podcast episode 3: will the CD die?

This show combines monologues I made in the car along with selections from Barry Manilow’s 70’s albums. A rambling consideration of where the world of music consumption may be heading, with a special emphasis on the waning popularity of physical media, especially the CD.

Warner Bros. “Loss Leaders” Series

Back in the 1970’s, Warner Brothers made a habit of issuing single and double album LP compilations from their stable of artists for ridiculously low prices. The concept was simple: entice customers to discover new artists, take a loss in distributing what was in effect a promotional album, while hoping to pull in increased sales across their catalog. It’s all about the thrill of front9discovery. What made the compilations so interesting were the witty and lovingly composed liner notes, album themes, and truly obscure tracks, some of which are very difficult to find anywhere else. They defied the current penchant for “niche marketing” with gusto. Essentially, you have what would now be called “deep tracks”. I’ve collected quite a few of these on used vinyl, and they are loads of fun.

Willard’s Wormholes has a comprehensive list of titles and background info about the Warner series, indispensable for collectors and idly curious pop culture anthropologists. Check it out: The Warner Bros. “Loss Leaders” Series (1969-1980)