Part of the reason I like Popmatters so much is that I get to level these kinds of essays at an audience that is mostly ambivalent to the conversation about video games. Talking about a music critic itself means that the primary audience of the magazine, music fans and film buffs, will probably take more interest than they normally would.
The piece itself is the culmination of all the conversations and blogs I made while reading about Bangs in his book. The link to the radio show was provided to me by a reader via e-mail and nicely rounded out the argument, plus a little bit of insight from Samuel Johnson to bring it all together. The result of this bizarre mixture was surprisingly sharp and simple. Even though it spans 3,000 words, at the core Bangs had a couple of basic driving principles that we could all take note from:
"What Bangs did was tell people to listen to the music they had missed or ignored, making it sound cool so that they would appreciate its contribution rather than neglecting it altogether. He was a person observing the storm and pointing out what it missed, as opposed to where it should go."
That's just a chunk of it though. There's the humility, the belief that the mainstream press is just a part of the machine, understanding the business of your medium, and understanding your own role in it too.
Quite happy with this one.