Harper’s Bazaar Gets In On The Music Game, With Dev Hynes Becoming First-ever ‘Music Director’

by Freya Drohan

The longest-standing magazines are really upping their game when it comes to engaging audiences (case in point: Cosmo has just launched merch and every publication worth its salt has a podcast.) But editor in chief Samira Nasr is cementing her arrival at Harper’s Bazaar with a music partnership—a first for the 153-year-old title.

The mag’s ongoing collaboration with Apple Music will see the launch of Harper’s Bazaar: The Playlist, which debuts alongside the November issue (covered by Liya Kebede.) Nasr has already tapped millennial-favorite Dev Hynes, also known as Blood Orange, to join the masthead as the first music director. The role will be assigned to a different musician every month, with each person given the task of defining a playlist which speaks to the theme and mood of the issue.

Of the cool new venture, Nasr says, “Fashion and music are inextricably intertwined and serves as the inspiration for this first-ever endeavor and collaboration with Apple Music. [Dev’s] music was on heavy repeat during my time in quarantine, and he has curated an original playlist to serve as the soundtrack. Readers can listen to and enjoy while reading the issue, a new chapter—my first—in Bazaar’s history.”

Dev Hynes (courtesy)

Music fans can expect a mix of older and newer releases, some that represent “literal firsts” and others that embody freshness or first-time emotions. As Hynes explains: “I picked ‘Behold That Star,’ by Marian Anderson, because she was the first Black opera singer to solo at the Met. ‘Blue Sky and Yellow Sunflower,’ by Susumu Yokota, feels like spring, or a new day. And ‘It Must Be Love,’ by Labi Siffre, feels like first love.”

Grab your AirPods and listen to the tracks here, or on Apple Music from October 28.

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