It has been an interesting CMJ event thus far. Unlike previous years, the schedule was packed early and gradually trickles off from there.
Tuesday was a ridiculously long travel day. Leaving Phoenix around 6 AM, I arrived in NYC around 4 PM, and got to my hostel around 5 PM. After checking into CMJ and picking up my badge, I met up with Sarah for some tasty dinner before running to the Dethcote party I'd been invited to during dinner. The music was loud and not good (some dance-y club music), but the beer was free (if you knew the right people) and catching up with all the guys from last year was fun.
Wednesday I went to 4 panels which was pretty intense to say the least. When I showed up to the first panel, about social networking and music, it was fairly empty, but by the end it was packed with people sitting on the floor, and I felt a bit uncomfortable being surrounded by so many hipsters. Moving onto the second panel, I was a bit less overwhelmed by hipsters, since it was about music and mobile devices. Pretty cool stuff thrown around for a tech guy like me. Then there were the two metal panels. The first was great as some of the feedback thrown around might result in some positive changes in the industry, always nice for those of us working in it. The second panel was, well, tense. One woman in the back of the room liked to call all music pirates thieves and had many a rant about how kids were destroying metal. Needless to say, in a room of college kids, that didn't go too well. Of course, most of us get all our music for free legally anyways, because they give it to us. So it also seemed a bit pointless to bring up. Still, the discussion was great.
After the panels I went on the walking punk rock on the Bowery tour/bar crawl. That was a great tour where we went with our tour guides to several historic areas of New York and discussed how punk rock started in new york in the mid-1800's, with the gangs of New York. Interesting ideas, and lots of great history. Also saw where CBGB's used to be and saw one of the only real dive bars left on the east side. After the tour we went on the annual bar crawl and there was a lot of great socializing going on whilst drinking copious amounts of alcohol.
Thursday was college day and somehow I managed to get there on time despite the drinking of the night before, and enjoyed a nice, free breakfast. After breakfast, a couple of panels went on, and Sarah met up with me between the two and we got a lot of great ideas about things to do to improve the station, which is always exciting. A couple of bands played during the lovely free lunch, and the second one was particularly interesting, though I didn't care for the vocals. After another panel was the college radio awards, and though I didn't announce an award this year, it was completely entertaining and fun. After the awards I ran off to the open bar before a showcase, drank as much in two hours as I had during the entire bar crawl, and a group of us stumbled up to another bar after the showcase to watch the baseball game. After a few more beers we went up to the Comedy Central showcase and enjoyed some comedy before heading home for some rest.
Tonight is the listening party and Relapse showcase, should be good times. There will be a second update soon.