Mike Powell

My name’s Mike Powell. I’m a freelance writer and copywriter with 20 years of paid experience at corporate environments like the The New York Times and Apple down to literary nonprofits and small art galleries. I’ve written essays and reported features for The New York Times Magazine, The Ringer, The Paris Review, Oxford American, and dozens of other publications on subjects ranging from the joys of dishwashing to the state of Hollywood stuntwork in the era of motion-capture animation.

I’ve also written hundreds of reviews and features for the long-running, ASME-nominated music site Pitchfork, all of which you can find here (and my favorite of which is here).

Most of my working hours these days are at Apple’s streaming-music service, Apple Music, whose tone and character I have helped shape through the design and writing of album notes, features, playlist and banner copy, CTAs and the like, often incorporating expectations from corporate and design teams alongside editorial initiatives. I live in Tucson, Arizona.

Selected Work

Here are some examples of features I’ve conceptualized and written for Apple Music:

About the history and legacy of hip-hop producers and MCs. Or The Beatles. Or Frank Ocean.

And here’s some other work I’m proud of:

An archive of columns I wrote for the Paris Review about living in Arizona.

A long story about the first guy to sell nature sounds (or, at least, fabricated nature sounds) as relaxation aids, for Pitchfork.

A long exploration of meditation apps for the Ringer.

A profile of a brilliant and unconventional record producer named Ariel Rechtshaid, for Grantland.

And because I lost so much sleep over them, a meditation on train horns that blow in my neighborhood.

Do you want to talk about contemporary American hardcore? Zen practice? The unyielding challenges - and incomparable rewards - of parenting? Work? These are some subjects I am invested in. Please feel free to email me.