Wait, you thought something like this would last forever?

illustration by Arik Roper

Arthur, such as it is, is set to close March 15, 2011.

The Arthur online archive and Store will remain operational for as long as makes sense.

Thank you kindly, and love to all.

Categories: Uncategorized | 61 Comments

About Jay Babcock

I am an independent writer and editor based in Tucson, Arizona. In 2022: I publish a weeklyish email newsletter called LANDLINE = https://jaybabcock.substack.com Previously: I co-founded and edited Arthur Magazine (2002-2008, 2012-13) and curated the three Arthur music festival events (Arthurfest, ArthurBall, and Arthur Nights) (2005-6). Prior to that I was a district office staffer for Congressman Henry A. Waxman, a DJ at Silver Lake pirate radio station KBLT, a copy editor at Larry Flynt Publications, an editor at Mean magazine, and a freelance journalist contributing work to LAWeekly, Mojo, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Vibe, Rap Pages, Grand Royal and many other print and online outlets. An extended piece I wrote on Fela Kuti was selected for the Da Capo Best Music Writing 2000 anthology. In 2006, I was somehow listed in the Music section of Los Angeles Magazine's annual "Power" issue. In 2007-8, I produced a blog called "Nature Trumps," about the L.A. River. From 2010 to 2021, I lived in rural wilderness in Joshua Tree, Ca., where I practiced with Buddhist teacher Ruth Denison and was involved in various pro-ecology and social justice activist activities.

61 thoughts on “Wait, you thought something like this would last forever?

  1. Bless you for everything arthur. I would not be the same person today without the peace you brought to my life over the years. I am very grateful to have spent time weekly pouring over articles, recipes, little youtube gems etc. The people and art and the love you have introduced to me have permanently altered my being, and will continue to be friendly signposts along the way. Thank you again for your heart, insight, and patience for bringing something beautiful to light for as long as you did.
    Take good care friends.

  2. In a world choking itself to death on fakery, dishonesty, greed and staggering levels of cultural mediocrity, Arthur was the real fuckin deal, and a mental life raft especially during the horrific Bush years. It should be considered a blow against the empire that it existed at all. I treasure my print copies the way someone 30 years older might similarly regard their early issues of Rolling Stone as an important countercultural force, and count myself lucky to have attended ArthurFest & Arthur Nights in LA, as well as many other events presented or otherwise promoted by Arthur — not to mention all the quality music, art and perspectives I got turned onto within its pages (and later, this site). Sad to see you go, Arthur — many thanks to all who contributed and especially to the esteemed Mr. Babcock for a triumphant, if underappreciated, effort. Long may you run.

  3. I always appreciated Arthur’s open minded yet refined take on the arts, hippiedom, magick and ecology. May the people and works you brought to light still flourish. With the possible exception of Spiritualized.

  4. Dang, just when I find a great online (formerly print!) magazine, it goes tits up. So much for getting my comic featured here.
    Please let us know what future projects the Arthur staff will be getting up to!

  5. Waiting for my local record store to get the latest issue of Arthur was a consistent pleasure for years. Now both are gone.

    Thanks for everything, Jay and crew. You made life better.

  6. Thank you arthur! I will always remember the first time I found you and read you. It’s such a shame that you will be gone, please inform us of the future endeavors of your creators.

  7. I would not be the same person today without the things that Arthur has given me over the five years that I have been following it. A sincere thank-you to the overworked and under-appreciated Mr. Jay Babcock and all Arthur’s equally inspirational contributors of past/present (Camilla Padgitt-Coles, Daniel Chamberlin, Dave Reeves, Nance Klehm, the list goes on & on). This makes me sad, but I guess the forest fire’s got to burn to make way for new trees… but the soil remains.


  8. Why not just start a blogspot or something? Aren’t there a ton of free options? Very saddened by this news.

    • Michael – There will be no more Arthur Radio, no more Arthur blog, no more Arthur anything. I know you mean well, but please. Arthur people deserve to be paid for their work, and there is no way for that to happen. In fact, it’s never been that way, and that needs to end. This has gone on long enough.

      Although it was a labor of love, Arthur was never meant to be a permanent, unfunded charity. Again, I’m sure you’ll agree, that Arthur’s many, many contributors and staff-folk deserve(d) to be paid for their work.

      Further, please keep in mind: The printer is paid in dollars. The UPS and USPS and FedExGround bills are paid in dollars. The distributors are paid in dollars. The bank fees are paid in dollars. ConstantContact and PayPal and Pulley and BigCartel are paid in dollars. People who loaned me money to buy out Laris Kreslins in order to be able to continue to publish Arthur after issue 25 loaned me *dollars. The IRS is paid in dollars. Those bills—those debts—had to be paid by somebody. The day-to-day business has to be operated by somebody, as their sole occupation. They can’t do it for free.

      Arthur has been unsustainable since March, 2007. I carried it on as long as I could, with the help of many, many, MANY folks, but enough is enough.

      I appreciate your goodwill, your love. But, something other than ONLY that is necessary for Arthur to ever regain its footing. As I’ve said repeatedly, in private and in public, Arthur needs someone who can take over its business affairs and push the thing forward. That person has not appeared in the last four years. I think it’s safe to say that I’ve exhausted all options here. Time to move on.

  9. it always seemed like we needed Arthur more than it needed us, i guess not after all.

    this is indeed very devastating news. no grudges held here, only sorrow at the loss of a friend and teacher.

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  11. fuck you_ o:)

    I Have offered to help you out in the past but to no avail. You can not let this thing go to past> Just another counterculture offering fading out. say it ain’t so. there must be something that we can do. This has to staty alive with all the shit that is offered to the masses this has been the only real thing. Jay keep it alive. We can help

  12. publish how much money you need and the readers will fin the money. lets be a collective.I will start this communist bitch out with a contribution of 500 dollars. I will get the rest of the money how much do we need. How much per article> i agree Jay the authors need the cash they should be paid. Weedeater first!

  13. lakahuna – you are very kind and generous. BUT—it is not only about money, although that is vital. It is about having a competent, enthusiastic, appropriate partner. Please see the note above, as well as previous public statements.

  14. “You who choose to lead must follow
    But if you fall you fall alone,
    If you should stand, then whos to guide you?
    If I knew the way I would take you home.”
    -grateful dead

  15. Just adding to the wall of thanks. I’ve been turned onto this site since I was 21, and it helped inform me of great things – particularly Ethan Miller and the coolest riffing i’ve ever heard.

  16. To my friends at Arthur, Thank you, thank you, thank you for everything you have done over the years. I honestly would not be the same person if I had not been exposed to your words, ideas, and perspectives. I wish you all the absolute best in all of your endeavors in the time to come. I will not soon forget what you have contributed to Our culture, and in that, I know I am not alone. Bless you.

    With love, sadness, and sincerity,
    Charles Frost Coe

  17. Hector – It sure is (was). And then it’s about people actually paying for the ads they bought! And the check actually clearing. Etc. The bigger the advertiser, the harder it was to get paid.

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  19. This is truly a bummer. Had a subscription until the end while I was living in South Dakota and it was truly a lifesaver. Visited this site daily in the hopes of some truly enlightening reading. Very sad day.

  20. I have to pinch myself every time I read this to convince myself it is not part of a nightmare I have having. OMG! I can’t believe it is the end. I’m not prepared for this.

  21. I’m very disappointed to hear this. Arthur was one of my first general-interest gateways into the world of unusual sites, sounds and smells in my college days. It would be awesome to see a brief list of where to go to follow up with the contributors that have made this project so inspiring over the years.
    Thanks for all the hard work thus far!

  22. All this praise is well deserved and earned. Arthur always offered something worthy of my attention in these days of vacuousness. Thanks for the love.

  23. Jay,
    for the for 6 years I have known of Arthur’s existence, discovering it in my mid-teens, I’d think it’s fair to say all the articles, videos, drawings, and every little thing your website and paper copies held have been at the utmost importance to my mental upbringing. The articles themselves would lead me to further interest in topics as far as to take a class on Shakti in college. Arthur was to me, what Sing Out was to a whole different generation.
    Thank you.

  24. It has been a great ride of high art, big mindedness and fanfuckingtastic showmanship. Next? Shit that reciprocates! Much regards and thanks

  25. That’s a real shame, hopefully something/someone will occupy the cultural void you leave with equal integrity and insight. Good luck Jay, you must be a real fine fellow, all the best for the future. Arthur will be greatly missed, Tim UK

  26. This is simply horrible news. Horrible! It’s beyond horrible, it’s terrible news. Horrible and terrible news!

  27. Jay & Arthur & Everything This Is & Was


    my only practical suggestion is to storm the Rolling Stone offices and OCCUPY!, but i’m not sure if it’d work out.

    none of you should be beasts of burden.
    arthur in all it’s manifestations was without equal and has had a bigger impact on me than probably any other publication. it is maybe weird to suggest that a magazine or a blog can function as an artwork but you guys and girls and wizards kept something alive in arthur that i have never seen elsewhere.

    whatever it is, it will live in your former readers and every back copy and in jay and nance and everyone else who worked at it and i only hope that i will see the weird glimmer of arthur’s spirit again, wherever and however that may be.

    good luck. stay weird.


  28. Thanks for the great run. All your work was very much appreciated and I will continue to treasure my back issues. Good luck in future times.

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