My (Re)generation: Paste's Nick Purdy on the Fall and Rise of a Music Magazine
When Paste Magazine announced it was folding its print edition in September 2010, most probably assumed they had seen the last of the acclaimed music journal, which had enjoyed healthy growth from its founding in 2002 until the economic downturn gutted its advertiser base. Instead, a savior appeared in the form of archival live music, video and memorabilia purveyor Wolfgang's Vault, which bought the assets of Paste Media Group in January 2011 and immediately set about helping Paste plan a relaunch—this time, as a digital only multimedia publication.
The new Paste, launched in beta in June and set to roll out this month as a subscription product (at 99 cents per issue or $36 annually), is delivered via its "mPlayer," a unique Web-based interface delivering downloadable music, reviews and feature articles to a subscriber's Inbox 48 times a year. At launch, Paste said the mPlayer "opens doors for the integration of visual and audio content and reader/social interaction in ways that were impossible through print." We asked Publisher Nick Purdy to explain how the new Paste will deliver on this promise.
Inbox: What does Paste provide the music fan that other channels cannot?
Nick Purdy: A developed point of view, combined with excellent curation across multiple media forms, all delivered in one elegant package. Our tagline, Signs of Life in Music, Film & Culture, has guided us since we launched the magazine in 2002 and continues to this day. Our readers trust us to help them discover new music, to write about it in an intelligent way and to give them a chance to experience that music. In the past we did that with a sampler CD. Now we simply pair streaming (and downloadable) music and exclusive video with features and reviews.
Inbox: The mPlayer seems to be the heart of the magazine (the main way readers engage) rather than an extra selling point (like promotional singles or CDs inserted in magazines in days of yore).