Re. The Wire


Occasional Writings
October 11, 1996

To Pat Kane,

My manager, Jane Quinn, called me just now and faxed me the questions that you’re asking about The Wire. I’m leaving home in about 15 minutes and won’t be back until tomorrow late morning, so I thought I’d send a quick fax before I go.

1. The Wire doesn’t really set out to “cover” contemporary music but has a distinctive and pleasantly lop-sided approach. I enjoy in particular the tone of the reviews of contemporary music where the language is refreshingly non-classical.

2. Its eclecticism is one of its hallmarks of course and I think it does work. This is not to say that I might not prefer more emphasis on certain areas over others.

3. “Being intellectual” is, I imagine, never a criterion that The Wire has ever set up for itself. I would prefer, at times, more intellectual approach, but at others a less intellectual approach…

4. I don’t think it’s ever brought anyone to my attention, but I have bought recordings which looked, from the accounts in The Wire, to be worth pursuing. I’ve always liked the photographs in The Wire, especially, in the earlier days, the portrait photographs by Nick White and it was through these that I subsequently used Nick for my last three album covers on Point, so The Wire did bring a serious artist to my attention with whom I’ve since worked, and continue to do so.

5. I suppose that the range of The Wire is what distinguishes it from other music papers. As I mention above, I do like the photography.

(I don’t buy The Wire regularly but pick it up from time to time so I’ can’t be exhaustive in my response. Hope this is useful.)

Gavin Bryars

Gavin Bryars