…is generally at the beginning. But I’m going to start this story in the middle and work forwards and backwards from here.

I’ve been putting off starting a ‘music blog’ for several years. What the world doesn’t need is another music blog. Even one by someone who has been listening to ‘weird music’ from beyond the mainstream for more years then he cares to remember. Someone who used to write about music for years. Someone who started a record label – www.fishriderrecords.com – because music he wanted to hear wasn’t being released. What a fool’s errand that has turned out to be, by the way. Not that I regret a moment of it though, don’t get me wrong.

But someone recently said ‘start a music blog and save a musician’ or something, which is a cool way of saying that those of us who are still excited by music, and who still value the creativity of crazy people driven to make and release unpopular pop music, need to do something to help other music lovers find it.  Telling people ‘you have to listen to this’ is what I’ve been doing most of my life. So this is that.

Why ‘Pop Lib”?

‘Pop Lib’ was the title of the very first Puddle EP on Flying Nun Records in 1986.  Pop Lib is a kind of motto for what I imagine I do with Fishrider Records… the liberation of “pop” music.

What do I imagine “pop” needs to be liberated from?

Well,  it should be liberated from dependence. Dependence on the plastic formula created by anonymous artificial taste-makers. Dependence on large corporate record labels driven by the desire to maximise shareholder profits at the expense of listener experiences.  Dependence on the narrow conventions of mainstream media who dictate and prescribe the limits of what you are informed about and what you listen to.

Popular music should be made by the people for the people.  There are no rules – just the common desire to warm the heart, nourish the soul and enlighten the mind. And a whole lot more. This blog may feature some new stuff some obscure stuff and will also revisit some old stuff too.  There’s a decade or so of album reviews and interviews I did in a previous life as a music writer. It might be fun to revisit those. It might not. Watch this space…

The cover of 'Pop Lib' by The Puddle, released on Flying Nun Records in 1986.

The cover of ‘Pop Lib’ by The Puddle, released on Flying Nun Records in 1986.