by carl wilson

Grey Tuesday

(from the folks who brought you Blue Monday)

Along with 150+ other music sites, Zoilus (which wakes up a little late in the day) is happy to join in with today's Grey Tuesday civil-disobedience action.

I haven't yet cracked the MP3 hosting trick for my own site, but look here for a copy of DangerMouse's remix of Jay-Z's The Black Album with The Beatles' The White Album - of course, The Grey Album. (It's password protected but the information you need is on the page.)

The leading source is here but it has been overloaded much of the day. And meanwhile there is this cease and desist letter to worry about - received today by the participating sites.

I should mention that the DangerMouse suite itself is uneven - some solidly inspired mashes side-by-each with some that are a bit jokey or token - but much more than worth hearing.

In any case the overall principle that corporations like EMI and their street-bully lawyers should not have the right to prevent artists from using existing work for appropriation and creative satire, recontextualization and metacriticism is pretty much the centre of the current cultural cycle. It's a fight that's been fought for a long while now, going back through the Plunderphonics and Negativland cases, and still needs to be fought every day - at the same time as defending the rights of artists (and their business partners, sure) to be compensated for their original work as a consumer item.

The difference between what DangerMouse has done & what a bootlegger selling burned CDs on the street - and even what your average downloader does - is vast and obvious. There are hairs to be split and contradictions to be resolved about downloading and copying in general. But when it comes to making new music out of old, in my opinion there's not even a legitimate counterargument: No harm done, we all benefit, and that's what culture has always been. A blues song, for instance, is almost always made up of two stolen riffs and one new one, two canonical rhymes and one new twist - new technologies change nothing there.

For more information or to add your site to the protest, go here.

News | Posted by zoilus on Tuesday, February 24 at 01:55 PM | Linking Posts | Comments (1)

 

COMMENTS

Thanks for some insight on the depth of this issue. Great post.

Posted by LL on February 24, 2004 03:28 PM

 

 

 

Zoilus by Carl Wilson