I get emails from time to time that say, "Jason, how can I become a music journalist just like you?"
I tell them to pitch the music blogs of the local weeklies, but I don't think they usually do that. Or maybe they do but they aren't persistent enough to get an assignment (editors sometimes need 2, 3, 25 emails to recognize your existence).
When I first started getting published, I'd sit around and go, "Man, I want to be a writer worse than anyone else. What's something I can do that no one else is willing to do? I know! I'll be a male stripper!" In fact, I still offer to do stuff like this. I pitched Mark B at Seattle Sound a story about breaking into the Crocodile in Seattle after it closed to enact my dream of singing a song on its stage. He didn't take me up on it.
But, this is where you come in, wannabe Lester Bangs. The Mercury is asking for someone to do something crazy for a story. How badly do you want to get your foot in the door? All you have to do is watch this 24-hour concert in a "vibe zone" and then the chance is yours to show your talent in the best goddamn review the Mercury's blog has ever seen.
You're not going to do it, are you?
You fuckin' wimp.