When We Waited In Line for Something Else

By Steve Meyer, Inside Music Media™ Contributor

What a week. Google's stock price hit $500 a share and Apple Computer was also at an all time high on Wall Street; the Universal Music group sued MySpace.com for copyright infringements; Fox Entertainment saved whatever face they had left and cancelled their planned O.J. Simpson special "If I Did It" due to public outcries; and Sony released their PlayStation 3 to retailers around the country. Well, actually they only partially released it, since most stores got 50 units or less and had lines around the block for days preceding the on-sale catastrophies. In several locations people were shot. In other locations there were incidents of robberies, and other violence. Must be a helluva tech-toy this PlayStation 3.

And then I thought back to a different time and I remembered vividly standing in line for hours to buy my copy of The Beatles 'Sgt.Pepper' album in Manhattan. My parents said I was crazy, but I hopped on my motorcycle at 7 a.m. with a friend, and headed down to be the first on my block to get the album and share it with friends. There were at least 200 people in line at the Capitol Records store in midtown, but we got in line, and waited. And when we got home hours later in the early evening and dropped the needle on the vinyl, we heard magic and didn't for one minute think the wait wasn't worth it all.

You see, unlike those Play Station 3s, MUSIC isn't generic product, it's something wrapped in our deepest emotions, psyche, and at its best, like great literature, can be either a mirror that shows us ourselves, or a lamp that sheds light on current and future conditions. So let's be blunt, those in the industry who don't realize this are part of the reason that so many people are now waiting in line for video game consoles instead of waiting in line to buy new albums by their favorite artists. (Steve Meyer is one of the music industry's top professionals and publisher of the new media newsletter DISC & DAT)