Arts & Culture

The Big Jewcy: The Music Slut, Bloggers

There are a lot of music blogs out there that cover indie music, I’m not going to lie to you about that. Just in my bookmarks alone, I’ve got over ten that I read regularly, but I assure you, none … Read More

By / June 9, 2010

There are a lot of music blogs out there that cover indie music, I’m not going to lie to you about that. Just in my bookmarks alone, I’ve got over ten that I read regularly, but I assure you, none are as fast-paced and tuned in as The Music Slut. It’s a name you don’t forget, with a voice that never lets up.

The Music Slut is actually more than one voice, the loudest being Jennifer Kellas and Matt Gross. Though the blog is technically light on words, as posts usually consist of a link, a download and a video, they are definitely deserving of super-blogger status. Just yesterday, Jen and Matt put up 25 posts, among them new Ariel Pink video, a new Olof Arnalds cover and a handful of show announcements.

I’m not sure what their average number of posts a day is, but I can promise you that it’s higher than most sites. That’s a heavy burden to carry, not to mention the fact they’ve been doing it since 2005!

But that’s not all: Jen also runs event company Nancy Jane Productions and founded New York’s famed After The Jump Fest, which is currently on hiatus. Both writers freelance, as well as DJ around town (catch them at The Big Jewcy at Bowery Electric on 6/17) in between wrangling a giant readership and a boatload of social media fans.

They’re busy, sure, but not too busy to talk to Jewcy:

Let’s get right to it — you run a site called The Music Slut. Are you, in actuality, slutty? Are you slutty, but just for music/musicians? Do you wake up in the morning hungover, your eyeliner smeared all over your face, slumped over in a pile of records, not remembering what you did the night before?

J: The rumors of my promiscuity have been greatly exaggerated, unfortunately. But the blog is a different story. We are The Music Slut, because as huge fans of all types of music, my co-founder Jamie and I loved reading blogs but couldn’t find a site that covered both the fun pop music and the obscure indie stuff we liked. So we made one ourselves. Jamie came-up with the name The Music Slut because we liked to get around…musically speaking, of course.

M: A slut never kisses and tells; however, I will share an embarrassing story with you: two years back, I attended a party to honor Morrissey’s birthday. There was a massive cake for everybody to enjoy at midnight. I had a little too much whiskey, and wound up stepping on it while dancing like a fool. To make matters worse (read: more ridiculous), during the cab ride home I noticed a gigantic cut on my leg. Apparently, I slipped on the frosting at some point, but have no recollection of the epic fall. I still have the marks to prove it. I call it my Mozzer scar!

How did you guys meet? How did The Music Slut come to exist? Was it magical?

J: Matt and I met in college. We had freshman year geology together, but were already spoken for in the gay bff /straight girl department, so we never bothered to introduced ourselves. But the summer between sophomore year and junior year, we both went to see Coldplay at Radio City Music Hall and Matt ended-up sitting behind my friends and I, so I finally turned around and introduced myself. My friends and I all called him "Coldplay Matt" for about a year. It wasn’t until late in our junior year that we became friends. We had a mutual friend who told Matt I was into music so one day he had two extra tickets to see Built to Spill at the 9:30 Club and invited my roommate and I to go. The rest is history. I have that Built to Spill ticket framed on my desk.

As to how TMS came to exist, well I’ve told you a bit about that above but you can read the whole tawdry tale here, and yes, it was magical.

M: I met Jen in college at The University Of Maryland. However, she started the site while overseas getting her masters in Scotland. Jen met Jamie, and they thought of the name and began blogging. About three months in, they asked for my participation and it’s been my baby ever since.

TMS does a TON of giveaways, and runs a lot of contests, which leads me to believe both of you are incredibly generous; however, knowing that Matt is a Jew, and Jen isn’t — is one of you more prone to hoarding goodies and another to giving them away? Who’s the Shylock?

J:When the site began we both were total hoarders, but I think now that we’re about to celebrate our 5th anniversary, we’re over it. Having piles of stuff you never listen to isn’t fun, it just makes it hard to move around. I actually think as the Scot, and since he’s abroad and doesn’t get overwhelmed with all the American mailings, Jamie is the one biggest into free things!

M: Ha! In actuality, I never rig a contest in my favor. The only time I’ve done something like that is when I made my parents the winners of Donna Summer tickets. They went to Atlantic City and had a blast (although to this day my mom still criticizes Donna’s ill-fitting purple outfit). I get just as excited hosting a contest as my readers do.

Considering your tastemaker status (22K+ Twitter followers!), which musical upstarts should listeners be looking out for? Who do you think is an overrated schmuck?

J: Teddy Blanks is just genius. He recently did the score for an indie film called Tiny Furniture (that won some big award at SXSW) that I love and I play his song "Crimson Tide" all the time when I DJ. Das Racist isn’t exactly an upstart at this point, but Himanshu Suri and Victor Vazquez are so brilliant and have this refreshing, smart and honest point of view that I can’t get enough of. If you haven’t see Vazquez’s cartoon-off in the New Yorker, you need to. And even if I wasn’t related to Blood Warrior, I’d still be listening to their album on repeat. It is so beautiful with such lush soundscapes that pull you into a mythical and sad world. They have a song called ‘Choir’ that makes me want to weep.

TMS works under the credo that "if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all" so I’m keeping mum about all those lovely bands full of lovely people who think that owning a Macbook gives them the right to try and foist their music on us.

M: Watch out for  I Love Monsters, The Hundred In The Hands, and The Mynabirds.

And, finally, what kind of bagel do you like the best, and how do you like it?

J: Pumpernickel with hummus, lettuce and tomato. But I also really love an egg bagel with egg salad, does that make me a shiksa?

M: A warm everything bagel with veggie tofu and tomato. YES!