Thanks for showing up
Six months ago, in a very ceremonious phone call, Kyla and I each clicked a little box on a web page, opening the flood gates, so to speak, on this new version of NoDepression.com. We had less than 100 members when we opened our doors – mostly friends, family and colleagues who were kind enough to help us test things out – and no model to hold ourselves up against. It’s been a fun, challenging six months trying things out, meeting music-loving folks from around the world who have shown up to our party, and testing the limits and capabilities of this format, whatever it is.
In those six months, we’ve grown to a point where we’re now reaching more readers every month (more than 50,000 unique visitors each month, and growing) than No Depression was able to reach in its print days. As of this blog post, 3,742 of those folks have even joined the community. Thanks to Kyla’s tireless dedication, and that of a small army of angel volunteers, we’ve also launched more than 7,000 articles from ND’s print tenure, accessible now and forever by anyone in the world for free at the NoDepression archives.
We’ve streamed music from some of the best known and unknown artists in this genre. We’ve hosted live chats with Justin Townes Earle and the Greencards. Cowboy Junkies’ Michael Timmins shared blog posts from the road on their summer tour with Son Volt. We held the first ever No Depression Festival at Marymoor Park outside of Seattle – one of my personal favorite days of this whole summer – featuring Gillian Welch, Iron & Wine, and a slew of the finest artists at work today. We’ve argued over the greatest living songwriters and best recordings.
We didn’t know what to expect when we launched this site. I, for one, didn’t even know how to tell people what kind of site it was. I’ve long since settled on mashing words up into whatever configuration emerges from my mouth: community social e-magazine blog information sharing network…focused around alt-indie-country-acoustic-punk-Americana-rock-roots music.
No Depression has always, since 1995, been about the indefinable, the stuff that doesn’t fit neatly into one existing category, but around which everyone in the community could gather and (at least partly) agree. So it makes sense that we’ve wound up here, doing whatever this is, on the web.
I know six months isn’t exactly landmark, but it’s something. We hope you’re enjoying this off-road adventure we’re taking together, helping us determine this new path. For those of you who have been around since launch, thanks for sticking with us through all our trial and trial again. For those of you just joining us, thanks for stopping by. Let us know what you think. What’s missing? What’s out of place? What could we use more of? What have we not even considered?
As I said when we launched, this is our community. Like any community, it’s only as good as we make it. If you like what’s happening here and you’d like to help us stick around, visit that “Contribute to No Depression” box on the right side of the page. Think of it like the tip jar at the edge of the stage. Or, if you can’t afford to help the site out financially, please never hesitate to join in with your blog posts, photos, videos, music, and forum discussions. You can also link to interesting posts from this site when you tweet, update your Facebook statuses, or reference us on other sites.
Don’t be afraid to use this site the wrong way. There’s not really any such thing. (Unless you’re uploading porn. Please don’t upload porn.) And definitely never hesitate to let us know what we can do to make this a better place. If I can promise you anything, it’s that we’ll do what we can.