…of why the old Big Music industry is on a freight train o death.
Last night on DiscoveryHD Theater they aired a special on Drift racing… You know, the type of racing where fast cars skid sideways in a constant burnout… it’s a treat to watch but I digress… The whole show, they’re playing music by some mystery band and it is damned good music. By the end of the show I have no questions about drifting, I just want to know who this is so I can pick up the album.
At the end of the credits, sure enough 80% of the shows soundtrack was performed by a band called Nural. I know absolutely NOTHING of them. They’re not on the terrestrial radar in my market, nor have I heard them anywhere on Sirius.
So I fire up the PC, hop in to the iTunes music store, find the album and… but WAIT! I check my shopping cart and see 2 other albums I had planned on buying a few months ago but never actually sealed the deal… Gabriel & Dresden‘s self-titled album, and How to Save a Life by The Fray. I clicked on “Buy Albums Now” and that was it, the tracks were tranfering, $30 was sucked out of my credit card, and within minutes I was listening to Nural.
Then it dawned on me again, I’d caught a new act on Sirius In This Moment – heavy metal like nothing I’ve heard in recent time with strong female vocals… Not the constant scream of Arch Enemy or the angelic tones of Lacuna Coil, I’d say it’s a pretty damned good blend that’d leave Amy Lee and Johnathan Davis hiding under the kitchen table after that HORRID duet.
*SIDE NOTE* Anyone catch the duet between Cristina Scabbia of Lacuna Coil and Dave Mustaine of Megadeth performing “A Tout Le Monde?” It’s circulating on Sirius and makes the aforementioned duet look even more rancid. When I find out how to buy that track I’ll happily hand more ducats over to Apple.
Back to the topic at hand… within the course of 10 minutes, I went from not knowing who performed the music I heard on a television show to owning the album and listening to the music without even leaving my house. Today, on the way in to the office I was listening to that very music through the Ipod jack in my Volkswagen. Now at my desk, I listen to it through the input jack on my stereo.
In the old way – where I’m expected to kneel at the altar of Big Music, I’d have maybe written down the band name, and likely had to wait until this weekend to tack on a trip to the music store for the album… That’s counting on me remembering, or not finding something more engrossing this weekend than a trip to the music store… like classifying my naval lint. Had I remembered, I likely would have spent $20 plus tax on 1 CD, and left with 1 CD. Due to the nature of how Apple’s OUTSTANDING electronic storefront works, I spent $30 plus tax and got 3 full albums. The market should cater to the consumer and not attack them, Apple knows this and that is why they’ve found such success with their music store.
I’d say if Apple could get involved in the ticketing aspect of music and offer tickets to shows – linked from the band and album pages in the iTunes store, we could effectively declare Big Music dead. Hell, all it took was an irate soccer-mom to down the RIAA’s war machine – only makes sense that an Apple could finally down the label’s long failed business model.
Last but not least, every one of the bands I picked up music by… have a completely free profile on MySpace which includes hits, bios, tour dates, etc… The music has embraced the new technology, the wave… and has seemingly left the industry behind.