02011-02-11 | Uncategorized | 7 comments

Great piece: NYT vs HuffPost

The sound of cicadas – also half, quarter and eighth speed to hear the actual rhythm.

Bling Bike – what happens when you ask a rapper to design a bicycle.

I read this rubbish last month and was moved to make the only comment I am likely going leave anywhere all year. I wrote:

o2ma Says:
CDs were always the smallest expense of a production. The recording itself costs the most, perhaps followed by the advertising campaign. Sure, if one records a few synths in a bedroom the recording cost is very low and the album should be priced accordingly. If, however, one needs to pay for a real studio, for musicians and engineers, the cost can hit several hundred thousand quickly.

The difference in cost between pressing CDs or selling downloads is minute.

I find it infuriating when people have no fundamental understanding wherein the value of an LP, a CD or a download album lies. Like all of my favorite art (((NOT this – that is the opposite))) the value of a musical album lies in the ideas contained in it, not in the value of the piece of plastic or vinyl or digital bits. The album in a store (((whether virtual or brick))) is simply a container for the ideas of the musicians and producers. This is similar to a painting, where the canvas and paint itself would not add up to much…

And to say that since musicians enjoy what they do therefore they should be willing to do it for free is such rubbish (((but often read on the interwebs!))). I mean, I know car mechanics who seem to truly love their work, but nobody would consider for a second that they would work for free.

In the past few years, every time I am about to start work on a new album, I think why go through all that trouble, why battle inspiration, why work so cussing hard on a new album when it will be traded worldwide for free, within weeks. I imagine a large part of my audience would be happy for us to play the “classic” stuff on tour and we could do well with that for another deacade or so.

Well, one thing that inspires me to start on the next album is that I already have the cover photography. I saw the image yesterday and think it is stunning.


It’s funny, when a friend played Medterranian Sundance for me in the mid-Seventies, I immediately wanted to know who the other guitarist was… it was Paco De Lucia. Today a search for Paco brought this to my attention. I am still not a fan of Al DiMeola, but the question and the beginning of his answer fit in with my post from today:

Al Di Meola meets “Strawberry Fields”
What makes you decide to do an album? The changes in the music industry have profoundly affected everything. I wonder if there’s a point sometimes.

There’s not (laughs). There’s really no point in making a record, when you think about it. Just think really quick – Rolling Stones. Do they need to make a record? No. Paul McCartney? Does he need to make a record? No. Assuming they’re going to keep touring…. You don’t go to see them for the new material. You go to see them to play the stuff you remember from way in the beginning …

Indeed, and I might add, they are not going to make any money releasing a new album while they do very well with their tours.


  1. Kaz

    Thank you for continuing to create your art.(Can’t wait to see that cover!) I hope people in future be more respectful of your music/art. I agree with your point of view concerning the cost of recording music, when we take into consideration studio time and its human resources, other fellow musicians, equipment ..etc.etc. it adds up very quickly especially if we’re creating a more “Organic Music” with real musicians playing like the music of Ottmar Liebert and Luna Negra!

  2. dave

    I, for one, have no problem paying for music. I do prefer to have a cd “hardcopy” for back-up when possible. Packages like the La Semana box are exquisite works of art.

  3. Adam Solomon

    Interesting frontpage comparison! I think both designs reflect their respective sites pretty well; the Times is professional and well-refined, while the HuffPo is more geared towards a massive, information-hungry Web 2.0 crowd. I think HuffPo’s representative of the web in a lot of ways; unlike the Times, which has consistency because they hire mostly trained journalists, HuffPo’s open nature leads to a huge variability in the writing. A lot of it is really excellent, while some is trash (for example, it’s absolutely appalling that they continue to give Jenny McCarthy a forum to speak about vaccines and autism). It has both hits and misses you’ll never have a chance to get with the Times. Depends what you’re looking for at a particular time, I s’pose.

    And hey, those of us who pay for your music are glad you keep putting new albums out, no matter how the cost-benefit analysis works :)

  4. Steve(Brokerbiker)

    I have always felt passionate about what I do, and therein lies the true value of one’s craft/art that should be worthy of compensation. My experise is valued by others, just as I value Ottmar’s music and artistic expression and glady pay to to enjoy it, whether recorded and/or live. As I ask my Clients- “If you required heart surgery, would you ‘shop’ the hospitals for the cheapest surgeon? They get the point…

  5. Brenda

    Why? There is only one you so burn your candle of inspiration that is “Not for Sale”.

  6. Boris

    Interesting what you mention on the cover photography. I remember albums where it was the other way round, like with Nouveaumatic. Even if the photography you found will not become the cover, it adds to the idea, to the atmosphere of the next album, no?
    Anyway, what makes you going back to composing new music again and again should be the process of creation which drives an artist. If you “only” played the yet wonderful music of the past it would make you a “Musiker”, or was it “Musikant”? Still a lot, though …

  7. stephen duros

    Great comment that you left


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