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Here's how stupid they are...

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I took a ride to Media Play and Best Buy the other night in an attempt to find some of the good Jazz I've been hearing on Nite Owl Jazz (See link in my sig).

The main thing I was looking for was a couple of albums by Charles Earland. I didn't have any luck at Media Play, so I still had time to jet over to Best Buy.

I didn't see what I was looking for, so I rounded up an employee to check the computer to see if any Charles Earland was in stock.

She ran the search and had a strange look. She told me she wasn't sure why, but it had been recently deleted from stock. She said this was strange, because the two titles I was looking for had been released in August! And she said they did have multiple copies in stock until the last couple of weeks when they were deleted.

Why on earth would these titles be deleted from stock when they had just been released?

And what kind of system are they using here?

Fritz has been playing tracks off of these two albums every week since they were re-released in August. (Charles Earland-The Mighty Burner and Funk Fantastique)

So, you would think that considering these two albums were being promoted regionally, local outlets would have these titles in stock.

(Maybe that makes too much sense. :freak: )


Needless to say, I haven't had any luck tracking down these titles at any retail outlet in a

60 mile radius.


Maybe it isn't reasonable to think I could get these titles through a retail outlet. I would have agreed with this if the woman hadn't told me they were in stock, but had been deleted for unknown reasons.

And of course, nothing is preventing me from having them special order these titles. But, this increases the hassle factor.

It would be nice if I could take a trip/adventure to the record store and find what I'm looking for without a hassle.

My record store trips are like a ritual thing that I've been doing for years. I like making the trip. I like going to the store and scanning the bins. I like stumbling across things that catch my eye. You know, those random finds that weren't on the list, but make it to the check-out. I love the trip back, when I get to sample my new stack of tunes.


Anyway, if I was one of these downloading types, I would probably just scan the p2p networks and download what I was looking for. But, I believe in supporting the artists/etc. I don't have the patience for downloading, anyway. I'm on a dial up.


The girl at Best Buy said she could special order the titles no problem, but I'm not going to give them the pleasure. They should have kept the titles in stock. I'll order the titles from a one of a few Jazz specific distros on the web.


Or, I'll just get them on Ebay. And if they happen to be used, than that might as well be a lost sale for the industry.


And Charles Earland isn't the only one. Fritz plays jazz for the 21st century.

That means most of what he is playing is recently released shit that should be available.


Terry Gibbs Dream Band Vol. 6 -not in stock, not a single title

Irene Reed - nothing in stock

The Latin Giants play the hits of The Paladium -nada, zilch, no luck

Chad Lawson - not in stock


So what gives?


Did they know I was coming and cleared that shit out? :D

Was Charles Earland a terrorist sympathizer? :D

Is Jazz a target of Homeland Security?

Is Fritz and WJZA wasting their time promoting these titles, since nobody is going to stock them?


Does anybody know where the best place to get good Jazz in Columbus is?


Anybody have any similar tales of industry ignorance?

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Maybe the distribution deal was a consignment type thing, and after a certain period with no sales, they pull the plug and send 'em back.


I've never looked at buying anything at Best Buy, we have pretty good regional chains here in the Boston area. A friend had horrible experience with a PC purchase at Best Buy.


Buy online, direct from the artist if possible. CD Baby is awesome.


And just because I always have to say it, I'll say it again: NEVER EVER buy music at Wal-Mart! :mad:

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Don't even think of going to Best Buy for jazz. They can't even spell jazz.


I was looking for new releases from Al Jarreau, and another from Anita Baker last weekend.


Of course they didn't stock either. I figured that I'd have to order them from Amazon.com.


Before going home I stopped by Barnes & Noble Bookstore. They had both CDs. Of course, they wanted an arm and a leg for them, but I bought them anyway.


It turns out the Anita Baker CD is nothing to write home about. But the Al Jarreau CD is exceptional. The title is "Accentuate the Positive".


Best Buy is a great place to buy blank CDs and overpriced televisions. But for anything else, you'll need to shop around.


Tom :cool:

"Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent." - Victor Hugo
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Yeah, I figured that much. :D


But, the Media Play and Best Buy I went to both have sizable Jazz sections. And you would think that they would have recent releases in stock.

I guess that's what I get for being an optimist. :D


When it comes to tracking down anything of the metal persuasion, I know right where to go. Being new to the Jazz thing, I'm clueless as to where the best place to get Jazz in the Columbus area is.


And like I said before, I could order this stuff of the web. But, then I don't get to make the trip, which is one of the favorite parts of my music buying ritual. And that usually results in me walking out of a music store with way more than what I went in there looking for.

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I worked in music retail for a long time, maybe I could share some insight.


I worked a buyer for a few natioanl chains in Canada, some only music, and some like Best Buy (i.e. Future Shop). Thankfully, I am out of that game.


I too, am dissappointed with the selectiion at record stores. Since the advent of p2p most stores carry less titles. They also now focus on DVD movie titles instead.


There are hundreds, if not thousands of new titles every week. With the prolifferation of cheaper recording, the tidal wave of new releases is insane. At the same time, there are less and less music buyers out there.


What chains do is trim down their title count and concentrate on the tried and true or sure fire sellers.


The saving grace, online stores. In the past we had a rolodex type reference tool to find titles, and those rolodex's were out of date pretty quick. Now you have the internet, with up to the minute updates of totles and catalogue numbers.


Music is no longer a hand sell.... :(

There is no substitute.
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I too miss the days of going to a shop, getting a box from the clerk and staring at A and looking at every record until Z, putting my selections in my own box. But those days are over.


Wasn't it nice to talk to someone at a record store and ask what new stuff was good? Now, if it isn't Dr Dre, they have no idea what you are talking about.


Last Christmas, I wanted to buy Steve Lukathar's Christmas CD for my bro in law. I went to the local HMV, first looked for it, then asked for it.


"Steve Who?"


"You know, Lukather. Toto, Los Lobotomys, every song recorded in LA in the 80's and 90's."


Response....blank stare.....


I bought it online.


Record stores are not what they used to be.

There is no substitute.
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I did a quick google search.


Amazon has listings for both albums, but Funk Fantastique is not shown on the Charles Earland page. You have to search Google for the specific album in conjuction with his name.


Funk Fantastique does, indeed, show as being re-released in August. Cookin' With The Mighty Burner shows as being in continuous release since 1997.


I found no idea why Funk Fantastique had been pulled, but that's hardly surprising. Mighty Burner was around 38,000th on Amazon's sales list. Funk Fantastique was over 224,000th. Not really surprising mainstream outlets would have dumped it for other titles. Of course, it's only been out again for a month but... Who knows?

It's easiest to find me on Facebook. Neil Bergman




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Good info, Neil.


GZ hit the nail on the head. I guess I'm too old school for the here and now. So much for the old way.

At this rate, I would guess the retail outlets will be gone in a few years.


It still doesn't make sense. They trim their stock down to the top 100, and the don't understand why sales are in the dump.

The music buyer isn't usually interested in the top 100. The top 100 is probably the titles that are most traded on p2p networks.


If they want to save retail sales, they need to figure out who the music buyer is. And I think the average music buyer is like myself.


P.S. Those numbers Neil provided from amazon just goes to show the majority of people don't have any taste. :D

Charles Earland is a burner!

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cd sales are there as a compliment to their audio sales. They do not care about music, it is just media to them.


When guys like them came into the industry, it went from a 25% margin/4 turnovers a year bisiness to a 6% margin/10 turnovers a year sideline.

There is no substitute.
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Many towns have a hole-in-the-wall record shop specializing in jazz. That's where you will find knowledgeable people who deserve your business. Check your yellow pages to see if there might be one out there. Much of the music stocked in the jazz category at chain stores isn't actually jazz. If you don't have any of the better chains around (such as Tower records) or any specialty shops then a pilgrimage to the nearest big city or clicking over to Amazon or other online resource is the best way to go.
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I really miss "the trip" of going to the record store too, but its a thing of the past for me. If I'm picking up a popular title I'll go to Target (whose prices beat even Best Buy) but otherwise go to Amazon and CD Baby. Our local Media Play was always well-stocked with jazz, but about a year ago they started making their cashiers do heavy telemarketing while you were trying to buy your CDs, "Would you be interested in...", "We have a special deal on..." I bitched to the local manager and got the proverbial "cow staring at a passing train" look. :rolleyes: I even tried to write to Corporate Headquarters, that's an address I just cannot find, damn! We have a Virgin Megastore in SLC that has a good selection of jazz but I'll not pay $18.99 for a single disc. Life's changing, even for buying records... :(


"Eccentric language often is symptomatic of peculiar thinking" - George Will


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Not music but...I noticed the other day that an author I've read is about to release a new book. I went to amazon.ca to see about pre-ordering and discovered that it's already out of print. Huh? Not "Will be released on..." but "Out Of Print" Not even released yet and already out of print. I feel sorry for the author, I hope his day job is secure.




I have the mind of a criminal genius.....I keep it in the freezer next to mother.
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We have a place here in North Coastal San Diego called Lou's Records. All the employees know their stuff. Different people have different specialties. Jazz, reggae, blues, pop, world, breakbeat vinyl, etc. They charge a consistent percentage over their cost which keeps the cost typicaly around the Target, etc. price range. Killer used CD building right across the parking lot. I hope everyone's got a place available to them in their town. Thanks Lou!
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