CASE STUDY /
Tennessee Musician Magazine Redesign
Tennessee Musician has been the official publication of the Tennessee Music Education Association since 1949. Each quarterly issue provides its members an in-depth look at industry news as well as original content featuring stories, opinions and advice from Tennessee music educators at all levels.
Tennessee Musician has printed their quarterly membership publication with Slate Group since 2013. In the fall of 2014, the newly minted editor of Tennessee Musician came to a crossroads: bare the burden of designing TMEA’s quarterly publication entirely on his own, or struggle with outsourcing the production duties to a design firm. To Michael, neither option sounded promising.
Before the redesign, Tennessee Musician was an overwhelming print-production process riding on the shoulders of one person. After an issue was released and received a less-than-pleased reader response for the font styles, color combinations and legibility— the editor Michael Chester, realized he had taken on a project that he alone would not be able to execute. He had missed the target and landed somewhere in the realm of marginality; he knew he needed an expert creative board and a group of problem solvers.
After a long creative session (conference call), we singled out key hot-points that needed to be addressed. Slate Group worked together with Michael to create a file sharing system, production schedule, and magazine outline to help prioritize our efforts to meet our print deadline. While Michael and his contributors worked on fleshing out the content, our Graphics team got busy developing a new nameplate, design scheme, typography styles and illustrations to refresh and revitalize the look and functionality of Tennessee Musician.
Since the redesign, the collaboration between the Slate Group team and Tennessee Musician has pushed the publication to new creative levels. The first issue released was met with praise and acclamation from readers and editors alike. Jo Caldwell, Washington Music Educators Association Publications Manager and editor of Voice, writes to Tennessee Musician, “I received your new issue of the Tennessee Musician last week and want to congratulate you on it. It is a wonderful publication – interesting articles and eye-catching layouts.” Tennessee Musician has been delighted with the response from the public and look forward to many more publications with our team at Slate Group