Rolling Stone: Why Don’t I Love You Anymore?

A pretty interesting perspective on RS by Martha Nichols, an early reader.

RS has long been criticized for its boomer music sensibility and cluelessness about race and gender. I was a feminist in the ’70s, and while that’s not why I read Rolling Stone, it’s ultimately why I got tired of it. That essentially male voice is so relentlessly sure it’s right, that it knows the best albums and the best songs of a decade — or a generation — but The Voice will never cop to being influenced by personal preference or (worse) industry hype.

From the vantage point of three decades gone by, I know that tastes in pop music change, listeners get older, we enter different life phases — and start receiving solicitations from AARP. But even in 1984, when I had that subscription to Rolling Stone and was reading the first installments of Tom Wolfe’s The Bonfire of the Vanities, I felt my interest draining away.

3 thoughts on “Rolling Stone: Why Don’t I Love You Anymore?

  1. started reading RS again two years ago when our music-obsessed teenage son asked for a sub. the political coverage these days is awesome, ranks w/the best-ever things in the mag and believe me, as a former editor/writer, I am not inclined to cut RS much slack. that said I barely glance at the music coverage, not so much out of pique as boredom. but hey, just looking at the review grades, it’s amazing how much good music is out there 😉

  2. I’m very out of touch with Rolling Stone these days, though I do tend to buy their Obama/Jon Stewart/etc. issues, or anyway, try to read them online. Their political reportage does always seem very solid, from what I’ve read. (I also enjoy reading Sheffield’s blog/column online.)

  3. I subscribe to RS because a.) I wasn’t around during their 60’s and 70’s heyday, and b.) their music coverage, for the most part, still covers 60’s-70’s artists, so I get to read many well-written rehashes of these artists. I imagine for anyone around the first time around, these rehashes can become tedious.

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