USB Key Concert Recordings from eMusic Live

A club in Hoboken, New Jersey is offering a new twist on concert recordings, by offering uploads to USB keys. After a live show, fans at Maxwells can pay $20 (€16.80) for a USB key and then a further $10 to have a MP3 of the gig copied to it.

The kiosk-based service is being offered by eMusic Live, who regard the service as a step beyond clubs who burn CDs of concerts for sale at the end of the night. The DRM-free music is also for sharing – providing free publicity and word of mouth for small bands.

Scott Ambrose Reilly, president of eMusic Live says the thinking behind the service is simple: “What we were seeing is that a large number of people were taking their CDs home and ripping them to MP3s, so we thought it would benefit music fans to eliminate that middle step. Admittedly this won’t be for everyone. But since the direction of music is increasingly going digital, I don’t see why this wouldn’t find its niche.”

eMusic Live are looking to roll more kiosks out to other venues around the US soon.

Founded in 1998, eMusic currently operate a music subscription service that offers tracks from its 300,000-strong library starting at US$0.25 (€0.21).

eMusic have long had one of the fairest usage clauses in the online music business (from their website):”Unlike other subscription services that put strict limits on how and where subscribers can listen to music, eMusic offers extremely flexible usage terms that allow the convenience online music fans want and expect. All eMusic’s tracks are in the industry standard MP3 format and subscribers are encouraged to make multiple copies for personal use, burn the music to CDs and transfer their music to portable MP3 players. Because eMusic uses the standard MP3 format, consumers can use their music the way they want. In addition, eMusic subscribers own the music they download.”

eMusic Live

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Fraser Lovatt

Fraser Lovatt has spent the last fifteen years working in publishing, TV and the Internet in various capacities, and believes that they will be seperate platforms for at least a while yet. His main interests at the moment are exploring where Linux is taking home entertainment and how technology is conferring technical skills on more and more people. Fraser Lovatt was born in the same year that 2001: A Space Odyssey was delighting and confusing people in the cinemas, and developed a lifelong love of technology as soon as he realised that things could be taken apart, sometimes put back together again, but mostly left in bits or made into something the original designer hadn't quite planned upon. At school he was definitely in the ZX Spectrum/Magpie/BMX camp, rather than the BBC Micro/Blue Peter/well-behaved group. This is all deeply ironic as he later went on to spend nine years working at the BBC. After a few years of working as a bookseller in Scotland, ("Back when it was actually a skilled profession" he'll tell anyone still listening), he moved to England for reasons he can't quite explain adequately to himself. After a couple of publishing jobs punctuated by sporadic bursts of travelling and photography came the aforementioned nine years at the BBC where he specialised in internet technologies and video. These days his primary interests are Java, Linux, videogames and pies - and if they're not candidates for convergence, then what is?