You hear the repeated chorus: music in the digital age has become meaningless and valueless, like turning on water from a tap in the middle of Rome. But, quietly, a movement is stirring that is reclaiming the value of music. Armed with nothing more sophisticated than markers, paper, collage materials, and imagination, they send mixes of music like grade school Valentines. Heck, they even use the mail. It makes the album more personal than it was even in its golden, mass-produced age.
Many of the practitioners in this case are returning to the cassette and mix tape. But I was also interested in handcrafting cases for demos, for your own music, and for mixes of Creative Commons-licensed and netlabel materials. Instead of just swapping behind our avatars and usernames on SoundCloud, it returns us to the glee of playing with markers and exchanging face-to-face.
If you’re in New York, we’ll be making our own musical packaging and then swapping records, starting with a 4:00 pm workshop on this Sunday 10/10/10 at the Lower East Side’s cozy (and tapas- and drink-stocked) Culturefix NY:
But wherever you are, perhaps this Sunday you can make some handmade music.
This is a really sweet article from the CreateDigitalMusic blog. Proof that value lies in the people. I think it’d be awesome if you could make a digital version of this, where artists can make their own collages and artwork on a touch screen, similar to an iPad, with a special pen or something. It would leave the custom feel but it would also be mass-producable and scalable. It also wouldn’t be hard for the artist to circulate a bunch of custom designs throughout their fan bases. It’s definitely something worth watching for.