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Publishers WeeklyStarred Review.
In the 11th installment, guest editor Powers and series editor Carr offer what could be one of the most prescient compilations of all, exemplified by a transcription of writer Christopher Weingarten's speech at the 140 Characters Conference in New York City. In it, Weingarten states that he and other music writers will soon be out of jobs because the internet has let anyone become a music writer. Weingarten argues that the fallout will be the increasing difficulty to experience new music outside of one's comfort zone, an incredible value to music writers. This is the axis around which the book revolves. Readers are exposed to a wide variety of compelling essays and articles they likely missed, from a profile of the 28-year-old conductor of the Gothenburg Symphony, Gustavo Dudamel, to an examination of the pivotal role mobile phones have had in exposing new Latino artists, to an essay on screwy record company accounting practices. There are still the lengthy profiles of artists like Merle Haggard and The Gossip's Beth Ditto, but the compilation's breadth is its real appeal. While it functions as a snapshot of the events, trends, and personalities that made up 2010, it also works as a portrait of an industry and an art form in transition.
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