It seems as though digital music sales have overtaken physical music sales for the first time.
CD sales are down 10 percent, and digital is reigning king. Not surprising, since the ease of finding music online is so readily available. It looks like the most popular non rock categories are punk and indie, and I know that’s a good thing for musicians….
The old guy in me misses the hunt. That’s something that a lot of kids and modern music shoppers will never know.
Growing up, I discovered punk rock at a very important time in my life. I was a new kid in a new school, in my previous one I was bullied and never welcome, coming into a new school, I had a new chance to be somebody else, but learned it was not going to be easy. Then I met a kid named Paul Nasty, he made me a tape one day, and the rest was history…
Punk rock was not easily attainable then. The internet wasn’t what it is now, basically a couple of message boards for Star Trek geeks and text based adventure games. When we wanted something we went hunting. This often involved travelling hours to Houston, Austin or San Antonio to a record store. I remember all their names. But I mostly remember the feeling I would get walking into these tiny cramped spaces crammed with records, zines, stickers, tshirts… my senses on overload as I actually tried to find the right music for the little money I had.
I have spent thousands of dollars over the years on music. My collection has grown into the thousands and I have tried to organize it before, but the feat was too great. Despite this, I still know every CD and record. I can tell you where I was when I got it, and if it’s older than a few years I can tell you what happened on the road trip I went to get it. My music holds certain memories for me. I can remember walking out of a store with a few new purchases in hand, and putting them on the CD player as we headed to the show that night. I remember listening intently to every track, proud of the fact that I had music I couldn’t find in my home town.
I remember the first album I bought online. It was actually Tom Wait’s last album that I had been looking for in various stores before I just gave up and bought it on itunes because music stores are just about obsolete and they don’t carry anything cool. I missed holding the album in my hand, and the artwork. I eventually bought the physical copy, but I just can’t seem to get into digital. I think the ease and convenience of digital has ruined things for people. I always appreciated the obstacles I had to go through to get my music, and the envy of other music lovers when I found something they didn’t. Now… for the right price we can all have the exact same music collection. There seems something wrong with that to me…