Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Musical Notes by Bob Duskis: Tis the Season

Let's just cut right to the chase and come right out and say it. It's going to be a REALLY bad holiday season, capping off a difficult year for most businesses in this country. It doesn't look like the economy is going to be getting anything but worse for quite some time and companies that have been hanging on by their proverbial fingernails are now being pushed off the cliffs and out of business at an alarming rate. While this is by no means a phenomenon that is relegated only to the music business, the dominoes do seem to be falling in a particularly swift manner in our business and the body count is stacking up.

I bring this up to you today, not to be some dire, downer prophet of doom but instead to tell you that there IS something that you as consumers can do to help in the next few weeks (and certainly into the new year)- It is actually elegant in its simplicity.
If you want to support the independent businesses that offer you the kinds of choices that go beyond the bland and the mediocre, then this is the time to put your money where your loyalty lies. Let me be clear and tell you that this is not some plea for you to spend all of your holiday money on Six Degrees products (although that would of course warm the cockles of my heart). I'm talking about making an extra effort this season to support any and all of the indie oriented businesses that have brought the joy of diversity into your life. That means when it's time to get books for your friends and loved ones this holiday, skip the big chains and spread your hard earned dollars out to the many wonderful indie bookstores that are struggling to survive. If there are particular record labels that you love, this is the season to give their music as gifts and to either buy directly from them on their on-line stores or to purchase their releases from your favorite neighborhood independent record store (if there's still one around in your hood anymore). Buying direct from a label puts your money in their pockets quickly and eliminates any middle man. In general, take a moment to remember what a good value the gifts of books or music are. These are relatively inexpensive presents that bring resonance and pleasure to you and your loved ones way beyond most of the disposal trash that people exchange during this time of year. Few things can enrich a life as much as a great book or great music.
It's going to cost a bit more and lord knows we are all counting our pennies these days- but I promise you, if your favorite businesses go away, you are going to feel like that slight investment would have been a small price to pay the next time you can't find anything other than the mass appeal entertainment peddled by the big box retailers. Imagine a market place where the Walmart's of the world solely decide what will and will not be available to be sold. We are not that far from that scenario.

This is it, this is the season when your dollars are a kind of referendum on how much diversity and eclecticism a depressed market can bear. All I'm asking is that you take a moment to think about this when you are contemplating what you will be buying this season and where you will be buying it.

Whatever you decide to do, we here at Six Degrees Records are always in your debt. Your loyalty and patronage are something that we NEVER take for granted. Crazy economy or not, we appreciate your continued support of what we do. All of us here wish all of you and yours, the happiest and most restful of holiday seasons.


Ian Menzies said...

Great post Bob. I'm gonna spread the link around. Merry X my friend.

Global Noize said...

Thanks Ian- glad you liked the post.

Happy holidays to you and your family as well-


Anonymous said...

Hello Bob!
Every installment from Traveler is a treat. The music you purvey thru your broadcasts enlightens and enlivens me and all my friends. Trust that your label, and your personal efforts to share amazing music with people, make the world a bit easier to navigate and dance in! This post epitomizes the need for people to allocate their dollars where they will do the most good. Getting the dough back to the baker is just a few clicks away, and people should make that effort if they truly desire art to be more refined than what Walmart decides is profitable. You're a great man, Mr. Duskis! Keep it up and cheers to you! Happy Holidays to you and yours-

Global Noize said...

Thanks for the kind words of support- it means a lot-