Editor’s Note – A Year Recap of 2021: Out of the Box

It’s almost crazy to think, as of this point in time, Reporting From 20XX as a platform has been around for half a decade. Late 2016, frustrated and looking to find something I was still at the very least interested in, much less passionate about, I ended up breaking apart from a small group that I brought together originally from friends I wanted to start a podcast with, and instead of abandoning any idea of journalism, began RF20XX, the intersection of music and gaming locally in the Queen City. My writing was terrible, short, full of gross grammatical errors, run-on sentences (it still happens occasionally), but I hit the pavement and ran with it. 5 years later, not only have I become a small moving part when it comes to people looking for what’s happening in Charlotte, RF20XX became a place that’s allowed me to work with other artists as well as venues, photographers, and Charlotte’s best bi-weekly cultural magazine, Queen City Nerve. What a wild ride, what an incredible notion, and at the start, I never would have discovered all the people I’d meet or who I might have a small effect in the lives of.

Pictured: WordPress Statistics for Reporting From 20XX by Year

Not only has the platform provided occasional articles when things have been a little more stable on the personal side, but photography became a safe haven as well as an additional skill set in our arsenal. When this all started, our main camera was a cell phone, and as good as cameras are on phones these days, we had to progress to something more…. stable and clear. Now, as well as writing, RF20XX has its own photography section which captures the moments for bands and events, all in ways the written word can only partly describe.

If 2020 was the year that tested the staying power of the platform and what could actually be accomplished independently under the worst of circumstances, 2021 was the application of everything that could be done and pursued, or at least a grand dash towards that ideal image. What is most gratifying is that what’s accomplished here isn’t static, and much like the people involved with it, the platform is in a constant evolution of itself, meeting new goals on most ends and coming close in others, leaving room for improvement in the following year. Ultimately, Reporting From 20XX, at least in my eyes, is a platform that evolved significantly from what a blog is supposed to be, and that is a lot to consider.

RF20XX Stats For 2021

This past year, after meditating over everywhere we’ve been, all the people we’ve interacted with, and the subjects we’ve both gone deep into along with some that were briefly touched on, I’ve decided on a new but familiar direction. For 2022, the journey will take us more into the entertainment realm, where music and games share space with movies, anime, comics, and much more. Again, it isn’t like nothing from some of those subject areas were never touched on, but this year, I want to pledge myself to less overthinking and more enjoying the hours at the keyboard to bring different types of articles to the forefront. As well, as will be announced in the next couple weeks, I look forward to bringing the views of those in the Charlotte Community onto the site for contributor spotlights. Some of this was talked about last year, so for 2022, you, the audience, may be surprised about who appears on the site.

Lastly, I plan to make the platform a little more versatile in how we bring awareness to artists in, and out, of the Charlotte Region. I had a ton of fun doing a few of the interviews near the end of last year with such local residents as Jamie Starks of Tommy’s Pub, Seth Telles of Anchor Detail, and Aaron Lawrence of My Blue Hope. For 2022, I aim to provide an interview a month, if not more than that, whether it be on our Twitch channel or on our YouTube page.

Regardless, at the end of the day and every year, I began this platform as a way to help support the performers and organizations in our community, and while that wish has expanded significantly to different parts of the North American continent, this is still a project that, no matter what is done, there’s a fun to it for me. It’s a genuinely exciting feeling to be able to show the world that Charlotte’s not just some banking city on the East Coast. For me, and for many of us, we know much better. When the sun sets in the west and the city lights come up, at around 7pm each night, the real Queen City comes alive, and the many talents that live here provide the heartbeat felt all around the state.

If you follow us, no matter on which social media platform, and you’re an artist or band looking from the outside-in, think of this an an invitation. Come see why we have so much to talk about here, whether that’s playing a show or just attending one while traveling through. You may be surprised not just of what you hear, but of the feeling that radiates from The Milestone Club to Tommy’s Pub. What exactly would I call that tingle? In short, it’s the vibe that keeps the city lights on, each and every night, here in the Charlotte Music Scene.

– Jonny G., Editor-In-Chief, Reporting From 20XX

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