Your Year End Lists, 2010 Highlights, Contributor Tip Jar and Fund Drive

Michael Ricci By

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Dear fellow AAJ contributor,

It's that time of year, and you know what that means: we're looking for your "best of" lists. It's also a time to take stock in our 2010 accomplishments and tighten our plans for 2011. Please read on...


  1. 1. Post Your Year End Picks
  2. 2. Year in Review
  3. 3. Fund Drive
  4. 4. Tips: Always, always...
  5. 5. Plans for 2011
  6. 6. What We're Listening to Now: Writers Wanted!

1. Post Your Year End Picks

I'm busy with the fund drive and won't have time to compile the collective year end lists. If someone wants to volunteer to compile the votes, please contact me. Otherwise, submit your picks as an article and format them like submissions by Troy Collins, John Kelman, Mark F. Turner, C. Michael Bailey, Jeff-Dayton Johnson, J Hunter or Dan McClenaghan. Your choice.

2. Year in Review

2010 saw us celebrate our 15th anniversary with a relaunch, upgrading our appearance and making significant changes to how our web site functions.

In addition to the makeover, we introduced track reviews, we made a greater commitment to record label profiles, we introduced several new columns, we launched shop.allaboutjazz.com, we introduced a private message feature, we created more RSS feeds and widgets, we recruited Bill King as the photo gallery editor, we launched a news syndication service, we incorporated the local calendar onto every page, we added several new features to the musician section, we added new directories to the GUIDES section, we upgraded the news section, we partnered with JazzRadio.com and currently offer 27 channels from AAJ, we parted ways with the two remaining print newspapers, we won our 9th consecutive JJA jazz award, and we launched a fund drive.

In terms of milestones, John Kelman had his 2,000th article published, we topped six million MP3 downloads, we published our 10,000th article and our 27,000th CD review, we topped 27,000 musician profiles, 100,000 MY AAJ registered users and 50,000 gallery images, and we celebrated our 15th year of presenting jazz on the web.

3. Fund Drive

If you've been to the site recently, you know we're looking to raise funds to keep the AAJ ship afloat. I'm posting all fund drive updates to a bulletin board thread in case you want to read about it. I also encourage you to view the two video appeals: the serious version, and Jeff Fitzgerald's Genius Guide to Jazz appeal.

4. Tips: Always, always...

Add email addresses to the notification box when submitting your articles. It's been proven time and time again that the recipients circulate the link boosting your read counts.

Place curly braces {{ }} around a musician's name mentioned in your article. This will hotlink their name to their AAJ profile page.

Click the Facebook LIKE button associated with your articles.

Post links to your new articles at Twitter, and copy them to your MySpace and Facebook pages.

5. Coming in 2011

We'll soon associate a PayPal "Tip Jar" with each contributor profile, so readers can support their favorite writers or columnists. You'll need a PayPal account to participate, and we'll place the tip jar in your byline pop up box and on your contributor profile page.

We're working on bringing more audio to All About Jazz in the form of an audio player (think MySpace). The AAJ audio player will be fully integrated with the website, so in addition to placing it on a musician profile page, we'll also place the audio player on a CD review page, an article page, a news page, an event page, and any other page we can connect to a musician profile.

We're making steady progress on a project to aggregate all the jazz calendar data on the planet and push it out to a calendar app for everyone to use. That way, fans will always know who is playing where and when. We know it sounds ambitious, but it can be done, and if anyone can do it, it's AAJ.

6. What We're Listening to Now: Writers Wanted!

We're looking for 10-12 writers to join John Kelman and myself as we highlight a new release we are listening to now. If you receive and listen to music regularly, you're eligible. Participating is simple and we'll present your pick and your name in a box on the home page.

It's another fun and easy way to hip our readers to good music and it's great exposure for all involved. Contact John if you're interested.

Have a safe and joyous holiday season!

Michael Ricci Founder/Publisher

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