Circus (magazine)

Last updated
Circus
CircusMag logo.png
EditorGerald Rothberg
CategoriesMusic
Frequencymonthly
First issueOctober 1966 (Hullabaloo);
March 1969 (Circus) [1]
Final issueMay 2006 [2]
Country United States
Language English
ISSN 0009-7365

Circus was a monthly American magazine devoted to rock music. It was published from 1966 to 2006. In its heyday the magazine had a full-time editorial staff that included some of the biggest names in rock journalism, such as Paul Nelson, Judy Wieder, David Fricke, and Kurt Loder, and rivaled Rolling Stone in sales and surpassed Creem . In 1974, a sister publication was launched, titled Circus Raves, [3] but by 1977 that venture had been merged into Circus Magazine, thus making Circus Magazine a biweekly . [4]

United States Federal republic in North America

The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or America, is a country comprising 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the most populous city is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico. The State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean. The U.S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The extremely diverse geography, climate, and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.

A magazine is a publication, usually a periodical publication, which is printed or electronically published. Magazines are generally published on a regular schedule and contain a variety of content. They are generally financed by advertising, by a purchase price, by prepaid subscriptions, or a combination of the three.

Rock music is a broad genre of popular music that originated as "rock and roll" in the United States in the early 1950s, and developed into a range of different styles in the 1960s and later, particularly in the United Kingdom and in the United States. It has its roots in 1940s and 1950s rock and roll, a style which drew heavily on the genres of blues, rhythm and blues, and from country music. Rock music also drew strongly on a number of other genres such as electric blues and folk, and incorporated influences from jazz, classical and other musical styles. Musically, rock has centered on the electric guitar, usually as part of a rock group with electric bass, drums, and one or more singers. Usually, rock is song-based music usually with a 4/4 time signature using a verse–chorus form, but the genre has become extremely diverse. Like pop music, lyrics often stress romantic love but also address a wide variety of other themes that are frequently social or political.

Gerald Rothberg originally put together the magazine under the name Hullabaloo in 1966 (23 issues), before changing the name to Circus in 1969. [1] Since then he has been the publisher and editor-in-chief of the magazine. In its early years it covered hard rock acts like The Doors and Grand Funk Railroad. Later, Circus began to cater to teenage boys focusing mainly on the popular rock acts of the time. In the late 1970s, the magazine started focusing on pop culture as a weekly in the vein of People Magazine , which caused a drop in sales. The magazine gradually shifted to Heavy Metal acts in the early and mid-1980s, then began focusing coverage on glam metal groups like Bon Jovi and Def Leppard in the mid-to-late 1980s. Until the arrival of grunge, Circus prospered in this style. When grunge did arrive, however, the magazine lost focus and sales again dropped.

Hard rock is a loosely defined subgenre of rock music that began in the mid-1960s, with the garage, psychedelic and blues rock movements. It is typified by a heavy use of aggressive vocals, distorted electric guitars, bass guitar, drums, and often accompanied with keyboards.

The Doors American rock band

The Doors were an American rock band formed in Los Angeles in 1965, with vocalist Jim Morrison, keyboardist Ray Manzarek, guitarist Robby Krieger, and drummer John Densmore. They were among the most controversial and influential rock acts of the 1960s, mostly because of Morrison's lyrics and his erratic stage persona, and the group was widely regarded as representative of the era's counterculture.

Grand Funk Railroad American band

Grand Funk Railroad, sometimes shortened as Grand Funk, is an American rock band popular during the 1970s, when they toured extensively and played to packed arenas worldwide. David Fricke of Rolling Stone magazine once said, "You cannot talk about rock in the 1970s without talking about Grand Funk Railroad!" Known for their crowd-pleasing arena rock style, the band was well-regarded by audiences despite a relative lack of critical acclaim. The band's name is a play on words of the Grand Trunk Western Railroad, a line that runs through the band's home town of Flint, Michigan.

As the 1990s progressed, Rothberg changed the longtime design and logo of the magazine, pared the staff down to a bare minimum, and started using stories from freelancers. It was during this period that the magazine was attacked in the Guns n' Roses song "Get in the Ring".

Logo graphic mark or emblem commonly used by commercial enterprises

A logo is a graphic mark, emblem, or symbol used to aid and promote public identification and recognition. It may be of an abstract or figurative design or include the text of the name it represents as in a wordmark.

"Get in the Ring" is the fifth song on the Guns N' Roses album Use Your Illusion II. Written by Axl Rose, Duff McKagan and Slash, it is directed at music critics. Mentioned by name are critics from Hit Parader, Circus, Kerrang! and Spin.

Before the magazine was shut down in May 2006, [5] Circus covered contemporary heavy metal, competing against magazines like Hit Parader .

Heavy metal is a genre of rock music that developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s, largely in the United Kingdom. With roots in blues rock, psychedelic rock, and acid rock, the bands that created heavy metal developed a thick, massive sound, characterized by highly amplified distortion, extended guitar solos, emphatic beats, and overall loudness. The genre's lyrics and performance styles are sometimes associated with aggression and machismo.

Hit Parader was an American music magazine that operated between 1942 and 2008. A monthly publication, it was a general popular music title until the 1980s, when its focus turned to the genres of hard rock and heavy metal. The magazine reached its peak during the 1980s as heavy metal music achieved high levels of popularity and commercial success.

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Grunge is a rock music genre and subculture that emerged during the mid-1980s in the Pacific Northwest U.S. state of Washington, particularly in Seattle and nearby towns. The early grunge movement revolved around Seattle's independent record label Sub Pop and the region's underground music scene. By the early 1990s its popularity had spread, with grunge bands appearing in California, then emerging in other parts of the United States and in Australia, building strong followings and signing major record deals.

<i>NME</i> British weekly music journalism magazine

New Musical Express (NME) is a British music journalism website and former magazine that has been published since 1952. It was the first British paper to include a singles chart, in the edition of 14 November 1952. In the 1970s it became the best-selling British music newspaper. During the period 1972 to 1976, it was particularly associated with gonzo journalism, then became closely associated with punk rock through the writings of Julie Burchill, Paul Morley and Tony Parsons. It started as a music newspaper, and gradually moved toward a magazine format during the 1980s and 1990s, changing from newsprint in 1998.

Alternative rock is a style of rock music that emerged from the independent music underground of the 1970s and became widely popular in the 1980s. In this instance, the word "alternative" refers to the genre's distinction from mainstream rock music. The term's original meaning was broader, referring to a generation of musicians unified by their collective debt to either the musical style or simply the independent, DIY ethos of punk rock, which in the late 1970s laid the groundwork for alternative music. At times, "alternative" has been used as a catch-all description for music from underground rock artists that receives mainstream recognition, or for any music, whether rock or not, that is seen to be descended from punk rock. Although the genre evolved in the late 1970s and 1980s, music anticipating the sound of the genre can be found as early as the 1960s, with bands such as The Velvet Underground.

The new wave of British heavy metal was a nationwide musical movement that started in the United Kingdom in the late 1970s and achieved international attention by the early 1980s. Journalist Geoff Barton coined the term in a May 1979 issue of the British music newspaper Sounds to describe the emergence of new heavy metal bands in the mid to late 1970s, during the period of punk rock's decline and the dominance of new wave music.

Music of Washington (state)

The U.S. state of Washington has been home to many popular musicians and several major hotbeds of musical innovation throughout its history. The largest city in the state, Seattle, is best known for being the birthplace of grunge, a type of rock and roll, during the mid-1980s, as well as a major contributor to the evolution of punk rock, indie music, folk, and hip-hop. Nearby Tacoma and Olympia have also been centers of influence on popular music.

<i>Kerrang!</i> British magazine about rock and metal music

Kerrang! is a British weekly magazine devoted to rock music and heavy metal music, currently published by Wasted Talent. It was first published on 6 June 1981 as a one-off supplement in the Sounds newspaper. Named after the onomatopoeic word that derives from the sound made when playing a power chord on a distorted electric guitar, Kerrang! was initially devoted to the new wave of British heavy metal and the rise of hard rock acts. In the early 2000s it became the best-selling British music weekly.

Popular music of the United Kingdom in the 1980s built on the post-punk and new wave movements, incorporating different sources of inspiration from subgenres and what is now classed as world music in the shape of Jamaican and Indian music. It also explored the consequences of new technology and social change in the electronic music of synthpop. In the early years of the decade, while subgenres like heavy metal music continued to develop separately, there was a considerable crossover between rock and more commercial popular music, with a large number of more "serious" bands, like The Police and UB40, enjoying considerable single chart success. The advent of MTV and cable video helped spur what has been seen as a Second British Invasion in the early years of the decade, with British bands enjoying more success in America than they had since the height of the Beatles' popularity in the 1960s. However, by the end of the decade a fragmentation has been observed, with many new forms of music and sub-cultures, including Hip Hop and House music, while the single charts were once again dominated by pop artists, now often associated with the Hi-NRG hit factory of Stock Aitken Waterman. The rise of the Indie rock scene was partly a response to this, and marked a shift away from the major music labels and towards the importance of local scenes like Madchester and subgenres, like gothic rock.

<i>Spin</i> (magazine) American music magazine

Spin is an American music magazine founded in 1985 by publisher Bob Guccione, Jr. The magazine stopped running in print in 2012 and currently runs as a webzine, owned by the Billboard-Hollywood Reporter Media Group division of Valence Media.

American rock

American rock has its roots in 1940s and 1950s rock and roll, rhythm and blues, and country music, and also drew on folk music, jazz, blues, and classical music. American rock music was further influenced by the British Invasion of the American pop charts from 1964 and resulted in the development of garage rock.

British rock music

British rock describes a wide variety of forms of music made in the United Kingdom. Since around 1964, with the "British Invasion" of the United States spearheaded by the Beatles, British rock music has had a considerable impact on the development of American music and rock music across the world.

Modern rock is rock music made between the late 1970s to present day. Some radio stations use this term to distinguish themselves from classic rock, which is based in 1960s–1980s rock music.

Popular music of the United Kingdom in the 1990s continued to develop and diversify. While the singles charts were dominated by boy bands and girl groups, British soul and Indian-based music also enjoyed their greatest level of mainstream success to date, and the rise of World music helped revitalise the popularity of folk music. Electronic rock bands like The Prodigy and Chemical Brothers began to achieve a high profile. Alternative rock reached the mainstream, emerging from the Madchester scene to produce dream pop, shoegazing, post rock and indie pop, which led to the commercial success of Britpop bands like Blur and Oasis; followed by a stream of post-Britpop bands like Travis and Feeder.

Frontline Records was a Christian rock record label founded in 1986 by James Kempner. The label focused primarily on modern rock, rap, dance-pop, and hip-hop. The label closed in the early 1990s, and then resurfaced in 2010 to re-release its music catalog, and that of related labels, digitally.

<i>HM</i> (magazine)

HM Magazine is a monthly, digital and print on demand publication focusing on hard music and alternative culture of interest to Christians. The magazine states that its goal is to "honestly and accurately cover the current state of hard music and alternative culture from a faith-based perspective." It is known for being one of the first magazines dedicated to covering Christian metal. The magazine's content includes features; news; album, live show and book reviews, culture coverage and columns. HM's occasional "So and So Says" feature is known for getting into artists' deeper thoughts on Jesus Christ, spirituality, politics and other controversial topics.

<i>Classic Rock</i> (magazine) Magazine

Classic Rock is a British magazine dedicated to rock music, published by Future, who are also responsible for its "sister" publications Metal Hammer and Prog. Although firmly focusing on key bands from the 1960s through early 1990s, it also includes articles and reviews of contemporary and upcoming artists it deems worthy of note. Despite starting as an on-off project it became one of the UK's best selling music magazines. In September 2010 it published its 150th issue.

Australian heavy metal music has its roots in both the Australian hard rock and pub rock tradition of the 1970s and the American and British heavy metal scenes. Since the mid-1980s, Australian heavy metal has been particularly influenced by foreign bands, particularly Swedish death metal, American thrash metal and black metal from Norway. Within Australia heavy metal has always remained part of the underground but since the mid-1990s many Australian metal acts have found widespread acceptance in overseas markets, particularly in Europe.

References

  1. 1 2 "20 Top Music Magazine Histories". CBUB Productions & Archives. Retrieved June 28, 2012.
  2. "CIRCUS Magazine Is No More – May 18, 2006". blabbermouth.net. Retrieved June 28, 2012.
  3. "Circus Raves". Rock's Backpages . Retrieved May 28, 2015.
  4. Template:Cite Gerald Rothberg, Founder, Editor-publisher web
  5. John David Ebert (September 2, 2011). The New Media Invasion: Digital Technologies and the World They Unmake. McFarland. p. 198. ISBN   978-0-7864-8818-6 . Retrieved October 31, 2015.