James Governor's Monkchips

Listening to Jon’s Radio not Reading It, A Dinosaur Tail

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I am a text luddite. I freely admit it. I have long been of the opinion that text is good enough for me, the fastest way to absorb and distribute information. But today i took the plunge and listened to my first podcast. Why? Because i like the sound of Elvis Costello’s voice and i wanted to know what he had to say about the music business. Jon Udell, that podcasting maven, had posted this playlist in a post referring the last flick of the dinosaur’s tail. [Another reason to start? Stephen was on the Gillmor Gang recently]

So what about dinosaurs? Basically the music industry has completely lost its way. It puts billions of dollars into marketing crappy artists selling albums full of filler, sues its customers, makes the sames mistakes again and again, and encourages cultural homogenization. well Music aint Milk guys.

For as long as RedMonk has been blogging we have railed against Big Media ignorance.

One thing that i couldnt help noticing, and wondered if it was intentional, was the links between the image of a dieing industry, a dinosaur thrashing its tail, as Elvis contended, with notions of the Long Tail, that is, a world driven by the end of shelf-life, the fact digital content isn’t fungible, and that we can index the “warehouse” and store and manage goods with zero distribution costs.

Forget squeezing millions from a few megahits at the top of the charts. The future of entertainment is in the millions of niche markets at the shallow end of the bitstream.

Anyhow one of my key issues with podcasting is the lack of a transcript. this is something folks in the blogosphere are thinking about a lot. See RoBlog.

Anyhow in a spirit of transcription i just pulled out a few nuggets from the conversation. Elvis says

“we”ve taken the distribution away from the crooks.”

“I sound like the voice of doom but its the opposite. ”

“we’re in the realm of the song not the album”

“we’re seeing the last flicking of the dinosaur.”

“everyone is becoming a DJ, a creative. programmer of music. they are ahead of record company people”

The last point really talks to Long Tail. Who gives a crap what an A&R man says? What have been my best moments in music? When a friend introduced me to something new. Music is better when we share it. I remember Guy playing me Costello’s Spike (great album sir!!!! you write quality across a whole album even if others dont).

So now i have listened to a couple of podcasts. They were both very interesting. I bet ten for twenty i buy some Elvis Costello music today.

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