Thoughts About Survival Part 4

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The problems for the independent record labels are problems for independent musicians. As less people buy albums in general, artists make less money both through income from sales the label makes and from sales on tour; this amount was perhaps small but it was significant, and it created much more of a budget for bands preparing for and going out on the road. Another problem is to now figure out what format to use for an album. It is generally acknowledged that the cd will be more or less “done” in the next few years.

Vinyl has returned, and though it’s an amazing format in many ways (design, sound, length), it is a complete pain in the ass to take out on tour unless you’re traveling completely by car- it’s fragile and heavy as hell (compare the weight of 30 lps to 30 cds in cardboard sleeves). There are downloads, but creating albums for download only is absolutely unsatisfying to all the musicians I know. Adding buy zithromax online canada codes with an lp for legal downloads is an experiment to include both formats in one purchase, but it’s not even clear how long downloading music will continue as things move more and more to streaming off the internet (consider the shift in Netflix from renting dvds in a cue, to streaming their catalog online, which has been a unbelievably successful business venture).

I am old fashioned, I prefer objects to digits, so it’s important for me to find out which format the music will use in the future, if possible. Right now- based on conversations with musicians, labels, and distributors- all that’s clear is that the situation is in total flux. As things seemed to make the jump to cd in the 1980s, many lps were released in that period that were “lost in transition;” it would be incredibly frustrating to have that happen to the music that’s being recorded now.