Monday, 9 May 2016

Vinyl - A Steve rant

For any newcomers to the blog, Steve is a recurring character who likes to rant to his long-suffering friend Johnny about the little things in life. Here is an example, and here is another
For audio click here
“Do you know what happened to me today?” Steve said. Johnny didn’t know but he had the feeling he was just about to find out.
“Go on,” he said.
“I got cornered by a vinyl bore.” Steve moved into his rant position.
“A vinyl bore?” Johnny looked askance.
“Yeah, some bloke sitting next to me on the train had just bought a load of vinyl and started droning on about how great it was.”
Johnny smiled at the thought of Steve getting a taste of his own medicine.
“I’m sure you gave as good as he got,” Johnny said.
“He wouldn’t let me get a word in edgeways.” Steve said, taking a sip of his pint.
Johnny’s smile broadened.
“Blah blah blah, digital audio is compressed blah blah, losing its depth, blah blah, Vinyl gives you a fuller picture. Blah, blah, boring blah. The whole bloody journey he was wittering on and on about it. It’s like some bloody religion, I don’t mind anyone having one, just don’t go on about it and don’t try to convert me.”
“Ha yeah. I bet the same guy was having a similar conversation in 2003. Boring someone about the beauty of the iPod,” Johnny said.  
“You bet he was,” Steve agreed. “He was the typical idiot who thinks he’s at the vanguard, but is actually late to the party. That insecurity is why they have to go on and on about it. And you know what? I’ve got a theory.” Steve said. Johnny rolled his eyes. Of course he had a theory, Steve always had a theory.
Steve picked up a beer mat.
“Who benefits most from digital music?” Steve tapped the table with the mat. Johnny looked at him expecting him to continue, before realising it wasn’t a rhetorical question.
“Illegal downloaders?” Johnny said.
“No,” Steve tapped the table again. “Well yes, but also indie bands. In the middle of the 2000s, the CD was dead and record companies were under threat. Yeah there were illegal downloaders, but the fact that bands could get their music out to the public without going through record companies meant the big labels were in danger of becoming irrelevant in modern music. So they had to hit back. They did it by making vinyl popular.”
“And how did they do that?” Johnny asked, just a little sceptical.
“I don’t know, how does any trend start? It’s all that Tipping Point stuff, isn’t it?”
“I’ve got no idea what you are talking about.”
“That Malcolm Gladwell stuff.” Steve said. Johnny nodded but he still wasn’t quite sure.
“But I thought it was indie labels who release more vinyl,” Johnny said.
“Ha, so did I,” Steve laughed “but I looked it up. Do you know who was in the top 10 Vinyl albums of 2015? Adele, Ed Sheeran, Amy Winehouse and Coldplay. BBC Radio 2.”
“Really?” Johnny said.
“QED,” Steve put the bar mat down, his point made. “And I reckon the publishing companies are doing it now with paper now too.” He picked the beer mat up again.  “Have you noticed how many newspaper articles dissing Kindles and celebrating book shops there are recently?”
Johnny shrugged.
“Book sales are up, but of course publishers decided what you read. If you read on a Kindle there is much more choice.”
“Steve,” Johnny said. “Go to the bar.” He waggled his empty glass in front of his drinking partner.

Steve sighed and got up to go to the bar.  

If you agree with Steve and would like to bypass the publishers consider buying an indie book or two from me :-) 

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