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Xanadu3737 View Drop Down
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    Posted: June 14 2011 at 20:37
Value in Your Listening Experience: A Collectorís Case for Buying Music
- Nicholas R. Andreas

Letís start by saying what this is not. This is not a legal case for why you should buy music. This is not a moral case for why you should buy music. I will refer to illegal downloading in this piece simply because it is unquestionably illegal, and whether it should or should not be legal is a moot point when discussing current realities. I say this to explain that I do not use the term not as a guilt trip, but I simply believe calling it anything other than what it is helps lead to the act being even more socially acceptable than it already is. This is a case for music lovers everywhere to embrace their passion and help add value to music by supporting the art they profess to love. Itís important to note that when I speak of value throughout this piece I do not mean personal value or sentimental value, but rather true economic value which can not only invigorate the music industry but give individuals a greater satisfaction and appreciation of the music they enjoy. Letís start with a bit of my story.



Like many of todayís music listeners I grew up in an age of Napster, Limewire, and other new and exciting file sharing programs. Those programs quickly became known for several things; porn, viruses, and perhaps most of all ďfreeĒ music. I can remember at a young age I was given CDís such as The Division Bell, Dark Side of the Moon, and Breakfast in America. As a kid around age 7 I would look through the booklets, try making sense of some of the lyrics (and failing miserably) and often fall asleep to a lot of music I still love today. From then on for a number of years I just listened to the radio whenever I need music until a point when I decided I wanted to have all my favorite songs together on mix CDs. I would download 15-20 tracks at a clip and burn them onto a CD, and I continued doing this till I had at least a dozen of those mix CDs. Eventually I became more serious about music and I wanted to start learning more about particular artists, hearing more tracks than just those that I heard on the radio. I would salvage some listening experiences from my fatherís music collection, but rather than simply downloading a few artistsí discographies my musical life would take a much different turn in October of 2003. I can still remember heading out to my local Best Buy, and after browsing the CD selection I decided to purchase best of collections from Blue Oyster Cult, The Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Rush.



The Rush compilation was The Spirit of Radio and it would change my life forever. A week or two later I scraped up some more money and decided to return to Best Buy to see what other Rush I could find. As luck would have it there was a display set up for a brand new release from the band, Rush in Rio. After taking those discs home and listening I truly became a Rush fan. I was able to get the albums Fly By Night, Moving Pictures, and Counterparts from my father, and quickly had the rest burned for me by a friend. Despite having the music I worked over the next few months to get more and more of the actual albums, each one costing me money that could have gone towards movies or anything else a high school senior might do. While I became obsessed with Rush I also started checking out and purchasing some other music as well. A major breakthrough came after graduation in í04. I decided to take some time off before college, got myself a nice full time job, and started making some serious money. While I should have been saving up for college I instead used a ridiculous amount of my paycheck on music. I was buying Rush and Dream Theater rarities off of Ebay and Amazon while buying oodles of new music both locally and online. Since then my financial situations have shifted for better and for worse, and there have been many other changes in my life, but through it all one thing has remained quite constant; Iíve always managed to set aside some money for music.



I tell you all this because it will tie into many of the points I hope to make. In the end buying music is not only the right thing to do, but it can be an incredibly rewarding experience, and one that will certainly allow an individual to value the music they love so much more.



Letís hit on a subject that everyone seems to love, bashing record labels. I will begin by saying that record labels have made a lot of mistakes over the years. While it is fine to hope for an ideal world in which music is as hard to steal as a pair of pants the fact is that is simply no longer the reality, and the labels were certainly late in acknowledging and adapting to that reality. Another huge mistake was how they originally chose to prosecute a select number of people an insane amount of money. Sure it may have delivered a large dose of fear to people but it was in no way fair. But let us face some facts. For decades it has been most bands dream to get signed to a major label, and that is because they can be very beneficial for a band. For decades a label was the major vehicle for finances and promotion for a band, and they still play that role for many bands today. Many accuse labels of hogging the money from record sales, for short-changing artists, but I donít believe that to be the truth. Donít get me wrong, as with anything there will always be a few bad deals and in this case a few horrible record execs, but for the most part labels serve a very important business function. I see them as a specialized bank that invests money into a band in hopes that they produce music that can be successfully marketed for a profitable return. Is there anything truly wrong with that? As with any contract I think that as long as an agreement between a band and label is understood then both parties can benefit. Labels today are not what they used to be, major labels seem more and more interested in big name big money superstars while smaller labels seem to reach out to most bands. While some see this as a victory for artistic freedom itís important to understand that everything comes at a price. These smaller labels cannot provide nearly the financial or promotional means that a major label can.



We continue this decline in resources when we talk about bands who have taken to releasing material themselves. Bands like Marillion, Spockís Beard and Nine Inch Nails, to name a few, have funded releases directly through their fans. While this may on the surface seem like a trend every band should pursue one must realize what nearly all bands having success in this manner have in common, they have all built up their current fan base with label support. Most bands going this route have little success generating new fans and instead are simply riding out the wave created by successful past deals with record labels.



But why does any of this matter to you, why does any of this mean you should purchase music? Because independent, minor or major label music is fueled by money, plain and simple. In an ideal world musicians and artists could make as much art as their hearts desired without a care in the world, and people could have and enjoy any art they wanted for free. Of course we donít live in that world, not even close. Some artists are wealthy from other endeavors and truly donít worry about money. Others have already made enough money that more may not be a major concern of them. But letís face facts, for every artist like Iíve just mentioned there are hundreds that cannot come close to supporting themselves through the music they make. When it comes to artists making music, one side of the equation is their ability to write music, but the ability to be able to get that music out to fans and new ears is just as important. The more money a band and their associates (labels, most notably) make, the more demand there will be for that band and their music. If a band sells fewer albums than expected, makes less money than expected, then it will be harder for that band to continue to produce new music.



When we look at the musical economy as a whole we must understand that it works under the same general principles as any other type of industry. For example, for several years now nurses have been in high demand in the United States. Many find that the work of a nurse is highly rewarding and somewhat of a payment in its own right, but we have still seen money spent on nurses go higher and higher over the past few years and the result has been that more and more people are going back to school to fill the demand present in the health care field. In much the same way we as a musical industry must create demand for music. Simply really looking forward to the new album from any given band does not put food on that artistsí table. Much like many nurses find their work rewarding, many create music naturally and wish to continue for the sake of the music. However it is one thing to create music and itís another completely to get a quality recording of that music and to tour and play that music live. There is no question the music industry has suffered a lot in the age of illegal downloading, and now it is growing increasingly difficult for bands to get the kind of money they need for quality recordings, tours, and promotion.



Up to this point we have discussed practical economic reasons people should support the music industry and put their money into it, but now letís look at how the decision to do so can generate personal satisfaction. Many people can claim to love music, but at the end of the day I ask them to put their money where their mouth is, and here is why: A dollar is nothing more than a tool for bartering; we use it to determine where to spend the fruits of our labor. We decide what is important to us and take our hard earned cash and use it on those things that matter. When we purchase music we are making a sacrifice, we are foregoing other goods and services we could be purchasing. What this does, in quite a simply economic sense, is give value to the music. Letís consider a scenario. When all else is held equal, Person A has $15 to spend and chooses to illegally download an album and go see a movie in theaters that night. Person B buys that new album with his $15 and waits a few months to catch that same movie on TV. While I will not claim that person A canít love the music he has illegally downloaded, I think itís clear in this scenario, with all else held equal, that Person B clearly values the music more.



Itís important to remember that every time we illegally download an album, whether it is out of convenience, habit, or lack of funds, we are making a decision that other things are more important than supporting music. Of course it is at times the case that people have to make a choice between basic necessities of life and music, and in those cases one certainly shouldnít fault people for valuing food over music. On the flipside, how many people know college kids who get by with little income, constantly downloading music? Surely if they truly valued music they could find work part time and support the artists they claim to love.



As I said earlier, many fault the record labels unjustly for all that is wrong with the music industry today, but quite simply itís the consumer who is to blame. We have by and large turned our back on the industry, said it is not deserving of a portion of our income, and it has moved towards death as a result. And where are we now? We still see genre leaders, icons, and pop stars doing just fine while lesser known bands stand nearly no chance in working hard to achieve success in todayís world. Those who find success are often commercially fabricated stars such as Justin Bieber or Hannah Montana. The industry has always had this type of star, but today the money seems to flow to them and little else. Our investment in music reflects what we see in music today. Often it is the background noise, the commercial pop radio and the American Idol singers. Rarely can bands in todayís market work hard, and go through tough tours and actually come out of it all with much to show for it.



Thankfully some of the same technology that is causing problems is also making recording and marketing easier and cheaper as time moves on, allowing lesser known bands to have some chance in this mess. But let me be clear in saying that bands being able to record par-quality albums at a reasonable price is far from a justification for illegal downloading. A stronger musical market will help everyone. It helps big bands do even more over the top tours, but it also helps smaller artists get their name out and other artists produce better sounding albums than they otherwise would have. The adage goes that you get what you pay for, and while prices might be getting cheaper thanks to technology we must realize that if we all pay nothing then no matter how far technology comes weíll eventually find ourselves getting exactly what we paid for.



Perhaps I digress from the point this half of the paper is trying to make. The industry can die or rebound, but what does that mean for you when you purchase music? While many will consider some of these comments to be materialistic, egotistic, or elitist, as someone who has been buying music for many years I canít imagine someone who has downloaded an equal number of albums having such pride in their music as I do. I sit here knowing how many countless hours I worked in order to obtain the wall of CDs at my back, and I canít help but chuckle when someone with a full hard drive of stolen MP3s claims to value music as much as I do. Steven Wilson, whose comments in the Insurgentes movies were a large part of the inspiration for this piece can be paraphrased as saying that music that can be downloaded at the click of a mouse can be just as easily thrown away and disregarded. I fully agree. When I buy a CD I may not like it at first, but Iím certainly going to give it a shot, listen to it a few times, hope it grows on me and search the booklet for anything that might spark my interest. In my entire collection Iíve maybe considered trading or selling 5% of it. So much of it, even that which Iím not in love with I feel the sacrifice and experience that went into buying it and truly love my collection. On the off chance I get to meet an artist I love I consider it fortunate if I have a booklet of theirs with me to be signed, as that album then becomes something I will treasure even more. I ask, how many of those with a hard drive of stolen MP3s will walk up to some of their heroes and ask them to sign it?



I take great personal pride in my collection, and it makes perfect sense that I should. It is a basic fact of psychology that we value more those things we work to obtain. Generally speaking the same item given or worked for will always be valued more by the person who worked for it. I ask, how many of you toiled at a low rate job when you were 16 to scrape together enough money to buy a decent car? And then how infuriating was it to see someone you knew have their parents buy them a brand new Mustang for no apparent reason? There is no question there is some envy in play in this example, but I think we all understand that those who have worked for everything they have value what they have more than those who have had everything handed to them. And not only is satisfaction generated by working for and buying music, but I also find great satisfaction, as many do, in having the actual physical CDs. Itís one thing to have the music, but itís another completely to have it in a high quality format that comes as a complete package. Unlike those who illegally download their music and can make it an invisible part of their computer, my CD collection has become a part of my dťcor, a part of my life and who I am and it is a visual representation of my love of music.



While I personally will never buy digital music I fully applaud those who do. It is a true show of supporting the artist without any materialistic perks attached. The difference between illegally downloading music and legally downloading music is usually clicking one site as opposed to another and putting out $10 for the exact same digital music files. By doing this you forego the physical collection myself and many others enjoy but you still support the artists and the industry. While I think certain value benefits are lost when acquiring music digitally I understand there are those who donít find value in those elements. What is truly important is supporting the artists and the industry and so I find the entire digital buying market weíve seen grow over the years, and those who buy that way as a great thing. It is simply one more option, and I for one am always up for a bit more choice.



I would like to take a moment to address two questions that were presented to me in the course of discussing this paper with people. One friend asked me why so many who champion the buying of music find it perfectly acceptable to illegally download something like porn. While it may be a crass subject itís a good point. While there is no moral grounds on which to stand here there is a good reason for it and it gets straight to the heart of the matter I am presenting. Quite simply put people who are buying music and illegally downloading porn value music more than they value porn. I can say that if the illegal acquisition of both was impossible and I had to choose just one I would be saying a sad farewell to porn, and so would many others who truly love music. Another question that was brought up, paraphrased, was, ďSo youíre saying that if I buy music and donít donate money to poor starving African children I value music more than those children?Ē And my answer is unquestionably yes. It may sting a little to phrase it in this matter but donít worry, music lovers are not alone in this type of greed. Every day millions of people show with their wallets that they value music, other entertainment, vacations, and everything else over the suffering of people either close to them or a whole world away. For the most part we all are concerned with our own self-interests, and perhaps the interests of a few very close to us. There are a few truly great people out there who value the health and safety of people they donít even know over their own personal luxuries, but truth be told these folks are few and far between and I canít look into the mirror and tell myself Iím amongst their ranks. So for me and majority of people like me we see what we value by looking at what we have bought for ourselves. Finally, I would like to say that I have often taken this paper to extremes at times, but I would like to acknowledge some grey areas. If you spend your money going to shows and buying band merchandise even though you donít buy music traditionally I applaud you. Itís not ideal, but at least it shows some initiative towards supporting the artist and is certainly better than nothing. The same can be said for those who ďsampleĒ music by downloading everything under the sun and buying what they enjoy most. While I think the wealth of samples, free (legal) songs, and reviews on the internet can lead anyone to smart buying decisions when it comes to music this once again is far better than completely foregoing the buying of music at all.



If I have tried to explain anything here itís that buying music will add value for the listener and also benefit them tangibly by improving the market for music. Some like to live in magical world where art is completely pure, but the truth is engineers need to be paid and performers have to eat. While some may end up eating caviar every night Iím okay with it as long as it means other artists can focus more time on making the music we love in nice settings and less time in other endeavors scraping together the funds to put out another home recording. Next time you think of how you will get that brand new album, I just want you to ask yourself, ďWhere do my priorities lie?Ē


Edited by M@X - June 17 2011 at 08:10
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Alitare Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 15 2011 at 19:07
That's like, your opinion, man.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Xanadu3737 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 15 2011 at 20:06
If your username didn't speak to my inner Assassin's Creed fanboy I would be raging so hard right now!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Henry Plainview Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 15 2011 at 21:14
 
Originally posted by Xanadu3737 Xanadu3737 wrote:

If your username didn't speak to my inner Assassin's Creed fanboy I would be raging so hard right now!

Alitare =/= Altair, feel free to rage.

I'm not going to pretend I read all 3,000 words of this, but here you go. 

Quote Many accuse labels of hogging the money from record sales, for short-changing artists, but I donít believe that to be the truth. Donít get me wrong, as with anything there will always be a few bad deals and in this case a few horrible record execs, but for the most part labels serve a very important business function.

There are countless stories of major labels doing just that. I'll agree that you should support many independent labels, but the major labels are solely predatory organizations. These are not isolated incidents.
Quote As I said earlier, many fault the record labels unjustly for all that is wrong with the music industry today, but quite simply itís the consumer who is to blame. We have by and large turned our back on the industry, said it is not deserving of a portion of our income, and it has moved towards death as a result. And where are we now? We still see genre leaders, icons, and pop stars doing just fine while lesser known bands stand nearly no chance in working hard to achieve success in todayís world. Those who find success are often commercially fabricated stars such as Justin Bieber or Hannah Montana. The industry has always had this type of star, but today the money seems to flow to them and little else. Our investment in music reflects what we see in music today. Often it is the background noise, the commercial pop radio and the American Idol singers. Rarely can bands in todayís market work hard, and go through tough tours and actually come out of it all with much to show for it.

Major record labels turned their backs on me. As much as I like to complain that popular music has always sucked (because it has), even I am forced to acknowledge that there is no way Free Jazz and Ascension would be released on Atlantic and UMG today. 
Quote Steven Wilson, whose comments in the Insurgentes movies were a large part of the inspiration for this piece can be paraphrased as saying that music that can be downloaded at the click of a mouse can be just as easily thrown away and disregarded.

Steve Wilson is a t**t. 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Earendil Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 15 2011 at 21:53
Well, I actually read all of it and rather enjoyed it. You make some great points, especially about where peoples' priorities lie.

I found this about how much artists actually get from sales, and it's really interesting: http://www.informationisbeautiful.net/2010/how-much-do-music-artists-earn-online/


Edited by Ešrendil - June 15 2011 at 21:57
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Alitare Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 15 2011 at 22:51
Originally posted by Xanadu3737 Xanadu3737 wrote:

If your username didn't speak to my inner Assassin's Creed fanboy I would be raging so hard right now!

Well, it IS his/her opinion. I don't claim to be right or wrong in what I do or do not do. I only claim that I do it.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote rogerthat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 16 2011 at 01:14
The question I pose to this general argument is if piracy alone is to blame for music's present state, why does Avatar rake in the millions? Why do kids rush to get their copies of Harry Potter/Twilight? I am not trying to talk up their quality, just asking how is that writers and filmmakers can still access a large audience in the same economic and social conditions as musicians? There is no doubt that illegal copies take away from the income of labels and artists but it is the major record labels who pretty much destroyed music culture as far as the mainstream goes and professional critics have played along like third rate conmen. 
 
How can labels and critics pretend that people don't like any kind of challenging music when Radiohead, Tool, Mars Volta have all done well?  They have attacked the very heart of expression in music so relentlessly, unreasonably and cynically (by basically dubbing most, if not any, attempts at adventure as pretension or elitism or snobbery or what have you) that only the most vapid, hollow and shallow music can reliably and regularly make the cut for the charts (and be thankful for the few exceptions).  It is not as if this was never the case before but every now and then exciting artists were pushed and they shook up tastes and renewed music culture. It's pretty obvious that a hollow music culture cannot capture the imagination of the public the way it could in times gone by and hence the current decline of the music business.  Besides, with so many more means of entertainment and distraction now available to people, it is even easier for most people to ignore music except as something to play at dance parties.
 
And here's the thing that a lot of prog listeners don't appreciate given they are habituated to scourging the underground for good music:  it is very very important to have a healthy mainstream to support the volume and size of the music business as it is today.  It is huge and cannot depend on royal patronage unlike in the common practice period so it must engage and enthrall the audience to remain relevant. Otherwise, music is on the fast track to getting relegated to one of man's less significant activities. It will obviously survive in some form if it has survived since time immemorial but the current music industry set up is not looking viable. 
 
I entirely endorse the passionate appeal to buy music but other than giving a bit of encouragement to the concerned artists (hopefully!), it won't achieve much more or 'save music'.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Henry Plainview Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 16 2011 at 01:27
 
Originally posted by rogerthat rogerthat wrote:

The question I pose to this general argument is if piracy alone is to blame for music's present state, why does Avatar rake in the millions? Why do kids rush to get their copies of Harry Potter/Twilight? I am not trying to talk up their quality, just asking how is that writers and filmmakers can still access a large audience in the same economic and social conditions as musicians?

Well reading a book on a computer sucks, and you can't repeat seeing Avatar in 3D on your computer screen. Music is the same no matter where you get it. I think we'll start seeing more widespread book piracy as digital reading devices take hold in the market. And movie companies are suffering hard from piracy, or at least people not going to theaters anymore. I can't find the link now, but I read that theater attendance in the US has stayed more or less flat even though the population increases. 3D has excited Hollywood so much because the same amount of people would go, but pay more money for tickets. Fortunately, people seem to be getting tired of this. 
Quote Otherwise, music is on the fast track to getting relegated to one of man's less significant activities. It will obviously survive in some form if it has survived since time immemorial but the current music industry set up is not looking viable.

That's ridiculous. The current music industry is in certainly trouble, but does not at all imply music will be " relegated to one of man's less significant activities". 
 
Quote it won't achieve much more or 'save music'.

I don't think the author thought 3,000 words would have a significant impact on anything either. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote rogerthat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 16 2011 at 02:39
Originally posted by Henry Plainview Henry Plainview wrote:

  Well reading a book on a computer sucks, and you can't repeat seeing Avatar in 3D on your computer screen. Music is the same no matter where you get it. I think we'll start seeing more widespread book piracy as digital reading devices take hold in the market. And movie companies are suffering hard from piracy, or at least people not going to theaters anymore. I can't find the link now, but I read that theater attendance in the US has stayed more or less flat even though the population increases. 3D has excited Hollywood so much because the same amount of people would go, but pay more money for tickets. Fortunately, people seem to be getting tired of this. 
 
This here has been put forth for a long time and it hasn't happened yet, especially with regard to e-books.  It is still possible for a film like King's Speech to do well at the BO but it's become much more difficult for any music made with serious intent to (and irrespective of quality because no two people can agree on how good or bad a work of art is and that would take this discussion nowhere) access a large audience in the first place, let alone do well commercially. And record labels are a big part of the reason why.
 
Originally posted by Henry Plainview Henry Plainview wrote:

  That's ridiculous. The current music industry is in certainly trouble, but does not at all imply music will be " relegated to one of man's less significant activities". 
 
If it is not significant for a good majority of people, it's not significant, period.  How significant it is for A particular individual is not my concern because that does not reflect the overall picture.  I don't see how a shrunk, niche music community would have much relevance in society and that's what I see things getting to eventually if 'mass music' collapses.  Of course, that's just me and my general disdain for post modern sensibilities. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Henry Plainview Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 16 2011 at 03:18
Quote it's become much more difficult for any music made with serious intent to (and irrespective of quality because no two people can agree on how good or bad a work of art is and that would take this discussion nowhere) access a large audience in the first place, let alone do well commercially.

I think most if not all pop music is made with serious intent.  
Originally posted by rogerthat rogerthat wrote:

Originally posted by Henry Plainview Henry Plainview wrote:

  That's ridiculous. The current music industry is in certainly trouble, but does not at all imply music will be " relegated to one of man's less significant activities". 
 
If it is not significant for a good majority of people, it's not significant, period.  How significant it is for A particular individual is not my concern because that does not reflect the overall picture.  I don't see how a shrunk, niche music community would have much relevance in society and that's what I see things getting to eventually if 'mass music' collapses.  Of course, that's just me and my general disdain for post modern sensibilities.

That's not what I'm saying. I am saying that I don't see any reason to think people care less about music than they used  to. Music fanatics like us have always been rare, but the people who truly don't care about music at all are even more rare. I think you are incorrect to link the collapse of the major labels with how much people care about music. The major labels survived for so long by gouging people, if/when they fall it will be because people have found a replacement for them, not because they've come to prefer silence.

I have no idea what post-modern sensibilities have to do with anything. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sean Trane Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 16 2011 at 03:30
QUOTE=Xanadu3737]

Value in Your Listening Experience: A Collectorís Case for Buying Music

[/QUOTE]
 
 
You're not exactly preachiong in a desert here... Most progheads are still buying music via cds, sometimes byuying the same album for the fifth time (I just bought the matest Bitches Brew and Grey & Pink deluxe editionsEmbarrassed; although i admit I won't do that for entire catalogues
 
Originally posted by Henry Plainview Henry Plainview wrote:

 
 
Quote Steven Wilson, whose comments in the Insurgentes movies were a large part of the inspiration for this piece can be paraphrased as saying that music that can be downloaded at the click of a mouse can be just as easily thrown away and disregarded.

Steve Wilson is a t**t. 
HP, I think we can finally agree onto somethingLOL
 
 
But I'll check whart that t**t did with Caravan's grey & pink in 5.1 tonight
 
 
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote rogerthat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 16 2011 at 03:56
Originally posted by Henry Plainview Henry Plainview wrote:


I think most if not all pop music is made with serious intent.  
 
 
I disagree and if anything it is rare that that is the case.  Most pop music is an attempt at second guessing the public's tastes and trying to give them what they ostensibly like. That is not serious intent, but maybe I just used a wrong word to convey what I meant.
 
Originally posted by Henry Plainview Henry Plainview wrote:

  That's not what I'm saying. I am saying that I don't see any reason to think people care less about music than they used  to. Music fanatics like us have always been rare, but the people who truly don't care about music at all are even more rare. I think you are incorrect to link the collapse of the major labels with how much people care about music. The major labels survived for so long by gouging people, if/when they fall it will be because people have found a replacement for them, not because they've come to prefer silence.
 
What the major labels sell is the primary window to music for most people.  If the major labels fall, they will take 'commercial' music with them.  Sure, there was a certain time when the recorded album as a unit of 'saleable' music didn't exist but at that point, television and computers didn't take up our time either.  The future will not always follow the precedents of history and I don't see how music is going to penetrate the consciousness of most households if music as a big business collapses (and you need the big labels to sustain big business with the current model).  Music's only point of reference in society outside the business is basically people learning or teaching music and performing it for recreation. The numbers of these too will shrink more and more. If there is nothing to expose a child to music in some or other form, he won't be fascinated by it and take it up as whatever, be it a pastime or a career.  And if it's a household where people are not interested in music, the chances of that get high. 
 
And I disagree with you there, I do believe music is really not very important at all to a lot of people these days. It is already less important than Farmville or Baking Life to a lot of people these days and more and more distractions will emerge to elbow out music from everyday existence.  We must recognize that these means of distraction didn't exist in music's 'glory' days so it was possible to get away with less than glorious efforts but  that is no longer the case. The industry needs to wake up and do something to re-engage society but at this point, they appear to be least concerned with it and are wallowing in the past, like the record sales of Dark Side or Thriller which will not be matched in the foreseeable future (and of course the convenient punching bag of piracy to blame everything on). My relatives, acquaintances, colleagues etc etc myriad groups of people I come into contact with day in day out are far less clued into music than they were 10 years ago so it is getting relegated as a means of recreation, which is all it is for most people at the end of the day.
Originally posted by Henry Plainview Henry Plainview wrote:

 
I have no idea what post-modern sensibilities have to do with anything. 
 
I kind of assumed you would say something along the lines of music will be relevant to at least someone so how it can be irrelevant and that is a post modern stance. As it turned out, you had a different line of argument.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Slartibartfast Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 16 2011 at 07:35
Unlike many of today's listeners, I grew up in the age of radio, LP, cassette, and yes, 8-track and reel to reel.  Never had any rtr it was dieing out at the time.  Though I've been enjoying recorded music since an early age I never became a serious collector until I got into prog in a big way.  You had no choice but to collect because the music rarely made it to radio.  There was the occasional sharing in the form of making a copy of something a friend had on cassette.  Most of my albums were bought used.

As far as the music industry goes, I have no respect for it.  They embraced prog to a certain extent early on, but it was wrong to push musicians to produce stuff that they thought would have more commercial success rather than just making good music and achieving success by that means.  Some progressive music did make it to the radio and achieved commercial success on it's own merit.

These days I am glad for the opportunity to explore many more artists than was possible but it has become a bit of an overload and I had to put the brakes on exploring collecting.   I'll always be a hard copy kind of guy.  It isn't always about just the music, but the whole package.  You can't beat a great album cover or CD package.  It's an important part of the listening experience.  And these days make it a point to order as directly from the artist as possible whenever possible.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Xanadu3737 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 16 2011 at 22:35
Originally posted by Alitare Alitare wrote:

Originally posted by Xanadu3737 Xanadu3737 wrote:

If your username didn't speak to my inner Assassin's Creed fanboy I would be raging so hard right now!

Well, it IS his/her opinion. I don't claim to be right or wrong in what I do or do not do. I only claim that I do it.


I wrote the article, fyi. Just seemed like you are under the impression myself and the person who wrote it are not one and the same.

The reason the phrase annoys me is that it's overused and practically useless. We can all tell opinion from fact, no need to point out that there were some opinions used!


Edited by Xanadu3737 - June 16 2011 at 22:36
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Xanadu3737 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 16 2011 at 22:42
On the subject of why TV shoes and movies still seem pretty healthy. I think it's two fold.

Firstly a lot of money is not made directly from the sales of DVDs. TV shows make a lot of their money from TV commercials and movies make a lot of money at the box office, as someone had already pointed out.

The other reason I think is that it is more difficult to download and manage TV shoes and movies and there is often a much more recognizable quality loss with this material. While those who download music a lot don't really care about MP3 quality or claim there is no difference between lossless, anyone who watches a small video file of something is going to notice it does not look as good as it did on TV. Either that or they will download full quality and the demands on bandwidth and storage will be much more prohibitive.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TheGazzardian Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 16 2011 at 23:07
Originally posted by rogerthat rogerthat wrote:

And I disagree with you there, I do believe music is really not very important at all to a lot of people these days. It is already less important than Farmville or Baking Life to a lot of people these days and more and more distractions will emerge to elbow out music from everyday existence.  We must recognize that these means of distraction didn't exist in music's 'glory' days so it was possible to get away with less than glorious efforts but  that is no longer the case. The industry needs to wake up and do something to re-engage society but at this point, they appear to be least concerned with it and are wallowing in the past, like the record sales of Dark Side or Thriller which will not be matched in the foreseeable future (and of course the convenient punching bag of piracy to blame everything on). My relatives, acquaintances, colleagues etc etc myriad groups of people I come into contact with day in day out are far less clued into music than they were 10 years ago so it is getting relegated as a means of recreation, which is all it is for most people at the end of the day.


I have to agree with Henry here, although very few people I know are into prog, everyone I know is into music of some type, be it punk/acoustic/singer song-writer (my wife), rock (my dad), alternative/core/punk/country/rock/pop/whatever (my brother), pop/rap/techno/rock (my best friend), video game music and linkin park (one of my high school buddies), core (a cousin), country/classic rock/musical theater (my mom), classical/jazz/soul/blues/early rock (another highschool buddy), lady gaga/pop/classical (my best friends girlfriend), metal/indie/industrial/alternative/acoustic/comedy/classical/chiptunes/etc. (the artist for some of my games), indy/folk (an old co-worker), nu-metal/christian rock (another old co-worker), radio rock (another old co-worker), extreme metal (another cousin), etc...their tastes were wildly disparate but all these people I know care deeply about music. 

Even those who don't actively seek out new music have many favorites, new and old, that they enjoy listening to.

The problem is a number of these people do in fact pirate with very little concern and only one or two of them other than myself are interested in collecting music in any format. The rest just like to listen to it, however they can. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote rogerthat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 17 2011 at 01:26
Originally posted by TheGazzardian TheGazzardian wrote:


I have to agree with Henry here, although very few people I know are into prog, everyone I know is into music of some type, be it punk/acoustic/singer song-writer (my wife), rock (my dad), alternative/core/punk/country/rock/pop/whatever (my brother), pop/rap/techno/rock (my best friend), video game music and linkin park (one of my high school buddies), core (a cousin), country/classic rock/musical theater (my mom), classical/jazz/soul/blues/early rock (another highschool buddy), lady gaga/pop/classical (my best friends girlfriend), metal/indie/industrial/alternative/acoustic/comedy/classical/chiptunes/etc. (the artist for some of my games), indy/folk (an old co-worker), nu-metal/christian rock (another old co-worker), radio rock (another old co-worker), extreme metal (another cousin), etc...their tastes were wildly disparate but all these people I know care deeply about music. 

Even those who don't actively seek out new music have many favorites, new and old, that they enjoy listening to.

The problem is a number of these people do in fact pirate with very little concern and only one or two of them other than myself are interested in collecting music in any format. The rest just like to listen to it, however they can. 
 
Well, I guess then things must be very different in these parts but not many follow A scene anymore and not many are into music per se.  Yes, people do play stuff at parties or on the car stereo when travelling in groups but that IS a less significant role for music.  Not many listen to artist or albums like they would watch films anymore.  Also, old habits die hard and the older generation would make room for music in their lives because they are accustomed to it but the kids have found other toys to play with.  And we are still talking of a generation which would have likely been exposed to music in a big way in their formative years but with the passage of time, more and more kids are going to grow up without coming into contact with music as much as before. And I would certainly say the number of people I have met who CARE about music is relatively much lower than ten years or so ago and I do include people who listen to the top 40 here. I have met people who really love to listen to popular music and it's their choice but even the numbers of these are dwindling.  When Ipods entered the market, the novelty of the device probably revived interest in music to some extent until people found they could also watch movies on Ipods with bigger screens.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Anderson III Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 28 2011 at 02:22
Originally posted by Henry Plainview Henry Plainview wrote:

Quote it's become much more difficult for any music made with serious intent to (and irrespective of quality because no two people can agree on how good or bad a work of art is and that would take this discussion nowhere) access a large audience in the first place, let alone do well commercially.

I think most if not all pop music is made with serious intent.  



Modern pop music? I think none of it is made with serious intent! Well, there is the intent of entertaining 10 year old girls, but I don't see what's so serious about that. Plus, I don't think it's the music itself that's supposed to entertain, but the whole multimedia package. There's for instance choreography, visual art, and most importantly an IDOL for the kids to worship. The music is a tiny part of this package, and many producers of pop music have publicly stated that they don't personally enjoy the music. It's made for children!
"Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and cannot remain silent" - Victor Hugo
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Siloportem Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 28 2011 at 02:39
Originally posted by Anderson III Anderson III wrote:

Originally posted by Henry Plainview Henry Plainview wrote:

Quote it's become much more difficult for any music made with serious intent to (and irrespective of quality because no two people can agree on how good or bad a work of art is and that would take this discussion nowhere) access a large audience in the first place, let alone do well commercially.

I think most if not all pop music is made with serious intent.  



Modern pop music? I think none of it is made with serious intent! Well, there is the intent of entertaining 10 year old girls, but I don't see what's so serious about that. Plus, I don't think it's the music itself that's supposed to entertain, but the whole multimedia package. There's for instance choreography, visual art, and most importantly an IDOL for the kids to worship. The music is a tiny part of this package, and many producers of pop music have publicly stated that they don't personally enjoy the music. It's made for children!


The fact that some music is made as a part of a multimedia idol/x-factor package does not mean that it wasn't made with serious intent. Mind you, I prefer the prog approach, just playing devil's advocate here.

Imho the reason the music industry is in worse shape than during the golden years (70s) is because back then, there was no multimedia. There's much more "stuff" to draw away the attention today.

Regarding the original topic: it comes down to a moral decision for me. I enjoy this music a lot so I am prepared to pay for this support the artist. But it can be difficult, painstakingly hunting down a rare cd while I can instantly download it. The fact that I'm no real audiophile doesn't help here. If I was, then a cd would be even more valuable to me.

And in the past I have gotten angry at stores giving me wrongful information and thought "screw it all" and just downloaded.
Thanks !! Your topics always so good and informative. I like you talk.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AtomicCrimsonRush Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 14 2011 at 07:45
I scanned portions of the OP and found there to be a case here. In any case in order to listen to as much prog as poss, the obscure stuff is impossible to obtain and demands to be downloaded, but I will buy as much as I can when I can. There is no harm in listening online before buying though to ensure the album appeals. 
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