Neil Kulkarni RIP

Neil had written for dis a couple times but much more well known for his writing for melody maker and lots of other publications, as well as his very highly rated “elements of hip hop” book which I know a few disers have read.

RIP

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Just saw this, couldn’t believe it. So sad :worried:

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One of my favourite writers ever. Even when he was trashing something I loved he was the most readable music critic I knew of. I don’t know what happened here, his wife died of cancer a few years back too. Absolutely gutted to hear this.

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Oh my God. I used to love him when he wrote for MM. He introduced teenage me to so much good music he loved and entertained me when he wrote about music he didn’t. Was a tiny bit starstruck when I saw him at the GVSB show a few years back. So unbelievably sad and shocking. RIP x

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What the fuck. This is horrendous news, a brilliant writer and was always great on the Chart Music podcast.

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He was a great writer. How sad

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Absolutely shocked to see this here, just saw it corroborated by Coventry mutuals. As a writer, there were none more fearless, barely any more compelling to read again and again. Met him a few times over the years; even played with his band Moonbears in 2015 and he took the time to watch my set with attentiveness. Meant a lot that he did that.

Devastating loss for music.

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Only seemed to be tweeting a couple of days ago. I wasn’t really an MM buyer bitd, so came to his stuff late, but he was a really great writer, taking on Britpop at the time definitely took some courage.

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Particularly recommend this episode of Chart Music, where him and Sarah breakdown what it was like being at Melody Maker in its dying months. Joyfully full of bile and humour. Mark Sutherland sounds like a right prick.

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Oh no, that’s absolutely awful news. RIP Captain Kulk.

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Absolutely awful news. He was active on Twitter only a day or so ago.

RIP

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very formative writer for me through his work at Metal Hammer. Disagreed on a lot with him but he was the only person putting across those kinds of perspectives in the early-00s rock and metal press.

Reading his substack and medium in later years I got the sense that he was a deeply unhappy man, with a bitterness that made his writing as acerbic and entertaining as it was downright unpleasant at times. I hope he’s found the peace he deserved.

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:frowning:

He was just posting on twitter up until a day or two ago. We’d interact every now and then. He’ll be missed around these parts

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Ah, RIP to a good one. Melody Maker was my goto mag in the late 90s and early 2000 as I moved away from punk and metal into my obsession with The Crocketts and Idlewild :slight_smile:

Reckon he’d also be one of the first music-y people I followed on Twitter too. Feels like he’s always been there.

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From Al who hosts Chart Music

There is so much to say about Neil, who died yesterday, and the things you need to hear are going to be said by the people who knew him and worked with him and loved him over his thirty year career as a writer for Melody Maker, Uncut, Spin, Metal Hammer, Kerrang!, Wire, The Quietus, and any other magazine who were in need of one of the greatest music writers of his generation, because that’s what he was. All I can do is talk about him from the standpoint of someone who worked with him over Skype, and met him only twice. But that doesn’t matter, because I’ve been blessed to have done that for the past seven years.

I started Chart Music seven years ago for two reasons; firstly because my options as a magazine writer had completely dried up and I was casting around to do something – anything – worthwhile and interesting, but mainly because I’d run into a group of people who used to write for Melody Maker in the late Eighties and Nineties on the When Saturday Comes forum, who I went on to meet at a forum meet-up, and I wanted to know them better –and I couldn’t believe my luck when they wanted to get involved. I’d met almost all of them before – in fact, I floated the idea in a pub in London at a drink-up for Taylor’s birthday – but at the time Neil was a Facebook mate; that bloke who worked on a proper magazine writing proper articles who I was a bit in awe of, who knew more about Pop music and could write about it better than I ever could, especially when it came to hip-hop (Not only that, but he was doing it all from his beloved Coventry, refusing to move down to London like everyone else did. Do you have any idea how good you had to be to do that?).

Neil made his debut in Chart Music 4, and the moment he started talking about how his Mam could detect who was on drugs on Top Of The Pops and how his sister used to play a game called Disco Lights which involved her switching the lights on and off and then screaming at him, I immediately wanted to attach a microphone to him and force him to talk about Pop music forever. Neil got the point of Chart Music straight away, and it was an absolute joy to record an episode with him. He was a Pop evangelist, he knew his shit backwards, he never forgot he was a fan before he became a critic, he had zero tolerance for catshit, and refused to believe that the age of Pop has passed, constantly championing the new and railing against the English Rock Defence League. By the time he said that he wouldn’t accept a sandwich from Tears For Fears, Chart Music effectively ceased being a hobby and became a full-on Mission To Explain.

So I’m sitting here, at 4am, listening to The Specials and T Rex, twisting myself into knots about how to pass this appalling news on to you, and refusing to believe that I’ll never hear Neil’s laugh again. I don’t like making statements on behalf of the rest of Chart Music, but I know they won’t mind me saying: fucking hell, Neil, we love you, mate. And we’ve been so fortunate to have had you in our lives.

- Al

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Don’t really know him from his journalism as such, but was one of my favourite people to follow on Twitter from around the time I first joined to now. Just a really entertaining guy, what a shame.

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That’s really very sad news. Neil was the first journo we ever sent music to I think, back in the early 90s (I was living in Coventry at the time). Not only did he respond, but he went on to write pieces in the melody maker and Lime Lizard about us. Think I only met him once, great writer who did his own thing. Will raise a glass later.

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Wasn’t it Mark Sutherland who was the final MM editor? Steve Sutherland may also be a prick but he was an earlier editor who left MM for NME in the early 90s.

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Whoops, you’re right!

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what a horrible, tragic loss. lost for words, tbh

firstly on the basis of him as a person, and for those who loved him, of course, and then as a brutal loss to culture/music

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