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When this site started in January 2017 it was conceived essentially as a blog but quickly grew well beyond that.

While it still has the same basic structure as a blog with new posts coming out daily, it is now, for all intent and purposes, a resource based site. The number of posts have gone from just four a week to one per day and this fall we’ve bumped it up to between ten and twelve per week and as a result we’re rapidly closing in on 1,300 full length reviews. Thus what began as a sideline has become a major occupation.

The original plan I had for the site was to have banner ads on the pages to help defray the costs as well give me some financial remuneration for all of this brilliantly meaningless work. I held off on those at first simply to give me time to get acclimated to running a website but once I got up to speed I dropped the idea of ads because… well, because I hate seeing them on other sites frankly.

These days ads are everywhere you look and becoming more intrusive all the time because people became accustomed to ignoring the smaller banner ads, so now they’ve gone back to annoying pop up ads that cover content, auto-play ads that yell at you when you’re trying to read and even news sites have paid ads disguised as articles, all trying to earn more and more revenue.

We don’t do any of that… and never will.

Freedom Has Its Price
A year ago I was offered a large sum to sell the site – but keep running it on salary – to a company that wanted to monetize it and take advantage of the steady traffic… which meant all those nasty things I just mentioned would clog the pages, change the look and tone of the site and probably bring in other people to write about other things that they deemed potentially lucrative (as if there was something with MORE appeal than long-winded reviews of obscure songs from seven decades in the past!).

I obviously turned them down, but it did get me to look into other avenues to increase the revenue on my own including Patreon, which has paid membership levels to get bonus content. These can actually be very profitable, easily a couple grand a month for sites with less visitors than we have, and there are other smaller operations that solicit one-time donations for the same purpose.

None of which I want to do.


I like the fact this site is free. I like the fact you can come here every day and get new reviews (now two a day – morning and evening!) and I like that you can go back and read any of the old reviews whenever you want, however many times you want without weighing a cost/benefit ratio each time you show up. You don’t have to sign in, leave a DNA sample or get our name tattooed somewhere on your body for promotional purposes to have access to any of it.

The site is meant to provide information for those seeking to learn about the full history of rock ‘n’ roll and however indulgent it may be – and it definitely is indulgent – that kind of thing should remain accessible for everybody with no strings attached.

All this extra writing to increase the amount of content however takes time and time is money and as a capitalist I’ve come to the conclusion that money is good – and it seems the webhost providers require it to actually keep the site up and running and with more bandwidth needed for more content the price goes up.

Okay, so where is this leading…

The Lost Sides
The point of this site, as regular readers know, is to cover rock history in its entirety from the very beginning, one song at a time… or rather, one single at a time, as in commercially available records from that era in chronological order.

But there were a number of great sides that legendary artists cut at their peak which didn’t see light of day for decades until the CD era had compilers scouring the vaults of defunct record companies looking for unreleased sides.

The best of these songs give a more detailed picture of just how good certain artists were and because they’re now widely available anyone can hear them… but nobody can read much about them because who else is writing about this stuff so long after it was recorded?

We’ve just finished 1950 (for those not following along closely) and there are a number of really good, really interesting songs from rock’s first three years that we haven’t been able to cover because they didn’t come out at the time but which would make for vital additions to the narrative, yet I could never figure out how to integrate them into the story… until now.

A Deviation Deep Into The Heart Of The Amazon
The sole source of income we make through this site has been via the Amazon links which – if I’m being honest – were chosen in large part because it would allow me to have a relevant color picture of the topic at hand for each page since there wasn’t always a lot of pictures to go with these records and artists we were covering. Whatever revenue we got from those would be merely a bonus for us.

Though Amazon is probably the most popular retailer in the world for a wider array of products than anyone else, I understand it’s not a place everyone is comfortable supporting for a variety of reasons (can their workers PLEASE be allowed to unionize for goodness sakes?!?!), so I’m not altogether happy that this new feature is contingent on people possibly violating their own conscience in order to get more content.

But in trying to decide how I could keep the site the same while still upping the influx of dough-re-mi I decided to try to incorporate bonus content without each person being obligated to fork over anything to read them.


So what I’m proposing to do is this: I’m writing and stockpiling reviews of the best of the unreleased songs in a given period and each time we reach a certain financial goal (based loosely on the site traffic) another one of these reviews From The Vault will be posted for anybody and everybody to read, same as always, whether or not they were among those who bought anything through the links themselves. The more who buy stuff however the faster these go up.

If it doesn’t generate much interest and as a result none of them ever get posted then it’s no big loss, nobody is being deprived of any normal review of the released records which won’t slow down in the least.

But I’m hoping the chance to read about some really good unreleased sides… in many cases ones that would’ve been, or should’ve been, hits had they come out at the time (already lined up are Amos Milburn, Smiley Lewis, Hal Singer, Stick McGhee, Johnny Otis, Professor Longhair, The Orioles) will be enough of an incentive to get some clicks and purchases of things you’d already buy from the same place – and with the holidays right around the corner you’re going to be buying more crap for more smarmy relatives you don’t like anyway, so why not at least get something for yourself out of that ordeal even if it’s just a few extra reviews?

All you need to do is click on any of the Amazon links which are usually the album covers halfway down the page on the left of most (not all) of the reviews (like the one above featuring a lot of the records we’re going to be covering in the coming weeks and months here) and as long as you get to Amazon through any of our links then whatever you buy once you’re there (NONE of which has to be what we’re linking to by the way) is credited to our efforts – clothes, electronics, books, farm equipment, do-it-yourself nuclear reactors, you name it.

You get the same products you were going to buy anyway at the exact same price but instead of Amazon getting that last 5% of it we get it instead, which will result in you and everyone else reading this site getting an occasional bonus review of a song that nobody ever heard when it was made!

How’s that for a sales pitch?!

As always, there’s absolutely no requirement you do any of this. Don’t be buying things you don’t need with money you don’t have to read reviews you might not even have much interest in to begin with.

But if you ignore that advice and spend recklessly for our benefit, we’ll celebrate madly and be sure to thank you with even more lengthy boring reviews!