February 2008 issue of Mojo
|First issue||October 1993, 26 years ago|
|Company||Bauer Media Group|
Mojo is a popular music magazine published initially by Emap, and since January 2008 by Bauer, monthly in the United Kingdom. Following the success of the magazine Q , publishers Emap were looking for a title that would cater for the burgeoning interest in classic rock music. Mojo was first published on 15 October 1993;in keeping with its classic rock aesthetic, the first issue had Bob Dylan and John Lennon as its first cover stars. Noted for its in-depth coverage of both popular and cult acts, it acted as the inspiration for Blender and Uncut . Many noted music critics have written for it, including Charles Shaar Murray, Greil Marcus, Nick Kent, Jon Savage and Sylvie Simmons. The launch editor of Mojo was Paul Du Noyer and his successors have included Mat Snow, Paul Trynka and Pat Gilbert.
While some criticise it for its frequent coverage of classic rock acts such as the Beatles and Bob Dylan, it has nevertheless featured many newer and "left-field" acts. It was the first mainstream magazine in the UK to focus on the White Stripes, whom it has covered as zealously as it has many older acts.
Mojo regularly includes a covermount CD that ties in with a current magazine article or theme. It introduced the Mojo Honours list, an awards ceremony that is a mixture of readers' and critics' awards, in 2004.
In early 2010, Mojo was involved in a controversial move by its new parent company, Bauer, to unilaterally impose a new contract on all photographers and writers, taking away their copyright, and offloading liability for libel or copyright infringement from the publisher onto the contributor. Two hundred photographers and writers from Mojo and Bauer's other music magazines, Kerrang! and Q , were reported as refusing to work under the new terms.
More recently, the magazine has taken to publishing many "Top 100" lists, including the subjects of drug songs (Mojo #109), rock epics (Mojo #125), protest songs (Mojo #126) and even the most miserable songs of all time (Mojo #127). To celebrate 150 issues, the magazine published a "Top 100 Albums of Mojo's Lifetime" list (essentially 1993 onwards). The top five for this list were:
In 2007, the magazine set out to determine "The Top 100 Records That Changed the World". The list was compiled and voted on by an eclectic panel of superstars, including Björk, Tori Amos, Tom Waits, Brian Wilson, Pete Wentz and Steve Earle. Little Richard's 1955 hit "Tutti Frutti" took the number one spot. Richard's record, dubbed "a torrent of filth wailed by a bisexual alien", beat the Beatles' "I Want to Hold Your Hand" (2nd) and Elvis Presley's "Heartbreak Hotel" (3rd). The magazine's editors claimed that "the 100 albums, singles and 78s that made up the list make up the most influential and inspirational recordings ever made". Hailing "Tutti Frutti" as the sound of the birth of rock 'n' roll, the editors went on to state that "one can only imagine how it must have sounded when the song exploded across the airwaves!"
The top ten on Mojo's 100 Records That Changed the World list are:
The magazine also published an issue in 2008 that celebrated the Beatles' "White Album", featuring a cover-mounted CD that included cover versions of tracks from the double album, including "Blackbird" sung in Scottish Gaelic by Julie Fowlis.
Other lists include a Top 50 of songs by a particular artist from time to time, usually compiled by a panel of music journalists and musicians. Featured artists have included David Bowie, Pink Floyd, The Beach Boys, The Who, Bruce Springsteen, Neil Young, among many.
After the success of an all-Beatles issue published to mark the release of The Beatles Anthology in 1995, many stand-alone, special editions of Mojo have been produced, devoting an entire magazine to one artist or genre. Three of the most successful were the series (produced by then special editions editor Chris Hunt) telling the story of the Beatles – one thousand days at a time. Featuring contributions from many of the world's leading rock critics and Beatles experts, such as Hunter Davies, Mark Lewisohn, Richard Williams, Ian MacDonald, Peter Doggett and Alan Clayson, the three magazines were published between 2002 and 2003, before being collected together by editor-in-chief Paul Trynka and published as the book The Beatles: Ten Years That Shook The World (Dorling Kindersley, 2004).
Other special editions have focused on Pink Floyd, Psychedelia, Punk and the Sixties. Mojo has also published four editions of "The MOJO Collection: The Greatest Albums Of All Time" (Canongate Books), originally edited by the magazine's founding features editor, Jim Irvin, and a series of short, definitive biographies under the imprint Mojo Heroes, starting in 2002 with Neil Young: Reflections In Broken Glass, written by Sylvie Simmons, a longtime Mojo contributing editor.
The company behind the magazine, Bauer, also produced a digital radio station.This station was called Mojo Radio, and was transmitted on the digital television networks in the UK (Freeview channel 721 and Sky Digital channel 0182, though not Virgin Media) and online. The output of the station was based on that of the magazine. It was announced on 5 November 2008 that Mojo Radio would cease broadcasting on 30 November 2008, in order to save Bauer the financial outlay.
The magazine's current editor-in-chief, Phil Alexander, has a regular show on the UK digital radio station Planet Rock entitled Mojo Rocks, in which he follows a Mojo-inspired playlist.
Rubber Soul is the sixth studio album by the English rock band the Beatles. It was released on 3 December 1965 in the United Kingdom, on EMI's Parlophone label, accompanied by the non-album double A-side single "Day Tripper" / "We Can Work It Out". The original North American version of the album, issued by Capitol Records, contained ten of the fourteen songs and two tracks withheld from the band's Help! album. Rubber Soul met with a highly favourable critical response and topped sales charts in Britain and the United States for several weeks.
Richard Wayne Penniman, known as Little Richard, was an American musician, singer, and songwriter. He was an influential figure in popular music and culture for seven decades. Nicknamed "The Innovator, The Originator, and The Architect of Rock and Roll", Richard's most celebrated work dates from the mid-1950s, when his charismatic showmanship and dynamic music, characterized by frenetic piano playing, pounding back beat and raspy shouted vocals, laid the foundation for rock and roll. Richard's innovative emotive vocalizations and uptempo rhythmic music also played a key role in the formation of other popular music genres, including soul and funk. He influenced numerous singers and musicians across musical genres from rock to hip hop; his music helped shape rhythm and blues for generations.
All Things Must Pass is the third studio album by English rock musician George Harrison. Released as a triple album in November 1970, it was Harrison's first solo work after the break-up of the Beatles in April that year. It includes the hit singles "My Sweet Lord" and "What Is Life", as well as songs such as "Isn't It a Pity" and the title track that had been overlooked for inclusion on releases by the Beatles. The album reflects the influence of Harrison's musical activities with artists such as Bob Dylan, the Band, Delaney & Bonnie and Friends and Billy Preston during 1968–70, and his growth as an artist beyond his supporting role to former bandmates John Lennon and Paul McCartney. All Things Must Pass introduced Harrison's signature slide guitar sound and the spiritual themes present throughout his subsequent solo work. The original vinyl release consisted of two LPs of songs and a third disc of informal jams titled Apple Jam. Several commentators interpret Barry Feinstein's album cover photo, showing Harrison surrounded by four garden gnomes, as a statement on his independence from the Beatles.
Kerrang! is a British weekly magazine devoted to rock and 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. The print edition of Kerrang! is currently on publication hiatus due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, though the website and digital editions are continuing as usual.
Q was a popular music magazine published monthly in the United Kingdom. It was founded in 1986 by the journalists and broadcasters Mark Ellen and David Hepworth, who were presenters of the BBC television music series Whistle Test.
"Mr. Tambourine Man" is a song written by Bob Dylan, released as the first track of the acoustic side of his March 1965 album Bringing It All Back Home. The song's popularity led to Dylan recording it live many times, and it has been included in multiple compilation albums. It has been translated into other languages, and has been used or referenced in television shows, films, and books.
"I Want to Hold Your Hand" is a song by the English rock band the Beatles. Written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney, and recorded on 17 October 1963, it was the first Beatles record to be made using four-track equipment.
"And Your Bird Can Sing" is a song by the English rock band the Beatles. It was released on their 1966 album Revolver, apart from in the United States and Canada, where it instead appeared on Yesterday and Today. The song was written mainly by John Lennon and credited to Lennon–McCartney. The recording features an extended dual-guitar melody, played by George Harrison and Paul McCartney, which anticipated the harmonised guitar arrangements commonly used by Southern rock, hard rock and heavy metal bands.
"Tutti Frutti" is a song written by Little Richard and Dorothy LaBostrie that was first recorded in 1955, becoming Little Richard's first major hit record. With its energetic refrain, often transcribed as "A-wop-bop-a-loo-mop-a-lop-bam-boom!", and its hard-driving sound and wild lyrics, it became not only a model for many future Little Richard songs, but also a model for rock and roll itself. The song introduced several of rock music's most characteristic musical features, including its loud volume, powerful vocal style, and distinctive beat and rhythm.
"Positively 4th Street" is a song written and performed by Bob Dylan, first recorded in New York City on July 29, 1965. It was released as a single by Columbia Records on September 7, 1965, reaching No. 1 on Canada's RPM chart, No. 7 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, and No. 8 on the UK Singles Chart. Rolling Stone magazine ranked the song as No. 206 in their 500 Greatest Songs of All Time list.
"People Get Ready" is a 1965 single by the Impressions, and the title track from the People Get Ready album. The single is the group's best-known hit, reaching number-three on the Billboard R&B Chart and number 14 on the Billboard Pop Chart. The gospel-influenced track was a Curtis Mayfield composition that displayed the growing sense of social and political awareness in his writing.
Record Collector is a British monthly music magazine. It distributes both within the UK and worldwide. It started in 1979.
"The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time" is a recurring music ranking of the finest albums in history as compiled by the American magazine Rolling Stone. It is based on weighted votes from selected musicians, critics, and industry figures. The first list was published in a special issue of the magazine in 2003 and a related book in 2005.
"The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time" was the cover story of a special issue of Rolling Stone, issue number 963, published in December 2004, a year after the magazine published its list of "The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time".
"Who Can See It" is a song by English musician George Harrison, released on his 1973 album Living in the Material World. The lyrics reflect Harrison's uneasy feelings towards the Beatles' legacy, three years after the group's break-up, and serve as his statement of independence from expectations raised by the band's unprecedented popularity. Some music critics and biographers suggest that he wrote the song during a period of personal anguish, following the acclaim he had received as a solo artist with the 1970 triple album All Things Must Pass and his 1971–72 Bangladesh aid project. The revelatory nature of the lyrics has encouraged comparisons between Living in the Material World and John Lennon's primal therapy-inspired 1970 release, Plastic Ono Band.
Sylvie Simmons is a London-born, California-based music journalist, named as a "principal player" in Paul Gorman's book on the history of the rock music press In Their Own Write. A widely regarded writer and rock historian since the late 1970s, she is one of very few women to be included among the predominantly male rock elite. Simmons is the author of a number of books, including biography and cult fiction. Simmons is also a singer-songwriter, ukulele player and recording artist.
Paul Du Noyer is an English rock journalist and author. He was born in Liverpool, Lancashire, and educated at the London School of Economics. He has written and edited for NME, Q, and Mojo. Du Noyer is the author of several books on the music industry, rock musicians, London and on his hometown, Liverpool.
Mat Snow is an English music journalist, magazine editor, and author. From 1995 to 1999, he was the editor of Mojo magazine; he subsequently served in the same role on the football magazine FourFourTwo.
Paul Trynka is a British rock journalist and author. He was the editor of the music magazine Mojo from 1999 to 2003, and has also worked as editorial director of Q and editor of International Musician. In 2004, he edited publisher Dorling Kindersley's compilation of the Mojo Special Limited Edition issues on the Beatles. He has also written for The Independent and Classic Rock magazine, and contributed articles on music, fashion, design or travel for The Guardian, Elle and Blueprint, among other publications. Before turning to journalism, he worked as a professional musician, recording albums for the Beggars Banquet and Fantasy record labels.
"The 100 Greatest Artists of All Time" is a special issue published by the American magazine Rolling Stone in two parts in 2004 and 2005 and updated in 2011. The list presented was compiled based on input from musicians, writers, and industry figures and is focused on the rock & roll era. It features exclusively Anglophone, and predominantly American and British musicians.