January 8, 2013

"Your average Dylan fan could be excused for not knowing about a new European compilation called The Copyright Extension Collection Vol. 1."

"Only 100 of these four-CD sets even exist, and they've been shipped to a tiny number of stores located in Germany, France, Sweden, and Britain."
Though it collects Dylan's highly precious unreleased studio outtakes and live recordings from 1962 and 1963, Sony is putting almost no promotion behind the collection....
Although this no-promotion thing works as a kind of promotion, viral promotion. But apparently, this release isn't about selling product at all. It's about preserving copyright. After 50 years, if nothing is done with a recording, the European copyright would expire. By doing something — next to nothing — the copyright can be extended for another 20 years. So they put out a 4-CD set — only 100 of them.

Obviously, ultimately, this is a product that will be mass produced. But it's not what Dylan wants to put out now,  and it doesn't hurt business, in the long run, to have this enticing rarity out there getting people advance-excited over what is only 86 outtakes from the Times-They-Are-A-Changin' days.

20 comments:

Icepick said...

Obviously, ultimately, this is a product that will be massed produced.

Yes, after he's dead. This is all about having marketable product after he dies.

wyo sis said...

But, he, like the Beatles, is a pure symbol of the anti-establishment. No profit motive, pure anti-capitalist. The times they are most assuredly not a-changin'.
It's a business.

Scott said...

The CD is currently for sale on eBay.

Surfed said...

What a wonderful musical catalouge to have had access to all these years. My girl and I added "If Not for You" this summer when we were in Wisconsin and are arranging a ulelele part soon. Keep the 4 cd set Europe, I have my memories and they are permanently grooved with Bob's "high thin mercury sound".

SGT Ted said...

Copyright is merely the creature of the music cartels and not a protector of artists rights.

SGT Ted said...

And this ties in with the Greecian smoking laws that are ignored. When a law is perceived to be unjust, people tend to ignore it.

Despite the lip service to artists, most people can see right through the cartel behavior of the music industry, as well as other intellectual property vultures that are perched on peoples corpses and art, feeding off of their past creativity.

jr565 said...

Despite the lip service to artists, most people can see right through the cartel behavior of the music industry, as well as other intellectual property vultures that are perched on peoples corpses and art, feeding off of their past creativity.

And I'm sure megaupload is looking out for artists bottom line.

jr565 said...

Sgt Ted wrote:
Copyright is merely the creature of the music cartels and not a protector of artists rights.

What rights are you refrring to? Property rights, the rights to distribute your own work the way you see fit?
The anti copyright absolutists keep talking about how copyright doesn't protect artists "rights'. But what does then? What "rights" are you even suggesting that people or companies should have over their own work product?

jr565 said...

"as well as other intellectual property vultures that are perched on peoples corpses and art, feeding off of their past creativity"

Vulture is EXACTLY how I would describe those people who appropriate artists works without regard to their right to contorl their work as they see fit. And are feeding off of their past and present creativity. Literallly.


Chef Mojo said...

The problem is that Dylan fans will be hitting the torrents to go after this, due to its rarity. When it comes time to actually release them, an awful lot of people will have downloaded them.

There are still lots of Dylan boots out there, and this will qualify, in a way.

SGT Ted said...

I am not anti-copyright.

I am anti-cartel through rigged laws that purport to protect artists and creators, but are merely monopoly grants purchased from Congress by corporations that didn't create the art and simply want to get money in perpetuity.

SGT Ted said...

I don't condone illegal downloads either. But, I don't pretend that current copyright law is Purity inspired.

Current copyright laws favor corporations and not artists. IF they were there to benefit artists, no corporation could effectively enslave the artists via contract and ignorance.

I'd limit copyright purchased by non-creators to 10-20 years, to be renewed from the artist or the 1st generation of his estate each time.

SGT Ted said...

Current copyright law is Crony Corporatist Government protectionism of big pocket political donors in the music and film industry.

Just like the Hollywood tax breaks that we never hear about, but exist. But, we sure hear all about other evil corporate tax breaks.

Sigivald said...



I bet it's available for download right now, undermining Sony's goal a little.

(A little, because the old fogies who like Dylan enough to consider caring will buy it anyway.

All ten of them.)

(SGT Ted: Tell it to artists who release on their own, but want you to actually pay for their music.

They like copyright, because it means you can't just sell copies of their albums "for them" without paying them.

Today's copyright regime does plenty of things that don't help artists, but "copyright" itself does protect all content creators.)

jr565 said...

Sigivald wrote:
bet it's available for download right now, undermining Sony's goal a little.

(A little, because the old fogies who like Dylan enough to consider caring will buy it anyway.

All ten of them.)

I wouldn't understimate these aging boomers. I took my mom to see Leonard Cohen for christmas or her birthday, recently at MSG and he sold that shit out!
(wasn't a terrible show either I'll admit, though did go on a bit long).
I also took my mom to see Al Green at the Beacon and that too was sold out. (and had a lot of young adults in their 20's there as well).
These old artists can still pack a crowd.

jr565 said...

Sgt wrote:
I don't condone illegal downloads either. But, I don't pretend that current copyright law is Purity inspired.

Current copyright laws favor corporations and not artists. IF they were there to benefit artists, no corporation could effectively enslave the artists via contract and ignorance.

I'd limit copyright purchased by non-creators to 10-20 years, to be renewed from the artist or the 1st generation of his estate each time.


That's actually fair. Questioning the duration of copyright protection is a lot different than saying there should be none. And it is true that copyright can be abused.
BUT the alternative that allows people or corporations to simply appropriate content without reimbursing the copyright holders is ludicrous.

Mike said...

What matters to writers of songs like Dylan is publishing rights. People who take a pre-existing song and give it their interpretation are worth exactly what they can extract from the market, which sometimes much, sometimes little. However, I don't discount the value of a corporation that promotes an artist who otherwise wouldn't have had an "in" to the industry.

Exploitation is another word for a deal the artist doesn't like. Look at American Idol winners, who are virtually enslaved to the Two Simon's for the first five albums. Those that can grow beyond that -- like Carrie Underwood -- can truly earn what they are worth. I suspect few can.

Sony and old Bob will both make out fine from this arrangement.

jr565 said...

Mike wrote:
What matters to writers of songs like Dylan is publishing rights.
agreed. And this is why the whole musicians have to just get used to the new reality and go on your rather than accept payment for song downloads doesn't work.
A songwriter may not be the artist covering the song. So he can't go on tour to cover his work if he's not a well known commodity but people know his song. There are plenty of songs like that which artists cover and make famous, but the writer is obscure living off of royalties. If people think to appropriate the work through an illegal download the songwriter gets screwed. As do musicians who expect some royalties. They by the way went into contract with the artist or
Label to specifically get that royalty.
Mega upload and all the torrenters aren't contracting with those artists before
Distributing that work.

SgtPete said...

Dylan is just Dylan. To me, his words and music has not change since Nan. Me still in that 70s time warp. I listen everyday. Dylan is truly a master. Love him up. Love you too Ann, SgtPete

Popville said...

Reminds me a tiny bit of the 70's Tax Scam labels (Tiger Lily, Dellwood, Crazy Cajun) created by Morris Levy (mob label owner fictionalized as Hersh in The Sopranos), Huey Meaux and others. For some interesting reads, google "tax scam record labels".

The scam:

Major label creates one or more subsidiaries, digs out demo/studio recordings from unsigned bands, allegedly ships 10,000 while actually pressing only 100, which are shipped as promos to "friendly" distribution warehouses and never see the light of day. All 10,000 on the books are listed as unsold and written off, thus giving the parent label a nice write-off. Some labels "released" 100 of these fake releases a year. That's alot of paper losses. In addition, the unsigned bands never knew of their fake promo records until those few surviving copies began showing up in Goldmine auctions.

Sweet, huh?

Tho most of the music was crap and never missed, there were a few gems in the pile, such as my personal favorite: the Sleepy Hollow lp "released" in 1972. Awesome, early 70s Beatlesque bliss. You can stream some of the songs & re-recorded versions courtesy of the band's frontman/songwriter Richard Billay: http://soundcloud.com/billay-sleepy-hollow.