in October 2016.

I have been the curator of the Festival Neue Literatur in New York for 2018 and 2017 (https://festivalneueliteratur.org/). 

The Team of “No Depression” Website

You can see below the team members of “No Depression”:

  • Publisher – Chris Wadsworth
  • Managing Editor – Hilary Saunders
  • Assistant Editor – Stacy Chandler
  • Finance/Operations – Maureen Cross
  • Advertising – Sonja Nelson
  • Marketing and Social Media Manager – Adam Kirr.

Americana Music

Americana is a collective term used to classify a variety of hybrid musical styles combining elements of native American genres.

Such music often has a traditional country among its key influences but may also contain elements of bluegrass, blues, folk, rock, soul, western swing and jazz.

Americana arose in the 1990s as a radio format, and then an independent genre for artists who combined many different American root styles in their work or preferred a conservative sound to modern trends.

Its essence was initially personified by performers like Bob Dylan, Graham Parsons, Emilia Harris, Joe Eli, bands Jason & The Scorchers, and Uncle Tupelo.

The conceptual ancestor of America was alt-country, which also had vague borders.

Overcoming his characteristic stylistic, racial, and gender restrictions, Americana at the same time absorbed the best artistic and musical qualities from alt-country.

In the absence of a formal genre framework, performers in Americana are united not much by specific musical parameters, but by a craving for traditional sound, the connection of creativity with the past, the inability to fit it into clear industrial categories, as well as the idea of ​​contrasting the commercial mainstream.

In this regard, Americana, among other things, is sometimes interpreted as movement.

Its representatives have their association, award ceremony, festival, Grammy Award category, and Billboard Magazine Chart.

Recommended books and sources

  1. HFNE “Depression Cake”
  2. HFNE “Is Depression a Disability?”
  3. No Depression: An Introduction to Alternative Country Music
  4. “No Depression” Magazine
  5. The Best of No Depression: Writing about American Music (Brad and Michele Moore Roots Music Series)
  6. The Website of FreshGrass

Conclusion

“No Depression” is a quarterly, and ad-free journal on roots music, published by the FreshGrass Foundation.

In the press, “No Depression” is a publication focused on long-form music reporting and in-depth analysis that connects modern artists with the chain of American roots music.

“No Depression” presents original articles, illustrations, music artists, and professional reporters and critics, as well as remarkable photography.

For the first time, “No Depression” was printed in 1995 by founding co-editors Peter Blackstock and Grant Alden.

Side Note: I have tried and tested various products and services to help with my anxiety and depression. See my top recommendations here, as well as a full list of all products and services our team has tested for various mental health conditions and general wellness.

The website of “No Depression” is called nodepression.com; it was created in 2009.

Please feel free to comment on the content or ask any questions in the comments section below.

References

  1. Americana Music
  2. No Depression (Magazine)
  3. “No Depression” Website

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