Pay-per-download Brass Band recordings

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by nethers, Jan 16, 2008.


Hmmm... pay-per-download...

Poll closed Mar 16, 2008.
  1. Great! No more CDs full of tracks I don't want.

    30 vote(s)
  2. NEVER!

    0 vote(s)
  3. Perhaps, but I need to know more...

    12 vote(s)
  1. nethers

    nethers Active Member

    I've had this idea at the back of my mind for a while, and one of my composers just made the same suggestion, so I'm going to throw it out there:

    Who would be interested in a pay-per-download service?

    I know a few times I have spent 15 quid on a CD when I only really wanted one track on it...

    If I was to implement it on our site ( operating in New Zealand), it would work something like this:

    Tracks can be browsed and sorted by composer/band/album and 30 second previews would br free.

    The customer fills their shopping cart with the tracks they want, then pay by PayPal/credit card. A temporary download link is sent to the customer by email on successful payment.

    The customer downloads the tracks to their PC, then burns to CD, adds to iPod etc...

    Technologically it shouldn't be a huge effort to create. But two questions before I start coding.

    1) BANDS: would you be interested in selling your CDs in this way? People can buy individual tracks and you'd receive a percentage of the price for everything sold.

    2) MUSICIANS: would you prefer to buy this way?

    Any other concerns/suggestions?

    This is potentially a great way to broaden the availability and affordability of brass band recordings, please let me know what you think about it!
  2. ploughboy

    ploughboy Active Member

    You mean like the worldofbrasstunes - that's already available?
  3. nethers

    nethers Active Member

    Pretty much yes - but with a much bigger catalogue (ie not just the top bands and soloists) and profile.

    I also think the price is a little high at WOBT compared to other music genres, but that's all part of the debate I'd like to spark.

    Worldofbrasstunes does its thing very nicely, but I am thinking of something ending up much bigger using recordings from every level of the brass community. I should have made my first post clearer in that respect.

    Good? Bad? Waste of time? Any comment, however supportive or critical is useful.
  4. brass journo

    brass journo Member

    nice plan but copyright / PRS / etc????????

    Glad to see your working on something useful though Marc - now do some practice!!!

    Also, I have two cats as pets are your "composers" your pets?!!
  5. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    This is something that TheMusicMan and I weren't discussing behind the scenes here a while ago ;)
  6. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member


    Anyway, I actually meant we have discussed it :hammer
  7. carlwoodman

    carlwoodman Member

    Be careful. You might get some interest from the similarly named
  8. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    It's a good point.

    It could be run from a separate or subdomain, though. It'd probably work out better financiially that way if the NZ T&C are anything like the orignal JOL agreement.
  9. johnmartin

    johnmartin Active Member

    Although I'm a great fan of all things tech I do have a feeling that we are in grave danger of replacing CD with an inferior digital medium. The average CD recording has a much higher sampling rate than MP3. And I don't just mean in brass bands, I mean in all forms of music. On my iPod I encode tunes at a custom sampling rate, as high as I can possibly get it. On the media centre PC all CD tracks are stored in a lossless format because it has much more disk space available. MP3 and other digital formats definetly have their place e.g portable players, but I am dismayed to see MP3 players and hard drives creeping into home hi-fi units too. Still don't think I'll be doing away with my CD collection any time soon.

    As too the question of a download store. Yes, but encode them in a very high sampling rate or lossless format. I think competition is a good thing for the consumer. The question of PRS and copyrights are not insurmountable otherwise places like iTunes, napster and Amazon would not exist.
  10. nethers

    nethers Active Member

    Yeah, it would need a new domain name, are happy as long as we don't start selling MP3s etc., but that's all miles away right now.

    Copyright etc. is a real issue, especially as sales would be international (the recent iTunes trouble threw this up in my head, and also reminded me of the original idea!).

    Right now I'm more interested in whether people would actually USE IT if everything worked and was hunky-dory. I'm not going to waste time getting in to the grit of it all if no one will end up using it.

    Had a thought in the shower that could remove some of the issues listed above: how about allowing groups/individuals to load their own music on to a site and sell/charge as they wish, with the site owner charging a small sum per download?

    This is much more like eBay (users putting up their own items, eBay charging on sale), but again, this is all wild speculation.

    If it reaches a point where I'm actually going to make some of this happen, rest assured I will get professional legal advice!

    So posts saying "yes, I would use this and would like to see..." or "no, I wouldn't use this because..." will be most welcome. Those finding legal flaws are a little premature at this point!

    Had lots of TMP emails whlie typing this, so apologies if this post seems in an odd place, I just type slow :D

    And Tabs, I am absolutely not discussing your cats online, that could lead down all sorts of unsavoury paths!
  11. GJG

    GJG Well-Known Member

    Exactly. I too would be interested only if the downloads were of CD quality. (or, even better, of vinyl quality, but that's another argument altogether ... ;) )
  12. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Audiophile ;)

    The best model I can think of at the minute for the quality argument is Linn Records.

    They provide MP3 and wma in addition to FLAC and - more importantly for you Gareth - high sample rate and bit depth downloads. So you can pick and choose what you want.

    We've been down this track before, though. The budget provided by most bands for things like their recording venues (if you're not talking about the big boys) can sometimes negate the point of things like high sample rate recordings...all they'll do is show up imperfections...high bit depth is something different as it extends the dynamic range. Full circle though - the only people who would potentially utilise this full dynamic range are probably the Bands who use the better venues.....

    To the OP - if you're requesting fees for bands to sell their own material through the site, someone will still be accountable for the licence administration....and that'd be the site owner, so it doesn't get you out of that one.

    The whole thing - whilst I really like it in principle - is a minefield, and not just technologically. You've got things like target markets, competition and a whole host of other things to compete with.
  13. WhatSharp?

    WhatSharp? Active Member

    Am I right in thinking that this could potentially be an outlet for bands other then the top few ( who can "afford" to mass produce CD's initially ) who could record their own tracks / albums and then sell them through your site?

    I can see this would be popular but would the recordings have to be of a required standard ( as in not recorded on someones mobile :D ) ?
  14. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Yep. Although producing CDs isn't as expensive as you might think - and you've got to remember that a lot of your own Band's sales will come from selling them locally at concerts to people who've heard you and want to support something they know.

    I'd suggest that might be prudent if you want them to sell ;)
  15. nethers

    nethers Active Member

    Both of the above posts make great points.

    A minimum standard for submissions would have to be set, certainly. Customers would have the ability to preview tracks too, so hopefully no one would be disappointed by recording quality.

    While dicey legal issues would certainly still need dealing with, this may perhaps be a better way to proceed all round, with the added bonus of not stepping on the toes of WOBT (who would continue to offer the major releases) and providing an affordable outlet for the less famous bands to offer their music to a wider audience.

    In all honesty, the task would be HUGE from a technical and legal perspective, so even if we see a potential moneymaker, we may leave it for some time yet.

    Or someone else can beat us to it! ;) As my business guru said "better to be one of ten in healthy competition than the only one in a dead market".

    Still very much at the wild cray ideas stage, the 'shoot it down in flames' stage is way off yet.
  16. brass journo

    brass journo Member

    excellent idea Marc - loading it up from bands - 'bout time all bands got a crack at the whip - they often have quite interesting new and different music too.

    as for the cats - you are no fun anymore - you're just jealous they're bigger than your poxy emu and would eat it for a light snack!!
  17. nethers

    nethers Active Member

    I have a surprising amount of clever ideas these days :D must be since I cut down my drinking.


    I wrote a paper at university about a group of composers who added a 'free' license which allowed people to do whatever they liked with their pieces (ie copy, arrange, record, perform) as long as the composer was clearly credited and the person doing it didn't intend to make a tonne of money... Really an idea aimed at amateur composers and performers, but a very nice one. A bit like the GPL one for software. Someone less forgetful than me can probably fill in the gaps.

    A lot of composers and performers are getting hacked off with the old rules in the new global marketplace, but as these rules protect the big companies who own most of the well-known music, things are unlikely to change soon.

    Perhaps time for brass band composers and arrangers to devise a 'Non-professional Brass Band License' which will remove all of the problems this project (and many others) face, while still protecting the rights of the creator outside of the amateur band movement.


    As for your cats, never mind bringing down an emu, they'd flatten a rhinoceros if they fell on it! See you tomorrow night.

    Rest of you: keep the thoughts (good or evil) coming!
  18. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

  19. nethers

    nethers Active Member

    That's the puppy!

    Though even that is over complicated for many, which is why relatively few people know about it and even fewer understand and use it.

    If anyone finds the idea of a simple, special one for us brass bandies exciting, lets make it happen. If someone starts a seperate thread on it I'll pile in first!

  20. Bass Man

    Bass Man Active Member

    I think it's a great idea. I fully intend to make use of WorldofBrass Tunes.

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