Streaming has conquered music listening, yet vinyl, CD and cassette sales are still rising.
As I ponder how many copies of my new album to produce (and conscious of the environmental impact), I’m wondering… do you buy physical music? Where and in what format? Or have you moved on like it’s all VHS?
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I haven't bought a CD or vinyl recently. I am working on an NFT project where I am going to sell NFTs of a new project called Pi. I am composing a piece of music for guitar which is very geeky. Every note or chord is tied to the sequential values of Pi. If I put it on Spotify, I would get fractions of a cent per play.
If I go to a gig and I like the artist, I will buy something from their merch table. If it is a CD, I would ask them to sign it, having spoken with and developed at least a superficial relationship with them. If I buy there I know that the majority of the revenue will go to them.
Hi Jake, could I have a cd of your new album if that is at all possible. Love the new track - made my day to hear it. Blessings, Tracey. X
I want a CD of your new music
1) The overwhelming message is one of passion for music and supporting artists. For example, lots of people here take pride in buying from Bandcamp because they know that more money goes to the artist. Everyone seems to know that streaming companies pay terribly.
2) CDs and vinyl are still a huge part of our lives, maybe a little bigger than I realised. An emphatic response here! It's a chance to hold something, explore the artwork and the credits, get an immersive experience beyond screens.
3) It doesn't have to be either / or. There were lots of stories about selectively buy physical copies of things but also listening through streaming or downloads as well (often begrudgingly!?).
4) Some people have moved away from physical, or buy but don't listen, and that's totally cool too.
Thanks so much to everyone for their contributions, I learned a lot.
New music coming next week!
Still buy CDs, I download digtal music and I buy vinyl. All in all, if you put it on vinyl, I will buy it :)
Yes yes yes. Play them in the car. I like that you can sink into an album and get to know all the chapters.
I grew up working in record stores and had a three album a week habit for years. Slowly moved to CD's for ability to rip and burn mixes for friends. Now with a family I've bough turntables for all of my teen daughters and they are all on the hunt for new and used vinyl! Great fun! They also use the 'thou shall not be named' streaming service...but I have not had the heart to go there yet. I love the physical objects, the collection, the art, the liner notes...and also love that with a cd or record purchase the money goes to the artists and an independent retailer!
I do love a shiny compact disc although, to be fair, I only normally listen to them in the car as Alexa has taken over my house.
They are all proudly stored in Steve's Famously Wonky Homemade CD Cupboard...
I have bought a couple of cds directly which came with some wonderful words from yourself written on the inside rather than the usual signature.
For that reason I will always buy the physical medium from you as you seem to genuinely care about your listeners.
I selectively purchase vinyl and of course your album would definitely be one of them! I use Apple for day to day listening though
Dear Jake, ALL my music is on "hard copy" I have bakelite, vinyl, cassette tape & CD, I may even still have the odd 8 track in my mum's attic. I also have some VHS eg "Eddie Walker Live at the Albert Hole", sending hugs from Glasgow & Howwood, Joyce xxx
Hi Jake. I love vinyl but sadly sold much of mine years ago simply due to lack of space for em. I've been buying cds ever since and dislike download only releases cos I like to see the artwork and inlays plus I actually like the physicality of actually putting an album on. So please keep releasing your stuff on cds!
Great thoughts shared here, Jake, and they overwhelmingly show that your fans recognise the need to support artists (in whatever physical/ digital form of their choice).
The support is the important thing. Unlike the cultural stereotype, artists don't wear berets, wait for 'a muse' to alight, nor do they have a different car for each day of the week. It's graft, like any other job, and it's really heartening to see the support that you have.
I'm an old git of 58 summers (and 59 winters). I remember the breathless excitement of queueing round the block on release day for a new album, then lying on my bed and scrutinising every word of the album notes whilst listening over and over. Those days may be largely gone, as are things to play them on.....but have we really lost anything?
After years of writing songs for and with others, producing and playing on albums for others, I've finally made my own. Wierdly, I've just seen this thread minutes after taking delivery of a short run of my new CDs ( 'Smell The Glove is here!'), ahead of a tour I start at the end of the month. I peeled the shrink wrap off the first copy and felt a mix of pride and guilt at the plastic I was adding to the already suffocating mountain. I wondered what it would look like on vinyl (adding yet more plastic to the suffocating mountain). I still feel pride, I'm only human. I've now got something to show for it - besides, I might even make something back on tour towards my (too large) ££ layout!
Other things crossed my mind as I read through the album notes, looking for the inevitable catastrophic mis-spelling of the drummer's name.
In digital form, only my name appears, but this album was truly was a group effort. As a long time back room boy, I was glad to see 'the team' in print. Aside from lyrics, album notes are a permanent awards ceremony of acknowledgements that have (hopefully) been thought through - with the added bonus of no tears.
The other advantages of the physical form are (already stated), the album as an entire work with flow. Whatever! The main advantage of physical is this, though:- you have to pay in. Take the 'product' out , put it into/onto a machine and actually be there to listen to it. Full attention paid in, and hopefully enjoyment paid out.
Apologies for the essay chaps, I'm kinda emotional. Despite all of this, what really matters is you good people doing the right Bandcamp/ direct purchase thing. In whatever form. Thank you.
Ach, artists, eh? Can't live with 'em, can't live with 'em....
Yes Jake, as a collector I buy the physical medium (CD, LP, Single or even an odd tape - even though nothing to play those on nowadays but if only available in that format and a download have still bought) so would definitely - though of course all your CDs I've bought are now in Beth's collection!
Ben, my position exactly! But always try and buy direct from new artists or those I have followed for many year’s…..like Mr Morley!
I buy CDs direct from artists I love to support them. But pretty much listen via Spotify…
Yes still love them! How would you sign it if we came to your concert otherwise!
Yes, I still buy CDs! Probably more than I should... ;-)
In my late sixties now and I love lots of different types of music.
It kind of depends which music I am wanting to buy. So I enjoy listening to new music - and for that I use Amazing Tunes, Bandcamp, Tom Robinson podcasts etc and if I want to buy it then Bandcamp first and Itunes if not available elsewhere.
But then also I am 'rebuilding' my vinyl collection - a mixture of some I used to have 50 years ago, some my Mum and Dad used to have, some I remember but never had [so anything from Trees, It's a Beautiful Day to Jussi Bjorling], and some new stuff like Bon Iver, and St Martiins. I tend to get most of the vinyl from charity shops so you'll have to tell me how that feeds into the environmental debate.
For 'The Manual' it was Bandcamp, but then I also wanted to buy a copy for a friend so I did the CD option for that. A few years ago I was worried about 'losing' my downloads so I put some of them on CDs but see now that that isn't environmentally friendly.
Sort of horses for course I guess.
I think it’s a generational thing Jake. The majority of Generation X and some Millennials like physical stuff. Seeing artwork, reading lyrics and hearing vinyl ( often on sound systems from Richard Sounds ) 😁.
In comparison the Generation Z and Alphas live far more in the digital world and prefer to listen via a streaming platform and buy through downloads. I know this is a generalisation comment but I think that if you want to target all audiences you have to cater for all chap.
Personally I love to see artwork and lyrics but think that the digital route has to be the way forward for our planet. When selling your album or ep on line could it come in a folder with artwork, lyrics and your thoughts behind the tracks maybe? This could cost a bit extra but I would pay for that extra info and personal touch.
I occasionally buy CDs still, mostly for my favourite artists releasing new music, but I rarely play them (don’t have the means here at the moment anyway).
I don’t think I’ll ever stop buying CDs entirely- old collecting habits die hard and I love leafing through the liner notes, but streaming really opened up my world. I listen to much more music, and more different kinds of music, than I ever did.
There is something special about the way vinyl sounds that you just can’t describe. If there’s something I like and it’s on vinyl, I try to buy it. Whether it’s an older scratchy, popping record from days gone by or a fresh pressing, it always puts a smile on my face and a tap in my step. CDs are also something that keeps that nostalgia alive, although I rarely buy them (unless they are to support local artists). While there’s convenience in streaming, it lacks a certain personal experience somehow. It feels ‘too easy’ all too often.
I’d love to hear a JM album on wax. Definitely not the first (or last) time I’ll put that wish into the universe
Have all your CDs Jake, kindly signed by you at gigs and looking forward to getting your new music in the same format.
Yes we still do . Bought CD this week .
I used to buy at least a CD a week for donkey’s years but confess to having bought very few in recent years- mostly from artists directly at gigs (like from your good self in Durham along with a famously loss-making teatowel of course). I have kind of weaned myself off the need to own the physical items, and whilst I have my reservations about Spotify and other streaming corporate giants, I do love the way you can go down rabbit holes of “if you like this, try this too” and discover really good stuff new to you that there’s no way you’d have found otherwise.
Nope. Far too inaccessible. I will buy digital versions from Bandcamp etc to support artists, but if they haven't also released them on streaming platforms they'll get listened to once and then abandoned; the lack of convenience via streaming drives them to never become regular listening.
We buy cds or vinyl.
Cd.s all the way. .... I mean how do you gift a stream as a Christmas or birthday present .
I still buy albums and singles rather than stream. I have decided to do this more recently as I realised I was ripping the music and exclusively playing it from a device rather than a CD player. The thing I miss is having the sleeve notes to hand. Could you provide a file with the sleeve notes if you don’t already?
Like many others here, I tend to like to own things physically as well, be that CDs, blu rays, video games, etc. I do stream a lot of content as well, but my preference is usually to try and (quite selectively) own copies of the media I really enjoy, and preferably in a way in which I can put it on the shelf, though I do buy digital music from Bandcamp and the like too.
There are many pros to owning it, not least of which is some of the stuff I listen to simply isn't on streaming services, or has been in the past, and then got removed due to licensing etc, and that makes me conscious of it. It's nice to know I'll still listen to stuff I like in decades to come, without a reliance on a third party.
If it's an artist I'm unlikely to see live, I'll tend to buy from Amazon as they often give you the disc as well as adding the album to your Amazon Music account, giving the best of both worlds. But if I am planning to see the band live, I tend to hold off buying that physical until the gig. So I'll tend to listen to the album through other means if I've got a gig booked, and then try to buy the album direct from the band, as I know the percentage the band themselves get can be massively different in some cases.
I always had records from when I was old enough to afford them. Love them. Was a very late adopter of CDs (like about '96!). Then shops stopped selling them. I remember Kiss From a Rose.. that I had to order.. being the last one I walked into a record shop for. The 90s saw a flooding of CDs.. what with all that britpop... but for the last 10 years or so, it's never been easier to buy vinyl again.. and it's always my preferred way to listen to a record.
I think it's neat... the old albums... designed as two sides... something melodic or poignant to finish side 1.. then you're back to upbeat for the start of side 2. Where do you put the best tracks? How every artist treated this problem, was something they had to think about.. and I think that partially disappeared with CDs.. and potentially completely now with streaming and playlists.
Short answer.. If it's a great album.. then I'd love to have it on vinyl. I just love taking the thing out of a sleeve, the whole process.. the large image on the cover.. having to get of your bum to flip the thing (but then I'm a generation that was forever getting up and down to change the tv channel because we didn't have a remote... so I don't mind the intrusion ).
It would be great if you make a vinyl record and I would definitely buy. Have to be signed of course though! :0).
side anecdote... actually bought my first CASSETTE TAPE in decades last year! Came as a bundle with an LP and a CD when Del Amitri released their first album in 20 years..... No regrets....
I’m just pondering on a scenario in which I can buy your records on vinyl. Because I would. And be a hero.
CDs and occasionally vinyl. Hardly ever stream and refuse to use Spotify. Bandcamp, artist’s websites or independent record shops
I’m a big fan of CDs but only if it’s the full works. I’m talking beautiful art, lyric booklet, limited edition, Matt finish cardboard, Polaroid from the studio session … not asking for much ;)
Bandcamps my favourite place to shop.
Appreciate your consideration of the environment in this :) no shrink wrapping would be ideal
Could you do a pre-order/kickstarter to help you make the right quantities?
I still buy cds, there are particular artists I like to have on cd (you are one of them) BUT I rarely listen to cds. I mostly listen to music on my Alexa or phone in the car.
Yep, I'll buy vinyl of albums that are particularly important to me or artists that I especially want to support (was looking forward to yours until the everything happened, obv). Bandcamp's been good for the latter because – presumably the artist can choose to? – offer the digital files along with the physical purchase, so I get my practical listening option along with the performative one. The only time I've bought a CD in the last 10+ years was because that was the easiest way to preorder the digital album.
Aside from Bandcamp I've bought vinyl at gigs, off eBay, and from honest-to-goodness real life record stores, although weirdly those have nearly all been in the US or Canada.
We're still buying cd's. At our age we don't understand streaming!
I like the collectability of real CDs. I like the flow of albums too.
Dowloads always feel more ephemeral.
I buy at least one vinyl album a month if it’s an artist I really enjoy or if it’s a collectible addition to my collection. I’ve brought and collected vinyl for over 30 years. Normally I stream music via Spotify. Don’t buy cassettes as I don’t have a player. Sold or donated my CDs after burning to iTunes.
Never buy physical music. I kinda get vinyl for the collectibility. Don’t really get that with cds. Think it’s important to be honest given your making stuff.
A strong showing for physical music here!
I buy CDs where I like the artist (ie, yes in this case!), I still love CDs. I only stream where the music doesn’t really mean anything to me as I find it a soulless medium where you forget the music when it ticks off your dashboard whereas I revisit CDs year on year as they are in front of me, often rewarding memories.
I only buy cds nowadays but also like to stream from Spotify. I would like to buy direct from artists especially those that could do with the support in the hope that more money goes directly to the artist. Ideally I would like to buy a new cd prior to seeing the artist play live. Looking forward to new cd and gigs.
I prefer to buy physical music (CD). You listen in the order the artist intended and can read about who the musicians are and lyrics etc. This I admit means I listen less as it depends what equipment I have set up if any, so the car is one place I can hear and sing along to your music. X
I got chatting to you recently about vinyl in Gloucester! So I believe the right kind of 12" album is special, worth buying and keeping to play; especially double albums ie four sides of a single album, with a long album of 16+ tracks being the most appealing format to me. Niche artists have signed their own vinyl I own which makes it special and different to just simply streaming those same songs. Coloured vinyl is a gimmick but if a limited edition then why not? Posters included are always a bonus too of course and another example of added value.
I buy CD’s in general and old vinyl (non-new release unless it’s been remastered). I try not to use Amazon or big box retailers when I can. I typically try to purchase at my indie store which is pretty large here in LA (Amoeba Records).
I treat myself and buy vinyl new and second hand probably at the same rate I did when it was the only option. And I love it. But also love the convenience of streaming. And pick up CDs at charity shops.
I’d bloody well buy yours xx
I buy vinyl where I can and CDs if I can’t.
Yes I do still buy phyiscal cds, most weeks of the year, don`t buy vinyl anymore.
Personally I've kind of moved away from it.
But I've almost never put on a vinyl record and regretted it.