Welcome to my new music blog website! Some of you might be coming from my old YouTube channel (more on that later), but for those who are new, let me tell you a little about what I want to do with this site.
Music has been a pretty important part of my life for about 20 years. It didn’t matter if I was listening to it, watching it, playing it, or performing it, I tried to keep some of its influence around. I even tried selling music equipment and repairing guitars for awhile, and I have the disassembled guitars in my closet to prove it!
Over those 20 years I’ve developed my own tastes and opinions in music, and some people actually respected those opinions and would turn to me for new music recommendations. Reviews played a big part of that development in my teenage years, not only in having someone articulate why an album was or wasn’t good, but primarily in introducing me to a lot of music that I probably wouldn’t have listened to on my own. The Christian music magazines (I know, I know… that’s a story for another time) and especially websites like Pitchfork greatly improved my critical listening and broadened my musical horizons.
My first attempt at putting out music reviews started in January of this year. I created the Continuous Thunder Facebook page to serve as the home for my written reviews. I wanted to start on an established platform as a bit of a trial in case I found myself not enjoying it. Backing out of a Facebook page would be pretty easy. However, I found the format to be limiting. I felt like I had to keep my reviews too short to accurately express all of my thoughts. But if I shared everything I wanted to, the post would be excessively long and nobody would stop to read it in their Facebook newsfeed.
Even though I kept things short and sweet, I still wasn’t getting the traffic. Even my truncated reviews were apparently too long for the Facebook crowd. This led to the transition to Continuous Thunder version 2.0. I started recording videos for my reviews and simultaneously uploading them to Facebook and YouTube. In the video format, I was able to fit more information into a smaller package, and a thumbnail with my face could attract more attention than a big block of text under an album cover. But the Facebook page still wasn’t getting the attention I wanted. With the YouTube channel getting more traffic, I gradually transitioned exclusively to YouTube and away from Facebook entirely.
Over the following months, I released over 30 videos on YouTube, some getting more views than others. (Who knew Madonna fans were so passionate?) I also gained a couple dozen subscribers. It seemed to be going well, but I underestimated the work required to upload regularly. My output kept reducing down to one video a week, and sometimes I didn’t even make that. The process was beginning to stress me out. I already have a day job and viewed this project as more of a hobby. I don’t know about you, but I don’t believe your hobbies should stress you out. Not like this anyway.
The YouTube channel went on indefinite hiatus and I enjoyed my time away a little too much. Any thought of getting back into it just filled me with a sense of dread. That brings us to Continuous Thunder version 3.0. I definitely enjoyed writing my reviews more than recording them, so I thought maybe I could revive Continuous Thunder as a written blog again, only with its own website. This way I don’t have to limit myself because of the format and I don’t have to edit any videos. Also, if I’m totally honest, my written voice is better than my on-screen presence.
So that brings us to the website that you are currently reading this post on. The all new Continuous Thunder. I have a pretty good feeling about this iteration. I think this will be the version that sticks around for awhile.
There will be a couple more introductory posts explaining my reviews and getting all of my previously reviewed material onto the site. After that we’ll get into the swing of reviewing new music.