PLENTY OF RHYTHM: Marty Jones, Managing Editor of Rhythms Magazine.
PLENTY OF RHYTHM: Marty Jones, Managing Editor of Rhythms Magazine.

Blues and roots fill a shed

FOR Marty Jones, managing editor of Rhythms magazine, producing the blues and roots focused publication in the backyard shed of his home in Brunswick Heads is a dream come true.

"It's the ideal situation when the thing you love doing becomes your job," Marty said.

And a career in the music industry has been on the cards for him since childhood.

"My father was a jazz musician and played with the Lorne Surf Club Jazz Band," he said.

"Some of my earliest memories are of the all-day jam sessions at our house and of watching him play at local pubs and clubs."

Marty plays guitar and keyboards with local surf band Windy Hills.

Rhythms was founded by Brian Wise in April 1992. Its beginning coincided with the first Bluesfest and the magazine remains deeply connected with the festival.

Marty bought the magazine six years ago and moved it from Melbourne to Brunswick Heads.

Over time he has seen an increase in the awareness of blues and roots music and a corresponding flourishing in the number of blues and roots festivals in Australia and around the world.

"Originally I wasn't an aficionado of blues music, I was more into roots music and alternative country music."

Marty believes roots music is music that has a connection to traditional forms of blues, folk and country.

"Its very broad really, it's about authenticity and a connection to those early primal forms.

"Ben Harper is one of those Bluesfest artists who over the years have contributed to the growing appreciation of roots music.

"And artists like Wilco and Trombone Shorty are the kind of artists who keep re-inventing the form."

Rhythms magazine has also had to deal with the public's falling interest in the physical printed word, however, the online version of the magazine continues to grow.

"We have invested a lot in producing an online version of the magazine.

"In the end I see print becoming the vinyl of the publishing world.

"Print is a superior experience, and if you can do it well it becomes a boutique product."

As well as editing Rhythms, Marty produces the mammoth 150-page Bluesfest program.

"This year, aside from the digital version, we've also launched a free iPad app."

He is constantly delighting in discovering new old music and is enjoying the back catalogue of '70s Californian folk singer, Tom Jans.



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