Sunday, March 04, 2007

Alas Papa Joe, We Hardly Knew Ye

I'm finally done with my Haydn seminar, with a touch of a regret and perhaps even a newfound respect for actual Classical music. (I imagine if myself from even a year ago heard me saying that he would try to strike me down. Great vengeance. Furious anger.) I can't say this will result in an upswing in posting, since my upcoming concerto seminar may decide to shank me just as well.

My final project in addition to some devastating illness preventing me from chiming in about the swirling maelstrom of Hattogate, which as of a couple days ago seemed to come to a close with her widower's "shocking" confession. Easily the best concert music scandal since that whatever that happened at La Scala.

I am never one to shy from beating a dead horse, so I ask a question which has probably been answered by I haven't found it yet. Why the hell did it take so long? From what I've been led to believe the limited availability of these discs resulting in them being sought after by some pretty in-the-know people. Did it really take a year after her death for someone to want to listen to it on their iPod?

I have two theories, one slightly more generous than the other. The first, is that Mr. Barrington-Coupe was struck down not by twenty-year old technology but by twenty-month old technology. The technology primarily used today (Gracenote, freedb) discerns what CD you are playing by its table of contents, or the number and length of tracks. Goosing the length of any track by a single second would throw off the dogs in this case. However recently the ability to tag tracks by acoustic waveform matching (MusicBrainz) has come into ascendence. In addition to being really awexome, it's also new enough that those old Concert Artist CDs wouldn't have prepared for it and for it to be concievable that the piano snob sect wouldn't be in the early adopter camp.

Of course, these CDs were probably pretty hot items on the secondary market. Just as Matthew Barney's Cremaster cycle will never be released on DVD, DRM-free files sitting on someone's computer are easy picking. Avarice and greed baby, avarice and greed.

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