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Old 06-27-2007, 06:17 AM   #32
ddmoit
Veteran DIYer -- Schluterville Graduate
 
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Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: SE Tennessee
Posts: 8,879
The recording industry (really the music distribution industry) has been bad for music in general, with its near monopolistic control over what we have been able to hear. Its influence has been especially hard on the quality of country music. There have been exceptions to this trend on occasion. Every now and then, someone truly talented was in control of the choices being made for us. Barry Gordy comes to mind - sort of a benevolent tyrant. For the most part, it's been bad though.

The good news is that the industry is in its death throes. They'll never be able to stem the tide of widely available and affordable methods of recording and distributing music - no matter how many lawyers they hire.

In the old days, musicians made a living by being paid to perform. Those who were judged to be good did well. They might not become multi-millionaires, but they did OK.

The technological invention of sound recording led to the creation of recording artists and the eventual quality slide that we have experienced. It wasn't the technology itself, but the artificial legal rights assigned to recordings that caused the decline - and it didn't happen overnight. The early cost of the technology to record and distribute music served as a barrier to entry in the market, and made it easy to enforce the newly created, artificial, and bad recording rights.

We've been indoctrinated to believe that record companies somehow own soundwaves, and that when we copy them we are stealing. Well, legally, yes, but only through legislation of artificial rights. Morally, no.

I predict that the recent technology that makes recording and distributing music easier than ever will lead to another golden age of great performers. Of course they could be lost in a huge sea of crappy performers and recording artists, but they won't. We will also see the emergence of musical opinion leaders, like the DJs of old, who will do the work of wading through the crap to find the good stuff. Of course, what is good is very subjective. We will all be free to identify the opinion leaders that suit our tastes. A lot of this is already happening. There are Web sites that strive to identify your taste in music and then suggest new artists, based on your listening habits.

That's my crazy rambling for the morning.
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