Should downloading music for free be illegal? (Blog Post 4)

As a kid, I remember my mother asking me to attend a work party. As a child, this sounded like a situation where I would rather be doing almost anything else than this. However, I reluctantly hopped in the car and joined my mom at the party. As we were all sitting around the bonfire, a friend of my mom’s named Dean was drumming on a conga drum. He offered me to join him and handed me a pair of bongos. I began rhythmically tapping and Dean seemed impressed with my performance, and before I knew it I was taking drum lessons with him! This eventually led to my parents purchasing me a beginner Drum Set, and I began participating in band class in elementary school and this lead me to also participating in jazz band, drumline, concert band, and this continued through junior high, high school and college! In college I even joined a band called “Ointment Appointment” both of our albums are up on Spotify if you feel inclined to check them out!

I have not actually received any money from this, but think about larger artists whose entire job and career is simply to produce music and tour their music. If people are constantly downloading music for free, this leads to artists or bands not making as much profit for the music they put so much effort into. I am not neccesarilly saying we should never download music for free or listen to music on sites like YouTube, but maybe consider also purchasing from merchandise from bands you like such as a shirt, hat or even a sticker. Another suggestion if you enjoy live music would be to purchase concert tickets! It has been said that most artists make most of their money from touring nowadays, because with apps like Spotify they do not make as much money from record or CD sales. So supporting a tour could be mutually beneficial, the attendee gets to experience the thrills of live music while the artist makes a bit of extra cash through concert tickets to help continue to support themselves and continue making music.

Another fun way to support artists could be to purchase a vinyl record from a band you enjoy. I recently purchased three records for myself, two of which were record store day releases. The albums were; “Kauai” by Childish Gambino, “Sunshine on Leith” by The Proclaimers, and “Modal Soul” by Nujabes. Record store day happens twice a year across the globe, I even remember showing up at around 2am last year with my brother and waiting in line to get some records. In conclusion, I do not think downloading music for free should be illegal, but is important to support artists that you enjoy!

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