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Witchfinder
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PostSubject: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Wed Sep 02, 2015 11:26 am

Some of you might enjoy this article from the MayoNoise blog:

https://mayobat.wordpress.com/2015/09/02/ghost-music/

It's about how the MP3 revolution has led to there being less information about music than ever before.  

MayoNoise is the blog of Bob Mayo who was the lead singer and bass player in the thrash band Wargasm.  Bob's blog is one of my favorites because he's a great writer and he always has interesting articles.  Check out his blog and I'm sure you'll enjoy it.
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MetalGuy71
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Wed Sep 02, 2015 11:36 am

Interesting article, but I'd have to disagree with him on the lack of information. There is more info out there than ever before. If you want to look for it. It's not spoon-fed to you through radio dj's or MTV. You have to look for it. That's the issue.

Yea, a kid today isn't going to have liner notes in his hand, but you know what he does have? A Smartphone. It's all there if you want it.

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Glower
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Wed Sep 02, 2015 1:56 pm

There's A LOT to talk about in that article.
He's a good writer too -
It must be a drag, for today's bands, to have every show filmed -
then posted on youtube - for everyone around the world.
Rolling Stone - Had a photo of Morrison on the cover - forget what year -
but the writer sadly lamented - that someone open/lifted the shades -
and all the sunlight has poured in - ruining the 'mystery' of rock -
esp. it's darkside element, that most bands have -
but it's the digital age of communications - way beyond MTV -
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Runicen
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Thu Sep 03, 2015 9:19 am

There are a LOT of different angles in that article to cover.

First, I think he's mixing a few topics. Music moving to digital isn't the cause of all the misinformation (or lack of interest in the information). Also, it's not that the information isn't out there, it's that you need really good bullshit detectors to go through all of the information that IS available. For as many fan-curated wiki pages as you'll find that more info than the artists and their labels could hope to recall, you'll have sites like allmusic where some reviewers just seem to have an ill-informed axe to grind (read the Jethro Tull album reviews after about '75 and they're all about how the band keeps trying and failing to recreate the glory that was Aqualung...).

Personally, I think it's not unique to music. I think people in general are unplugging from life in general and their own in particular. It's not that people engage with everything BUT music because there's a lack of CDs or vinyl or whatever in circulation. People just seem to largely not give a crap about anything and music is just one really glaring area of this phenomenon because it DID mean so much to so many not that long ago.

All that said, I'm on board with how it's a hell of a lot less impressive to have files on a hard drive vs. CDs or records on a shelf. When I'm at home, I listen to physical product. I walk up to a shelf, pick something up off of it and put the disc in the player. Unfortunately, the majority of my time is spent at work, so I have to compromise and that's where my lossless library and iPods come into play. Trust me, if I could have a full stereo setup at work, I'd comb thrift stores for miles around to put together a viable setup for the office and I'd listen to my tangible records and CDs there too. However, until I end up winning the literal or metaphorical lottery, this is what I'm left with.

There are some glimpses of a better way forward that are impressive as hell though. I have a Plex media server set up at home. It began as a way for me to share music with my roommate (who takes TERRIBLE care of her physical media) without constantly burning CDs or doing unique CD rips for her. It was a way for her to stream music via her laptop or the living room PS3. But THEN, they did some amazing crap and put out some solid updates to the product which cross-references my library against online artist and album databases where now artists pics and bios accompany these disembodied files, link to music videos, etc. Is it perfect? No, not remotely. BUT, it's a way that being a music collector could go full multi-media without everyone jumping the Spotify bandwagon AND it puts names, events and faces to the songs. Pretty sweet all around.

Overall, it was an interesting read, but I think the forest was missed for the trees.
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journeyman
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Thu Sep 03, 2015 10:26 am

Good article. mp3's were a way to make music portable. The less information is intentional and due to technological limitations at the time. Not sure if I get the point. Is it now time to add the missing information into mp3's or is it that many folks miss out on the experience of the physical product.
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Addy
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Thu Sep 03, 2015 12:50 pm

Quote :

First, I think he's mixing a few topics. Music moving to digital isn't the cause of all the misinformation (or lack of interest in the information). Also, it's not that the information isn't out there, it's that you need really good bullshit detectors to go through all of the information that IS available.

I agree
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Witchfinder
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Thu Sep 03, 2015 12:55 pm

Runicen wrote:
There are a LOT of different angles in that article to cover.

First, I think he's mixing a few topics.  Music moving to digital isn't the cause of all the misinformation (or lack of interest in the information).  Also, it's not that the information isn't out there, it's that you need really good bullshit detectors to go through all of the information that IS available.  For as many fan-curated wiki pages as you'll find that more info than the artists and their labels could hope to recall, you'll have sites like allmusic where some reviewers just seem to have an ill-informed axe to grind (read the Jethro Tull album reviews after about '75 and they're all about how the band keeps trying and failing to recreate the glory that was Aqualung...).

Overall, it was an interesting read, but I think the forest was missed for the trees.

He's not saying that the information isn't out there, he's saying the information doesn't come with the music as it used to. That's the point. Previously, such information was readily available with the music itself. If you wanted to know who wrote a song, or who the performers were, it was right there on the media.
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Thu Sep 03, 2015 1:08 pm

I have purchased some downloads directly from bands or from places like HDtracks where I've received a PDF file with scans of all the artwork and liner notes. Why that isn't offered by everyone for every album sold is beyond me.
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Eyesore
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Thu Sep 03, 2015 1:20 pm

MetalGuy71 wrote:
Interesting article, but I'd have to disagree with him on the lack of information. There is more info out there than ever before. If you want to look for it. It's not spoon-fed to you through radio dj's or MTV. You have to look for it. That's the issue.

Yea, a kid today isn't going to have liner notes in his hand, but you know what he does have? A Smartphone. It's all there if you want it.

I disagree. There is more information out there, but it says far less than it once did. Ten years ago, beyond the info included with albums, bands had websites, with a bio, band history, discography, etc. Now, many just have a Facebook page, with little to no in-depth information. Before that it was MySpace. It'll be something else in the future. Sure, if a band is deemed "metal" enough they might have a page on Metal Archives where you can find a lot of info, some bands will have a Wiki page, but many bands have nothing beyond a simple Facebook page with no "backstory" whatsoever. No Wiki page, no Metal Archives, no fan pages (there are virtually no fan pages anymore), nothing.

How does one find out how many albums a band has released? When I discover a band that I like, I want to look into their back catalog. Many times, I have no idea if they've ever released more than that one album. There's simply no info out there.

So yeah, I think there is more cumulative info out there in general, but if you start breaking things down by individual bands there isn't nearly as much as there once was.

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MetalGuy71
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Thu Sep 03, 2015 4:19 pm

Eyesore wrote:
MetalGuy71 wrote:
Interesting article, but I'd have to disagree with him on the lack of information. There is more info out there than ever before. If you want to look for it. It's not spoon-fed to you through radio dj's or MTV. You have to look for it. That's the issue.

Yea, a kid today isn't going to have liner notes in his hand, but you know what he does have? A Smartphone. It's all there if you want it.

I disagree. There is more information out there, but it says far less than it once did. Ten years ago, beyond the info included with albums, bands had websites, with a bio, band history, discography, etc. Now, many just have a Facebook page, with little to no in-depth information. Before that it was MySpace. It'll be something else in the future. Sure, if a band is deemed "metal" enough they might have a page on Metal Archives where you can find a lot of info, some bands will have a Wiki page, but many bands have nothing beyond a simple Facebook page with no "backstory" whatsoever. No Wiki page, no Metal Archives, no fan pages (there are virtually no fan pages anymore), nothing.

How does one find out how many albums a band has released? When I discover a band that I like, I want to look into their back catalog. Many times, I have no idea if they've ever released more than that one album. There's simply no info out there.

So yeah, I think there is more cumulative info out there in general, but if you start breaking things down by individual bands there isn't nearly as much as there once was.

You could argue that you won't find most of that information in liner notes anymore either. It's not just lack of digital info, it's an overall lack of effort (or money). Allot of bands, especially the younger ones, don't bother putting any thought into the packaging.

I see what you're saying, but I've come across very few bands that it's difficult to find info on. It's a very small percentile and it's typically new-ish bands.

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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Thu Sep 03, 2015 4:22 pm

Allmusic.com - discographies, album reviews, bios, etc. Of course they're not going to cover every band that recorded an album in their studio apartment and released it on bandcamp but they are fairly comprehensive.
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journeyman
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Thu Sep 03, 2015 7:19 pm

Eyesore wrote:
MetalGuy71 wrote:
Interesting article, but I'd have to disagree with him on the lack of information. There is more info out there than ever before. If you want to look for it. It's not spoon-fed to you through radio dj's or MTV. You have to look for it. That's the issue.

Yea, a kid today isn't going to have liner notes in his hand, but you know what he does have? A Smartphone. It's all there if you want it.

I disagree. There is more information out there, but it says far less than it once did. Ten years ago, beyond the info included with albums, bands had websites, with a bio, band history, discography, etc. Now, many just have a Facebook page, with little to no in-depth information. Before that it was MySpace. It'll be something else in the future. Sure, if a band is deemed "metal" enough they might have a page on Metal Archives where you can find a lot of info, some bands will have a Wiki page, but many bands have nothing beyond a simple Facebook page with no "backstory" whatsoever. No Wiki page, no Metal Archives, no fan pages (there are virtually no fan pages anymore), nothing.

How does one find out how many albums a band has released? When I discover a band that I like, I want to look into their back catalog. Many times, I have no idea if they've ever released more than that one album. There's simply no info out there.

So yeah, I think there is more cumulative info out there in general, but if you start breaking things down by individual bands there isn't nearly as much as there once was.
I agree. A while back I rediscovered UFO and finding information on the band was tough and frustrating.
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Thu Sep 03, 2015 7:33 pm

UFO

http://www.allmusic.com/artist/ufo-mn0000809999

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corplhicks
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Thu Sep 03, 2015 9:00 pm

S.D. wrote:
UFO

http://www.allmusic.com/artist/ufo-mn0000809999


And Wikipedia.

I'm missing something here. I've learned more about music and the artists than ever thanks to the internet. In fact, growing up, there was this mystique behind the bands due to a lack of knowledge. Even after studying the liner notes, their history had to be sought out through fans, books, and magazines. It wasn't easy. Today I can find out an artist's blood type, favorite weed, and style of f*cking.

Then again, I haven't read the article, so I could be heading in the wrong direction.
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muckie
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Thu Sep 03, 2015 10:54 pm

If I hadn't had the internet to expose me to stuff like Italo disco or Japanese music, I'd probably still be stuck listening to shitty American pop-punk bands and CCM artists. And foreign music, especially stuff in a language besides english, has A LOT of bullshit going behind it, even with the internet. You should've seen the kind of understanding and attitude a lot of people had (and still have) about Japanese music as a whole, too. There were constant struggles on internet forums and wikipedia about what Visual Kei 'really' was. Most of the info came from Japanophiles whose understanding of the country is interpreted through rose-colored glasses and didn't really even care for what was underneath besides what was the novelty of the moment (i.e.; AnCafe's singer does Donald Duck impersonations on stage). Every little thing they did was considered 'deep' or 'meaningful' without a sense of irony behind it. So I say the internet remains a mixed bag. There are some english-speaking artists that I liked who made one good album and nothing else, no profile info, very scant information on the internet. This guy from the UK named Tinashe comes to mind as one of them. He put out this one release on a major label and a few videos but other than that had almost no public exposure, though from what I know he is still actively doing music offline.
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Runicen
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Fri Sep 04, 2015 8:26 am

corplhicks wrote:
I'm missing something here. I've learned more about music and the artists than ever thanks to the internet. In fact, growing up, there was this mystique behind the bands due to a lack of knowledge. Even after studying the liner notes, their history had to be sought out through fans, books, and magazines. It wasn't easy. Today I can find out an artist's blood type, favorite weed, and style of f*cking.

Then again, I haven't read the article, so I could be heading in the wrong direction.

I'm going to second this. Honestly, more than writing credits or stories behind albums (some of which could threaten to diminish rather than build the aura of the album, depending on who you are and what you're about anyway), it struck me the other day that there probably won't be a lot of books written about bands anymore.

Think about that one for a second: even up to the 90s, you had authors who would track down a singer's high school gym teacher to ask about a musician's formitive years (and yes, some of that is pointless, but that's beside the point) and who would spend YEARS track down cowriters, bandmates, former friends, management, etc. just to put together some kind of narrative on a musical act. Now, you can find the information if you know where to look (and don't mind risking exposure to a LOT of false garbage), but it's not nearly as likely to see a unified effort to compile everything.

Granted, that may just be because nobody friggin' reads anymore, but it hit me like a two ton heavy thing the other day.
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the sentinel
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Fri Sep 04, 2015 8:13 pm

Like a two ton heavy thing, you say? Smile

I think the advent of the internet, for me anyway, adds to the amount of knowledge I can have of a band. If it's an older band and I have everything, I can supplement my liner notes and magazine articles and autobiographies with Ult's site, this forum, allmusic, heavyharmonies, sleazeroxx, wiki, etc. I wish I could find a blog or site that had old Hit Paraders and Metal Edge issues scanned in to read. I know a lot of the info and such is outdated but it would still be a cool read in my humble opine.
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exact33
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Sat Sep 05, 2015 7:28 am

i buy more music since the internet...

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TheGreatDuck
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Tue Sep 22, 2015 9:19 am

Honestly, without internet I'd probably never have got into metal, or music in general.
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Tue Sep 22, 2015 8:22 pm

exact33 wrote:
i buy more music since the internet...


Seriously!!!! Damn those interwebs!!!!!
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muckie
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Tue Sep 22, 2015 8:48 pm

I find it interesting Chewie that you have the first Yanni album in your rateyourmusic collection. It's one of the only ones I've ever listened to thoroughly and sounds very prog-rock compared to his later stuff that others seem to hate. Some compare it to Rick Wakeman.
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PostSubject: Re: Ghost Music - MP3s and the devaluing of artists   Tue Sep 22, 2015 11:00 pm

muckie wrote:
I find it interesting Chewie that you have the first Yanni album in your rateyourmusic collection. It's one of the only ones I've ever listened to thoroughly and sounds very prog-rock compared to his later stuff that others seem to hate. Some compare it to Rick Wakeman.

I've actually had it for over ten years, but RYM dropped it out of my collection. That and Keys to Imagination are actually really, really good! Correct, Optimystique, is more prog and Keys is more electronic in nature like Michael Hoenig or Tangerine Dream soundtrack type stuff. Since you like that Optimystique, I highly recommend Keys to Imagination and Out Of Silence after that you are on your own Smile
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