Music, culture, and strong points of view.

Tone Madison is an independent website, podcastemail newsletter, and event series covering music and culture in Madison, Wisconsin.

Thanks for a great/crazy 2018

In Microtones, our newsletter-first column. 

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MICROTONES by Scott Gordon, editor-in-chief and publisher

For a small, scrappy publication with a very specific focus, making it to the end of another year really is an accomplishment. In 2018, we not only got Tone Madison through its fourth birthday in one piece, but also pushed ourselves harder than ever. We forged a new partnership with Communication that will allow us to plan for the future as a nonprofit (more on that in 2019). We hosted great events with artists like OHMME and Lykanthea, and took part in booking the annual Marquette Waterfront Festival. More than ever, we feel like we're able to reach people and make a difference on a variety of fronts.

More importantly, Tone Madison's journalists worked tirelessly to offer much-needed perspectives on music, culture, and politics. We talked with figures ranging from multi-faceted luminary Laurie Anderson to fiction writer Tia Clark to local experimental musician Gregory Taylor. When Live Nation consolidated a near-monopoly of Madison venues and concert promoters, we offered context. We tempted the Internet's wrath and scorn with our takes on pretzel necklacesBucky statues, and snails. Our podcast brought you conversations with artistsauthors, and musicians. Oh, and we've still got the deepest year-end coverage of local music that you'll find in Madison.

The stuff we published this year was all over the map, and often surprised even me. What ties it all together is a refusal to go for the low-hanging fruit or the fluffy narrative, and instead push a little harder for stories that we hope will make people feel more connected to arts and culture in Madison. Sometimes those stories are really difficult and sometimes they're just plain intriguing and fun. In any case, it's a privilege to share them with you.

We're going to rest up a bit until early January, but there's still more and better work ahead in 2019. Thanks to everyone who's read, listened, corresponded, and commented this year, and remember that we can't do it without your support.  


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New this week:

Our look at the year in Madison music continues with a roundup of some great singles.

Emily Mills takes a look at Crucible, a new club opening on New Year's Eve on Madison's east side.

On the podcast, Madison-based journalist Lawrence Tabak discusses his investigative reporting on Wisconsin's deal with Foxconn.

Neil Young is coming to the Overture Center in January.

Elsewhere on the Madison internet: A review of Madison Latin-jazz band Golpe Tierra's performance in Bhopal, IndiaOur Lives reports on Plan B's pattern of mistreating performers, employees, and patrons. Arts + Literature Laboratory is launching a queer youth book club. The Wisconsin Book Festival announces some early 2019 talks from authors including Chigozie ObiomaHa Jin, and Sonya Renee Taylor.

This week's Madison calendar: A Planned Parenthood benefit with a bunch of great local bands at Art In. Kurt Vile and Jessica Pratt at the SylveeAnd more.

A few more of our favorite Madison records of 2018

A few more of our favorite Madison records of 2018

The state of Madison filmgoing in 2018

The state of Madison filmgoing in 2018

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