Sunday, March 6, 2011
This is going to be a short column, even though it’s probably one of the hardest ones I have had to write… MRR is one of the most inspiring life changing frustrating things I have been involved in. This month, at the year end shitworker meeting I gave my six month’s notice as content coordinator of this magazine. I do not intend on leaving the Bay Area, or stopping working on the magazine totally. I just realized a few months ago that I would like to come home from a days work at my crappy retail job, and not have to work for another six hours on the magazine, then do the same thing the next day and the next day. This is partially due to my own workaholic nature, I know this, which is why I am not abandoning ship totally. I just want a break. I intend on continuing to write for this rag—that includes coming up with content, (you should do this too! Interview your favorite band and send it in!)—and of course to continue on with the epic work that goes on behind the scenes. Most of you will have no clue how much effort goes into this thing you hold in your hands, every month, year after year, over one hundred shitworkers and three coordinators all working for free.
(The below is a pic I took when I interviewed Raymond Pettibon-that's his dog in his studio. You can still get this issue on the back issues page here, it's #304 www.maximumrocknroll.com)
I want to continue to be involved in the magazine for years to come, which is why I am handing in my dance card or whatever twee way there is to put such a thing. I think it’s time for some new blood to take over… I have volunteered here for seven years, and I will have run this magazine for three of those years, which is a pretty good average. I think Arwen did six as coordinator? No one has beat Tim Yohannon of course, but a shitworker expressed surprise that I wasn’t planning on trying. I mentioned before that the workload was intense, it is, but the main thing is how totally life encompassing it is. I have friends I have not seen since I started coordinating MRR and I haven’t been in a band or written for my own zine Chimps either. I find it difficult to leave town for a few days without feeling guilty.
Punks are always surprised when they come here; that it’s not a squat-like building filled with GG style miscreants. Some kids from NYC dismissed me and Cissie as a bunch of “old ladies in sweaters” when they stopped by the house when she was still coordinating the magazine last year, which I thought was funny. Like how do people think this magazine happens? A bunch of punks grab glue bags and typewriters and hope for the best??!! Actually, that is how it happens. Maximum Rocknroll is not an easy thing to run. Essentially you are running a small business, a magazine, in the face of the supposed death of print media. You get to pick what runs in the magazine, but you also get to work twelve to fourteen hour days in a building with no heat, figure out how to do the yearly sales taxes for every county in California with no “boss” to tell you the right or the wrong way to do it, figure out how the rent is going to be paid each month, and deal with the fact that your house is a community space, a library of punk. This is awesome when you want to listen to Rutto 7”s and read old issues of the classic San Jose zine Forget It! Shitworkers will call me boss sometimes, but it always makes me feel weird. MRR is what it is because of all of the people that volunteer here, whether that’s the punks that email or mail in interviews and scene reports from Nepal, Venezuela and St Louis, or those that spend the Bart fare to get here from Oakland to green tape records. Punk is what you make it, whatever Brace says, it isn’t an outfit, it’s something you do. This magazine is evidence of that fact and I am proud to have been a part of its continued existence.
Are you interested in applying to be coordinator of Maximum Rocknroll? Email us firstname.lastname@example.org for an application. Must supply own gluebag. Actually, no gluebags allowed.