The Art of Buying Music

For me, the art of buying music is about physicality and experience. I can’t be the only one that misses the days when electronic and media stores were packed to the brim with CD selection after CD selection. A world of choice literally at my finger tips. The digital age and all of its magic has made our lives so wonderful. Patience is no longer a virtue, it is extinct. Why buy a physical disc or vinyl album that I can hold, that is hopefully designed with a concept, printed in an intriguing manner which I can access without the aid of my computer when Steve Jobs is serving music in the format of 1s and 0s for $1.29 a pop.

I can’t be the only one that loathes iTunes and what it has done to the experience of purchasing, obtaining and listening to music. I’m old fashioned, which is sad. I am the one who counts down the days until a favorite band releases their latest body of work. I look forward to taking a trip to a local retailer to obtain my new music. I love listening to new music with a cold beer, headphones on and the liner notes in my hands. All combining into a luscious, tactile and sensory experience. I relish in looking at the collection I’ve amassed for myself since my days in middle school. I still burn my friends albums and mix CDs to share music.

May those days rest in peace. This past month the inevitable finally occurred. The Bad Plus released their latest disc earlier this month. Overwhelmed with joy regarding the forthcoming new work from the band, I sadly realized that I would not be getting the release the day it was made available. My options for obtaining were two fold: schlep or call around town hoping someone would carry it or order it online. What is the point? Go to Best Buy or another box store where their music selection is a single isle of physical discs, sans a Jazz section, which is being encroached by a few rows of Napster or iTunes gift cards or hopefully find a record store charging close to 20 bones for a new disc. My new Bad Plus disc, along with a few others, arrived this weekend from Kentucky. Thanks Steve Jobs, my life of convenience and immediacy could not be better. Sleep well on your pillows made of Franklins with your magical iPad resting securely on your night stand.

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