I’m writing this editorial the night before we go to press with the June 2021 issue of Pro Sound News, and by the time you read it, you may have already heard about what’s happening here at PSN. It’s big: Pro Sound News and Mix are merging.
Starting in July, you’re going to find the news, content and feel of Pro Sound News infused into everything Mix does—its magazine, website, social media, email newsletter, events and more.
It’s a big step—and no simple trick when you’re dealing with two iconic brands, each with its own viewpoint and way of doing things. Still, the word I want to emphasize here is “merging.” As an industry, we all like to interpret or tell ourselves we can “read between the lines” when major news breaks (certainly that’s a big part of what PSN does), but this is a case of WYSIWYG—what you see is what you get. PSN is not shutting down and no one is getting axed. We’re merging.
Beginning with its July issue, Mix magazine will be larger, because we’re going to cram two magazines’ worth of content into it. Pro Sound News has always served up news and insight, particularly in live sound, and pros everywhere trust our Real-World Reviews. Meanwhile, Mix has always been known for its longer, deep-dive features and heavy focus on the recording world. Each brand has always played to its strengths—and now all those strengths are going to be under one banner.
Another example: PSN’s email newsletter comes out three times a week, while Mix’s comes out twice weekly; put them together and you get the new Mix SmartBrief newsletter. Starting July 6, it’ll move to a full weekday schedule (amazingly, 3+2=5). It will also adopt the format of PSN’s newsletter to bring you the latest pro-audio news, reviews and more, along with relevant articles from around the internet, hand-curated by audio pros, not algorithms.
Both brands started as magazines back in the 1970s, with Pro Sound News based in New York City and Mix set up in the Bay Area. You could probably make an argument that each one was a product of its surroundings, with PSN reflecting the scrappy, get-to-the-point attitude of the Big Apple and Mix sporting an immersive West Coast vibe captured in its longer articles and rich photography.
Of course, the industry changed dramatically in the decades that followed, and so did the two magazines. Mix and PSN were always competitive, but for the last nine years, we’ve actually been under the same corporate roof. In 2012, our parent company at the time bought Mix and told both brands to get along in a state of “co-opertition.” As time wore on, our editorial staffs discovered we had a lot in common … starting with a distaste for corporate jargon like “co-opertition.”
Now we get to be colleagues instead of competitors. Mix’s longtime leader, Tom Kenny, is rightfully respected across the industry, and going forward, we’ll be co-editors for all of Mix’s print, digital, social and event platforms. Things will be different, but they’ll also be exciting: We’re taking the best parts of Pro Sound News and Mix and creating a next-generation brand that can lead the industry for the next 40 years.
And that’s just the start. See you next month.