Category Archives: Music

Radiohead: Pay what (and if) you want

When the best band in the world decides to release its next album through only one website, inrainbows.com, at once for the entire world (no promo copies to radio stations, websites, music magazines) and without any relation at all with any major record company, you stop. And think.

InRainbowsSure, the industry is changing, but… More importantly; it’s already changed.

I was talking about this with my boss last Friday. I was defending people (other people, not me) who download music online for free – I was explaining how I thought that the music could perhaps be viewed as a way to promote the live performances and other band-related things… From his view point, paying for your music is the right thing to do. He’s right. Right?

But the fascinating thing, and therefore the thing that matters within the confines of this blog, is the effect that this decision has on Radiohead fans… Like me. I went to the website to pre-order the (I almost typed “the CD”, a sign that I’m getting old) music. I went already thinking “I’ll pay $1” (ended up paying almost $2, as you’ll see below).

 

When I got there, I think just to find out if you really could pay zero and still “purchase” the songs, like, legally, I went for it with a zero.

And… Yes. You really can pay zero. It just feels really wrong. And that’s a powerful thing Radiohead tapped into. I always thought there were many things genius about them. That’s a band that has inspired many of us, for years, when it comes to music. They have now inspired a bunch of us in marketing practices.

This is a great posting on greenplastic.net about the record industry’s reaction, including an fun-to-read portion of a Time article on the subject.

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The Smashing Pumpkins. Intense, beautiful. Ultimate rockness.

Emptiness is loneliness, and loneliness is cleanliness, and cleanliness is Godliness, and God is empty; just like me.

It’s not just the twisted emotional logic of these lyrics; it’s also the moment in the song when they happen, and the fact that everything else stops and suddenly the lyrics are the focal point. That’s beautiful songwriting.

Interpol… Great lights. Light rain.

And a girl crowd surfing.

But the rain is the best. Beautiful. The music’s just the background.

Regina Spektor plays John Lennon

What can I say?

Ok, I can say something. If you buy the CD where this song was included you will help “save Darfur”. Some of it is good music; and it sounds like a good cause right?

Regina Spektor was brilliant.

She walked up on the stage, alone. A girl and her piano. No band to protect her, encourage her, to hide mistakes, to reassure her about the set list. Just her. She faced thousands of music fans who were there primarily to see much louder acts than her. Yet she had all of us in the palm of her hands 20 seconds into her first song. She was brilliant. And the coolest thing is I got to talk to her after the show and tell her how magnificent she had been 😉

CSS Dances with Trees

Those “trees” were not a planned part of their show. They just happened to be there in the crowd and got invited by the band to go on the stage and… Dance. Fabulous.

CSS (from Brazil) conquers the crowd.

Yes… They are from Brazil. And their real name is “Cansei de Ser Sexy”, which means “I got tired of being sexy”. A perfect name for them. They were absolutely fantastic. A little crazy, but fantastic. Great dancing, great dialogue with the crowd, they even got some people in trees costumes to get up on the stage and dance to their songs. One of the best shows for sure. Enjoy. Fantastic lyrics.