Contrary to what you might have read at the beginning of this special music issue, I did NOT dub this issue "The Producers" in an effort to wedge coverage of the American Musical Theater into the pages of The Stranger. While I believe that songs written for the American Musical Theater are the ONLY kind of music that matters, I recognize that my taste is a minority one, and that you kids today much prefer your rock and roll, your techno, and your hippity hop.So why did I dub this installment of The Stranger's Music Quarterly "The Producers"? Because I wanted to see if our music writers, editors, and freelancers could put together a music issue that wasn't all about them. Could The Stranger do a music issue without someone yapping on and on about how the Smiths helped us survive junior high? Could we do a music issue that didn't mention mix-tapes our exes made us? Or the drunken one-night stands we've had with this or that lead singer? Could The Stranger's writers and editors do a music issue that was about the people who make music--you know, other people--and not just about how we feel when we listen?

Me, me, me, blah, blah, blah--there had to be a limit to this navel-gazing! After all, we could only publish a weekly newspaper with pages and pages of music content for so long before we ran out of things to say about ourselves.

So that's why I called this issue "The Producers." I wanted to force the hands of our writers and our new music editor. Could we do it? Could we write about other people? People who didn't give us mix-tapes, herpes, or jobs? I picked producers. Producers, I understand, have something to do with music production. "The Producers" also happens to be the name of the biggest smash-hit musical to hit Broadway since A Chorus Line opened in 1976. But it's just a coincidence, I swear.

Finally, I'd like to say that I didn't listen to the Smiths in high school (or ever), no one has ever given me a mix-tape (I prefer original cast recordings, thank you very much), and I've never slept with the lead singer of any band (I would, however, make an exception for the lead singer of the Catheters). But enough about me, right?