Hello and welcome to the 20th Anniversary edition of the Pennyblackmusic Magazine.

Twenty years is a long time to do anything, and during that time we have been through a lot of changes.

Pennyblackmusic started life as a web-based music shop, going online in the first few days of September 1998 (Unfortunately no-one can remember the exact date) with the magazine very much a supplement to it. When the shop closed in 2003, the magazine had grown to such an extent that we decided to carry on with it as its main focus.

Throughout most of the past twenty years we have always had a hardcore of the same writers, people who have stuck with us year after year, and we have been joined by others along the way. Some of those early writers started out with us as music-obsessed teenagers and students in their early twenties, and, often married now with children, are now middle aged. Others we have lost, sometimes all too soon, including in what has been our two darkest moments two to cancer in the last twelve months.

There have been over thirty Pennyblackmusic Bands’ Nights in London, Manchester, Edinburgh and Glasgow, a chance for us to promote live what we have been shouting about online. There have been occasional disasters, poorly attended gigs, and on one infamous occasion a headline act which broke up acrimoniously on stage, but more often than not it has been good. Audiences have been steady, and sometimes the gigs we have promoted have been memorable for all the right reasons, all the acts have been superb, and we have also had some incredible nights.

We have also run over 1, 700 interviews, sometimes with well-known names, other times with cult acts and indie bands and on occasions with the wilfully obscure. There have been 8, 500 album and single reviews, and we have taken countless photographs and been to hundreds of gigs.

Thank you to all the many Pennyblackmusic writers and photographers past and present, to everyone who has ever handed in a piece of writing for us, or who has stood for us in the pit in the front row of a gig with their camera.

Thank you too to the bands, and also for keeping reading us.

We wouldn’t have got this far without you…

John Clarkson
Magazine Editor

Richard Banks

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