Ray Gun (magazine)

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Ray Gun
CategoriesMusic magazine
FounderMarvin Scott Jarrett
First issue 1992 (1992-month)
Final issue2000
CountryUSA
Based inSanta Monica, California
LanguageEnglish
ISSN1533-4732

Ray Gun was an American alternative rock-and-roll magazine, first published in 1992 in Santa Monica, California. Led by founding publisher Marvin Scott Jarrett, art director David Carson and executive editor Randy Bookasta, along with founding editor Neil Feineman, Ray Gun explored experimental magazine typographic design and unique angles on the pop cultural currents of the 1990s. The editorial content was framed in a chaotic, abstract "grunge typography" style, not always readable (it once published an interview with Bryan Ferry entirely in the symbol font Zapf Dingbats), but distinctive in appearance.[1] That visual tradition continued even after Carson left the magazine after three years; he was followed by a series of art directors, including Robert Hales, Chris Ashworth, Jason Saunby, Scott Denton-Cardew, and Jerome Curchod.

In terms of content, Ray Gun was also notable for its choices of subject matter. The advertising, musical artists and pop culture icons spotlighted were progressive—for example putting such artists as Radiohead, Björk, Beck, Flaming Lips, PJ Harvey and Eminem on its cover before its competitors.[citation needed] Those choices were guided by Executive Editor Randy Bookasta (and founding editor Neil Feineman for the first three issues), along with an editorial staff that included Dean Kuipers, Nina Malkin, Mark Blackwell, Joe Donnelly, Grant Alden, Mark Woodlief, Eric Gladstone and photographer Ian Davies.

Ray Gun produced over 70 issues from 1992 through 2000. Owner-founder-publisher Marvin Scott Jarrett (one-time publisher of a late-1980s incarnation of Creem) also later created the magazines Stick, huH,[2] Bikini,[3] and Nylon [4] (a New York–based fashion magazine).[5] The most notable common thread among all of Jarrett's magazines (from his days at Creem through Nylon) have been their focus on graphic design and music.

Partial list of issues[edit]

Issue # Date Cover
1 November 1992 Henry Rollins
2 December 1992/January 1993 R.E.M.
3 February 1993 Dinosaur Jr.
4 March 1993 Frank Black
5 April 1993 Porno for Pyros
6 May 1993 PJ Harvey
7 June/July 1993 Sonic Youth
8 August 1993 Iggy Pop
9 September 1993 Urge Overkill
10 October 1993 Teenage Fanclub
11 November 1993 Swervedriver
12 December 1993/January 1994 L7
13 February 1994 Ministry
14 March 1994 Morrissey
15 April 1994 Elvis Costello
16 May 1994 Alice in Chains
17 June/July 1994 Perry Farrell
18 August 1994 Lush
19 September 1994 Jesus and Mary Chain
20 October 1994 Kim Deal & J Mascis
21 November 1994 Liz Phair
22 December 1994/January 1995 Keith Richards
23 February 1995 Belly
24 March 1995 Mudhoney
25 April 1995 Pavement
26 May 1995 Beastie Boys
27 June/July 1995 Björk
28 August 1995 Neil Young
29 September 1995 Flaming Lips
30 October 1995 David Bowie[a]
31 November 1995 My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult
32 December/January 1996 Sonic Youth
33 February 1996 Smashing Pumpkins
34 March 1996 Cypress Hill
35 April 1996 Iggy Pop & Perry Farrell
36 May 1996 Rage Against the Machine
37 June/July 1996 Soundgarden
38 August 1996 Yoko Ono
39 September 1996 Beck
40 October 1996 Tricky
41 November 1996 Mazzy Star
42 December 1996/January 1997 Smashing Pumpkins
43 February 1997 Nine Inch Nails
44 March 1997 David Bowie
45 April 1997 U2
46 May 1997 Chemical Brothers
47 June/July 1997 Blur
48 August 1997 Wim Wenders & Michael Stipe
49 September 1997 Björk
50 October 1997 Oasis
51 November 1997 Jane's Addiction
52 December 1997/January 1998 Marilyn Manson
53 February 1998 Goldie
54 March 1998 Radiohead
55 April 1998 Pulp
56 May 1998 Pearl Jam
57 June/July 1998 Garbage
58 August 1998 Andy Warhol
59 September 1998 Prodigy
60 October 1998 Kiss
61 November 1998 Marilyn Manson
62 December 1998 R.E.M.
63 January 1999 Beck
64 February 1999 Underworld
65 March 1999 Shirley Manson
66 April 1999 Jamiroquai
67 May 1999 Eminem
68 June 1999 Jamiroquai
69 July 1999 Edward Furlong
70 August 1999 Red Hot Chili Peppers
71 September 1999 Chris Cornell
72 October 1999 Missy Elliott
73 November 1999 Stone Temple Pilots
74 December 1999/January 2000 Nine Inch Nails

See also[edit]

Books[edit]

  • Ray Gun: Out of Control by Dean Kuipers and Marvin Scott Jarrett, Simon & Schuster (1997), ISBN 0-684-83980-6. Design and art direction by Neil Fletcher and Chris Ashworth.
  • Ray Gun: The Bible of Music and Style by Marvin Scott Jarrett, with Contributions from Steven Heller (design writer), Liz Phair, Wayne Coyne, Ian Davies and Dean Kuipers, Rizzoli (2019), ISBN 978-0-8478-6315-0.[6][7]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Final issue to be art directed by David Carson.
  1. ^ Shetty, Sharan. "The Rise & Fall of Grunge Typography". The Awl.
  2. ^ Reminiscing on 90's huH Magazine by Eric Compton, Maximum Metal, May 6, 2016.
  3. ^ Bikini to Hang it Up by Keith J. Kelly, New York Post, January 20, 2000.
  4. ^ Nylon Magazine by Helen Lee, Sassy Bella Magazine, November 7, 2007.
  5. ^ "Nylon Magazine". Archived from the original on February 13, 2010. Retrieved February 13, 2010.
  6. ^ Ray Gun: The Bible of Music and Style Rizzoli USA, Publish Date May 14, 2019.
  7. ^ Ray Gun, the Magazine That Defined the Alt ’90s, Lives Again by Corey Seymour, Vogue Magazine, May 23, 2019.

External links[edit]