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Pieces I was Proud of in 2016

Here are some pieces of mine published in 2016 that I’m proud of:

– Long-form interview with Beijing poet, freestyle rapper, scene gadfly and former high-level competitive martial artist, Dawei: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 (pangbianr)

“The Underground Sound Rising Up From China’s Cities”: a piece that existed for a long time in my head with the working title “Megacity Sound”, an attempt to succinctly trace how the cities of Beijing, Shanghai and Dalian shaped recent (2015/2016) albums from rock bands Chui Wan, Duck Fight Goose, and DOC, respectively. (Sixth Tone)

– Li Daiguo: I was completely blown away by Daiguo’s 2016 solo pipa album Li Shurui, and profiled it/him briefly in the August 2016 issue of The Wire (pdf of my Bites feature here). Also added a few thoughts in a recent entry to my weekly Douban Music column, here.

– In My Ears (入耳): On that note, I’m quite happy to have a weekly, bilingual column aimed at Douban Music’s audience, which is predominately young Chinese indie music nerds. Personal highlights so far: Li Jianhong’s 1969, Yang Fan’s What Happened After 1,001 Nights?, Snapline’s Two She’s, Carl Stone’s Electronic Music from the Seventies and Eighties

Sinogrime Primer: Parsing a non-genre that nevertheless signifies some sociocultural baggage present in the current alt-club zeitgeist. I wrote it ahead of Kode9’s latest China appearance, at which he told me that this is “the best thing that’s been written about Sinogrime”, for whatever that’s worth. (Time Out)

Gulou View: My monthly column with Michael Pettis for the New York Observer. Prouder of some entries than others, but I do stand by two two-parters in particular: On hutong gentrification (1, 2); On weirder strains of 21st century Chinese fiction (1, 2)

Beijing Sound As Art: A primer on several projects that treat the sound of Beijing as a medium in itself, with an obvious focus on field recording and sound art. (Time Out)

MRR China issue: I had two substantive, history-oriented interviews (with SUBS and Demerit) in the December 2016 “All China” issue of Maximum Rock’n’Roll. Giving back to the punk rag that educated my youth. Download pdf here.

– Interviews and profiles: My bread and butter. I can safely say that I interviewed or profiled more than 100 artists, musicians, producers, label-runners, film directors, et al in 2016, here are some of my personal favorites: Yang Mingming (director, Female Directors), Daniel Miller (Mute Records), Holly Herndon, Andrew Savage (Parquet Courts), Alison Knowles (Fluxus co-founder), Sergey Saburov (Hyperboloid Records, Moscow), Ivan Zoloto (Full of Nothing/Love Cult), Baudouin Mouanda (photographer of the Congolese sapeurs), Howie Lee (Do Hits), Negro Leo (musician, Rio de Janeiro)

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