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September 7, 2010

Exciting news!!

happy day dinerDoes that headline sound familiar?

Elizabeth Large, our former food critic, was a mentor to me, so when it came time for me to step down from Midnight Sun I wanted to tip my hat to her.

Yes, after five years covering Baltimore's arts, music and nightlife scene, I am taking on a new role here at the paper: entertainment editor. Well, the actual title is something corporate-y, like Content Editor, Features Dept., but 'entertainment editor' sounds better to me.

Erik Maza, an incredibly talented reporter from Miami, will be our new local entertainment reporter and blogger.

No, this isn't my final post on Midnight Sun. I'll be phasing Erik in during the next week or two. I'll also be editing his stories. So you're not totally rid of me yet ...

Why would I possibly give up reviewing bars and clubs and interviewing musicians? As glamorous as this job sounds, I'm fried. Lately, I find myself putting too many commas in my copy. I think it's because my inner voice is tired and needs a rest.

Believe it or not, going out two or three times a week gets old after five years. I'm ready to start a new phase of my life, which I'm calling "couch time." I'll no longer be editing and publishing blog comments on my phone in the bathroom, at a restaurant or any other random times and places -- something Amie will appreciate, I'm sure.

I can't begin to tell you how much fun it's been hosting Midnight Sun. Nothing has helped me more as a writer than this here bloggy. Since Midnight Sun started three years ago, we've been stood up by Eddie Vedder, learned about Little Havana and the MIZOD and poked fun at some dude named Chris Sligh (I still chuckle when I think about Sligh). I've published more than 2,800 posts and approved more than 28,000 comments. And now that Erik's here, Midnight Sun will be in great hands.

I'll miss Midnight Sun, but more than writing, I'll miss the conversations we've had over the years.

I'm trying not to cry right now. It's hard.

Sniffle sniffle.

(Baltimore Sun photo of Happy Day Diner, because today is my happy day, by Gene Sweeney Jr.)

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 9:57 AM | | Comments (42)
Categories: News


Here we go again. Another attempt to bring Miami to Baltimore.

Congrats Sam!

Couch time? Bwahahahahaha! Just you wait, Mr. Newest Editor!

Seriously, though, congratulations to you. It'll be fun working with you on the flip side!

My this end of Sessa?

I'm sure I'm not the only person who will miss you here in the future, but I look forward to a Baltimore new comer's take on the entertainment scene.

Maybe "Erik Maza" will try something new, like going to a bar or club that black people go to, or like, resisting one single PR pitch for a new brand of tonic water or a new cocktail list that comes his way, or, y'know, breaking a new band or artist on the local scene BEFORE city paper does, or, PERHAPS, writing some actual news or insightful criticism. But from the look of him, (call me a hater, sure...) with his club shirt and his $60 haircut, probably not...

Please continue the wonderful tradition of the alternate text in the pictures.

Sad Face :(

Oh Cool!

Sam-one last party!!!

Midnight Sun- Sayounara

The Sun shouldn't have posted Erik's picture, I enjoyed the old days of the anonymity.

Actually, (yawn) your moving on is long overdue! Toodleooh!

So does that mean this here magnet I've got in my cubicle that says "Sam Sessa writes about the city's after-hours scene" is officially a collector's item?

Sorry to see you go, Sam. Best of luck in your new position.

Long Live Chris Sligh?



certainly a little bitter sweet so you will be missed. look forward to reading erik's perspective of our "charming" city.

@Jason Z -- I miss the old, anonymous days too.

@Dave F. -- Indeed. Ditto for the life-sized cardboard cutouts of Sam "arms-crossed" Sessa.

So...I go from being Roommate Patchen to just Patchen? This sucks!


Does Maza need a roommate?


So, basically, you're an old man now and you want to sit around and watch Netflix instead of going out every night? I can relate, unfortunately.

Wow, though, it's going to be weird having a new guy doing this blog.... You'll be missed. Are you still going to do your WTMD show?


Congratulations, Sam!!!! I can totally relate to Couch Time! You deserve it, but you will be missed!

and with that Sessa goes upstairs.

Congrats - sorry to see you go from the pages.

There must be a Sessa Sayonara ShinDig. Post Haste.

JTK, step away from the window.

Well... at least you waited long enough to cover the Justin Bieber concert...

Good luck in your new position!

Miami's beer scene is terrible compared to Baltimore's--all that hot weather, you know. Let me know when we have to indoctrinate him into the better beer scene up here--say, for Baltimore Beer Week? <:-)

Thanx for all the fish!

I am speechless. I mean, I knew this day would come, but it's all so sudden...

I need a moment to collect my thoughts...

All right, I've pulled it together.

Congrats, Sam! In your honor, I have promoted myself to Layabout, Chief at work today.

Congrats, Sam. You've been a great source for all things hip in the city and will be great in your next position. The Sun is lucky to have you and like you said, surely your other half will be happy when you're "no longer be editing and publishing blog comments on my phone in the bathroom, at a restaurant or any other random times and places." Too funny.

Aww, JTK, it'll be okay.

Congrats on the new gig, Sam, and welcome, Erik.

And, yes, there has to be a Midnight Sun Sayonara.

This is sad news for us but a promotion for you, so congratulations!

For the sake of the doormen/bouncers of the city's licensed establishments, could you please post a link to Erik's photo? Might he also have a smallish beard and possibly be wearing glasses?

Good luck Sam, we'll miss ya.
Welcome to Baltimore Erik!

Your last assignment was a Justin Bieber concert?

You planned it that way, didn't you?

Congratulations on the new opportunity. Best wishes. I have enjoyed your work.

"Let me know when we have to indoctrinate him into the better beer scene up here--say, for Baltimore Beer Week?"


What you should really do is send him out on a treasure hunt using all of the "Name That Bar" photos as clues.

Did the GoodLife Boys get to you?



Erik you are going to receive the hazing of 10,000 lifetimes

Congratulations, Sam. And now let's retire that "Exciting News" lead forever,

Congrats Sam and thank you so much for all the press! You still better stop by for a drink occasionally.


So it's Splitsville for the major cool cat of the Midnight Sun to a bigger time.
Now we need to break in Erik.

Of course, since YOU him brought up,
Chris Sligh's new album
The Anatomy of Broken
on Word Records due to be released on 9/14/2010
more info

The lead off single
Only You Can Save

Will "Get Out" and "Concert review by random correspondent" still be regular features?

So he will be taking over the @MidnightSunBlog twitter? And will the Entertainment Editor have a twitter account?

Maybe @BaltimoreSunContentEditorFeaturesDepartment

Just kidding...Congrats man!

@ Jr.: God I hope not.

Sessa, I think you've laid the foundations of a good home here, but as you've noted, you're tired. It's been obvious in your subject matter and writing in the last few months. I think new blood is welcomed and needed.

This business is hard, and only a few people are lifers. It is a lifestyle more than a job, one that not everyone can (or wants to) stay in for an extended period.

I wish you luck in your new role. Don't let the next man up get as tired as you did. The Baltimore scene is a vibrant one with a lot of nuance. I hope Erik comes in with wide eyes.


We're one step closer to figuring out how news and advertising actually work together. It'll be a blast.


Sam, congratulations. I feel like - I don't know, I was part of it when you got engaged, married, and conversely when I got married, pregnant, baby - I am so sad, but so happy for you in your new venture. Good luck!

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About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

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