The Auricular Turns Five!
The Auricular officially turns five today! I’ve got so many thoughts to share and so much to unpack, but to start, I’ve been thinking about the last paragraph from that very first post back in 2018:
“The Auricular is designed to be a great resource for anyone already well-versed in the local music scene, or for those wanting to jump right in. In that sense too, we’re not perfect and we’re going to miss things from time to time. Helps us be better though and drop us an e-mail or social media message through our contact page. No matter what’s going on in Richmond, we want to know about it and more importantly, we want to tell everyone who’ll listen about it.”
Over the past month, I’ve met and talked with so many people who’ve told me the site is just that: a resource for people to know what’s going in town, whether it be concerts they can go to or just new & exciting stuff to listen to. This past weekend at the two celebration concerts, I was overwhelmed by people sharing the same sentiment in addition to offering up thanks and congratulations. It was amazing to hear and it truly meant the world to me.
Despite that though, I’m still drawn to the central part of that paragraph from 2018: “we’re not perfect and we’re going to miss things from time to time.” This site has covered so much in the past five years, but there’s still so much more that we didn’t because I couldn’t make the time for it in one way or another. I want people to know that those moments — those albums the site missed a review on, those music videos we saw months late, or those stacked line-ups I couldn’t attend — it all haunts me. It all keeps me up at night. I’m saying this because it’s that conflict that really drives The Auricular. I’m constantly saying that this site could be doing more because I want to be doing more and I want to give each and every musician in town a platform and spotlight. The more music they make, the better this city is and I truly believe that. If you’re a musician reading this, just know that I’m listening. ALways listening. Whatever you make, I want to hear it.
I can say so much more about the last five years, but instead, I just want to express my appreciation for some people. I put together a special compilation this weekend that were passed out for free at the two concerts (and we still have copies left so stay tuned for some chances to grab one) and I did include a page thanking various people and organizations, which I’m going to share below here. But first, I want to express my deep admiration and appreciation for all the musicians and artists who played the two shows this past weekend: Drook, Rikki Rakki, Strawberry Moon, Hotspit, Tyler Meacham, Keilan Creech, Kailey Conner, Gary Luong, and Rine. When I first asked them to play the shows, their enthusiasm was out of this world. It was so heartwarming. I especially want to thank those first four bands listed for braving the constant rain the night of their show. Saturday was just a dreary day that ended on the best musical note I could have imagined. I also want to thank everyone who came to a show, whether they bought a ticket for Richmond Music Hall or got a bite to eat at Rare Olde Times. Hopefully, I’ll see you at a concert very soon so I can tell you in person how much I appreciate you.
Anyway, here are the thanks included on the liner notes for The Richmond Sound: 2018-2023. Thanks for reading and get ready for a lot more to come in these next five years!
First and foremost, thank you to my incredible family. To Sarah, my wonderful wife and best friend: I can’t express how much I appreciate you. The patience and support you’ve given me over the years for this “passion project” is astounding. It might have been easier if I had just started a band all those years ago, but I chose to chase this dream, and your unwavering belief in me has been my greatest source of strength. To Brooklyn, my amazing daughter: thank you for always being so interested in what I’m doing. Watching you latch onto music in your own special way has been the most heartwarming thing of my life and I love how it’s shaped the creative and curious mind you have. Hopefully, my work here will lead to a more prosperous music scene in town once you form your own band in the future. I love you both more than I’ll ever be able to express with words.
Thank you to Marilyn Drew Necci for a decade of advice, guidance, encouragement, and, most importantly, friendship. I wouldn’t be where I am today without you and neither would the Richmond music scene. You have an amazing mind and an even better heart. I’m a better person just knowing you.
Thank you to my colleagues, peers, and idols within the music scene, new and old, who have motivated me to do more with their endless encouragement and unique dedication to the scene: Davy Jones (You Hear That), Andrew Cothern (RVA Playlist), Elijah Hedrick & Rian Moses-Hedrick (HearRVA), Maggie Graff (Ignited), Maya Walters (Gallery5, WRIR), Melissa Vaughn (WRIR), Caitlin & Chris (Restless RVA), Jay Smack (StudioB), Reese Williams & Carlos Chafin (In Your Ear), Sarah Moore Lindsay (Sounds Of RVA), Penny Page (WRIR), Brice Maddox (WRIR), Chloe Pallak & Cole Curry (River City Sounds), Craig Zirpolo (Dust Up), and Marc Cheatham (The Cheats Movement).
To anyone who has ever contributed to the site in one or way another, you helped shape the tone and style of The Auricular with every single thought: Sam Atkinson, Joel Worford, Samuel Goff, Codi Endres, Dylan Lawson, Christopher McManus, Laura Burroughs, Taylor Peterson, Ethan Hamilton, Shannon Cleary, and Timothy Bailey.
Thank you to Matt Klimas for designing the logo, layout, and feel of The Auricular way back in 2018, as well as several projects I’ve called on for help since then, including this tape release!
To the following musicians, photographers, and artists, all of which let me talk their ear off about projects or issues over the years, your patient counsel has always been appreciated: Ali Thibodeau, Andrew Bonieskie, Andy Brown, Anthony Gillison, Avery Fogarty, Ballard Midyette, Bobby Egger, Brent McCormick, Bri Bevan, Chanelle Vigue, Chip Hale, Coldon Martin, Daniel Medley, Elaine Digges, Erika Blatnik, Gary Luong, Grant Tolber, Indira Sultanić, Jackie Bishop Wells, Jay Kole, Jay Leavitt, Jennifer Kennedy, Jeremy Shatan, Jim Ivins, Johnny Tay, Illa Styles, Katie Bowles, Kelian Creech, Kelli Strawbridge, Kenneka Cook, Kevin Ganley, Lauren Serpa, Lucille Elliott, Lucy Dacus, Manny Lemus, Marissa Butler, Mark Obsorne, Matt Francis, Matt Luger, McKinley Dixon, Miranda Jaroneski, Miranda Jean, PJ Sykes, Prabir Mehta, Roscoe Burnems, Sam Koff, Sammi Lanzetta, Shelby Guest, Shelly Thiss, Todd Murray, Tyler Meacham, Tyler Scheerschmidt, Warren Campbell, Whitney Asher, and many, many more that I’m forgetting at the moment.
To Rob Mercurio and the staff at Rare Olde Times, thank you for feeding my musical obsession for all those years. To WDCE, thank you for giving me a platform to better explore Richmond music.
To anyone who has ever visited the website, viewed a social media post, told a friend, whatever — I appreciate you more than you’ll ever know. Stay tuned because I have a lot more planned.
Finally, to every musician from Richmond, Virginia, past and present: The Auricular is absolutely nothing without the amazing music you create. Thank you so much for the endless inspiration over the years. Hopefully, I’ve been able to turn an ear or two in your direction these last five years. Please know that I won’t rest until our music scene gets its proper recognition, both within the city and across the world.