拾乐园 Paradise Found  
#1  For Tower Records, End of Disc (Washington Post Staff Writer) (By By Paul Fa)            Go Back
In the wan light of retail desperation, it's nearly impossible to spot a gem amid the acres of dreck: Eddie Money CDs, anyone? The soundtrack of "Snakes on a Plane"? Boxed sets of "Captain and Tennille" DVDs? Get there before it's too late.

Too late, though, is almost here. Tower Records is closing, and as the signs say, everything must go. The whole chain is shutting, not just this thoroughly ravaged store off the Pike in Rockville. A liquidator is peddling the stock left in Tower's 85 or so remaining stores (five locally), and by Christmas, even Tower's desiccated carcass will be dust.

All of it is going, of course -- not just Tower, but the record store culture that Tower embodied. Anything that can be squeezed down to ones and zeros and moved around at the speed of electrons doesn't have to be stacked in plastic cases, shoved into bins and splayed over aisles under fluorescent lights anymore. All of it's going online.

And isn't that better? Doesn't the digital universe give anyone with a computer and a credit card wider and speedier access to more music than any Tower could ever stock? Isn't it better when you never have to find a parking space or deal with one of those haughty, green-haired clerks who always gave your Beach Boys and show-tune selections a look that said, "Wow, you are such a geezer"?

No, it isn't. Not exactly.

There will never be the same sense of wonder on iTunes, the same joy of discovery and intoxicating power of musical abundance that hit you every time you walked into even the dinkiest Tower or any comparable record store. There it lay before you -- unheard! unseen! unfondled! -- potential treasures beckoning from row upon row of wooden bins.

Clicking a mouse cannot replace the singular ritual act of pawing through those big bins to find . . . well, you never knew what. And that was the point. Skilled veterans could flip through dozens of records -- "records"? Ha-ha, Grandpa! -- with knowing hands and studious concentration while the rest of us dawdled over a particularly alluring piece of cover art. Working your way down the alphabet (Abba, the Beatles, the Cure, etc.) could take the better part of an afternoon.

Tower facilitated all this with spacious, high-ceilinged stores that seemed to stock every note recorded in the preceding decade. Just when you thought you owned everything by [insert name of favorite artist], Tower had something you'd never heard of ("Whoa, when did Zeppelin do that?"). It had obscure imports, generous helpings of jazz, blues and classical.

I hear the music geeks whining: Tower wasn't the cheapest place around, and it often employed contemptuous or conveniently nonexistent salespeople. It also pushed the same Top 40 pap as the marts (Wal- and K), the big boxes (Best Buy, Barnes & Noble, etc.) and the surviving mall chain stores. Yeah, yeah and yeah. And so what?

……
        

#2  Re: For Tower Records, End of Disc (By By Paul Fa)            Go Back
当CD取代硬盘唱片的时候,上一代人里面会有人像我讨厌ipot那样讨厌CD吗?
到目前为止,我仍然享受到店里的架子上去扒拉而不是在网上购买。我宁可花时间在我的壁架里慢慢翻找而不是坐在电脑前光是听着一种声音。
我近年大多数的收藏是在塔楼里买的,现在这个癖好就被剥夺了,这段时间来,曼哈顿中城对我的吸引力已经随之减低了不少。
        

#3  Re: Re: For Tower Records, End of Disc (By By Paul Fa)            Go Back
和谈,好久不见,多谢转来这篇。我和你想法差不多,虽然不讨厌ipod,但从来也不感兴趣。我甚至基本上不在电脑上听音乐的。我在网上也买CD,但正如这篇上所说,在店里逛,搜寻感觉实物的感觉,无论如何是网上浏览所不可取代的。塔楼去了,也许会有什么别的出现?无论网上书店如何兴旺,但我想街上的书店还是会存在的,因为有人无论如何还是喜好逛书店的。唱片店大概也会这样吧?

>和谈 wrote:
>当CD取代硬盘唱片的时候,上一代人里面会有人像我讨厌ipot那样讨厌CD吗?
>到目前为止,我仍然享受到店里的架子上去扒拉而不是在网上购买。我宁可花时间在我的壁架里慢慢翻找而不是坐在电脑前光是听着一种声音。
>我近年大多数的收藏是在塔楼里买的,现在这个癖好就被剥夺了,这段时间来,曼哈顿中城对我的吸引力已经随之减低了不少。
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自得其乐
        



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