In a short article on jazztimes.com actually dated 01-08-09 (but probably meant to be dated 06-08-09), it has been announced that the print version of JazzTimes magazine would be temporarily suspended “while it finalizes a sale of its assets”

Most of the staff has been furloughed.

The May 2009 issue (pictured at left) is the latest one yours truly has received; it arrived here on April 13, which means the June issue is almost a month late now.

I’ve been a subscriber for several years, and I have to say that, of the 8 or 10 magazines I subscribe to, JazzTimes has consistently been one of the few that I drop everything for and read immediately when it arrives.

I sincerely hope the publishers are able to close a deal that will allow the print version of the magazine to continue without being stripped down or, worse in my view, subjected to a reduced print schedule such as every other month or even quarterly.

It’s hard enough for a glossy national magazine to be topical given the lengthy lead times print publishing requires. Reducing the number of issues produced per year would certainly save the publishers money, but it would only make other matters worse.

Better to let it die a swift death now and get it over with than have it sink slowly into the morass of irrelevancy, gasping for air and grasping at straws in a doomed attempt to stave off the inevitable.

NOTE: To clarify, I want to say that I do hope things don’t come to this. My preference would be for JazzTimes to live to a ripe old age as the venerable Downbeat has.