Rocks Off has tunnel vision. If something's not right in front of us, we're apt not to notice.
Therefore, we were pleasantly surprised to open this week's print edition of the Press and discover we are the readers' 2010 choice for Best Music Blog. We are humbled and flattered, especially since the only sort of campaigning or lobbying we did for the award was, well, doing our job.
Thank you, Houston. First and foremost, our readers - those who voted for us and those who didn't.
Of course, we also have to thank the people without whom we wouldn't be here: The scores of talented local musicians in any and every genre imaginable, who give us something to write about when Lady Gaga and Tom Petty aren't around. (Yes, we are kidding.) It's no secret that Rocks Off is pretty high on Houston, and continually astounded by both the amount and quality of local music coming out these days.
Our victory was hardly a given. There are many other music-minded media clusters in Houston that keep us honest and on our toes, occasionally tip us off to stories and once in a while even do something newsworthy themselves - like, say, organize a big summer festival or open up a club. So, for all of the above, we'd like to take a moment to thank the following: 29-95, Free Press Houston, CultureMap, Space City Rock, Hands Up Houston, Houston Calling, indiehouston.org and Nonalignment Pact.
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We can't cover it all alone, naturally. Rocks Off would also like to thank our staff, especially core contributors Craig Hlavaty, Brittanie Shey, Shea Serrano, William Michael Smith, John Seaborn Gray, Matthew Keever, Rizoh and Jef With One F, as well as photographers Jim Bricker, Groovehouse, Marco Torres, Jason Wolter, Faith Silva and Marc Brubaker, for usually coming through in a pinch and not getting us into too much trouble. On that note, thanks to our bosses, both at the Press and Village Voice Media, for their advice, patience and occasional forgiveness.
Also due a note of gratitude are all the club owners, booking agents, promoters, publicists, box-office and record-store folks, radio DJs (especially those who don't work off a computer-controlled playlist), waitresses, bartenders and bouncers. It takes a lot of work to make a music scene hum, and Houston is absolutely humming right now.
Real Talk: Rocks Off reads other cities' music blogs on a regular basis, both in and out of the Village Voice Media chain. As a scene, Houston can go toe to toe with any of them, and whup most. That's something we can all be proud of. Houston may not get the national or even regional coverage many within the scene (yours truly most definitely included) think it so richly deserves, but that doesn't make it any less fertile, vibrant or interesting.
Four examples, in fact, are playing our Best of Houston reader appreciation party tonight at Lucky's Pub: Los Skarnales, Zydeco Dots, Robert Ellis & the Boys and Hollywood FLOSS. We hope you can join us.