The Belle and Sebastian
Sinister Mailing List

The Short Version

[Archive] [Join/Leave] [Old Sinister]


The Sinister mailing list started in 1997 as a mailing list about the band Belle and Sebastian, quickly became a mailing list about people who like Belle and Sebastian, and is now at the time of writing I suppose a mailing list about people with an affection for a mailing list about Belle and Sebastian. But it's also still about Belle and Sebastian. It's a quieter place these days, but because it's considered by some to be a good example of the homegrown nature of communities on the internet in the mid-1990s before corporate music poked its head in, it's still stubbornly here. It's also here for the thousands of people who shared their lives on it in the 1990s and since. It might be the oldest continously-existing mailing list on the Internet for a band. It used to run on a big scary server with big fans and scary beeping noises, now it runs on a computer you can hold in the your palm of your hand. You can still join, you can still read the archives, you can still post to it.

If you're browsing, interested in the band or interested in independent music history or what the internet was like in 1997, you can find list archives in the link below. There's no search right now, but I dare say Google will catch up soon, or I'll make a new search myself maybe.

> Sinister list archives

If you want to post something, the list had a ton of rules in its heyday, but now all you're required to do is send posts with a few (or many) lines of content, not be mean, and obviously not advertise. You don't have to worry about setting your mail program to send in plain text anymore, you can send mail as you would send a mail to anyone, even with attachments (although please be sparing). If you join, your first post or two will be "moderated" - it just means I'm checking for spammers, and your mail will appear soon.

To join the list: send an email to
To leave the list: send an email to
To post to the list once joined: send an email to
To find out what else you can do: send an email saying "help" to
and get back a bizarrely confusing reply.

Note that these addresses changed in 2016. You also can join and leave via the web, do other things like swap to the digest version, swap email address and so on and generally find things easier that way. Visit the page below.

> Sinister list information page

For your historical amusement, there's a link to the old webpages below, resplendent with broken links, pointless information and historical anachronisms: the old pages. There's a farcically amusing log of one of the earliest online chats with a band, sheet music, obscure lyrics, a Tigermilks register, and some photos of list members as babies and list members in the 1990s, which from today's perspective is nearly the same thing.

> Old Sinister


Table Service providedby Honey
Brewing up date: 24th August 1997

Cartoons from "The Story Of Sebastian" Laura Molloy
used by permission, and animated by Honey

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