We are beyond shocked and saddened to share that MAGNET senior writer Jonathan Valania passed away unexpectedly September 11. Valania (virtually no one ever referred to him by his first name) was an extraordinary writer whose lengthy cover stories and features helped define the editorial voice of the print magazine throughout our 25-year, 150-issue run. He literally traveled the world for MAGNET, hanging out with and interviewing musicians at length to give our readers a glimpse of a side of these artists they could never see on their own.
Valania was a larger-than-life personality who was never afraid to ask the tough questions—repeatedly if necessary—to get to the truth. But, at heart, Valania was a life-long music fanatic, like the rest of us, who was always on the lookout for something new and great to listen to. MAGNET would have been a very different, lesser magazine without Valania. Not having him around anymore hasn’t really sunk in yet, but it will, and it’s going to be hard.
Honor his memory by reading these stories he wrote, plus anything else that you can find with his byline. And, if you have an hour to spend, check out the podcast at the bottom, wherein Valania and MAGNET editor-in-chief Eric T. Miller discuss what went on behind the scenes during the first 20 years of the magazine.