No mention of the infant PM here
Listening to BBC Radio 3’s New Music Show last night I heard for the first time music by Julia Reidy, part of an album called In Real Life. Wonderful stuff I thought, I might just have to buy that. But how? My internet research (yes, I went to Amazon purely for research purposes) revealed that you could buy the album on vinyl for £22+ or download an MP3 file. But no CD. I don’t know if this restriction of formats is the artist’s choice, but it’s bloody annoying. Either you can buy a file (how exciting) or you can go retro. Well, I don’t want a file, and although I still occasionally get albums on vinyl (experimental stuff from Sub Rosa) I don’t think that more generally this current vinyl boom is anything other than a marketing ploy to gouge the consumer. So people are having to rush out to buy turntables etc., when their previous junked equipment was perfectly OK. Or you have to go out and buy some new hi-fi on which you can faff around with MP3 files. Of course, if you want to listen to the music on your mobile device you will no doubt need the very latest app which allows you to do that. More faff. So Julia, get your stuff out on CD and don’t encourage this cynical profit driven marketing con!
On a similar theme I visited Leeds on Thursday for an Opera North performance of Handel’s Guilio Cesare (very good, top notch) and had the time to pop into the HMV store, emblazoned as it was with ‘store closing down’ posters. You’d expect a few bargains, but ‘few’ is the operative word here. I wonder whether they’re closing down at all. A similar thing happened earlier this year at their store in York—the last time I went they were still trading and the closing down posters they had, had disappeared. Perhaps this is all a game to put the frighteners on their landlords during some rent renegotiation. In which case good luck to them—why should landlords believe they can buck the trend of high street closures when it is their own greed which is partly driving the decline of high street shopping? They’re sitting on properties which are at risk of total redundancy. Anyway, if the shop closure trend continues, these self-regarding property magnates will come begging to the arts community to set up pop-up galleries, etc.—a sure way to regenerate run down streets. But they’d better understand that artists generally don’t make any money, and so should not charge rents accordingly. When the local economy picks up, they can kick the artists out and rent profitably to some trendy gin bar (or whatever the fashion will be by that time. I wonder if I could start a trend for Absinthe bars? Goes with the art territory).
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