My romance of Vinyl is irresistible
Today’s individual music libraries have more music they download illegally more than the music they buy legally from authorized vendors or through approved digital download platforms. The older generation according to research in major music markets happily buy physical albums at a rate which surprises the industry in those countries while under 40 are said to pay for a few selected download songs with majority engineering music piracy at unprecedented levels. With so many ways to acquire songs these days, seems music fans are getting their fix and the most popular way is through MP3s.Technically in terms of quality, the MP3s that are compressed digital files that usually have a low-bit-rate sound quality. While MP3s can be cheaply purchased even in the poorest continent, they are illegally downloaded for free by young music fans. What matters to the young generation that has never heard of Elvis or the Commodores storage for their collection is never an issue, as no shelf is required to host thousands of gigabytes of songs if not terabytes. Although I still have a sizeable number of my music in Cassettes, the 1980s fashion music player is now heading to oblivion, while CD that I vividly recall was the most fashionable at my twilight years in school, music buyers are nowadays faced with the lure of their low cost and pocket friendly pirated versions.
What happens in the criminal underworld of music piracy is nothing new to music lovers. Even law enforcement authorities knows all too well that crude versions of MP3s are burned onto CD that are slapped into sticky plastic cases with archaic printed covers and for Contador Harrison a music collector’s such products have never been my cup of tea, but I must admit that their very presence attests to the existence of willing consumers who don’t care about quality and longevity of their collected music. According to latest research, very few African countries have major music label representatives like Warner Music, EMI, Sony Music, Universal among others and therefore there is lack of expertise that can focus on digital music market. Statistics in Africa shows that has been a steady increase in digital sales for local artiste’s music through cellular downloads like ring back tones, true tones and other forms of audio for mobile phones and in other cases full-track downloads. However, foreign music especially from United Kingdom and United States of America where Africans most adored musicians comes from suffers massive piracy. Internet has changed many things for the music industry and although the industry is partly to blame for ignoring technology, file copying has easily become the most common method of acquiring music in African.
This is largely because majority of people are poor and music still remains the most preferred mode of entertainment. In addition to that, file copying and file transfers are free and are easy to perform. For those still praying for the purchases of original copies of albums in Africa they better keep those prayers to themselves because music industry indicators point towards a digital music revolution as more and more people access Internet download habits of the majority of younger music fans seem to confirm this. Also the studies shows that the average last time Africans aged over 40 paid for music was in 2000 and majority justifies their choice to download free music due to lack of collection of new music and also few record stores selling original music in Africa. For example, Nairobi a city of more than 3 million people was said to have less than ten music stores while Lagos, commercial capital of Nigeria with more than 21 million people has less than two hundred shops that sell original music. I was shocked that in African countries there are too many groups whose albums has never been available locally and as one piracy expert is quoted in the report downloading is the only way to get them in Africa. To many music hungry youths, it’s much easier and cheaper to download music via local vendors or via link online than to go to a CD shop that sells music downloaded from the Internet.
Majority of mediums available in African countries favor the digital format be it a music player like a smartphones or iPod. Despite the plenty of alternatives available for listening to music in Africa, the most popular current medium is on mobile devices such as Tablets, desktop computer, Laptops and mobile phones. The old folks who grew up listening to Bruce Springsteen, Beetles, Rolling Stones, Jimi Heindrix, James Brown and the likes even the proliferation of Internet downloads has not changed their mindset and majority of the them are audiophiles who want physical music they can hold and add to their record collection just like Contador Harrison a generation Y faddy Daddy. To me, the Internet only serves as a gateway to screen which purchases are worthy in the Rock, Pop and Classic music. Contador Harrison romance of vinyl records is irreversible and is not going to die anytime soon. Even my fifth most preferred genre which is Rap music, I buy vinyl as the pictures below show.
Even instead of downloading some MP3 version I’d rather buy a CD for nine Euros as seen in the photos below. Your blogger is that kind of music aficionados who prefer to roam the aisles of record shops seeking that rare, limited pressing of his favorite Rocks band’s albums and will be heading to London around spring to shop my vinyl. That’s how old fashioned I am when it comes to music and books. No doubt my Vinyl records will accompany me over a lifetime. Just like my ancestors, Contador Harrison still has the belief that the act of buying and listening to a vinyl record is an art in itself and is not comparable to anything else. I know with Vinyl, I belong to a few number of people in this world but I care less and will continues to appreciate the charms of vinyl records.