A Very Jazzy Ezine

Divergis Media Group Produces Audio Version of JazzTimes(R) Magazine
It might just be a reason to look forward to the daily commute: JazzTimes(R) Magazine () has launched an audio edition that seems custom-made for busy jazz fans. Produced by digital audio publishing company Divergis Media Group, the JazzTimes SonicMAG(TM) is available as an 80-minute, studio-quality digital audio MP3 or CD. And in an increasingly fast-paced world where the average commuter spends 50+ minutes in the car every day, that should be music to many people's ears.

More than just a dry reading of the magazine's print edition, the January/February issue of JazzTimes SonicMAG(TM) includes music clips on six of the eight tracks. Articles range from a profile of 85-year-old master Hank Jones to a 22-minute review of the highs and lows of 2003. Clips include Andrew Hill's recording "Passing Ships" on Blue Note Records; Hank Jones with The Great Jazz Trio from the CD "Autumn Leaves" on 441 Records; Wayne Horvitz on Songlines Recordings; and Keith Jarrett on ECM Records.

Chris Lewis, spokesman for JazzTimes Magazine, expressed satisfaction with the JazzTimes SonicMAG(TM). "We have been extremely satisfied with the Divergis team and the ideas they've brought to the table, creatively, strategically and technologically," he said. "Our successful partnership with Divergis will allow us to offer an innovative product for a long time to come."

That's because the magazine has tapped Divergis to provide audio creation and distribution services long-term. "We at Divergis are set to transform the JazzTimes traditional print publication into a digitally mastered audio creation complete with nationally recognized voice talent," commented Chris Clement, Founder and CEO of Divergis Media Group. "The result will be an enhanced product for the JazzTimes readership as well as a new revenue stream for JazzTimes."

The outlook for the JazzTimes SonicMAG(TM) is rosy: Research by Divergis shows high consumer demand for downloadable digital audio content, as evidenced by the spectacular success of Apple's iTunes. And along with a decline in readership in the magazine publishing industry in recent years, audio book and online downloadable digital audio product sales are on the rise, as are listeners--due primarily to increased drive time and decreased leisure time. In addition, the portability of digital audio content with MP3 players, like Apple's top-selling iPod, allows busy people to take their content with them.

"People have little time for themselves anymore, but few want to give up the pleasure of sitting down and reading a magazine," Clement explained. "Thanks to technology, SonicMAG(TM) is better than the next best thing--it's actually an enhancement of the traditional print magazine. With its ability to embed superior digital quality music clips and interviews right in the audio version of the magazine, SonicMAG(TM) is perhaps the best thing that could happen to a music magazine like JazzTimes."