Vinyl singles making a comeback in Britain

January 8, 2007

7 inch single

LONDON (Billboard) – Physical singles may be losing the war against digital formats, but the U.K. market has found an unlikely hero to lead the fight: good, old-fashioned, 7-inch vinyl.

Via Yahoo News (and maybe City of Sound)

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Amie Street – new music sales model

January 6, 2007

Amie Street

Amie Street, which launched in July, has a brilliant DRM-free music sales model. Bands upload music, which can then be downloaded for free by users. As songs become popular, the site starts to charge for it. They start at $0.01 and go up to $0.99. Users looking for popular new stuff go right to the more expensive songs. More adventurous types try out lots of new music. I’m somewhere in the middle. This free-market place to set the value of DRM-free digital music could be the future. Our coverage is here.”

Via Techcrunch


Tower Records ceases trading

January 5, 2007

Tower Records

Poignant reflection in the Guardian on the closure of Tower Records bricks and mortar music stores:

The demise of Tower Records is a watershed moment for the sale of recorded music. From now on, no American city will have a large record store. And where New York leads, the rest of the world will surely follow. In Britain we still have similar outlets – mainly HMVs and Virgin Megastores – but the clock is ticking for them. I doubt there will still be a large record store in this country in a decade’s time.

Unfortunately the author appears fairly ignorant of online sources for research (last.fm, allmusic, mog, etc), many of which offer the potential for social interaction:

And we learned in breadth too – as a teenager browsing in Valances in Leeds on Saturday mornings in the 60s, I learned more about jazz than I ever learned on the radio. I owe a lot of the scope and detail of my musical interests to record stores, and I wonder how the next generation is going to find that kind of opportunity.

Despite this, I can’t help but sympathise as I mourn the closure of places like Ray’s Jazz in Covent Garden and their friendly and informative staff.