Sunday, February 4, 2007

Itunes vs. CD Alley

Itunes is a blessing and a curse. When I find myself needing to hear something completely random like "September" by Earth, Wind and Fire or 10cc's "The Things We Do For Love," I can just turn on my computer and download it quickly and cheaply. It's better to just download a single track than to get in the car and DRIVE to the record store and pay $13.00 for an entire record just to hear that one track that you cannot get out of your head... damn that Fozzie Bear.

Ever since I got an Ipod and installed Itunes on my computer, this easy (sometimes lazy) way to get music has become somewhat normal. I'll hear something on the radio that I like alot and instead of going out to get the whole record, I'll just pay $.99 for the track that I want.

But since November or so, I have tried to fight this urge of taking the easy way out with Itunes. Before Christmas, I bought Nina Nastasia's On Leaving only because I had heard a track or two off WXYC and liked it. The album is good. I am not in love with it or anything, but I am glad that I bought the whole thing. But I know that I wouldn't have bought it at all, except that I was forcing myself to be of the mindset to buy something new that I knew little about. I also bought Lullaby Baxter's album Garden Cities of To-morrow, for a single track. But I feel like I got burned on that one. "What's Wrong With You?" is a sprightly, sweet, little pop gem with sing-song lyrics, but it is BY FAR the best track on the album.

About ten years ago or more, I used to go to the record store ALL THE TIME... I was in love with music and I was infatuated with all the record store guys... not in a romantic way, but in a musical way. At least twice a week, I would go to the record store and ask the record store guys to pick out something out for me to listen to. And I would say 85% of the time, I LOVED what was given to me. It was a heavenly relationship. The boys who worked in School Kids and Record Exchange on Frankin Street introduced to Stereolab, the Flatlanders, Flying Burrito Brothers, Billy Stewart, Tex Ritter and Doo Wop.

I don't have any record store relationships like that anymore. Record Exchange closed and I am never in School Kids. I am in CD Alley fairly regularly since I have clients close by, but now that I am old and no longer a scenester, it's hard to get any record store recommendations these days. I'e asked for recommendations and usually I get an "Uh, I dunno. You want pop? Do you know Belle and Sebastian?" Duh.

But it's ok... I always ask for melodic indie pop and I think that the 21st century scenesters like the noisy stuff. I have been laughed at when I've used the term twee to describe what I like in my indie pop. I am just not cool... which is probably pretty apparent when someone is on the hunt for Marshall Tucker Band records.


Christa said...

i used to be one of those record store boys! er, girls, i mean. i miss those days.

have you ever seen this?

Charlotte said...

Yeah, I have heard of Pandora and I just turned it on. I created a station based on Camera Obscura, Magnetic Fields and Donovan. So we'll see how this goes. I might want to throw some Blossom Dearie in there for kicks as well. Thanks!!! I had totally forgotten about this.