In a surprise twist, Rolling Stone replaced managing editor Will Dana and founder Jann Wenner with Tim Heidecker of The Tim & Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! — and he's doing a very convincing job already.
Heidecker broke the news Monday evening in a Tumbr post, of all places. Heidecker explains that he would take over as editor-in-chief immediately, replacing Jann Wenner and Dana as the magazine's two-headed ruler. It was a management decision, apparently. New blood for a perilous new media world. Heidecker hopes to restore the magazine to its former glory, with a few slight changes:
- I’d like to slightly revise our rating system for music - I believe we should add a star so there is the potential for a six star review (perhaps only as a nod the the “six string” guitar)
- would like to introduce cartoons in the style of the New Yorker but with rock themes.
- return focus to the bands and artists that helped build Rolling Stone into the Icon that it is, with celebratory stories, covers and features on Van Morrison, Bonnie Raitt, Eagles, Rolling Sones, The Beatles, Zeppelin, etc…
Josh Groban was quick to start sucking up to the new rock-and-roll opinion overlord:
@timheidecker will you give Groban Sings Casey 6 stars? Thanks.— josh groban (@joshgroban) December 3, 2012
Ever since, Heidecker has been live-tweeting his experience as Real Life Editor-In-Chief of Rolling Stone. If you're wondering why there hasn't been much fanfare over the decision, it's because they were supposed to announce the personel change on Anderson Cooper 360. Unfortunately the fiscal -cliff negotiations got in the way:
Oh and my @ac360 interview got bumped because of Fiscal Cliff... Hope to reschedule soon!— timheidecker (@timheidecker) December 3, 2012
Heidecker's been hard at work with the art department to try and breath some life into the mag's snooze-worthy covers of late. Take the new cover above, featuring Ringo Starr and his All Starr Band, which early prognosticators are guessing will shatter sales records for the magazine:
2013 Dream Cover no. 1 (starting off with the fab four) can't wait for your feedback on these! twitter.com/timheidecker/s…— timheidecker (@timheidecker) December 4, 2012
And the Smithsonian already called Heidecker to get a hard copy of another soon-to-be iconic cover, for which Heidecker commisioned Bob Dylan to paint a picture of the "King of Pop" Michael Jackson:
And, as an incoming Real Life Editor-in-Chief, Heidecker's been trying to make friends with the storied mag's high-profile staff. Sometimes things don't go so well, though:
meeting with Taibbi was intense. needless to say we don't agree on much but i respect him! will find a way to make this work! #challeges— timheidecker (@timheidecker) December 4, 2012
No word yet from Heidecker on how his meeting with Annie Liebovitz went yet, though.
He's also been offering an inside glimpse into the life of building a major music magazine from scratch, like a photo of him approving a new feature story that's sure to blow everyone's butts away:
And while things may not have gone over so well with Taibbi, contributing editor Jonah Weiner offered a warm welcome to his new overlord:
.@timheidecker's livetweets on his new job as RS EIC are engrossing. He just assigned me a 6-page "Ten Summoner's Tales" oral history.— Jonah Weiner (@jonahweiner) December 4, 2012
Fellow newsstand occupier Interview Magazine offered their congratulations:
Unfortunately, there were some crossed wires, and no one told outgoing managing editor Will Dana about the change in editorial direction:
That one is on you, Jann Wenner.
For some reason, Reuters' Anthony De Rosa doesn't believe that Heidecker is the Real Life Editor-in-Chief of Rolling Stone magazine, despite the overwhelming evidence presented in this post:
This guy, though. We can promise you, sir, that this is a very real thing and that Tim Heidecker of The Tim & Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! is now the Real Life Editor-in-Chief of Rolling Stone magazine, created by Jann Wenner and where Lester Bangs used to write stuff:
So, I can't tell if @timheidecker is really working for Rolling Stone.Not that it matters.The delivery is top notch either way.— Bartley Blackmon (@Bart_The) December 4, 2012
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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