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last word

The demise of The Word, or Word as the magazine was known when it launched, has saddened the Twitterati and lovers of good music writing.

Like all good writing, it sent you off in search of that which had inspired the piece in the first place.

In The Word that might have been a classic album, or a new album, or a dvd box set or just a piece of cultural trivia.

The magazine’s impact on my life is perhaps best illustrated by the booklet that came with an early issue (or perhaps even the launch issue) under the title ’21st century Classics.’

It asked its contributors and other hacks to choose ‘a completely subjective selection of the best of everything right now.’

In those far off days of 2003, the Apple iPod gets a nod as best ‘toy.’

Flicking through its recommendations, I loved (and still do) …

* ‘English Passengers’ by Matthew Kneale (Great British Novel)

* ‘The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay’ by Michael Chabon (Great American Novel)

* Ricky Gervais in ‘The Office’ (Comedy Performance)

* ‘The Tipping Point’ by Malcolm Gladwell (Theory)

* ‘Amelie’ (Foreign Language Film)

* ‘One Band Could Be Your Life: Scenes From The American Indie Underground, 1981-1991’ by Michael Azerrad (Music Book)

* ‘Rear Window’ (Classic Movie on DVD)

* ‘Nixon’ by Lambchop (Best Americana Album)

* ‘Seabiscuit’ by Laura Hillenbrand (Sports Book)

* And something called ‘Google’ (Most Useful Website)

My sense is that nearly a decade ago, such a magazine with its ‘heads up’ editorial policy was a unique selling point, whereas today the internet and social media has thrown up lots and lots of rivals, many of them free.

But pretty much all the above were new to me at the time and I can genuinely say that revisiting any of them would be a pleasure.

Stereophonics – Handbags and Gladrags

Lambchop – Up With People

The Word Magazine – official website

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