Melissa Giannini

Catching Up
February 25, 2014, 11:22 pm
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Just a little note to let you know I’m still putting together a weekly song roundup for every Friday. Lots of them can be found here. My November cover story on Lana Del Rey went up a while back, too. Here’s how she looked on the newsstand:


Speaking of newsstands, the March issue of NYLON should be on one near you very soon! If you pick  up a copy, you’ll be able to read all about the afternoon I drove around with Angel Haze and made pit stops at a sweet plant store and La Esquina. xox.

Next Big Thing
March 20, 2013, 12:03 pm
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Many thanks to Jimmy Newborg for tagging me to do a Next Big Thing blog post. Below is my attempt to make sense of a memoir project I’ve been working on for about two and a half years. I’m especially pleased to pass the mic to Aaron GilbreathIan King, and Carey Wallace for the next round.

What is the working title of your book?

Only the Good. (Yes, this is a Billy Joel reference. And no, he does not make an appearance in the book.)

Where did the idea come from for the book?

A little more than a decade ago, I was the staff music writer for an alt-weekly in Detroit. A lot of the bands I had covered were starting to get international attention, and an uncle of mine (a former music journalist himself) suggested that I collect some of my early stories on these bands into a book. About three years later, my uncle died, and at his funeral, I made a promise to him and myself that I would write a book. I began serious work on the project in 2010 while attending the Bennington Writing Seminars, and by suggestion of my teachers, I approached the subject material from a personal angle. As such, my uncle, other family members, the city of Detroit, and its music all play prominent roles.

What genre does your book fall under?

I would call it a music memoir.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?         

Several of the musicians could theoretically play themselves. A healthy degree of natural awkwardness would help in the role of me. Kristen Stewart could probably throw on a pair of glasses and phone it in.

What is a one-sentence synopsis of your book? 

After an adolescence spent obsessing over riot grrrl spreads in Sassy magazine, Melissa Giannini pursued a career in music journalism; it seemed like a good idea at the time.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

The first draft took about two years. During the same period, I was working full-time as a magazine editor in New York and enrolled in an MFA program—but sleeping very little.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre? 

There are many music-journalist-penned memoirs, but not a ton by women—Ann Powers’s Weird Like Us and Donna Gaines’s Misfit’s Manifesto come to mind.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?

The resiliency of my family, Detroit’s refusal to die, independent record stores, dream hampton, Virginia Woolf, Ellen Willis, and Patti Smith.

What else about your book might pique a reader’s interest?

It sounds sad, but it’s actually a joyful book.

When and how will it be published?



I’m Listening, Every Friday
January 11, 2013, 11:08 pm
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Just a quick note to let y’all know that I’ve been posting my five favorite new songs every Friday over at You’ll also be able to read lots of words by yours truly in upcoming issues of NYLON and NYLON Guys. But in the meantime, here are links to the weekly song picks I’ve made so far in case you need to catch up. Enjoy!

Good Listener – November 30, 2012

Good Listener – December 7, 2012

Good Listener – December 14, 2012

Good Listener – December 21, 2012

Good Listener – December 28, 2012

Good Listener – January 11, 2013

Oh! And an interview I did over the summer with the one and only Philip Lopate is up right now at The Aviary. Happy New Year!

September 10, 2012, 2:10 pm
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I enjoyed talking to these two (twice) for SPIN: Brooklyn Punkers Handcraft a Warpath

The second piece is in the September/October print issue (on stands now), along with a short feature on Willis Earl Beal.

New Writing
August 5, 2012, 11:39 pm
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On Neneh CherryPsychobuildingsPatti SmithRa Ra RiotStarringM. WardMEN, and Daniel Rossen.

Plus, Daisy sleeping:


More soon!

New Thing
February 25, 2012, 9:11 pm
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Hey, friends. A little interview I did with Sharon Van Etten is up on the new SPIN site. I hope you like it!

Some Recent Things …
October 25, 2011, 2:53 pm
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Here’s an essay I was asked to write to go along with Tracy Thomason’s August solo exhibition, Highlights, Low Fades, and Deep Cuts, at Tiger Strikes Asteroid:

Peach Fuzz and Cream

A guest post by yours truly was recently featured on Martha Stewart’s daily blog:

A Guest Blog from Iceland

Many of the photos in the post above were taken by Tom Costa. Check out his most recent painting and sculptural work at

And here’s the video I’ve had on repeat since returning from Iceland: