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Author Topic: Singles or albums?  (Read 881 times)

Roadgeekteen

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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #25 on: February 08, 2019, 12:06:47 PM »

When I was growing up, everything was on CD, so you didn't really have much of a choice in the matter; you were getting the album.

Now, it kind of depends. If all I know about an artist is that I like one particular song of theirs, I'll just buy the single. If it's an artist I like that has the song I want, I'm more likely to buy the album. Although really 99% of the music-buying in the house is my wife's doing, and I just nick the files I want from her.
Really, it's better now with digital downloads.  Before, you could only buy copies of recordings of songs the record company released as singles.  Now, you can buy a digital copy of a recording of virtually any song on a particular album.

On the flip side -- no pun intended -- there are a number of digital tunes that aren't available individually, but only as part of an album.

I notice Apple for instance generally doesn’t make songs over 10 minutes available individually. I’ve never been sure why, unless they think a song of that length is worth more money than $1.29.
I don't buy music. I solely use spotify. Saves a lot of hassle.
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kevinb1994

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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #26 on: February 08, 2019, 12:15:20 PM »

When I was growing up, everything was on CD, so you didn't really have much of a choice in the matter; you were getting the album.

Now, it kind of depends. If all I know about an artist is that I like one particular song of theirs, I'll just buy the single. If it's an artist I like that has the song I want, I'm more likely to buy the album. Although really 99% of the music-buying in the house is my wife's doing, and I just nick the files I want from her.
Really, it's better now with digital downloads.  Before, you could only buy copies of recordings of songs the record company released as singles.  Now, you can buy a digital copy of a recording of virtually any song on a particular album.

On the flip side -- no pun intended -- there are a number of digital tunes that aren't available individually, but only as part of an album.

I notice Apple for instance generally doesn’t make songs over 10 minutes available individually. I’ve never been sure why, unless they think a song of that length is worth more money than $1.29.
I don't buy music. I solely use spotify. Saves a lot of hassle.

We only buy music if the album or single is worth the purchase.
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hbelkins

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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #27 on: February 08, 2019, 12:48:25 PM »

I have always bought primarily albums. Still do. The last single I bought was a Springsteen 45 I picked up on eBay a few years ago to get a non-album B-side that, at the time, hadn’t been released on any album in its studio version.

Which Springsteen B-side was it?

I'm guessing 'Pink Cadillac."
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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #28 on: February 08, 2019, 01:46:34 PM »

When I was growing up, everything was on CD, so you didn't really have much of a choice in the matter; you were getting the album.

Now, it kind of depends. If all I know about an artist is that I like one particular song of theirs, I'll just buy the single. If it's an artist I like that has the song I want, I'm more likely to buy the album. Although really 99% of the music-buying in the house is my wife's doing, and I just nick the files I want from her.
Really, it's better now with digital downloads.  Before, you could only buy copies of recordings of songs the record company released as singles.  Now, you can buy a digital copy of a recording of virtually any song on a particular album.

On the flip side -- no pun intended -- there are a number of digital tunes that aren't available individually, but only as part of an album.
Yes, this is true (and annoying), but it's still probably a net positive.

I interpret this as the seller declining to accept my money and proceed accordingly.
Same.  I don't buy an album to get an album-only song unless I was going to buy the album anyways - I just listen on YouTube instead.
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1995hoo

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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #29 on: February 08, 2019, 07:10:11 PM »

I have always bought primarily albums. Still do. The last single I bought was a Springsteen 45 I picked up on eBay a few years ago to get a non-album B-side that, at the time, hadn’t been released on any album in its studio version.

Which Springsteen B-side was it?

“Held Up Without a Gun.” The live version from 1980 had been released on The Essential Bruce Springsteen; the studio version wasn’t released on an album until the River boxed set in late 2015.

“Pink Cadillac” was released on the Tracks album in the 1990s, BTW.
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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #30 on: February 09, 2019, 02:57:45 PM »

Albums though given I grew up in a time when CD's and Cassettes were sold in stores.
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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #31 on: February 09, 2019, 05:31:05 PM »

Most CDs and cassettes are albums. “Album” doesn’t mean “LP record.” The term “album” was originally used to distinguish from a “record” in the days of 78-rpm records. A single “record” could only hold a small amount of music, so if an artist wanted to release a collection of tracks, several records came in separate sleeves bound in sort of a binder—an “album,” kind of like a photo album. The term “album” stuck when the 33-1/3 rpm LP record (which could usually fit an “album” onto a single record) and the 45-rpm record came into the market, though over time the term for a 45 evolved to be a “single.” (Originally there were 45s with four songs called “EPs,” for “extended-play” records as opposed to “long-playing” LPs.)

I remember when CDs first came on the market and my grandfather wanted to know if it was “a record or an album.” I was maybe 11 years old and I was not aware of any of the above and his question confused the crap out of me, which in turn annoyed him because he thought I was being a smart-alec.

This history is why the Grammy Award got the name “Record of the Year” in reference to one song, BTW.
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"You know, you never have a guaranteed spot until you have a spot guaranteed."
—Olaf Kolzig, as quoted in the Washington Times on March 28, 2003,
commenting on the Capitals clinching a playoff spot.

"That sounded stupid, didn't it?"—Kolzig, to the same reporter a few seconds later.

hbelkins

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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #32 on: February 09, 2019, 06:46:52 PM »

I have a few 10" EPs in my collection, most notably Cheap Trick's "Found All The Parts." I bought it on a family vacation in a record store at that multi-level mall in downtown Gatlinburg, and was thankful that we didn't make many stops on the way home, so the record didn't melt in the heat of a locked car.

Curiously, though, the EP that Metallica released after Cliff Burton died was on a 12-inch record, not a 10-inch one.
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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #33 on: February 09, 2019, 06:50:51 PM »

Also, 78's broke much more easily than more modern records.
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1995hoo

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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #34 on: February 09, 2019, 08:31:25 PM »

Yeah, 78s were typically made of shellac and were much more brittle than the vinyl records most of us know.

I have one 10-inch LP, a copy of The Savage Young Beatles. I guess it's a good thing my Rega turntable doesn't control the tonearm automatically given the odd record size.

I've heard of some 45-rpm LPs (12-inch 45-rpm records), but I don't have any and don't have much interest in them because it's a hassle to set my main turntable to play at 45 rpm (requires removing the platter and adjusting the belt). My Yamaha turntable would play at 45 with no issues just by pressing a button, but it doesn't sound nearly as good as the Rega and it's a mild nuisance to pull it out and connect it. I've read, though, that 45-rpm LPs typically sound great.
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"That sounded stupid, didn't it?"—Kolzig, to the same reporter a few seconds later.

bandit957

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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #35 on: February 09, 2019, 08:48:16 PM »

I've heard of some 45-rpm LPs (12-inch 45-rpm records), but I don't have any and don't have much interest in them because it's a hassle to set my main turntable to play at 45 rpm (requires removing the platter and adjusting the belt). My Yamaha turntable would play at 45 with no issues just by pressing a button, but it doesn't sound nearly as good as the Rega and it's a mild nuisance to pull it out and connect it. I've read, though, that 45-rpm LPs typically sound great.

Similarly, I have a really old 7-inch single that plays at 33. It has the type of small hole that 12-inch albums usually have. This is not an EP, but appears to be some sort of 1950s special issue.

My grandparents had an old cabinet-style Victrola (an antique phonograph that operates by turning a crank), but I don't remember them having any records that were playable on it. I'm sure it only played old 78's that just didn't last that long.
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KeithE4Phx

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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #36 on: February 09, 2019, 11:09:51 PM »

My grandparents had an old cabinet-style Victrola (an antique phonograph that operates by turning a crank), but I don't remember them having any records that were playable on it. I'm sure it only played old 78's that just didn't last that long.

78.26 RPM was standardized in the mid 1920s.  Before that, the various manufacturers set their speeds anywhere between 74 and 82 RPM.  By 1925, record players were using 60 Hz, 3600 RPM synchronous motors, with 78.26 RPM set via a 46:1 reduction gear.  78 RPM records existed through the late 1950s, although some kiddie records were released into the early '60s.  Elvis, Chuck Berry, and some of the other early rock and roll greats had singles released on both 7-inch 45s and 10-inch 78s, until 1958 or so.  I would bet that those 78s are worth a lot of money today.

78 RPM records are fairly rare nowadays, but they can be found.  Just be careful with them -- they break easily.  They were made of shellac, not vinyl.
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JREwing78

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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #37 on: February 10, 2019, 06:09:36 AM »

In my younger days, I started with tapes, then went exclusively to CDs when I got a stereo system with a CD player (about 1992). I didn't fool much with singles; that's what recording off the radio was for, if the damn DJ would shut up so I could catch the intro.

I milked BMG hard for freebies - I'd sign up for their 8 for 1 plan (buying 1 CD outright, paying shipping for 7 more) under one name, then "referred" a fictitious family member to get 3 free CDs. Cancel old plan, then repeat.  I built my CD collection up well over 200 CDs using that plan until BMG stopped doing the service.

Once I had a internet-capable computer, I jumped head-first into digital music, both illegal and legal. I've ripped my entire CD collection probably 4 or 5 times over the years into various formats seeking better sound quality on my iPod, then later my phone. At one point I went "legit" with my entire collection syncing it to Apple's iTunes Match, then back down again.

Then I discovered Spotify. All of a sudden I didn't have to buy physical media anymore. I pay them my $10/month, and I stay up to date on any and everything out there. I have probably 8,000 or 9,000 tracks in my general playlist, and about 4,500 of those on my phone. At maximum quality settings, sound quality is pretty damn good - only true audiophiles would find it lacking.
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1995hoo

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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #38 on: February 10, 2019, 09:08:06 AM »

I've heard of some 45-rpm LPs (12-inch 45-rpm records), but I don't have any and don't have much interest in them because it's a hassle to set my main turntable to play at 45 rpm (requires removing the platter and adjusting the belt). My Yamaha turntable would play at 45 with no issues just by pressing a button, but it doesn't sound nearly as good as the Rega and it's a mild nuisance to pull it out and connect it. I've read, though, that 45-rpm LPs typically sound great.

Similarly, I have a really old 7-inch single that plays at 33. It has the type of small hole that 12-inch albums usually have. This is not an EP, but appears to be some sort of 1950s special issue.

My grandparents had an old cabinet-style Victrola (an antique phonograph that operates by turning a crank), but I don't remember them having any records that were playable on it. I'm sure it only played old 78's that just didn't last that long.

When I was growing up, my parents had a KLH record changer that played all four speeds: 78, 45, 33, and 16. We didn't have any records that were properly played at 78 or 16, though like most kids we occasionally sped up 45s to 78 to create our own Chipmunk records. I believe when my father's mother died in 1995 and my parents were cleaning out her apartment in New York they found some old 78s, but I have no idea what they did with them. They don't have a way to play them anymore because the changer is long gone—my father has the same model Rega turntable I do and it plays 33 or 45 after you adjust the belt manually.

Regarding the comment about Spotify, I don't entirely understand the appeal of streaming. I get the appeal of not having to store physical media and not having to use up your device's storage capacity, of course. On the other hand, if you don't have a good wifi connection at the office, much less in the car or on the subway, won't you blow through your cellular data allowance fairly quickly unless you have unlimited data? The other thing that gives me pause is that you're relying on someone else to keep the music you like available. It will surprise nobody to hear that I don't listen to Taylor Swift, but I recall a year or two ago she was in the news for some sort of dispute with Spotify that resulted in all of her music being pulled from said service. If you rely on streaming and you don't have your own copies of your music, and if you're a Taylor Swift fan who relies on Spotify, suddenly that's a big hole in what you want to listen to because you just lost access to your music through someone else's actions. I've had that sort of thing happen as to TV when there have been disputes between TV providers and the networks—the one that annoyed me the most was when DirecTV dropped Versus during hockey season some years back—and I found it extremely frustrating to lose TV programming like that. But with TV it's beyond my control. With music, it's easy to control. I could understand augmenting a music collection with streaming because I could see streaming potentially being a good way to find new music, and indeed I used to use a free Pandora account sometimes when I worked out of the home office. But I don't see the appeal of relying exclusively on letting someone else send all the music to you.

Maybe it's a generational thing.

BTW, it bugs the crap out of me how my iPhone sorts music differently than my iPod. I take the time to use the iTunes sorting tab to fix all the incorrect track and artist data that often shows up. Bruce Springsteen should be alphabetized under "S," for example, not under "B," yet for some inexplicable reason the dolts who program this stuff into the Gracenote database iTunes uses seem to be incapable of understanding that. I always fix this. I also don't usually listen to much music on my phone except for occasionally via Bluetooth in my wife's car if we don't have my iPod with us. I was quite chagrined a week or two ago when I tried to find music on my phone via the car's display and everything was sorted in the wrong order (Springsteen was under "B," for example). Why provide the sorting tab in the software if the devices are going to ignore it? (This doesn't happen on my iPod, which does respect the sorting tab.)
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"You know, you never have a guaranteed spot until you have a spot guaranteed."
—Olaf Kolzig, as quoted in the Washington Times on March 28, 2003,
commenting on the Capitals clinching a playoff spot.

"That sounded stupid, didn't it?"—Kolzig, to the same reporter a few seconds later.

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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #39 on: February 10, 2019, 09:49:13 AM »

Mostly albums, since I only bought cassettes and CDs.

There was a time around 1990 where cassette/CD singles came out, usually with 2-4 songs on them; one would probably be a remix of the "hit" song. If it was a few different tracks, then they called it an EP. But I think that distinction blurred a bit between artists and record companies. If I figured I was going to buy the album anyway, I usually waited for the entire release; spending $4 twice on two singles would be as much purchasing as the entire album. Of course, there would be that one song you couldn't get from the album, because it was only on the B-side, so you either found it later in a used pile or waited 10 years to nab it off some peer-to-peer service.

I don't spend a whole lot of time streaming music in the last few years; it's one of those things I'll remember every so often, but then go away from it after a week. On the flip side of that, I haven't used any downloading "service" in about 8-9 years.

I probably bought my last single in 1993, and haven't looked back, other than when record stores would throw them in as promotional freebies.
« Last Edit: February 10, 2019, 09:51:57 AM by formulanone »
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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #40 on: February 10, 2019, 10:06:10 AM »

I have a lot of MP3's that I recorded from records or cassettes that I have, or that I purchased online or downloaded from the old MP3.com. It's tricky to record them from records and tapes, but I can do it.

I also wrote a program in FreeBASIC that sorts them by category and creates playlists for a good music balance. But this program is pretty specific to my musical interests.
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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #41 on: February 10, 2019, 10:06:57 AM »

I just found a 3-inch CD on a shelf in my home office (Springsteen's Chimes of Freedom live EP from 1988). It has four tracks on it and was later re-released on a standard-size CD. IIRC the 3-inch CD was supposed to become the "CD single" and was to be targeted at consumers for whom full albums were too expensive, but as I recall they flopped. Funny thing is that CD players, other than slot-loaders, still have the well for the 3-inch discs even though the discs disappeared years ago. (Somewhere I must have an adapter that allowed the 3-inch disc to be played in a CD player without the well, though I have no idea where the adapter is and I would be afraid to use it in a slot-mounted in-dash CD player in the car for fear of jamming.)
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"You know, you never have a guaranteed spot until you have a spot guaranteed."
—Olaf Kolzig, as quoted in the Washington Times on March 28, 2003,
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"That sounded stupid, didn't it?"—Kolzig, to the same reporter a few seconds later.

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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #42 on: February 10, 2019, 12:17:04 PM »

I just found a 3-inch CD on a shelf in my home office (Springsteen's Chimes of Freedom live EP from 1988). It has four tracks on it and was later re-released on a standard-size CD. IIRC the 3-inch CD was supposed to become the "CD single" and was to be targeted at consumers for whom full albums were too expensive, but as I recall they flopped. Funny thing is that CD players, other than slot-loaders, still have the well for the 3-inch discs even though the discs disappeared years ago. (Somewhere I must have an adapter that allowed the 3-inch disc to be played in a CD player without the well, though I have no idea where the adapter is and I would be afraid to use it in a slot-mounted in-dash CD player in the car for fear of jamming.)

My CD player from 1993 has the well in it.

I never had one of the most mini-CDs until very recently, as in 2018. Def Leppard re-released all the original albums with bonus content. They included the 1978 "Def Leppard EP" as a 3-inch CD in it.
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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #43 on: February 10, 2019, 12:40:07 PM »

I like listening to entire albums from start to finish so that is for the most part what my music collection consists of.

That said, we're talking CDs and (more recently) digital downloads. I do not and never have owned anything on vinyl myself, although I do know how to operate a turntable since my parents still have one along with all their old records (which, for the curious, do include a stack of 45s, but the majority of them are 33 LPs).
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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #44 on: February 10, 2019, 12:43:28 PM »

I'm thinking the last time I purchased a new vinyl single was roughly 1998, but I'm not sure what it was. That seems late, but there were a few stores that sold them.
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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #45 on: February 10, 2019, 03:50:50 PM »

There was a Tom Clancy book that came out with a 3-inch CD PC game.  Politika, I think it was.  Still have it somewhere, I think.
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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #46 on: February 10, 2019, 04:25:59 PM »

There was a Tom Clancy book that came out with a 3-inch CD PC game.  Politika, I think it was.  Still have it somewhere, I think.
I remember seeing those mini-CDs. Trouble was, you couldn’t play them on front-loading CD players.
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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #47 on: February 10, 2019, 09:41:15 PM »

There was a Tom Clancy book that came out with a 3-inch CD PC game.  Politika, I think it was.  Still have it somewhere, I think.
I remember seeing those mini-CDs. Trouble was, you couldn’t play them on front-loading CD players.

I remember getting one with a Nine Inch Nails EP (Broken?) back around 1992. I bump into the little envelope somewhere in my office every couple of years, since it has no home.

Geez, that music became very unlistenable in about 2 years and a few relationships later.
« Last Edit: February 10, 2019, 09:43:49 PM by formulanone »
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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #48 on: February 11, 2019, 12:26:59 AM »

Then you have CDs like this one, shaped like a skull for artistic effect: https://goo.gl/images/Rn3RJB

It even says on the back of the box "do not use in car stereo systems".
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Re: Singles or albums?
« Reply #49 on: February 11, 2019, 12:48:25 AM »

There was a Tom Clancy book that came out with a 3-inch CD PC game.  Politika, I think it was.  Still have it somewhere, I think.
I remember seeing those mini-CDs. Trouble was, you couldn’t play them on front-loading CD players.

I remember getting one with a Nine Inch Nails EP (Broken?) back around 1992. I bump into the little envelope somewhere in my office every couple of years, since it has no home.

Geez, that music became very unlistenable in about 2 years and a few relationships later.
I can count on my hands the number of NIN songs I can still listen to today. In high school, sure.
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