- Many new cars no longer come with CD players.
- I had trouble finding a decent portable CD player to purchase recently.
- Many of the stores selling CDs have closed.
- Big box stores still selling CDs have poor collections.
- Internet downloads are said to be taking over.
While I have had iTunes on my computers for about five years, I have still never purchased anything from the iTunes store. It seems like such a bad precedent to set. Instead, I have loaded many of my CDs into iTunes and from there put some of these onto my iPod. As nice as it is, I have never really listened to this music much except during the short, intense spring gardening season or on a trip. I seem to use the iPod more for listening to free podcasts that I download and audiobooks that I borrow from libraries. I still like my CDs in the car or in my portable player. It just seems the right package to me.
Still, I heard the death bells ringing and thought "I have plenty already. I really never need another CD. I can rotate what I have as long as I am still able to get a player." Enough is enough.
Of course, this is not an absolute pledge. I host the Friday at the Ford concerts at my library. We have a great variety of very talented musicians come, and they almost all bring CDs to sell. I have built a nice collection of CDs of musicians that I have not only heard live but have met and like as people. I know that I will continue to get several every year as long as musicians hand sell their CDs.
So I spoke with one of our library's shelvers the other day. When did he last buy a CD. At sixteen years of age, he has never purchased a CD. I hear a deep resonant dong.
So, what have I done since I had my thought?
In mid-July, I attended a free Sunday afternoon concert at Cantigny Gardens in Warrenville with friends. (There was a fee to enter the park.) The attraction was Guitarra Azul, a contemporary flamenco-inspired band with two guitars, a bass, and three percussionists. Their original music was really exciting, and I bought two CDs, Mariposa and Oasis. They sound really great in the car. They'd make a great soundtrack to a road trip.
Early in August, Bonnie and I went with friends to the Bristol Renaissance Fair in Bristol, Wisconsin. I was rather disappointed by the lack of live music. There used to be constant music from various minstrels and consorts on several stages all day.
Now, there are mostly comedy acts. As we headed toward the exit, however, we discovered a shop with Renaissance and Medieval games, DVDs, and music CDs. There was a vast selection of CDs featuring different countries, instruments, and forms of music. I could have spent the whole afternoon looking through them. As it was, I bought two: English Madrigals and Songs from Henry VIII to the 20th Century by the Oxford Camerata and Elizabethan Songs and Consort Music by the Rose Consort of Viols with Catherine King, mezzo-soprano. Both please me much.
Then, a week later, I discovered that our local music resale shop was going out of business and everything was 60 percent off. That made already well-priced CDs even less expensive. I restrained myself and only bought five titles:
Classic Masters by Gordon Lightfoot - really early songs three of which were new to me.
Greatest Hits: Shining Like a National Guitar by Paul Simon - a 2000 title that draws from about 25 years of his career.
In the Wind by Peter Paul & Mary - the photo on the back has them singing in front of the Washington Monument at a civil rights march. All the songs are classic PP&M.
Reasons Why by Nickel Creek - my daughter introduced me to this group.
Songs & More Songs by Tom Lehrer - Everyone should hear these outrageously clever political songs from the 1960s.
So, the CD may be endangered in some habitats but it is thriving at our house. Perhaps I will declare the property as a CD preserve. Maybe I can take in a few more CDs. I know some titles I'd still like to have.
I wonder what my next crazy thought will be?