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Eric Weisbard

Eric Weisbard

Eric Weisbard organizes the annual Pop Conference at Seattle's Experience Music Project, a gathering of music writers of all kinds thatfirst launched in 2002. He has edited two collections of writing from the conference: This Is Pop: In Search of the Elusive at Experience Music Project Harvard, 2004) and Listen Again: A Momentary History of Pop Music (Duke, 2007).

Also at Experience Music Project, Weisbard curated the exhibits Disco: A Decade of Saturday Nights and Off the Charts: Pop in Progress.

Before his time at EMP, Weisbard worked as an editor in New York, from 1995-1996 at Spin, where he edited the Spin Alternative Record Guide (Vintage, 1995) and was a senior editor, and from 1997-1998 at The Village Voice, where he was music editor. From 1999-2001, he was a regular contributor to both Spin and the Voice, while also writing for such publications as The New York Times and GQ.More recently, Weisbard has written a book in the 33 and 1/3 series of pop album monographs: Use Your Illusion I & II (Continuum, 2006).

He is currently finishing a dissertation for the history department at the University of California, Berkeley, titled Top 40 Democracy: Pop Music in the Rock Era. He lives with his wife, Ann Powers, and daughter Rebecca in Los Angeles.

Experience Music Project Pop Conference

List of articles in the library by artist

Tori Amos: Irving Plaza, NYC

Live Review by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, April 1998

TORI AMOS believes in the rhythm method. ...

Laurie Anderson: Outside the Whale: Laurie Anderson plays Moby

Live Review by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, October 1999

Songs and Stories From Moby Dick, BAM Opera House, Through October 16 ...

A Tribe Called Quest, The Beastie Boys, The Breeders, George Clinton, L7, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Smashing Pumpkins: Various Artists: Lollapalooza '94, Sam Boyd Stadium University of Nevada Las Vegas July 1,1994

Live Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, September 1994

THE DIFFERENCE between Lollapalooza 1994 and Lollapolooza Past is that this year Perry Farrell and colleagues decided the music being offered couldn't just be loud, ...

Barenaked Ladies: Theatre at Madison Square Garden, NYC

Live Review by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, October 1998

"A ROCK 'N' ROLL show, for us, is a celebratory experience," said the unbearably revivalistic drummer-singer of the opening band Cowboy Mouth last Wednesday. In ...

Ben Folds Five: The Unauthorized Biography of Reinhold Messner (550/Epic)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, May 1999

THE NOTORIOUS thing about the "college rock" I grew up on, over a decade ago, the same time Ben Folds was gestating in the university ...

Kurt Cobain, Nirvana: Kurt Cobain: Revolutionary Debris

Comment by Eric Weisbard, Spin, April 1994

I STILL prefer to believe that Kurt Cobain's life was saved by rock'n'roll. ...

Sheryl Crow: Sheryl Crow (A&M)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, November 1996

ALMOST ANY song here would sound just fine played next to Beck on the radio. Both artists are rejuvenating the LA singer/songwriter for a digital ...

Drive-By Truckers: Pizza Deliverance (Soul Dump/Ghostmeat)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, December 1999

WE DROVE TO Pittsburgh the weekend before Halloween, to watch the leaves change and attend a three-day fest called the Haunted Hillbilly Hoedown. ...

Drive-By Truckers: The Mouth of the South

Profile and Interview by Eric Weisbard, Spin, July 2003

The Drive-By Truckers are hard-ass punk rockers from Alabama by way of Athens, Georgia. They drink too much. They love Lynyrd Skynyrd. And their Southern ...

Green Day: Young, Loud, and Snotty

Interview by Eric Weisbard, Spin, September 1994

GREEN DAY's unexpected rise from Gilman Street punk urchins to MTV poster children has not come without a price. Eric Weisbard wonders if they can ...

Hole: Celebrity Skin (DGC)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, September 1998

COULDN'T SAY which color most becomes her, but Courtney Love's best vowel is u. She throws herself into them all, of course, like a stage ...

Jellyfish, Lenny Kravitz: Jellyfish: Spilt Milk/Lenny Kravitz: Are You Gonna Go My Way (Virgin)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, April 1993

"DO YOU like Queen?" asks my editor. "I hope not." ...

Jurassic 5: Quality Control (Interscope)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, July 2000

"IN THE sixties we believed in a myth – that music had the power to change people's lives," Stanley Booth writes in the afterword to ...

Jim O'Rourke, Jon Langford, Wilco: Chicago: Indie City

Report and Interview by Eric Weisbard, Spin, September 2000

Sick of a world ruled by Britney and Backstreet? Visit Chicago: a salt-of-the-earth midwestern town where old-world pleasures like community, cheap rent, cheap beer, gritty ...

Leadbelly, Nirvana: A Simple Song That Lives Beyond Time: Leadbelly via Kurt Cobain

Essay by Eric Weisbard, New York Times, The, November 1994

IMMEDIATELY after the suicide of Kurt Cobain, lead singer of the rock band Nirvana, last April, MTV broadcasted almost continuously an hourlong Unplugged special that ...

Limp Bizkit: Significant Other (Flip/Interscope)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, July 1999

WHEN MTV and BET air the new Eminem video 'Guilty Conscience', they run into the small problem of the song's conclusion, where bad-angel Slim Shady ...

Los Lobos: Just Another Band From East L.A. — A Collection

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, November 1993

BOX SETS generally exhaust you with their completeness; greatest-hits albums worship a few select songs. ...

Shelby Lynne: I am Shelby Lynne (Island)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, April 2000

HERE'S WHAT intrigues me about Shelby Lynne, the country singer whose new album has been enjoying the sort of blanket media salivation only Dave Eggers ...

Nirvana: The Ten That Matter Most '85-'95: Nirvana

Retrospective by Eric Weisbard, Spin, April 1995

What does it take to be named one of the top ten artists of the decade? Innovation, influence, imagination, integrity. It all adds up to ...

Pavement: Wowee Zowee (Matador)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, May 1995

THINK ABOUT IT. A band works years to learn its instruments, play out, record, suffer the blows of fortune, regroup, play better than ever — ...

Primal Scream: Give Out But Don't Give Up

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, May 1994

YOU DON'T necessarily need the flash and appeal of the New York Dolls or Aerosmith in order to try to be the Rolling Stones and ...

Puff Daddy: Forever (Bad Boy)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, September 1999

The first thing I asked him to do was get me a tape from the studio. He came back with it in five minutes. The ...

Rage Against the Machine: Band Of The Year: Rage Against The Machine

Interview by Eric Weisbard, Spin, January 2000

The funk was deep. The rock was heavy. The politics were thick. Rage against the machine unleashed a rock-rap masterwork and a series of incendiary ...

The Ramones: Anthology: Hey Ho Let’s Go! (Warner Archives/Rhino)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, July 1999

FROM THE punk oral history Please Kill Me to Joey and Johnny Ramone on Howard Stern, the mythology around the Ramones lately seems to emphasize ...

Paul Simon: You're the One (Warner Bros.)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, November 2000

PAUL SIMON has an image you wouldn't wish on a real estate developer. ...

Smashing Pumpkins: Adore (Virgin)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, May 1998

TRUE, BILLY Corgan has removed most of the guitars, the pounding, the rat-in-a-cage rage from Smashing Pumpkins' new album. But don't worry: he remains stupendously ...

Sun Ra: Wooze and Spazz

Overview by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, October 2000

IN HIS FAMOUS essay "Kafka and his Precursors," Jorge Luis Borges argues that Zeno, Han Yu, and Kierkegaard, though nothing alike, all now seem Kafkaesque. ...

Tom Waits: Real Gone (Anti-)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, November 2004

The eternal hustler works his gloomy-gus shtick and leaves the hipsters wanting more ...

Wu-Tang Clan: Wuclear Fission: A Nutcase and a Point Guard Rise Above Wu-Tang’s Solo Overkill

Overview by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, February 2000

THE STUPIDEST, greatest, lovingest, most problematic-yet-simple moment in pop last year was a guy not content to be called Ol' Dirty Bastard letting it all ...

List of genre pieces

A Golden Age: MTV Names The Only 10 Songs That Matter

Comment by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, October 1999

A COUPLE OF weekends back, MTV presented a late-night Hard Rock A-Z special: wide-ranging sets of several videos in a row, with minimal VJ banter. ...

Conjunction Junction: The All-Music Guide Wants To Make Scrabble out of Babel

Report by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, February 1999

THE ALL-MUSIC Guide bills itself as "an ongoing project to review and rate all music" – emphasis on the all. ...

Generation Ex: Some Get A Decade; We Get A Moment

Essay by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, July 1999

THIS TIME IT'S personal. High school student Reese Witherspoon leaves teacher Matthew Broderick cursing his so-called life in Election. No shocker; couldn't be a teen ...

Keeping Up With the Napsters

Report by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, May 2000

At Pho, a Thousand E-mails a Month Track the Great Digital Debate ...

Napsternomics: The Pop Solution to Downloading

Comment by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, August 2000

HERE'S THE smallest of Napster's ironies: the service shut down last week by Judge Marilyn Hall Patel, then granted a stay of execution by the ...

Pop in the 90's: Everything for Everyone

Essay by Eric Weisbard, New York Times, The, April 2000

GEORGE STRAIT is a middle-aged country singer with an easy grin about him; even his boxed sets go platinum. Ice Cube is an intense rapper ...

Proxy Music: Electing the Pop Star in Chief

Essay by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, October 2000

IN 1822, NOAH Ludlow dressed himself in a buckskin hunting shirt and leggings, donned moccasins and an old slouch hat, put a rifle on his ...

Smart, Lyrical, Even Genteel, But Is It Rock?

Essay by Eric Weisbard, New York Times, The, August 1999

FOR ONE breed of rock fan, last year's most important album was probably Lucinda Williams's Car Wheels on a Gravel Road, a dozen perfectly turned ...

The Graying of Indie Rock: What do you do for an encore after the spark is gone?

Essay by Eric Weisbard, Village Voice, The, March 1999

WHEN THE guy in Fuck announced his 37th birthday, people thought he was joking. The occasion was too cruddy: the rumpus-room attic of a gross ...

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