“A half-life in lost dreams”
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Lost and foundation
You might detect a common theme as you flick through the pages of this issue. In our cover feature, Lana Del Rey and her team are quick to isolate one of the essential pillars upon which her extraordinary career has been built: long-term vision. In always keeping an eye on the legacy being built and worked towards instead of capitulating to much of what is expected from artists and campaigns, Lana has established a totally unique place with modern pop. Nor is Lana alone in extolling the virtues of taking a long view on things. For 19 years now, BBC 6 Music has grown and grown by building an alternative space on radio for, well, alternative acts, playing songs, it should be stressed, that are often diametrically opposed to those found on other stations. Then there’s UK independent hip-hop specialists Big Dada, who are rebuilding their label with diversity as its cornerstone and Ghazi Shami’s Empire who are presiding over a streaming revolution for artists. And that’s to say nothing of the innovators and visionaries that comprise our huge Music Week Tech Summit preview. There is a connective tissue here: people who are not only concerned with attaining success, but success that can be sustained for the long haul. At the time of writing, there are signs of light at the end of the long, dark tunnel that has been the Covid pandemic. In the past year the emphasis has, understandably, been on survival; everyone from artists to major labels has been working overtime to find ways to adjust to lockdown life and its myriad implications. But as things slowly start to open up again, as recruitment drives will no doubt begin, as some whole sectors will be revived, there will no doubt be an urge to race to get things back to normal again – a quick scramble to reinherit something as close to the old ways of doing things as possible. But care should be paid here, and old assumptions about the best ways of doing things should also be interrogated. Yes, it is time to rebuild, but also time to build things to last.
George Garner, Head Of Content
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