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Thursday, February 12, 2015

9th Anniversary Post

As we stand on the 9th anniversary of this blog (this Saturday), I:

a) can't believe that I've been doing this for so long
b) find myself looking back and forward, as I continually redefine Alienhits' purpose in the blogging world.

When I first started this blog, I did it purely out of curiosity and the wave of excitement I was riding after discovering a wider world of pop music. Before 2004/05, I was beholden to what U.S. radio had "curated" for American listeners. For awhile, that was fine, but as mainstream American music took a plunge in quality (and diversity) after the turn of the millennium, and the internet became more and more valuable in discovering new sounds, I began to explore a whole new world of music. Living in the UK and travelling Europe only exacerbated this newfound fascination.

At this point, I briefly attempted to turn the blog into more of a side business -- adding advertisements here and there and accepting many submissions from record labels, both large and small. In some ways, these years (2006-2009), were the golden age of blogging. They were certainly the golden age of my readership! Still, even when I was thinking with a more business-oriented mindset, it was important to me to never post anything simply because I was being paid, or prodded, to do so. In the past nine years, I can count the times this has happened on one hand, and those entries are painfully obvious to me because there's just no passion or authenticity in them.

As I moved on to another form of writing in 2011, and had my first young adult novel published, I feared that the blog would fall by the wayside in favor of all of the work that book-publishing entails. In some ways, I'm sure Alienhits suffered because of this, but it's also at this time that I began to redefine what I wanted the blog to be. Alienhits has always been a musical journal for me, even when I flirted with running it more as a business. I am the only one in charge, and the only one who has ever posted. I'm also an obsessive, (maybe too) passionate pop music fan who loves lists and statistics. My end-of-the-year countdowns continue to be very important to me, and I take them very seriously. I also don't cater them to anybody but myself, which I realize probably limits my readership, But hey, at least it's 100% authentic to my music taste!

Speaking of music taste, longtime readers will undoubtedly notice the changes in music posted as the blog has aged. Just as I was riding high on the European/Scandinavian wave back in 2006 when I started, the music that's getting me jazzed these days is almost exclusively Korean. I felt guilty at first about posting so much Kpop on the blog, since I realize it can be a polarizing genre and isn't exactly what readers were "sold" when the blog started, but I feel incredibly passionate about the genre. In fact, I'd go as far as saying that it's revived my love and interest in music. Period. It reminds me of when I first started getting in to European pop. I hope some of that passion has inspired readers to check out something they wouldn't have normally given a second look. If not, then I'm okay with losing some readership. After all, my "musical journal" won't be for everyone. I'd quickly give up if I were writing to please. I've got to be true to what I like, which definitely changes with time.

So, long story short, I'm looking forward to celebrating ten years in 2016. I will still post music that I love, wherever it may come from... just expect a good portion of it to come from Korea this year! Thank you SO much to readers that have stuck with me all these years. I'd love to hear from you (if you exist! haha), and I of course welcome new readers. In the coming year, I hope to do what I've always done: post the very best musical finds that are rocking my world.


Blogger Caleb said...

Hey man, I haven't been with you since the beginning (I started following around 2008 or 2009) but you introduced me to so much great music. Like you, I had become bored (and still am a bit) with the watered down, monotonous, American pop music (and music in generally) being put out but you really opened the door for me to a whole other world of great music that I didn't know of. Also, being a music artist myself it gave me so much inspiration. I even started my own music blog in 2012 because of you.
So with all that said, thank you. I wish you the best in everything and keep doing what you do because it's much appreciated :)

10:49 AM  

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