Brooklyn Vegan: Reliable Access


I don’t remember when precisely I started reading Brooklyn Vegan (BV), but I know why I did and why I still do: Access. I like how on-top of music happenings the three-quarters music blog and one quarter music news site is—be it of the New York area or the national stage. There have been instances where the blog was my main news source for a specific music interest (such as the time it appeared that nobody knew if Governor’s Ball Music Festival was going to cancel the it’s third day last June). I love their Twitter and Instagram feed for the cheer aspect of access. I can’t go to every concert I want to, but I can count on them to have a gallery or at least one picture from the show that gets me closer to the show. On top of galleries and show reviews, BV often posts the setlist after concerts as well, and I am a sucker for analyzing an setlists. I also love when they break news on tour announcements and sometimes even publish ticket presale codes.

The blog’s general Twitter is particularly useful and helpful—just last week I tweeted at them a question and they responded—in trying to keep up with new music coming out and learning about artists that are in the East Coast and may be announcing a tour or pop-up shows. The blog interacts with people by constantly Tweeting already published posts or updates from a concert. Facebook interactivity isn’t high, let alone comment engagement, however. Neither is the blog’s “comments” section underneath posts. One common and interesting facet of posts is the embedding of Tweets or Instagram posts from the general public. This feature increases the aforementioned interaction.


I think BV can improve its actual appearance website-wise, because it isn’t as attractive compared to other sites such as Pitchfork. Nonetheless, there is something about the current appearance that sort of fits the aesthetic of a music blog—defining it isn’t a big-name, polished site, but reliable nonetheless. Similar to the Allston Pudding in Boston/Allston, but bigger.

Dave Levine, who is often just referred to as Dave or BV or Brooklyn Vegan, founded the blog in 2004, according to the blog’s about page. The blog is focused in the New York music scene, but has expanded—such as the Austin- and Chicago-based Brooklyn Vegan sites and BV’s acquisition of heavy metal blog Invisible Oranges in 2013. Most recently I have noticed more interaction between BV and Invisible Oranges on Twitter. This may be that I am more attentive or that they are actually interacting more. BV is and has been independently owned since it was started; it is also a member of digital marketing company Townsquare Music, alongside and

Web traffic peaked in August, according to a Similar Web analysis, which makes sense due to the amount of festivals that occur in the summer months so there could have been more referrals, galleries or overall coverage of music festival season. Approximately 30 percent of traffic came from a direct search, 21 percent from social media and 42 percent from a search. These numbers sound correct due to the activeness of the blog on social media, and also what appears to be a loyal readership that would seek out information from them specifically.

Nonetheless, BV receives a fraction of the visits that Pitchfork does, according to another Similar Web web traffic analysis. This makes sense, too, because Pitchfork is larger (part of Conde Nast). In a comparison to Allston Pudding, BV is much larger—resembling Pitchfork in relation to BV.,,


I can’t really assess what kind of revenue strategy it is pursuing besides the exclusive content that exposes ads.

Photo Courtesy Incase, Creative Commons


Music feeds to follow on Twitter

Twitter is a garden ripe with accounts to follow for all sorts of interests. Being that this blog is focused on Boston, independent and alternative music here are 10 accounts of the like that you should follow:

@Pitchfork is at the forefront of new alternative music releases and show announcements. They also Tweet out links to breaking music news several times a day. It is one of the accounts I make a point to check every time I check my Twitter feed.

Last winter my friend’s band made @AllstonPudding’s “Localz Only Early Winter Mixtape” so I checked it out and followed the blog on Twitter for similar content. It was a good decision. You will find all sorts of information related to local music by following.

@nprmusic is another vanguard at indie and alternative music releases. The links to all sorts of features from the “Tiny Desk” segment to different series on artists and topics is the best following perk.

@FrontRowBoston is a part of WGBH and literally puts viewers in the front row of Boston music through uploading recorded concerts. Their Twitter feed contains links to those recordings and to exclusive studio sessions, by all sorts of artists from the national spotlight to the local one.

@theRSL is music writer Ryan Spaulding’s account. Spaulding is the producer of The Outlaw Roadshow—a traveling music showcase that has a Boston show. I just started following Spaulding, but he tweets updates about his roadshow as well as interesting music commentary and general thoughts.

@ben_stas does freelance music photography and writing for the Boston Globe, Vanyaland and Invisible Oranges—often tweeting live from concerts. He is on top of the music scene at Boston and is at a show at least once a week, most weeks.

@brooklyn_vegan is one my New York go-to sources for music updates that I make a point to check on daily. I have found several up and coming artists (like Whitney) that often come up to Boston. They provide breaking music news and odd news scoops too.

I just recently followed @clickyclicky after a friend’s suggestion, and it was a good suggestion. They tweet lots of local music links and also retweet other Boston music blogs. A touch of comical Tweets are included with the follow.

@BostonHassle is another source to find local artists and shows—they have a lot of shows, too, which they tweet about.

@bradleysalmanac is an active Boston music-scene blogger that Tweets about upcoming shows that aren’t always heavily promoted. His website has his blog posts, new tunes from locals and an intensive upcoming-shows calendar.