Since the 1950s, writing about popular music has become a staple of popular culture. "Rolling Stone", "Vibe", and "The Source" as well as music columns in major newspapers target consumers who take their music seriously. Rapidly proliferating fanzines, websites, and internet discussion groups enable virtually anyone to engage in popular music criticism. Until now, however, no one has tackled popular music criticism as a genre of journalism with a particular history and evolution. "Pop Music and the Press" looks at the major publications and journalists who have shaped this criticism, influencing the public's ideas about the music's significance and quality. The contributors to the volume include academics and journalists; several wear both hats, and some are musicians as well. Their essays illuminate the complex relationships of the music industry, print media, critical practice, and rock culture. (And they repeatedly dispel the notion that being a journalist is the next best thing to being a rock star.) Author note: Steve Jones is Professor of Communication at the University of Illinois, Chicago. Among his books are "CyberSociety: Computer-Mediated Communication and Community" (editor) and "Rock Formation: Popular Music, Technology, and Mass Communication".