Around the Web is where we see point you in the direction of other great conversations on the internet. Culture writing is never hard to find, and these are our favorite pieces from the last week or so.
- Grantland: Lies Grammy Told Us – Steve Hyden, who is quickly becoming my favorite music writer, digs into the Grammy’s weird history with rap music. Can you imagine a world where the only rap albums to win Album of the Year were by Outkast, Lauryn Hill and Macklemore?
- Stereogum: Album of the Week: Against Me! Transgender Dysphoria Blues – In his praise for the new Against Me! album, Tom Breihan starts off by taking his lumps. I always love the way he describes rock music moods, too: “full-on stomp-snort rock-star whoop.”
- Interview Magazine: Kanye West – Director of the Oscar-nominated 12 Years A Slave talks to Kanye West, and it’s a good interview and it’s kind of a relief to be devoid of any serious drama. It’s just friendly and interesting.
- Aquarium Drunkard: Lucinda Williams – S/T Reissue – One of AD’s greatest values is his knowledge and understanding of music history, not just what’s hot & what’s ubiquitous canon. For someone like me, who only knows Lucinda Williams because young folkies cover her, a sharp write up like this is illuminating.
- Village Voice: Why The Grammys Don’t Matter – You tell ’em, Nick Keppler.
- Slate: In The Name of Love – “Elites embrace the do what you love mantra. But it devalues work and hurts workers.” Miya Tokumitsu takes the wind out of the sloganizing on your favorite throw pillow.
- Grantland: Stanford Man: Richard Sherman and the Thug Athlete Narrative – A reminder that getting hype about football is not a fair assessment of character, and a sharp deconstruction of the standards we hold entire races by Rembert Browne.
- The Atlantic: Neal Brennan – White America’s Greatest Klingon Writer – This Ta-Nehisi Coates post is just full of great quotable wisdom, (“Never trust anyone posting as a tour guide,” “Never try to look cool and learn something at the same time. We must all have an awkward phase.”) but it’s really worthwhile to read the whole thing.
- The Daily Dot: The Final Confessions of a Silk Road Kingpin – Silk Road, the deep web’s not-so-secret drug marketplace, is going to be one of those internet legends and pieces like this, by Patrick Howell O’Neill, show us why it’s a source of fascination.