Music I’m Not Buying

While looking for some mellow music for a late night coding session that wouldn’t disturb my wife I remembered an album I used to listen to quite a bit, ‘Far Away Trains Passing By‘ by Ulrich Schnauss, and wondered if he had something new out for me to enjoy. Seems he’s been busy since I first picked up that album in 2001 with at least four other releases so after listening to some samples I figured I’d pick up an album or two.

I started first with Zune Marketplace which has become a viable option ever since they started offering DRM-free MP3s. While they have all his albums none of them are in MP3 format which crosses it off my list. Not to be daunted I hit up Amazon’s MP3 downloads but no dice there either, I can order the CD but I want satisfaction now. Last on my list is eMusic, usually a great location for smaller or indie labels but I only found a scattering of his songs on compilations. I thought about checking iTunes to see if it was available as a “Plus” track, meaning DRM-free, but you can’t browse their catalog online and I really can’t be bothered to install iTunes just to see if it may or may not be there. I even toyed with using BitTorrent for some nefarious illegal song grabbing but honestly that’s entirely too much fussing just for a few songs.

After all of this searching and disappointment I realized I’ll probably never buy another Ulrich Schnauss album, not out of some petulant pouting or idealistic, chest-beating stance against the horrors of DRM but because I had an impulse and now it’s gone. Anyone that knows me knows that I’m slightly impulsive while at the same time I lose interest quickly so in a few days time it’s doubtful I’ll even remember Mr. Schnauss and instead I’ll be buying some DRM-free tracks that caught my ear on eMusic or something tasty I see come through Zune Marketplace.

I’m not just not buying (neat) Ulrich Schnauss either, The new Dropkick Murphys album ‘The Meanest of Times‘ hasn’t gotten any rotation from me and they’re one of my top 10 favorite bands. There is just too much good music out there and my tastes are too varied for me to obsess over a single album. These days if I can’t get it DRM-free it’s doubtful I’ll ever buy it or listen to it.

A little note to Ulrich Schnauss’s label Domino USA, you really need to look at licensing your music as DRM-free, whether it’s on eMusic, Amazon, Zune Marketplace or even iTunes. You could have had some of my hard-earned dosh, instead I’m just cueing up some ‘Thievery Corporation’ and calling it good.