The Next Track, Episode #127 – The Changing Economics of the Music Recording Industry

The Next Track Blue Flat Button2 400pxWe all know that the recorded music industry has gone through many changes in recent decades, but it can be interesting to take a long view of the various ways that music has been sold.

Listen to The Next Track: 127 – The Changing Economics of the Music Recording Industry.

Find out more, and subscribe to the podcast, at The Next Track website. You can follow The Next Track on Twitter at @NextTrackCast, to keep up to date with new episodes, and new articles from the website.

The Next Track, Episode #126 – Background Music and Muzak

The Next Track Blue Flat Button2 400pxSometimes, you hear music where you least expect it, and where you don’t choose to hear it.

Listen to The Next Track: Episode #126 – Background Music and Muzak.

Find out more, and subscribe to the podcast, at The Next Track website. You can follow The Next Track on Twitter at @NextTrackCast, to keep up to date with new episodes, and new articles from the website.

Ringtones Composed by Brian Eno for the Nokia 8800 Scirocco Phone

Many people know that Brian Eno composed the Start tone for Windows 95, which has become his most-heard piece of music. But Eno also composed ringtones for the Nokia 8800 Scirocco phone, which was released back in 2006.

OpenCulture has an article about this today, and includes a YouTube “video” which plays all these ringtones. As the article says, they do somewhat recall the Laraji album which was part of his Ambient series of records back in the 1970s and 1980s. But when you hear the ringtones you can tell that Eno really did try to compose music out of the limited palette of sounds that was available.

At that time they were asking you to compose a piece of music, but you could only use those sounds. They would compose ringtones out of these – beep boo boop, beepy noises. So I thought, ‘That’s hopeless – what can you do with that?’ You know the sound I mean, neep neep neep; so people were composing neep-neep neep-neep nee-nee nee-nee. In the meantime things changed so they had polyphonic tones; so you could actually have more complicated sounds. It’s not really a great medium for writing music.

You can also download the ringtones here.

The Next Track, Episode #125 – How We Do It

The Next Track Blue Flat Button2 400pxHow is the sausage made? In this episode we present a making of episode; how we make our podcast.

Listen to The Next Track: Episode #125 – How We Do It.

Find out more, and subscribe to the podcast, at The Next Track website. You can follow The Next Track on Twitter at @NextTrackCast, to keep up to date with new episodes, and new articles from the website.

The Next Track, Episode #124 – Deluxe Editions

The Next Track Blue Flat Button2 400pxDeluxe editions, super deluxe editions, and more. The record industry is trying hard to get us to buy our favorite music again.

Listen to The Next Track: Episode #124 – Deluxe Editions.

Find out more, and subscribe to the podcast, at The Next Track website. You can follow The Next Track on Twitter at @NextTrackCast, to keep up to date with new episodes, and new articles from the website.

A New Version of The White Album, with Demos, Outtakes and More

It’s funny, the Beatles have always been there, and I know all their hits, own all their official releases (in the latest remasters), but I’ve only really been a passive fan of the group. You couldn’t have avoided them back when I was young, and there were a few Beatles records among the first albums I bought, but I’ve never felt the affection, the obsession, that many feel for the band. (Unlike, say, the Grateful Dead…)

So the fact that there’s a new edition of The Beatles (The White Album) is interesting, but my first though was just that “here’s another super deluxe edition of a record that wasn’t that important.” But going to my iTunes library to play the album, I realize how many great songs there were. Perhaps it’s the fact that after the “concept” albums – Magical Mystery Tour and Sgt. Pepper – the white album comes across as a compilation with little coherence. It is, however, one of the peak’s of the band’s creativity, and about half the songs on the album are classics.

This new edition – about which Rolling Stone has much to say – seems interesting, in part because of three discs of acoustic demos; the Beatles’ Basement Tapes, perhaps, or the Fab Four Unplugged. Do I want to spend what it costs for the deluxe super edition? Not sure. (Amazon.com, Amazon UK)

But I admit I’m curious to hear more of the origins of this album that I have long sloughed off unimportant.