Lost albums

I own a record player. One of the old-fashioned types. The one that plays music pressed on a vinyl disc. I also have different CD players, but I do not use them much. Neither the vinyl player to be honest. I have gotten used to streaming services like everybody else.

I use the Norwegian service Wimp because they offer me lossless streaming quality, and I can have my family connected to the same account. Yes, I know it is a very strange choice of a name for a music streaming service, but I guess it gave some sort of meaning for the people choosing it. In Norwegian it does not mean anything, it is just a name. Anyway, I use it because of the quality. Lossless is not that bad actually. You cannot compare it to vinyl, but you certainly can with the CD.

The new structure is here to stay for a long time. To think that you can go back to the times where music was something packed in a box you bought over a counter is at the best dreaming. It is more precise stupid to think so. It will never happen.

A great album that deserve to be available on streaming services

I understand the longing for the old days many musicians have, because the old model made it easy to earn money if you had a contract with a record label. If successful, you could even earn a lifetime fortune by writing one song. However, it will probably not happen anymore. The music industry has had its fifty or something years of massive retail income from physical products. Now it is only earnings from merchandise left from the counter sales. The music sells through streaming services, and I – the consumer – have access to all the music in the world, but I only pay for the drinks I have. To be precise, it is the artists that is being paid for the actual streams, I pay a monthly fee to my streaming provider.

Well, not all the worlds music.  There is something sad about the shift to digital streaming. Since not everyone like the new world and its economic models, a lot of music are about to drift into the land of long forgotten tales. People are storing great albums away in cellars or somewhere safe, to ensure that no one sell it for pennies, or for other reasons I am sure. It is their right to do so of course, but it is still sad.

“Blockbuster” bands like AC/DC, Beatles, and big names like Peter Gabriel are holding their music away from distribution, with oblivion as the consequence. In many cases, one right holder can block for the others on a recording, and in other cases, it is not the artist that holds back, but the contracts written out by lawyers. 

If I want to listen to Robert Fripp’s recordings, it has to be his collaborative works. Well, there is one recording available, but it is an interview. Interesting enough, but I want to listen to his music as well. I do not know Fripp, so I have no idea why his music is not there, but it is the same story if I want to listen to King Crimson. A band you might be more familiar with if you do not know who Robert Fripp is. Artists like Eleni Karaindrou and Iannis Zenakis are also sadly inaccessible through streaming. Zenakis has a couple of recordings available, but that is it.

Zenakis is such a big name among musicians that I think it will take time before the world forgets him, but it is not likely that people in general will have a relationship to his music in the future, if they keep withholding it from the available services.  One of my favorite recordings is Eleni Karaindrou’s Ulysses’ Gaze. It is so soothing and sad. However, even though I have it in my shelf, I seldom listen to it anymore. If it had been available on stream, it would have been different. I do recommend that you buy it, the recording doesn’t deserve to be forgotten.

It is not even close to Ulysses’ Gaze, but here is a recording you actually get to hear some of Karaindrou – enjoy!


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