Confession #2: I’m a geek
This is the one I thought I’d have the most fun with! Even though I’m nowhere near what I’d like to be, I still claim full geekhood. That said, I’ve discovered over the last few months that there different degrees of geekiness. You got your game geeks, movie geeks, music geeks (here’s where I fit in!), and various other categories as well.
Now I have to point out that there are differences between geeks and nerds. Geeks have that thing that they’re really into, whereas nerds are your smart, brainiac academic types. Though they tend to overlap once in a while, they are two totally different creatures (of course, it’s been said that those who can keep track of the differences are dorks, but I digress…).
Being a music geek, I’m the guy that — in most cases — can hear a song, and identify it within the first five notes. Of course, I have to point out that school and work have made it a little more difficult to keep track of the newer stuff (not to mention my aggravation with radio stations that loop the same playlist for months!), so I’m not as accurate as I could be….
Essentially, I’m really into music, and being poor/broke most of the time, I’ve had to resort to independant artists and “other methods” for most of what I have. Normally I’d be the kind of guy that says “support the artist” but the only way to do that, unless the artist is an independant, is to go to their concerts. Now, I wouldn’t have a problem with this, except that I don’t have a car. and living where I am the closest large-scale venue is about a 2-hour drive. That means I’d have to either hitch-hike, or get a ticket for someone else with a car and add gas money on top of that. Then there’s the added complication of having friends who don’t necessarily like the same kind of music as I do (I tend to prefer Rock and metal, though I do listen to the occasional game soundtrack from time to time…). So I’m pretty much out of the running for a concert. As for buying albums, I’ll just say that most labels are ripping off their artists and move on…
Even though I’m broke a fair amount of the time, I still buy an album from time to time, if, and when I have the resources to do so. One thing that makes that a little more difficult is the lack of selection in my area. Here in Southern Illinois, I have to say that none of the christian stations have the music I like to listen to. I’ve found a few internet stations that will play my Christian Rock and Alternative, but I don’t have my own internet connection at home. or work. So I can only listen to them when I’m at my parents’ house or one of the coffee places I go to. Going back to the money thing, I can’t always do that, either. So….
I have to say that I have mixed feelings on the whole concept of “Illegal Downloads”. I mean, if I, for example, BitTorrent the Tron: Legacy Soundtrack (I actually bought this one through iTunes), I can decide from there whether or not I like the album before purchasing it. Now most places that you can buy an album from online have samples of the music to listen to, but 30 seconds is typically not enough to get the full feel of a song. I mean, I’ve heard samples that made me go “hey! That songs sounds pretty awesome!” and been majorly disappointed. On the flip side, I’ve had a few samples that had me thinking a song was totally lame and later heard the full thing and realized it’s full potential. So, enter the “Illegal downloads”. Now when I say illegal downloads, I am lumping in the music that the independant artists have made and released free of charge, and I’ll explain why a little later.
Before I purchased the Tron: Legacy soundtrack, I found a bootleg copy and gave it a listen. After listening to it a few times I decided that I liked it (of course, I like Daft Punk anyway, but I wanted to make sure. I’ve been disappointed by the occasional bad release many times.), so I went and purchased it.
Another route I’ve taken is getting free recommended tracks from Last.FM. Though I don’t always like what I get, I’m usually pretty happy with what whatever they have to offer.
Now, as to why I lump free, independant releases into the mix with illegal downloads: To my understanding, the RIAA is kind of _____ [insert random insult here] on ANY kind of music download that they don’t profit from. So an independant artist puts their own work on their homepage and offers it [free or purchase] and next thing you know, the site disappears! I don’t know…
Y’know, I had no intention of making this a rant, so I’m gonna cut it here….