Preset Town

In one of the posts that’s been sitting in my drafts tray for a while now, I have noticed since returning to Brisbane that this is a realy Preset town. Radio stations seem to be constantly playing their stuff, which given that they really only have about 3 or 4 songs on high rotation is quite an achievement. Of course I’m not complaining, since I own the album and certainly think it would be one of my top musical purchases from last years.

I was going to embed a link to their MySpace page earlier in this post, just by way of reference, but when I went there I found that they had the music video of “If I know you”, and got so excited about it that I had to watch it through before returning to writing this. Check it out, and while you do that I’m going to listen to the song a few more times….


I’ve always been a little curious how the money from the price of a CD gets divvied up, and I recently found something that gave some indication. Apparently on a US$15.99 CD it breaks down as follows,

$0.17 Musicians’ unions
$0.80 Packaging/manufacturing
$0.82 Publishing royalties
$0.80 Retail profit
$0.90 Distribution
$1.60 Artists’ royalties
$1.70 Label profit
$2.40 Marketing/promotion
$2.91 Label overhead
$3.89 Retail overhead


Youtube stumbles

While doing some stumbling around Youtube I came across these somewhat unusual girls who go by the name of the Parselmouths, and who like to make videos of themselves singing songs about harry potter and potter related themes.

Here, for your amusement, are two of their offerings.

“What kind of name is Hermione”:

and, “And then I died”:


Want Japanese Music?

Slate has an interesting piece on buying music from iTunes stores other than the one for your specific country.

It uses the example of Japanese songs that you can’t buy through iTunes America, but can buy through itunes Japan (if you live in Japan), mainly it seems because the author has a slightly unhealthy fascination with obscure Japanese pop and rock bands, but that’s neither here nor there.

It ponders why the music companies cannot come up with some arrangement so that you can buy music from overseas iTunes stores (after all, a sale is revenue for them, and denying it decreases their profit and promotes file sharing to get music), and also has some interesting comments on the various ways people routinely work around these restrictions, which is something I hadn’t read about before (apparently you can easily buy legit prepaid iTunes cards for other countries on popular auction websites, and then just buy songs using those).

Interesting read anyway.

The fascade of culture

A few weeks ago while driving to work for an afternoon/evening shift I happened upon the ABC Classics radio station doing their countdown of Australia’s favorite 100 opera moments, and got kind of hooked.

(as an aside if you want to (re-) listen to it you can do so at

Subsequently I went out and bought the 8 CD Boxed set of the countdown, and have been gradually listening my way through bits and pieces of it. It is both quite nice music (by and large it seems to miss out on the harsh screeching soprano moments that I usually most dislike in opera) and makes me feel almost cultured (or somethings).

The morning music predicament

I keep on running into a little dilema.

I’m not the most motivated in the morning, and usual arrive in the hospital car park with 2 or 3 minutes to get up to the ward before start time.

Now the problem is that I listen to CDs or the radio as I drive to work, and I frequently find myself halfway through some really good song or other as I park the car. Now I know I should just jump out and go into work, but my brain keeps on saying “Oh go on. just stay till the end of the song”.

This of course sounds like a completely superficially reasonable proposition, but as previously mentioned I am already running almost late, and besides, what should I do if the next song is really good too. And if it only happened occasionally it’d maybe be OK, but it seems to happen all the time.

I suppose that the other Freudian conclusion to be drawn from this is that maybe I just like music more than I like work…

Cultivating my Evil side

Following my opera purchase today I spent a portion of this evening cultivating my Evil side

I sat at my oversized desk, in my swivelling chair, playing Evil Genius (one of my current favorite computer games, where you control minions, build secret lairs, comit acts of infamy across the globe, and plot to take over the world (it really is an awful lot of fun)), listening to opera playing loudly in the background, and stroking the cat who was sitting on my knee.

I half expected Sean Connery to bust into my study to try and stop me. 🙂

More thoughts on copyright

The BBC has an interesting discussion piece about the appartent push by certain industry lobby groups in Britain to extend copyright from it’s current 50 years.

Regular readers will be quite familiar with my opinions on matters of copyright and IP as it pertains to popular culture, so I will forgo my usual tired tirade, but the piece is certainly an interesting and quite fairly balanced discussion of the issue.