In the music blog spheres, there seems to be some confusion of hubris and humility. The recent blog awards / rankings have done nothing but massage egos and create a divisive mood among bloggers. For me, these awards and rankings mean little when placed aside the topic I write about: inspiring music. That's not a haughty comment - I'm not creating a CV, I'm writing about pop!
Validation is not getting hordes to vote for you via links or message board requests. What matters is the community you create with your blog. One in which you truly participate, not preside above. One that leads a reader to send you a random note saying that you rock and that they totally agree on the new Girls Aloud single. What matters is the thoughtfulness that you put into your writing. Do you rush to be The First, or do you write to be clear and expressive? What matters is that you have something unique to say.
I suppose there is some arrogance in me presenting what may be perceived as a "finger wag" here. It's often a laugh to gape at the cravenness of some bloggers. I have been dismayed recently by how easily artists themselves are won over by smooth talk. Sycophants win the battle, not the war, and their presence doesn't really help musicians, does it? What matters is that your opinion is not tainted by sidling up to fame - and I use that term loosely - or confusing criticism with PR.
I do not believe that bloggers are the new leaders of the industry. I would never ascribe that kind of position or power to myself. That's a golden calf. They/we may perhaps be the new community organizers - and we see how well those guys can turn out! - but not the new Establishment. When you can financially front the recording of an album, distribute it and promote it successfully, please get back to me and I'll revise these comments.
What goes up must come down and I am wise enough to know that. To paraphrase a friend many of you know/read, just do what do you do, for yourself, and don't worry about the rest.
We each have our own values and these are mine. Said with love. XO