Fourth meeting – “virtual” dialogue with music blogs present everywhere on the web. This time, after the interview with Phil Freeman – Burning Ambulance (here), based in the United States, Uwe Schneider and Michael Göttert – African Paper (here), based in Germany, Mario Biserni – Sands-Zine (here), based in Italy, we go to Argentina to exchange a few digital chats with Sergio Piccirilli, founder of the Spanish language music blog, dedicated to jazz and experimental music, El Intruso. The undersigned has the pleasure to participate for Kathodik at the ‘Encuesta Periodistas Internacionales’, an annual event promoted by the magazine, which involves journalists and music scholars from around the world, invited to express their ranking on artists, groups, and more of the past year (here that of 2022). Clearly when I drew up the list of blogs to contact, El Intruso was among the first I wanted to deepen the story. Sergio told me with pleasure, and I turn it to you and invite you to read it.
How did the online magazine come about?
Our magazine arose as an extension of an outstanding radio program hosted by my colleague and dear friend Marcelo Morales. The original idea was to transfer the spirit and concepts contained in that program to the online format. This new project began to materialize at the beginning of 2005 and at that time I had the honor of joining the writing team. Over time, the magazine achieved an unexpected international projection and my participation increased to the point of becoming the director of El Intruso.
What ideas were there? Which models did you refer to? Where did you get the cue from?
We never had a model to copy or imitate, but the idea of trying to spread and support musical creativity in all its forms was always present. Emphasizing, especially, those manifestations that for different reasons and causes, were not reflected or considered by the traditional media. Perhaps that explains why the original slogan of our magazine has been (and still is): “the other music”.
Why did you choose the name El Intruso?
The explanation is quite simple. The radio program that gave rise to the magazine was called, precisely, ‘El Intruso’.
Do you deal mainly with music in the magazine? Which genres do you cover?
Music was always the main theme in our content, however, in the early days of the magazine we also had sections dedicated to other topics such as literature, for example. Today music occupies all of our publications, but our readers know that in the texts and musical reviews that we publish they can find multiple references to other artistic disciplines (cinema, painting, literature, etc.) or allusions to essential topics for the human being such as philosophy, psychology, politics and sociology, among others. In other words: we are passionate about music because we are passionate about life, therefore, there can be no separation between the art of our time, the world around us and the central aspects of the human condition.
Besides the institutional site you are present in social media? If so, which do you prefer to use?
At present it is difficult to conceive of the development of journalistic work without the use of social networks, but we cannot ignore the incidence that post-truth has had in the field of communication and journalism, as well as in the field of related technology at the information. In this context, today the truth seems to have lost its value, quality has been replaced by quantity, and critical thinking does not have much space to develop. However, taking these risks into account and taking the necessary precautions, appropriate use of the networks can be made and incorporated as a tool to facilitate disclosure. At El Intruso, based on the premises mentioned above, we have been using Facebook and Twitter for several years and we do not rule out incorporating other platforms in the future.
Do you have an idea of who your readers are? Do you have any feedback from your readers?
The main characteristic of our readers is diversity. Sociocultural, generational, and even language diversity. In fact, we know of the existence of many readers who do not speak Spanish and take the trouble to translate our texts and publications.
Are you planning a printed edition of the magazine?
No, definitely not. However, and related to my previous answer, we are considering the possibility that at some point El Intruso will have a multilingual edition.
Are you open to collaborations with other magazines, online/printed, associations, bodies, etc.?
The idea of collaborating with other media is always present, but the lack of time prevents its development. In recent years I have received many invitations, mainly from musicians inviting me to make “liner notes” for some of their albums. And although I did it in specific cases -such as for Mary Halvorson‘s ‘Meltframe’ album, to cite an example- I see it as unlikely that I would immediately be able to dedicate time to tasks unrelated to El Intruso.
Any future projects beyond the online magazine?
Simoen Kondev once said: “I feel that every project I work on is a dream project, as long as I am learning.” In this sense, for my personal future I only aspire to be able to continue dreaming and learning.