For those that may not have heard, there has been a lot of discussion recently regarding the music business and how it is changing daily. The events of note were an article from NPR’s All Songs Concidered and 21 year old intern Emily White, who basically said she has downloaded for free her entire 11,000 catalog of music from such sites as Pirate Bay. You can read her article here. After this, David Lowery, front man for the amazing Camper Van Beethoven and Cracker, wrote a tour-de-force reply slamming her and this generation for not supporting artists. Read that article here. It is a long read, but very detailed. Lowery makes some great points, but overall, he misses the point, specifically on Spotify.
I am from a crossover generation. I spent many hours at record stores, and I have paid for most of my 10,000 CD’s (including Camper Van Beethoven’s catalog). That is up until about 2 years ago. While I remember ripping through my dad’s Beatles and Zeppelin records, I am also forward thinking and I am from the need it now mentality. I have an iPhone, iPad, and Spotify. I see lowery’s points, but I support and have supported many of my favorite bands and artists over my lifetime by going to shows, buying shirts, posters, etc. The way I see it, if I am supporting them by getting music out to more people (through this blog and word of mouth), then I am doing my part and I shouldn’t have to pay for everything that I might want. But here is the thing, I DO pay for Spotify. $9.99 a month for unlimited access to virtually everything I could want. If I play Camper Van Beethoven’s Key Lime Pie 5 times, then Lowery is getting paid. It is right for him to be somewhat upset about the process, but if that is the case, then blame the record companies and executives that are in charge of how it is set up. Don’t blame your fan. Get out of here with that shit. I support you and everyone else that I listen to. If I download some albums here and there and then pay for Spotify to boot, then you have nothing to bitch about. The Emily White’s of the world are worse because they have never seen the inside of a record store. The people that are paying for Spotify are from my generation, and are the ones that have supported music all along. And the 21 year old Emily White will pay too, once she has a job that will allow her to do so. So if some college kids download some copies of Key Lime Pie, you should be happy, David Lowery. And even better, check out Key Lime Pie via Spotify below. Your move David.