Mastodon Publisher's Letter - Sensitive Skin Magazine

Publisher's Letter

Sensitive Skin #8, April 29, 2012

15 years in the making, it’s finally here – we’re proud to present the “lost” interview with William S. Burroughs, conducted by Allen Ginsberg, from 1992. The two old friends go to a sweat lodge together and then discuss censorship, the cut-up method, the film version of Naked Lunch, and the death of Joan Burroughs, among other things. Along with the interview are some previously unpublished photographs of Burroughs by Ruby Ray, from the iconic RE/Search magazine photo shoot of 1991. (I refer to it as the “lost” interview, as I actually lost the file at one point! But I found it! Good.)

Ruby remembers: “When I met Burroughs, it was at a party at Mark McCloud’s house – Mark is the owner of the illegal art museum – LSD art – we were all partying for a while, and I’d had a drink or three. Vale introduced me to him, and I said, ‘Pleasure to meet you Mr. Burroughs, you’ve been a big influence on me, even though you hate women.’ Vale dragged me away. But Bill still agreed to do the shoot – though he pointed the gun at me the whole time, with that sly grin on his face…”

We’re also proud to present a portfolio of Ruby’s photographs documenting the West Coast punk scene of the late ’70s, with shots of X, Flipper, Sid Vicious, Jello Biafra and more. Man, this issue is so packed with goodness I can’t even begin to describe it! Wait a minute, I already did describe it here!

Anyway, I also wanted to mention that we’re distributing the “magazine” in book format going forward – that is, it’s no longer getting a date on the front cover because, well, the material doesn’t expire. That means that bookstores can keep us in stock indefinitely, and that we’re much more easily distributed (via Amazon and select bookstores), as we have an ISBN. If your favorite local bookstore doesn’t stock us, have them order us! This will be the format going forward, more of an anthology than a magazine, coming out twice a year rather than four times – better, faster, stronger – much like Steve Austin after he was bionically rebuilt, but at a much lower cost, especially after inflation is factored in. Enjoy!


Sensitive Skin #7, October 15, 2011

Wow, lots happening in the Sensitive Skin world! First of all, this current issue (and selected back issues – we hope to have the whole catalog available at some point) are now available for purchase in print format!

One of the reasons we decided to take the trouble to create a hard-copy version is we were blown away by how beautiful the printing quality is – thick, glossy, full-color pages, in a perfect-bound format that’s more like a book than a magazine.

On a sadder note, I’m going to have to step down as publisher and managing editor of Sensitive Skin, in order to fulfill some familial duties (eg, I got a job). I’m going to turn over my duties to an old friend, B. Kold, who has magnanimously accepted the (unpaid) position. Welcome back, B. Kold! We’re glad to hear you’ve recovered from your, ahem, “health problems” and are ready to be a responsible and productive member of society once again.

At any rate, another great issue is here, and we proudly present:

• A short story by Rob Roberge, author of Working Backwards from the Worst Moment of My Life and the neo-noir novels More Than They Could Chew and Drive;
• a novel excerpt from Díre McCain, publisher of Paraphilia Magazine;
• a short story by Drew Hubner, author of American by Blood, We Pierce and the upcoming East of Bowery (the first in a new series by SENSITIVE SKIN Books);
• a memoir by Erika Schickel, author of You’re Not the Boss of Me: Adventures of a Modern Mom;
• a filthy and hilarious prose poem from John S. Hall, vocalist and lyricist of King Missile;
• additional writing by blogger City of Strangers, poet Marguerite Van Cook and screenwriter Mark Netter;
• art by Shalom Neuman (who currently has a one-man show at the Naional Gallery in Prague) and downtown NYC sculptor Janice Sloane;
• a short film by Flame Schon, director of the ’60s underground classic documentary, Dope;
• music by contemporary composer Mike Fink (Cal Arts) and Bay Area jazz trio LaMacchia/Myrner/Feiszli.
• additional artwork by Chris Bava, Jim C, Jeff Spirer and Ted Barron

Lots to check out, enjoy it! I’m out of here!


Sensitive Skin #6, June 4th, 2011

Hide your wife! Hide your kids!

Our sixth issue is here at last! We’ve got writing by Carl Watson, Bonny Finberg, Sean Flaherty, Patricia Eakins, Max Blagg, jennifer jazz and Mike DeCapite. All great stuff…

We’ve got a film clip from Blood in the Face, by Anne Bohlen, Kevin Rafferty, and James Ridgeway, featuring the first on-screen appearance by Michael Moore, as well as the captivating Coppertone Nazi hillbilly she-wolf. (You’ll see).

We have two special musical features: rare and unreleased tracks provided by Elliot Sharp, and some long-lost tracks by 1990s NYC’s greatest industrial punk dance band, The Spitters.

For the first time, we’re presenting two featured artists, paintings from downtown doyen David West (downtown by way of Chateau Rouge, that is) and graveyard-digging (in liking, that is) John Griffin.

Check it out!


Issue 5, February 2011

Bob Bannister, Kurt Wolf and Spuyten Duyvil.

2. Just as important, we’ve finally figured out a way to present the incredible art we’ve been so lucky to publish the past few issues – brilliant work by Justine Frischmann, Al Kresch and Ted Barron, geniuses all. Instead of rows and columns of thumbnails forcing you to scroll down a long page, we’ve implemented a built-in slide show. Just click on it at any time to launch the full-page image viewer.

Pretty cool…now, just wait till you see what we have in store for next time!


November 2010