New Song & Video: Hi-fi Sci-fi Library

You HAVE to watch the amazing cool music video Michael Porter and I made!!! Here it is:

And go to Michael’s account for a larger version of the video. Want the MP3? Find it here and at

Go read Michael’s post for the nitty-gritty details (and this post for the lyrics and credits). Here are some song details…

This was a really fun song to write and record. I honestly wasn’t sure Michael’s idea would work when he first suggested it to me, but then I’m game for just about anything, so thought “let’s try it and see what happens!” And Michael’s a great friend and writing partner (we write the Public Libraries Magazine column “Internet Spotlight” together), so if everything else went down the tubes, I knew we would at least have a fun time of it. But as we started writing the lyrics, rhythms and melody lines started bouncing around in my head… and I realized this would be easy to pull off.

Other details:

  • The music is a mix of GarageBand instruments, my own guitar playing, and three samples of theremins and other whistle-like sounds.
  • And Michael Porter and I sang/rapped the thing
  • recorded and mixed in Garageband, in my basement

Samples used:

I’m No Antidigitalist: a song about GormanGate

Click To Play

Last week, as I was reading and responding to everyone’s responses to Michael Gorman’s blog posts, I re-read a couple of the posts myself… and this phrase from his earlier “blog people” article started running through my head … and wouldn’t leave.So I did what any self-respecting closet musician would do on his day off – I wrote a song!

A little more explanation – I wrote the music (with a little help from GarageBand here and there). For each line of the lyrics, I pulled random Gorman quotes from these three articles.

This is probably some odd self-fulfilling prophecy, since I am a blogger, since Gorman said “entirely possible that their intellectual needs are met by an accumulation of random facts and paragraphs” … and that’s pretty much what I did to construct this song!

Now, on to the song! And here’s a game for you while listening: try to find each quote while you’re listening to the song!

I’m No Antidigitalist
Music by David Lee King, lyrics pulled from Gorman quotes

an associated flight from expertise
believers in Biblical inerrancy
authoritative printed sources
an extreme example of technophiliac rambling

human beings learn, essentially, in only two ways
verifiable credentials and demonstrable expertise
derision of the professorial authority figure
hyperventilating not blasphemy

I’m no Antidigitalist

there are obstacles to such a benign outcome
antihuman and intellectually debasing
the endemic confusion of means
the triumph of hope and boosterism over reality

I’m no Antidigitalist

read what they want to read … random facts
read what they want to read … paragraphs

an associated flight from expertise
believers in Biblical inerrancy
human beings learn, essentially, in only two ways
hyperventilating not blasphemy

I’m no Antidigitalist

The structures of scholarship and learning are based on respect for individuality and the authentic expression of individual personalities.


Free Online Music “Store” coming in December…

Just saw this… a start-up named SpiralFrog is planning to launch a (drumroll please) new-fangled music service that will be based on advertising revenue rather than on .99 cent downloads. Yes, you read that right – as in FREE music. Universal Music is backing them (that’s big). Look for them in December.

Libraries, dust off your CD-burning and USB-downloading skills…

silly update: I actually beat TechCrunch (who has much more info than my post, of course)!

Update #2: Never mind – from TechCrunch (who had a Skype conversation with the PR dude from SpiralFrog):

“Spiral Frog will offer a desktop downloader for Windows Media Files (no iPods!) that can be listened to on one PC and two portable devices.”


“you must log in to the Spiral Frog service at least once per month, and see their ads, or your files will stop playing!”

Two VERY stupid ideas, one digital music company that’s sure to fail.

Music 2.0 and DRM

Interesting post on the Social Software blog: Yahoo music exec says maybe DRM should be ditched.

I’m all agreed that DRM doesn’t work in libraries – if it disappeared, then iPods would work with services like Overdrive and netLibrary. But look at some of the thoughts the author has about how to assign value (if the thing being purchased isn’t the music itself):

  • Linking music downloads to concert promotion/tickets
  • Liner notes
  • other branded multi-media beyond the music file itself
  • superior quality to files found in the wild

Some of these ideas are leaving traditional types (that’d be libraries and record stores) in the dust. Example – Linking music downloads to tickets – where does that leave the library’s music collection, or future music purchases? Also – other branded multi-media… hmm… at least with this added value item, patrons could still come to the library to access the value-added thing via the web.

Most likely there would still be a way to purchase music that would make sense for libraries (ie., subscription-based services). Still…

Also – the article mentions that there was recently a conference called “Music 2.0” – wow. Again, it’s not just libraries and Library 2.0 – many different industries are dealing with the same notions.

Library 2.0, Web 2.0, Music 2.0

Music Access and Libraries – Still a Long Way to Go!

I just got off the phone with a rep at‘s Rhapsody music service. What an interesting conversation! First off, here’s what I told the rep we (and probably other libraries) wanted in a digital music service:

  • digital music for library patrons
  • ability to listen in the library
  • ability to listen at home, using the library’s authentication
  • ability to download to a portable device
  • We need all this to be an annual library system subscription, rather than a normal, individual subscription

The Rhapsody rep (very nice, knowledgeable person) had guessed we’d want something along those lines, and stated that they “probably haven’t considered” that type of model. He then shared all about record labels being extremely picky, who gets paid when, etc… all the usual record-labels-get-all-the-money types of statements. Which I’m certain is all very true indeed.

Right now, Rhapsody isn’t set up to do what my library wants. Rhapsody did offer a “bulk download license” type of model – similar to what they do with corporations (think McDonalds or Pepsi) for promotions. But what library wants to deal with multiple licenses for potentially EVERY library patron, handing out those licenses, etc? Probably not too many.

But – here’s the good thing. The rep DID say ours was an interesting concept, he’s open to further ideas, and he’d talk to the “product development” people. That’s something, anyway.

Digital Music