Robert Christgau contributes regular music reviews to All Things Considered.
Christgau began writing rock criticism for Esquire in 1967 and became a columnist at New York's Village Voice in 1969. He moved to Newsday in 1972, but in 1974 returned to the Voice, where he was the music editor for the next 10 years. From 1985 to 2006, he was a senior editor at the weekly as well as its chief music critic. He is best known for the Pazz & Jop Critics' Poll, for over 30 years the nation's most respected survey of rock-critical opinion, and his Consumer Guide column, where he began to publish letter-graded capsule album reviews in 1969. The Consumer Guide is now published by MSN Networks. Christgau is also a senior critic at Blender.
Christgau has taught at several colleges and universities, most extensively NYU, where after stints with the English and journalism departments, he now teaches music history in the Clive Davis Department of Recorded Music. In 1987, he won a Guggenheim fellowship to study the history of popular music. In 2002, he was a senior fellow at the National Arts Journalism Program, where he is now a member of the national board. He was the keynote speaker at the first EMP Pop Conference in 2002, and a Ferris Professor of Journalism at Princeton University in 2007.
Christgau has published five books: the collections Any Old Way You Choose It (1973) and Grown Up All Wrong (1998), and three record guides based on his Consumer Guide columns. He has written for The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The London Times, Playboy, The New Yorker, Video Review, Blender, Spin, The Nation, Salon, Believer, numerous alt-weeklies and many other publications. Most of his writing can be read on his website, robertchristgau.com. His capsule reviews are also part of the editorial content at the online music service Rhapsody.
Christgau was born in 1942. He attended New York City public schools and got his B.A. from Dartmouth in 1962. He married Carola Dibbell in 1974. In 1985, they became parents of a daughter, Nina.
Amy LaVere sings in a sweet soprano, but her lyrics are anything but sweet. Robert Christgau reviews her new album, Runaway's Diary.
Music critic Robert Christgau says it has been six years since Southern rock band Drive-By Truckers put out a great album. That wait ends this week with the release of the excellent English Oceans.
The oratorical alt-rap duo featuring Lateef the Truth Speaker and Lyrics Born returns with a follow-up to 1996's The Album. The new record demonstrates that the two are as capable as ever of illustrating the musicality of hip-hop.
As The Uncluded, the two cancel each other's weaknesses — Dawson gains heft, while Aesop Rock lightens up. Critic Robert Christgau says the collaborative album is almost like two halves of a whole.
Marc Ribot has spent nearly three decades as a guitarist on the margins. Critic Robert Christgau explains why Ribot's new hard-rock album with Ceramic Dog ranks among his most daring pieces of music.
On his new album, Dad Country, the Nashville singer-songwriter emerges from behind the moniker Jonny Corndawg to reveal a more serious side. In several songs on the new record, he draws on a year he spent trying to salvage a relationship.
The New York MC, whose father is a gifted boxer turned community lawyer, gave up a promising career path of his own to rap full time.