I am writing to express my dismay at the firings of the majority of the editorial staff of the Voice. Having worked in publishing for a number of years myself, I know all too well what happens when good, experienced editors are laid off. Of course, their work must still be done by someone else, but now it gets done by someone who is usually less experienced and more overworked. I have a strong feeling that the paper will become more and more generic in character, losing its uniqueness and ceasing to be the voice of the Village. A bigger listings section and more movie reviews can in no way replace the contributions made by these editors. Listings exist online, as do tons of movie reviews. I fear there will be less and less reason to pick up the Voice at all.
I can't believe you fired Robert Christgau. He's really the only reason I still read the paper. He's the best pop music writer of the past half-century (and I disagreed with him more than enough times). For every bit of tangled syntax, there were a half-dozen brilliant insights that reshaped how I think about music. Well, I guess my shift to Time Out is unfortunately complete. It already does what the Voice undoubtedly plans to do well enough, plus it's a glossy. As for the promised "investigative reporting," I'll stick with the tried and true establishment media ( New York Times, Post, Atlantic, New Yorker, etc.), which do well enough for me.
I always thought of the Voice as just an entertainment paper, but in the past few months I have learned to truly appreciate your investigative work and hope that you keep it up. Thanks for informing the public and fighting against corruption, especially in the case of the city and Yankee Stadium, as well as in the political arena with the attorney general race.
Get back to the future
Re Rob Harvilla's "Get Busy Living" [Down in Front, August 2329]: Typical review of a Dylan record that was recorded after 1975. It drips with all the college-minded cliché questions of "Where's our Dylan and his protest songs?" Dylan has never done the same thing twice, and the fact that your article hangs on that theory on a man who is almost 50 years into his career is, I think, a little embarrassing. Where is our Village Voice of the '60s? Oh, wait a minute; it's not the '60s.