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Negotiating the Dense and Boorish Clots, Or Shopping for Music

Introduction by Justin Cober-Lake - In part two, our writers embrace the current modes of shopping. Terry Sawyer finds his joy in shopping from his computer, looking at the wishes and habits of others even as he avoids them in person. David Medsker agrees; there's nowhere he can enjoy shopping, so he's staying home. Dave Dierksen, on the other hand, knows all of the pitfalls of shopping out in the physical world, but he savors the experience just the same. Finally, Brian James helps us understand why it's okay to be surrounded by these stacks of CD won through the diligent perseverence described by our other writers, and he's not just seeking solace in property or buying the time to listen to these albums.

NEGOTIATING THE DENSE AND BOORISH CLOTS,
Or Shopping for Music
:: 22.Dec.04 part two
This PopMatters Special Feature Section edited
by Justin Cober-Lake
(PopMatters Music Special Sections Editor)

Even amid the excitement, yesterday's articles had a bit of anxiety about them; devoted people were making the best of circumstances changing in ways they view as detrimental to their passions. Today's writers, on the other hand, embrace the current modes of shopping. Terry Sawyer finds his joy in shopping from his computer, looking at the wishes and habits of others even as he avoids them in person. David Medsker agrees; there's nowhere he can enjoy shopping, so he's staying home. Dave Dierksen, on the other hand, knows all of the pitfalls of shopping out in the physical world, but he savors the experience just the same. Brian James helps us understand why it's okay to be surrounded by these stacks of CD won through the diligent perseverence described by our other writers, and he's not just seeking solace in property or buying the time to listen to these albums. Finally, since we've decided it's okay to be buying all this music, Jason Thompson tells how to best go about doing so.

As much as we want to elevate our love of music into a fully transcendant experience, we have to get the music somehow. Since we have to commodify our pleasure anyway, we might as well try to understand what that experience is all about. Then we can get back to our pure (and purifying) listening.

   � Justin Cober-Lake, PopMatters Music Special Sections Editor


"One-Click Ecstasy" by Terry Sawyer
The debut of Amazon.com was, for me, an event that unleashed my inner capitalist whore with a frightening, binging fury.
[Read Essay]


"Christmas shopping? Screw you guys, I'm staying home!" by David Medsker
After 13 glorious years in Boston, New York, and Chicago, I knew that moving back to central Ohio to settle down would be a challenge.... There isn't a single decent record store for miles. [Read Essay]


"Do You Remember Rock and Roll Record Stores?" by Dave Dierksen
I know a long-winded rant on the importance of the record store sounds a little bit shallow. Maybe you would prefer it if I told you to get out and do some damn exercise. Fine. But if you're out running, and you happen to pass a record store, go in. Go in and be reminded that there's often more to rock and roll than just the music. [Read Essay]


"The Physical Fetish" by Brian James
I've got some kind of fetish for CDs that goes far beyond a mere love of music. The objects are important to me, and while there are some nice, rational reasons why I'll stick to buying them rather than any downloadable alternative the world throws at me, at heart, I know my compulsion is nonsense. [Read Essay]


"A Simple Buyer's Guide to Shopping for Music" by Jason Thompson
Here are some tips and ideas on how and where to shop in this modern age of digital music, the CD format, mp3s, and the whole concept of the "disappearing record store". [Read Essay]

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