Posted in industry | music | technology on January 30, 2013

Amoeba

Vinyl will never die, but at this may help put some of those ultra-rare releases into your pocket and not just on your turntable:

California-based mega-retailer Amoeba Music, the last big record store on the block, has moved into the digital age with both feet, with its inauguration of a revamped website. And possibly the most intriguing element of that site, and a direct reflection of Ameoba's dig-deeper philosophy, is the so-called Vinyl Vaults section -- thousands of rare and out-of-print LPs, 78s and 45s that flow through the company's three outlets in any given week -- now available for sale via download.
"We've been digitizing a lot," says Jim Henderson, who owns Amoeba along with partners Marc Weinstein, Karen Pearson and Dave Prinz. "What you see now is the lost-between-the-cracks, underappreciated, undervalued (music) from dead labels, (obscure) artists, stuff that we really stand behind. It's mostly in the rock genre, with a lot of jazz, a lot of blues, some country, some spoken word. There are some oddities for sure." -[Variety]
The number of titles grow daily, with more than one thousand already on hand. If it's anything like Amoeba's stock right now, expect some rare/obscure LPs in there. Check out Amoeba's "vinyl vault" here.

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Tags: Amoeba Music

Comments (24)

I don't know whether to be excited about the idea or a little concerned about the legality of this.

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 11:23 AM

how is this legal?

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 11:24 AM

it's tough to imagine they've tracked down the [estates] of a lot of the musicians / labels... maybe they just wait for someone to approach them and then they'll pay per download and hope to not get sued further?

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 11:28 AM

Would love to see Amoeba Music in Manhattan.

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 11:39 AM

Freaking Myrons on here "how can this be legal?" Damn, talk about Debbie Downer WOOP WAAAAAH

This is good news. OOP stuff is a drag to track down, often in less than desirable condition. Chill out and groove on a rainy day.

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 11:41 AM

It's one thing to digitize hard to find recordings and share them, but it's the charging money for them aspect that's sketchy.

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 11:48 AM

Oh I'm chilled and groovy. And this is awesome news. But I question the legality because this may lead record nerds everywhere to get very excited, only to see it potentially shut down very, very soon.

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 11:52 AM

agreed. it's great news but highly questionable.

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 11:59 AM

yeah 11:48, they should do it for nothing. rooms full of people, spending hours per piece to rip and restore, and then just release it. after all, nobody there needs to eat or pay rent. power to the people.

when are you going to gather at zuccotti park this spring?

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 12:00 PM

totally illegal

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 12:07 PM

Give me a break, 12:00. They don't own the rights to the music, therefore selling digital downloads without royalties going to their respective copyright owners is illegal, regardless of how many hours they spent doing this.

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 12:08 PM

12:00- bloggers do the same thing and don't make a dime off their efforts. If they can get shut down on the same grounds, then you do the math.

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 12:11 PM

"Amoeba is remastering much of the music, and while there are only about 1,000 titles for sale right now, they are adding 10 or 15 more every day. Some artists or labels are so long-lost that they have been impossible to track down, leading Amoeba to set aside money from such sales in an escrow account. “If (someone says), ‘That’s mine,’ well, OK, we can either take it down or we’ll sell it, and you’ve got this nice (digital) master. We’ll sell it, we’ll promote it; let’s sign a contract,” explains co-owner Marc Weinstein."

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 12:18 PM

yeah, but that's only if the bands find out about it and take action. if not, it's all profit.

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 12:21 PM

a very flimsy way to cover your ass...

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 12:21 PM

Well, the question is if they would personally dip into the escrow account or not. That's the only thing they need to be more clear about.

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 12:23 PM

Yeah, are 100% of those profits going into that account and will they sit there untouched until someone claims them? Doubtful...

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 12:26 PM

what if the rightsholders already have a reissue planned and amoeba releases the music early, without express permission? labels like numero group and light in the attic do exhaustive research before reissuing obscure music, there's no reason why amoeba can't as well, especially with 200 employees working on the project and a budget of $11M.

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 12:34 PM

I think there's a lack of info - it doesn't say that Amoeba hasn't contacted anyone at all. Maybe they have? It says "some" artists and labels are too obscure to find.

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 12:36 PM

12:34 - Your comment is too inside and correct for 11:41 & 12:00 to understand. Please take your comments elsewhere.

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 1:31 PM

Like prohibition, it's sometimes OK for something to be illegal and a good thing.

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 1:33 PM

Losers at amoeba digitizing rare vinyl is whack.

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 5:15 PM

Lionel Hutz will take Amoeba down. DOWN

Posted by Anonymous | January 30, 2013 10:27 PM

no matter how much technology changed.. no one could ever copy the epic sound of a record..

Posted by Tello | September 15, 2014 1:41 PM

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