Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Site news: A new mobile version, gig info wanted, and more

It's been a slow news week in St. Louis, and for yr. humble editor, some gigs and deadlines for actual paying work additionally have made for light blogging over the last few days...so this seems as good a time as any to catch up on a few site-related housekeeping items:

* Blogger has added an option to offer a mobile version of the site, which I've enabled for StLJN. (We've been without a mobile version for a few months, since the previous third-party provider shut down their free service.)

The new mobile site should come up automatically when you access StLJN from a smart phone or tablet. It's not fancy - much like the earlier incarnation, it's basically a re-skinning of the RSS feed. However, if you have any feedback on how well it works (or doesn't work), please feel free to let me know in the comments or via email.

* Once again, a reminder to all the musicians reading this site: StLJN wants your gig information for the St. Louis Jazz Notes Calendar! To get a free listing, just send an email to stljazznotes (at) yahoo (dot) com. Your gig will get added to the site calendar, and it also could get featured in a post, mentioned in the "jazz this week" update, or otherwise selected for more extensive coverage.

The minimum information needed for a calendar listing is the name of the band or musician, the date, the place, and the starting time and ending time. Additional information - ticket prices, web addresses, more details on the event, whatever - may be helpful, and will be included in the listing as appropriate, but it's not required.

Again, this is a completely free service - but to continue to make the calendar as complete as possible, I need your help. After more than six years of publishing, I can usually get reasonably good information on performances put on by the larger jazz presenters, venues and concert series. However, information often is harder to come by for gigs like self-promoted concerts or charity benefits, or at places like neighborhood bars, coffeehouses or churches that may not regularly present jazz. That's where it's very helpful to hear directly from musicians; if you don't tell me about the gig, I may not find out about it all. So, send in those listings!

* StLJN is getting close to 500 "Likes" on Facebook, and near 400 followers on Twitter. If you use either service and don't already like/follow StLJN, please consider doing so, thereby helping us to reach those curiously gratifying round numbers.

* Lastly, if the current lull persists for a bit, there may be some dead-link pruning and minor adjustments to the current layout in store - nothing too dramatic, but if the site looks a bit strange on an upcoming visit, it's because you've stopped by while renovations were in progress, and things should stabilize soon.

I also anticipate launching a couple of new recurring features for StLJN in the not-too-distant future, about which I hope to have more later this week.

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