It was bound to happen. We were hearing constant stories about longstanding newspapers shutting down across the country. Dying slow deaths thanks to the much more accessible (and up-to-date) internet as well as the economy. It was just a matter of time before major magazines started folding. And of course you know the Black mags were going to be the first to go. But Vibe??
It's really too bad because Vibe was always one of my personal favorites as far as entertainment rags go. I used to get into The Source when I was younger and hip-hop was more relevant. However, when the genre started to take a turn for the worse (probably around the late 90s or so), The Source lost me as a reader. I delved even more into R&B and that was always Vibe's specialty.
Vibe had their own....well....vibe that set them apart. Things like the fact that they purposely made their magazine the unconventional size. It helped it stand out. Although that probably contributed to their downfall also since I'm sure that created higher production costs. Or there was also their "20 Questions" they printed at the end of every issue. I would always skip to the end to see what randomness they came up with that month.
I did have a subscription to the mag at one point, but I eventually let it lapse a couple of years ago. Funny thing was, the mags kept coming and they weren't charging me for them. There was nothing better than getting a free Vibe in the mail every month. That was the gift that kept on giving. Even if they didn't do actual cd reviews, which always irritated me.
The oddest thing about this news is the timing. Here is a magazine that was started in 1992 by none other than Quincy Jones. One would think that on the heels of one of the most significant celebrity deaths in our lifetime, they would put together a nice memorial issue for Mike. If they truly are ceasing operations immediately, looks like that won't happen. If any publication would have been able to do the moment justice, it would be the the one created by Mike's one-time mentor. Alas, it was not meant to be.
Rest in peace, Vibe.