The 2007 Idolator Pop Critics Poll — and my own best-of music list along with it — is now live

So a few people keep asking me when I was going to post a top-ten list for 2007 musically. I kept saying, “I’m just waiting on the Idolator poll results to get published.”

And they are! So go check it out — it will be further updating throughout the week, and I’m already looking forward to the mix disc features that are going to be published, with contributions from such excellent writers as Mairead Case, Tim Finney, Andy Kellman, Tom Ewing, Douglas Wolk and Mike McGonigal among many others. It’ll be a great collection of individualized snapshots of the year and you’d do well to check them all out and give a listen to what captures your interest.

Meantime, here’s my ballot and therefore my own best-of/top-ten lists, with its accompanying essay. To quote part of it:

This was a hard ballot to draw up. Not because I was weighing the merits of a huge list and trying to narrow it down and encapsulate a full year and so forth. If anything, this was…not the reverse per se, but perhaps the converse: this was me looking at everything that can now be heard, could be heard all over the place, at any time, and realizing how divorced I am from the effort of ranking in general, accelerating a long-held tendency. I heard more music from all over the place this year than ever before and most of it I only heard once before moving on to the next album or song or mix. The big hit singles hit me not with repetition but with generalized and often anonymous osmosis, from being out and about and getting a snatch of a song here and there [and often that was enough — like hooks have been so relentlessly perfected that one or two listens are all that’s needed], rather than trying to actively pursue them or to subject myself to the kind of reigns of aural tyranny that made things like that OneRepublic song omnipresent in recent months. To create a list out of all that seems increasingly close to futile (and if I solely listened to music via my computer, would have done all the work for me).

But of course I drew a ballot up anyway.

Enjoy, and explore! There’ll be a lot to consider.

If you’d like to nominate something for Da Capo’s next Best Music Writing book…

…here’s the information. There are a couple of things I’ll be recommending that I really enjoyed from this past year.

From: daphne carr
Date: Jan 14, 2008 8:32 PM
Subject: Best Music Writing 2008

I’m the editor of the Best Music Writing series, now going on its
eighth year of publishing the year’s best writing on all topics music
related. I am pleased to report to you that for the 2008 edition of
the book I will be working with esteemed writer Nelson George. I look
forward to a fruitful spring of reading and consulting with him on
this project.

This year, as in every year, I am looking for brilliant features,
essays, profiles, news articles, interviews, creative non-fiction,
fiction, book reviews, long-format reviews, blog posts, journal
articles and the like on music and music culture-related topics.

I ask you to please send your own best work, work you’ve edited or
published, great work of your friends and colleagues, and/or work that
you have admired in passing throughout the year. You can send me email
links, hard copies of articles, whole magazines (please
paperclip/post-it the pages to read), or if need be, just the
name/title/publication title/date and I will search the piece out
myself. Feel free to mail me multiple times as you find more pieces
that you love starting right….NOW! and ending by the first week in
February at the very latest.

Email to:

Mail to:

Daphne Carr/BMW07
603 West 115th Street #120
New York, NY 10025

And finally, please feel free to post this or forward this email
widely to all of your contacts in the music writing and publishing
community. I look forward to a deluge of mail from all of you in the
very near future.

Feel free to email me with any questions.

Thanks for another great year of writing,

from the desk of:

Daphne Carr
Best Music Writing Series Editor

603 West 115th St #120
NY, NY 10025

Dispatches from the primary front — aka, there really WILL be blood

First, the Democrats. Can this be a real battle royale? For real? I’d be entertained. Two posts at Balloon Juice from John today — here and here, and don’t ignore the comments — plus Josh Marshall at TPM provide some thoughts on it all. I’m not as up for following the shenanigans as they are but I’ll just simply say that none of it surprises me and that I wouldn’t be surprised by any of it being true in the sense that everyone’s fighting dirty. I still think it’s likely the successful candidate will win the overall election, so hey.

Meantime, the GOP. Oh, the entertainment value. Two bits from today, out of many:

First, Newt Gingrich has some things to say, including:

Also, there has been some speculation that I have endorsed a Republican candidate or that I am supporting a particular candidate “behind the scenes.” Nothing can be further from the truth. The fact is that I have offered my advice to any candidate that wants it and have had personal conversations with several candidates on a number of issues. My goal is to help every candidate be the best they can be. I want the strongest possible field because ultimately that will lead to a stronger America.

Doubtless. So which Cabinet position is he jockeying for, you figure?

Meantime, Michigan’s Pete Hoekstra, a Romney man, is a little nervous these days:

In response to Huckabee’s line that Americans want to elect as president someone who looks like “the guy they work with, not the guy who laid them off,” Hoekstra insists “the right Republican response is that we shouldn’t be judging people based on what they look like. We should be judging people on whether they have the qualifications . . . the ability to get the job done. I’d like a guy who has the skills of Bill Gates and Steve Jobs.” Hoekstra says he wants to elect a president who is “someone who knows how to create jobs. . . . Republicans know that if [Gates or Jobs] gets rich, it is good for Americans.” To suggest otherwise, in the populist tone Huckabee has, is “scary,” Hoekstra says: “Huckabee is scary for the Republican party.”

As someone who is on the verge of making Mr. Jobs a little richer via an iPhone purchase, I can’t say that patriotism via the GOP is driving my assessment of the current state of things. But thank you for trying, sir. Political Blogger Alliance