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Screw Starbucks


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Originally posted by d gauss:

remember that dylan started out playing in coffee shops. he just got a little bigger and so did the coffee shop... :)

 

-d. gauss

That is the perfect statement there! :thu:
"Nothing is true; everything is permitted."
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Well...I'd be willing to bet that no label was willing to put out that Dylan CD. My assumption is that he had three choices: Not put it out, put it out through an independent label, or do the Starbucks thang.

 

And if he'd put it out through Rykodisc or whatever, we wouldn't be talking about it here...right? It's all about exposure, and he'll get exposure at Starbucks. At any record store, chain or independent, he'd be lost in a stack of a zillion CDs.

 

I think the key line is that Starbucks feels they've found a niche for a demographic that's not being serviced elsewhere, and probably doesn't spend a lot of time going around to CD stores. Nature abhors a vacuum, as they say.

 

And I have to admit that these days, I pretty much buy CDs where I find them because my time is so limited. I can't just take off and go to a CD store, because the nearest one is a one hour drive there and back. I bought Ultra Dance 06 from an Altitunes store at the Cincinnati airport on a layover, the new Nine Inch Nails from Fred Meyers up in Oregon when I was buying snacks, and Beck's Guero from a...shudder...WAL-MART because I was there buying batteries, and the CD caught my eye. This also meant I didn't have to make a separate trip to the nearest CD store. Which, by the way, did NOT have Moby's "Hotel" last time I did go there specifically to buy it...

 

HOWEVER, my attitude would be very different if there was a "mom and pop" CD store in my area, and you can bet I'd patronize it. But there isn't. One chain is about the same as any other chain, far as I'm concerned. Normally I get my CDs from the NARAS list anyway, but lately it seems some labels are opting out of putting their releases in there.

 

Anyway, probably anything that gets people into the habit of buying music is ultimately a good thing, unless it's a deceptive practice...like selling at a loss to pull in customers to buy other things. I think Wal-Mart does that, but then again, the Beck CD cost me $16.88...hardly a loss leader. In any event, one thing's for sure: I BOUGHT those CDs, so at least I can hope it showed up on the artist's royalty checks!

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I've got two of them within walking distance of my place. They went up a couple of years ago almost at the same time causing another coffee house that specialized in bagels to turn into a sushi place.

 

I don't drink coffee anymore, these days its tea. They have great hot or iced teas, decent bagels, and I like the banana nut loaf, marble cake loaf, and lemon loaf occasionally.

 

Picked up a good Miles Davis CD recently. I've yet to see any live entertainment in one of them and they're all over Orange County.

 

Steve

You shouldn't chase after the past or pin your hopes on the future.
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Well I'll agree with ya Bon Mot - Dylan's definitely a national treasure! :)

 

And Starbucks pisses me off at times, I definitely support local independent coffeehouses rather than go there... but I don't really care that Dylan did this deal (and d gauss' post had me laughing out loud as usual). Artists have to get creative these days to get heard, even some of the big names. Unfortunately music is not uppermost in people's minds these days and often you have to bring it to where the people are because people will not necessarily go seek it out. In order to make any money you have to sneak music into TV and movie soundtracks, video game soundtracks, ads, and now coffee shops. Whatever. Frankly I'd rather deal with that than a record label, at least corporate sponsors tend to have more of a hands off approach to the creative part - unlike the labels. :rolleyes: And of course if you sign with a label it is probably STILL owned by some corporation that's at LEAST as evil as Starbucks, if not far more evil.

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Originally posted by Anderton:

Anyway, probably anything that gets people into the habit of buying music is ultimately a good thing, unless it's a deceptive practice...like selling at a loss to pull in customers to buy other things. I think Wal-Mart does that, but then again, the Beck CD cost me $16.88...hardly a loss leader.

Well a lot of times they DO sell at loss leader prices. In fact the owners of my local mom and pop record store often go in there and buy CD's and resell them in their store - because they can get them at Wal-Mart cheaper than their wholesale distributor! There's something really wrong with that.
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Originally posted by pseudonym:

So, can you say, without going into much detail, why you can make a much better "brew" of coffee? I'm not trying to be defensive, I just wonder why, that coffee can be so subtle and yet so vast in difference? :wave:

It's real simple. The Starbucks shops around here have coffee that is BITTER!!! I like reasonably strong coffee but it has to taste good. Theirs doesn't. Who knows why? I don't. I have friends and associates that love the taste of Starbucks so it's a personal thing.

The shop I frequent most also has a larger variety of coffee available than do the local Starbucks that normally have two, sometimes including decaf. I don't go for the lattes, mochas & etc, I'm only speaking of straight coffee.

 

As to my own...

Nothing special except learning my grinder, the quantity of beans to grind and the brewer. I generally brew Sumatra or a Kona Blend simply because I like them.

 

Believe it, I made some pretty nasty coffee for awhile.

 

Our Joint

 

"When you come slam bang up against trouble, it never looks half as bad if you face up to it." The Duke...

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ALl I'm satying is, I don't want to hear any more whining abotu filesharing.

 

When the industry get's to a point where the only music you can find in a store, is the stuff released in the last 6 months, and othewrwise you can pay$0.99 for a POS crappy MP3 online, theycan Go F%^$Ck themsleves.

I am not going to pay basically the same price for a compressed format and no packaging.

 

And by allolwing stores to cherrypick, that is where you end up.

IMDB Credit list

President George Washington: "The government of the United States is in no sense founded on the Christian Religion."

President Abraham Lincoln: "The Bible is not my book, nor Christianity my religion."

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ALl I'm satying is, I don't want to hear any more whining abotu filesharing.

When the industry get's to a point where the only music you can find in a store, is the stuff released in the last 6 months, and othewrwise you can pay$0.99 for a POS crappy MP3 online, theycan Go F%^$Ck themsleves.

I am not going to pay basically the same price for a compressed format and no packaging.

And by allolwing stores to cherrypick, that is where you end up.

I guess you don't know about their NEW cd make-you're-own thing also, you can burn a cd from their options right there in the store, you choose the songs you want, from the artists, etc. :eek:
WAR IS PEACE, FREEDOM IS SLAVERY, IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH
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Right. So the issue really isn't about Starbucks at all... oar is it?

All stores cherrypick. Successful businesses pick what they think will sell to make their store successful. We'd be up in arms if companies were disallowed the ability to carry or not carry stock... tell them how to run their business and limit their success.

 

If a 'mom and pop' store stocks something they know won't sell to the mainstream masses, but they are targeting a particular demographic, that's their choice. Maybe they're not concerned with growing their business and are happier serving a niche. That's their prerogative. I'm all for independent non-chain stores of any kind because I enjoy variety and I'm also a sucker for 'the underdog'.

 

I'm personally tickled to have the ability to download MP3s and do a little cherrypicking of my own before I order a full CD since I don't have a lot of time to hit music stores. If I'm not particularly thrilled with an entire CD, I can pick only the song(s) I like. I've bought many a CD for just one or two songs, even though that seems like a waste to me sometimes. I remember one of the music stores I went to used to allow you to choose songs and make custom cassette tapes (which I used to do all the time, but even that selection was limited) and I'm glad to see that option extended for CDs now as well... now if I could just get to a music store! :)

 

For years I bought 45s... yes the quality was/is better than an MP3, but we live in a different world now and I don't have unlimited hard drive space anyway. If the cost of that is $.99 a song so the artist/label gets some kind of cut, that's fine. Whatever. I'll deal with it because I'd rather not steal anything from anyone because I'm a pretty strong advocate for other people's intellectual property.

 

That's just me, anyway. ::shrug::

"Nothing is true; everything is permitted."
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Henchman, I like filesharing.. or I should say I liked it back when.. I understand philosophically if it is something someone is selling and you take it without paying for it- you're stealing... but I believe in actuality, it helped musicians sell more records and tickets.
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Originally posted by miki:

If I'm not particularly thrilled with an entire CD, I can pick only the song(s) I like. I've bought many a CD for just one or two songs, even though that seems like a waste to me sometimes. I remember one of the music stores I went to used to allow you to choose songs and make custom cassette tapes (which I used to do all the time, but even that selection was limited) and I'm glad to see that option extended for CDs now as well... now if I could just get to a music store! :)

 

Too bad a start-up failed with just that criteria, custom cds burned to your specs as to what songs you wanted on the cd. I can't remember the cost per song but it was very reasonable for the cd. I did a compilation with, I believe 15 songs on it for, in the neighborhood of $10.00, give or take a buck. Main stream? No, but artists I wanted and songs I wanted are on it.

I don't have the cd here, it's out in my car so I can't tell you who and how many, but I know Fred Eaglesmith, C.J. Chenier(sp?) and Doc Watson are among the artists on my compilation.

That was a great idea, much before it's time. The music industry should have jumped on that band wagon, they'd be rolling in more dough now than they are.

It was XOOM dot com at the time. Don't know if they have survived in some other image.

 

Our Joint

 

"When you come slam bang up against trouble, it never looks half as bad if you face up to it." The Duke...

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Originally posted by Bon Mot:

I believe in actuality, it helped musicians sell more records and tickets.

I agree. It pissed off labels because they were no longer anle to count on peopel buyign full albums with only one good song on it. And the same shitty artists were suddenly faced with less salkes and less mechanical royalties becasue of the same issue.

 

I still believe if labels held producers more accountable for the qulity of records delivered, instead of paying them huge amounts of money upfront, better records would be made, and more records would be sold.

IMDB Credit list

President George Washington: "The government of the United States is in no sense founded on the Christian Religion."

President Abraham Lincoln: "The Bible is not my book, nor Christianity my religion."

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The days of the full line record store are over. The local HMV's (which are the deepest catelogue music store in Canada) have a very thin selection. Last Christmas I was looking for Steve Lukather's Xmas cd (Xmas time), they had never heard of Steve Lukather or even Toto. Same story with Henry Rollins. The employees are just kids.

 

Nowadays, their stores are half $28 dvd's and half 3 for $30 cd's of back catelogue.

 

Bottom line, the labels would do so much better if they actively promoted the back catelogue and made EVERY title in their coffers available through E-Stores, whether their own, or other.

There is no substitute.
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As for Starbucks.... besides those ellusive Mom and Pop coffee shops (any of those in the 'burbs?), many areas did not have a decent coffee house. If you think that a Denny's, local donut chain or a McDonald's pour a good cup of coffee, I suppose we will have to agree to disagree.

 

While Starbucks is far from perfect, they brought some semblance of taste and artistry to places not used to having anything but a retailer that put on a pot of Maxwell House and let it burn for 4 hours.

 

Not everyone lives in the heart of the cool part of town.

 

As for people who want more then what a chain like Starbucks or Second Cup, there will always be specialty shops willing to serve you. But you will have to go to that neighbouhood up on the hill, where the thin blooded folks park their Bentleys and Aston Martins.

There is no substitute.
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Originally posted by songrytr:

If you're a serious coffee drinker you know the difference.

...and because of this, you make it yourself with a french press, or suchlike.

 

Or visit your favorite Turkish restaurant, and get some real flavor there! ;)

 

 

cheers,

aeon

Go tell someone you love that you love them.
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Originally posted by aeon:

Originally posted by songrytr:

If you're a serious coffee drinker you know the difference.

...and because of this, you make it yourself with a french press, or suchlike.
Absolutely. I tend to alternate between the french press and my commercial grade Bunn drip brewer.

 

Of course, the beans are fresh (within a week of roasting) and I grind 'em up with a nice burr grinder.

 

Gotta do your chemicals right.

 

;)

this house is empty now...
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In his autobiography, Starbucks founder/CEO Howard Shultz talks about how early on, Kenny G was a goodwill ambassador for the chain and that his music perfectly matches Starbucks image.

 

'Nuff said.

"You never can vouch for your own consciousness." - Norman Mailer
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I am a huge coffee drinker and whenver possible I'll support the local guy. But the only close place to my office is Starbucks, so I'll usually go once a day to get my triple tall Americano. It's $2.05, which seems fair for 3 shots of espresso, some hot water, and free cream. I don't go for those fancy fru fru drinks that are 90% fluff and 10% coffee, but that's just me...
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This sin't about liking Starbucks or not.

This is about exclusive contracts with Starbucks, keeping the much needed income from record stores.

If Starbucks wants to sell records, then fine. But they should be competing on level playing field. Instead of getting a six week window, when most people who are goignt o buy the record, will buy it.

 

The day will come that in the US, the only places to buy actual full CD's will be in stores like Walmart, who force lables to sanitize covers and content, and places like Starbucks. Both who will have very limited stock.

 

I find this type of thing way more troubling than downloading, as it affects WAHT you will be able to buy and hear.

IMDB Credit list

President George Washington: "The government of the United States is in no sense founded on the Christian Religion."

President Abraham Lincoln: "The Bible is not my book, nor Christianity my religion."

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You'll always be able to find CDs online at Amazon.com and the like, as long as CDs are around, and they have a larger catalog.

 

I was in Ameoba records in Hollywood last night before heading over to Catalina B&G and in their front window was a display of old dusty and worn phonographs from the 50s and 60s and a tree made out of warped red vinyl LPs. In a decade or so it might be replaced with 80s, 90s, and 00s CD players and scratched up CDs.

 

Inside they did have a small selection of out of print vinyl but the bulk of the music was on CD. I have a feeling that the record stores of the future will have a small selection of out of print CDs and some kiosks where you can quickly beem DVD quality mp3s or whatever to your player of the moment, and I'm sure Starbucks, Barnes &

Noble, etc., will have a compact rendition of that. Then you can take the "beemed" music and transfer it to your home system if you really feel the need.

 

But then again people are downloading music onto their cellphones over Wi-Fi these days.

 

Steve

You shouldn't chase after the past or pin your hopes on the future.
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Hench, I understand your point about catalog depth and cherrypicking. Starbucks, however, is staking out in their own category. Initially they were working deals for what the trade used to call "special products" - Licenses of back catalog for branded distribution.

 

Now they are becoming vertical. I linked that Seattle PI article about the music bar expansion into more stores in my earlier post. They also have a music branding exposure on XM .

 

The Ray Charles deal with Concord was the first of a development deal that guaranteed additional doors (geeky retail term for points of sale). The deal was non-exclusive and did not bypass traditional distribution like the Best Buy exclusives did. Carole King and Zucchero releases follow .

 

Now you can still look at the 4000 plus shoebox size stores that Starbucks has on the ground and say that these will never be able to offer the breadth of product that you can find at a good specialty store. That is true for now. But time moves pretty quickly. The Starbucks stores are wifi hotspots already. The leap to digital distribution is closer than you think. Things like Ultrawideband and higher capacity portable devices may follow with completely new distribution and commerce models that simply put the music where you are. Craig's anecdote about shopping and time and satisfaction suggests that this is where we could be heading.

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Originally posted by spokenward:

Hench, I understand your point about catalog depth and cherrypicking. Starbucks, however, is staking out in their own category. Initially they were working deals for what the trade used to call "special products" - Licenses of back catalog for branded distribution.

Yeah, I'm sure. if this is true then why the exclutivity?

 

I'll repeat:

 

The day will come that in the US, the only places to buy actual full CD's will be in stores like Walmart, who force lables to sanitize covers and content, and places like Starbucks. Both who will have very limited stock.

IMDB Credit list

President George Washington: "The government of the United States is in no sense founded on the Christian Religion."

President Abraham Lincoln: "The Bible is not my book, nor Christianity my religion."

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I must confess I don't see an issue here.

 

If Starbucks sells a CD you can't get anywhere else, so what? Who cares? So it's $14, is that worse than the price Walmart charges?

 

Starbucks is a company, just like Warner Bros, Sony, MCI, BMI, Microsoft and Apple. Their job is to sell product and make money. Morality hasn't, doesn't, and never will, enter ito the equation. That's not what capitalism is about. So what?

 

My advice: Get over it, and find something that really matters to get upset about.

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I can understand the concern, I once had a marketing/finance wizard (in the most elevated sense of the word) go on a 15 minute rant about how EJ Korvettes nearly destroyed the record business, all by themselves.

 

I decided right then that I should probably pick another time to tell him that he was speaking of my very first employer.

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Originally posted by philbo_Tangent:

I must confess I don't see an issue here.

Unfortunately, that's the problem.

I'm sure most peopel can't see the problem in the short term.

 

And the funny thing is, I don't even have to rely on music as my main source of income.

IMDB Credit list

President George Washington: "The government of the United States is in no sense founded on the Christian Religion."

President Abraham Lincoln: "The Bible is not my book, nor Christianity my religion."

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