If you walked into the music editor's office at the SF Weekly, you'd think a No-Doz-popping teenager was in charge of the decor. Stacks of CDs covered in Post-Its threaten to topple over from every available surface. Overlapping band posters are tacked, kamikaze-style, to the wall. Such is the haphazardly organized 9-to-5 nest of yours truly.
Every fall, though, my piles of stuff become increasingly hazardous, as the difficult process of winnowing the Bay Area's vast landscape of musicians, DJs, MCs, and oddballs down to a handful of SF Weekly Music Awards nominees looms. New York and Los Angeles may have the lock on the major labels, but the Bay Area is a thriving hive of everything from smartass hyphy acts to ambient electronic music to droning metal to dub-dusted club nights and Latin-infused dance crews. Scaling back the myriad styles into ten distinct awards categories is a difficult task, but it's cake compared to narrowing down who should get tagged for each grouping on the ballot.
Luckily I had some help in whipping together 2007's award nominees — SF Weekly's reliable stable of freelance music writers, along with members of the local music industry, all of whom piped up with their picks. We pitted those names against those who had won in previous years, refreshed a couple of ballot spots for some newcomers, and placed the whole thing online for a week in early October so all you music fans could tell us which locals most excite you in '07.
On Thursday, Oct. 18, we announce the winners of the SF Weekly Music Awards during a big ol' bash at Ruby Skye. For your entertainment we'll have live music (from Kelley Stoltz, J-Boogie's Dubtronic Science, Honeycut, Zeph & Azeem, and Brass Mafia); a host with 20 years of local radio experience (Sterling James); awards presenters from various sides of the local club, media, and festival worlds; and something special on the side: Icer Air will be hosting some fancy ski and snowboarding tricks in front of the venue starting at 7 p.m.
So come join us to celebrate a year's worth of great local music on Oct. 18. I can't promise I'll have my office all nice and tidy by the time the party starts (I guess that's why God invented iTunes?), but that's only because living where we do, there's always a bunch of new discs worth a spin being delivered. The curse of living in a region as music rich as the Bay Area's, I guess.
See you at Ruby Skye.