Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Leftovers (The Music Biz): Don't Download This Song

Weird Al Yankovic: Don't Download This Song


I was here for The Music Biz week back at the end of September, and I enjoyed the songs and hearing what various artists thought about various aspects of the music industry. The song I'm sharing today wasn't really relevant back then, but I think it is now.

Back in September, I felt that I was really starting to get the hang of this whole blogging thing. I was feeling a rush of creativity and tons of post ideas in my head and music I wanted to share. I even carried a notebook around with me at work so I could record any ideas as they came to me so I wouldn't lose them. I sat in restaurants with my notebook, writing entire posts on my lunch break. I had blog fever.

Then something happened.

Songs and posts started disappearing. Blogs were shut down or had to relocate. Regular contributors to this site either stopped contributing or greatly reduced their output... myself included. Even at my own site, I put up less than half as many posts in November as I had in any other month since I started writing in July. Suddenly blogging isn't as much fun. There's a cloud that hangs over the community now as more and more songs continue to disappear from my site (two more yesterday) and others.

On his 2006 release, Straight Outta Lynwood, Weird Al Yankovic addressed the issue of music piracy on the track "Don't Download This Song." It's a bit of a shot at those who used free peer to peer services such as Napster and the millionaire artists who fought against them such as Lars Ulrich. In the song, Al compares piracy to "selling crack and running over school kids with your car." I'm starting to think that certain record labels actually now view bloggers in the same way.

Al's song is obviously tongue in cheek and filled with the type of ridiculous over exaggerations that Al often uses in his music. However, I thought it might be appropriate to share here. I know none of us consider ourselves pirates or criminals... just music fans who want to share the music we love with others. I'm not sure what my point is. I guess I'm just frustrated, and Weird Al always makes me laugh.

Edit: Just after I posted this, I received a notice from blogger that I have had another post removed. I may just not do this anymore.

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