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Independent Music Labels and Young Artists Offer Streaming, on Their Terms

“The rise of streaming music services like Pandora, Spotify and Beats Music has been a boon for listeners, serving up songs for a modest monthly fee or, with ads, free. But their effect on artists, especially those with smaller audiences, has been less positive.

But rather than fight what looks like an inexorable shift in how consumers listen to music, some independent record labels and their artists are embracing the streaming revolution — but on their own terms.”

My son’s a big fan of Other People artists, especially Darkside, and has been a subscriber for some time. $50 a year for as much music as they release is a very good deal. I’d expect to see more labels do this.

via Independent Music Labels and Young Artists Offer Streaming, on Their Terms – NYTimes.com.

New, Free U2 Album for All iTunes Store Customers

One interesting thing about Apple’s presentation today was the announcement that the new U2 album would be free to every iTunes Store customer. The Apple website says you’ll find it in your iTunes library, but this is only the case if you have iTunes in the Cloud purchases turned on, or iTunes Match. If not, […]

What Kind of Music do Pono Fans Like?

I’ve talked about Neil Young’s hi-res music player Pono plenty of times on this site. I was looking at the Pono Kickstarter page today, and I find it interesting to see which “Artist Signature Series” Pono players have sold, and which were flops. These are special Pono players bearing an artist’s logo and/or signature. Pono […]

What’s Lost When the Cloud Replaces CDs

“Recently, while moving my CD collection to new shelving, I struggled with feelings of obsolescence and futility. Why bother with space-devouring, planet-harming plastic objects when so much music can be had at the touch of a trackpad—on Spotify, Pandora, Beats Music, and other streaming services that rain sonic data from the virtual entity known as the Cloud? What is the point of having amassed, say, the complete symphonies of the Estonian composer Eduard Tubin (1905-82) when all eleven of them pop up on Spotify, albeit in random order? (When I searched for “Tubin” on the service, I was offered two movements of his Fourth Symphony, with the others appearing far down a list.) The tide has turned against the collector of recordings, not to mention the collector of books: what was once known as building a library is now considered hoarding. One is expected to banish all clutter and consume culture in a gleaming, empty room.”

Alex Ross ruminates, at The New Yorker, about what’s lost when we no longer buy physical music. His conclusion:

“But only by buying the albums are you likely to help the label stay in business.”

via What’s Lost When the Cloud Replaces CDs.

The ABCs of Lossless Music Files

Lots of people like to use lossless digital music files. These are files that reproduce exactly what is on a CD, with no loss in quality; they can even go further, offering high-resolution capabilities, with bit depths and sample rates well above that of CD. One of the advantages of lossless files is that, when […]

Neil Young’s Pono Player Delayed

Neil Young’s Toberlone-shaped Pono high-resolution music player, which was supposed to be released in the fall, has been delayed until the first quarter of 2015. This product earned $6.25 million on Kickstarter, then $7 million on Crowdfunder, which is a crowd-funding investment site, so the company has around $13 million (though they don’t have all […]

Why Journalists Fall for the High-Resolution Music Scam

Yesterday, the UK newspaper The Guardian published an article about high-resolution music. The article – entitled How much difference is there between MP3, CD and 24-bit audio? – starts with a leader: “Debates rage over whether hi-res music is a gimmick. Three Guardian writers put four music formats – and their ears – to the […]

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