Reinventing vinyl: Wheel, a needleless record player

With the advent of digital services, music has become universally accessible. The trend evolved from using 78rpm records to streaming tracks over the Web. With a simple click on the computer or a tap on one’s smartphone, access to millions of songs from hundreds of thousands of artists is possible. All a person really needs is a good Internet connection. However, despite the ubiquity of this multi-billion dollar business, digital music is not what everybody wants. There are still individuals who prefer to listen to classic vinyl records. As a matter of fact, it seems that the traditional way of playing music popular a couple of decades ago is making a comeback.

Image source: digitaltrends.com

Engineers and companies alike have picked up on this trend. That is why they have developed tech where vinyl-lovers can play their favorite tunes. First, there was RokBlok, a portable vinyl record player. Next, there was LOVE, where a stylus was used instead of a wooden block. Now, thanks to the effort of Dutch enthusiasts, “Wheel” is being introduced to the world.

Unlike similar products, Wheel doesn’t make use of a wooden block or a stylus so that individuals can listen to their favorite vinyl. Rather, it’s just a circular platform without any attachments or frills. Supposedly, it is a needle-free record player. So how can it play music? Actually there is a wheel tucked in there. The designers made it in such a way that all of the mechanics are placed inside the platter doing away with any sort of visual disturbances. What the creators had in mind is that they wanted to create a minimalist record player. Surely enough, they achieved it with Wheel.

Image source: pexels.com

The music industry has to constantly capitalize on innovations to keep it appealing to customers, whether mainstream or on specific niches. Indie musicians, major labels, or even music streaming sites know exactly how the current landscape looks. To regular listeners, and even music investors, music is something that will never completely vanish. It is a resilient industry and while it will inevitably have to go through major changes, it will forever have its own place in the economy.

Powerhouse musicians:  Musical milestones and achievements

Music has shaped human experience way more powerfully than many other aspects of life. Almost every culture uses the power of rhythmic sound to convey messages, lighten the heart’s burden, stimulate ideas, or worship supreme beings. In popular culture, music is both a source of entertainment and a multi-billion-dollar business. It gave people countless stars to idolize, songs to get inspiration from, and lyrical campaigns to promote specific causes.  But of the numerous successes that pop music has achieved across the globe and throughout history, it is probably in the commercial side that it established itself as a staple in many applications.

 

Most popular artists

The Beatles, Elvis Presley, Michael Jackson, and Madonna are currently the world’s four bestselling artists of all time, with global record sales of no less than 350 million apiece. These artists are household names and their influence has gone far beyond music that they—at one point in their life—have been listed as among the world’s most powerful personalities. Other artists who enjoyed or enjoys roughly the same commercial success include Elton John, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Rihanna, Mariah Carey, Celine Dion, AC/DC, and Whitney Houston.

Biggest selling albums

With total sales of more than 65 million copies worldwide, Michael Jackson’s 1982 album ‘THRILLER’ is the bestselling album of all time. It is notable for such releases such as “Billie Jean” and “Beat It” and helped prove that ambitious music videos are viable promotional vehicles. The album also helped other black music artists to gain mainstream recognition. Other albums with very strong sales figures include AC/DC’s “Back in Black” (1980), Pink Floyd’s “The Dark Side of the Moon” (1973), and Whitney Houston’s “The Bodyguard” (1992), with total sales of 50 million, 45 million, and 44 million, respectively. Of all the albums released in the 21st Century, British singer Adele’s sophomore album, “21” has the highest sales figure at 31 million.

Chart mega-hits

Spending 16 weeks atop the Billboard Hot 100, Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men’s 1995 hit “One Sweet Day” is the most successful song to ever dominate the US’ most important music chart. Carey is also credited to have the most cumulative weeks at number one in the very same chart spread across 18 extremely popular songs, including “We Belong Together.” Meanwhile, the cast of the TV musical “Glee” currently holds the record for the most entries in the Hot 100 with 207.

Most viewed Youtube music videos

The rise of the Internet also gave artists a new avenue to promote their music. Youtube, arguably the most popular site for viewing online video clips, has recorded mind-boggling number of views for music videos. Korean singer-rapper Psy is the current record holder for having the most viewed music video of all time, with his 2012 smash hit “Gangnam Style” amassing total viewership of whopping 2.76 billion as of this writing. Three other music videos were also able to surpass the 2-billion mark, namely Wiz Khalifa & Charlie Puth’s “See You Again” (2.43 billion), Justin Bieber’s “Sorry” (2.24 billion), and Mark Ronson & Bruno Mars’ “Uptown Funk” (2.19 billion).

 

The music industry has undergone a series of massive booms and recurrent declines. The musical landscape as a whole is rapidly evolving, alongside consumers’ personal preferences and the emergence of new technologies (particularly digital records and streaming sites). Regardless, music will forever be part of the human experience and will never completely die down despite many changes in the business.

Planning Right When Investing

Just because you have a plan, doesn’t always mean that would work in the world of investment. This business could be ruthless if you are not careful enough to handle it. Not to scare you, but there are lots of people who have loss a lot of their money because of simply not having a right plan for it. Just assuming the market and the money flow would be a bad idea to be a basis whether your money is going to do well or not.

investor mindset

This is among the common mistakes rookie investors are making. I’m here to show the right steps on how to plan for your investment. But don’t fret; it is not as hard as it would think it would be. If you are looking to invest, visit LOM

 

  1. Focus: This is the most important thing you should know and it is always best to stick to the plan. Dwindling from it would not be a good idea just because you heard of other’s opinion, or because of an on going trend or because of some financial forecast that you saw. Don’t be easily swayed by those and keep your head in the game.
  2. Be mindful of your emotions: Believe it or not, part of a good plan in investing is being prepared about your emotions towards it. The first thing that you need to eliminate in your emotion is fear. Lots of people lose the game because of it. They anticipate so much negativity that their own fear manifests into a reality. Being hopeful is good, but too much of that could lead you to some unrealistic results in the market. It is best to only keep factual and real time analysis of the money flow than predictions hoping it is all going to be great. Now, the one emotion or rather character that you much eliminate is greed. This will put your money in trouble and you won’t be able to think clearly if you have this trait.
  3. Knowing The Right Investment Objectives: You should know that planning this whole thing involves your objectives in the area of your income, growth and security. Knowing what you want is something that you should do first. It is hard to get going with your investment if you don’t know exactly where you are headed. You should know what you would have to focus on whether it is to build a good portfolio, a long-term business or something that would guarantee you a stable income.
  4. Learn About Risk: Before you even think of placing your money to anything you could investRisk managementin, it is only wise that you know about the amount of risk that you need to take. This could be a stressful thing for you if you are not aware of it, this could cause you a lot of trouble. However, if you study this carefully, this could actually do well in your favor.

 

These are just among the things that you should know when you plan in investing.

Piracy and the Economics of the Music Industry

The Starving Artist

Ever since the advent of the MP3 format, it has become easy to leak out music recordings.   Piracy came into full blast and the music industry suffered immensely.

Middlemen have actually made a lot of money from piracy .  However, the ones who suffered the most  are the artists who create the music themselves.  One musician revealed that after selling more than a million downloads, he just earned a little less than two thousand pounds.  And he was actually a successful artist compared to his peers in the music industry.

The leaders in the music industry actually have a duty to be purposefully looking out for the music artist.  Music is an art form before it is a business.  Ideally music as an art must be expressed. It just can’t be contained or bottled up until the pricing is right.  But the dearth of income is bound to definitely discourage and prevent people who have the talent from investing their time, honing their skills and giving music their all.  No one wants to be a starving artist if they had a choice.

Talent is inborn, that is true.  But a person’s talent is not necessarily the same as his interests.  Take for example someone talented in Math.  He can, without exerting the least bit of effort, make expanded decimal computations in his head without the aid of calculator or computer.  But it is possible for him to not be interested in Math at all. He is good at it naturally.  But he feels no passion about it. He may be extremely passionate about baseball instead.  And since he is not interested in Math, the talent just lies dormant in him.  Instead, he keeps throwing balls and practicing his baseball bat swing.  He hones his skill in baseball. He could have been a great mathematician, an Albert Einstein or a Johannes Kepler.  But unfortunately, he was not interested in where he was talented at.

The same analogy can be made in music.  A person with a musical talent can become discouraged by the lack of earnings prospects.  As a result, he would lose all interest in honing his skills in music.  Why should he if he sees a musician’s career as a dead end?  As a result of a stagnant music industry, society is going to be deprived of the talent which failed to bloom because of the disincentives.

 

Technology:  Boon and Bane

Although the music industry has transitioned from vinyls to cassette tapes to CDs, all through that time, the album release was a primary income generator.  These days, however, companies like Apple earn revenues by structuring their marketing strategy in a way where they are selling songs piecemeal.  This has thus placed a big question mark on the value of album production.

There have been so many rapid advances in technology and this has led to a horrifying number of previously investment-worthy products becoming worthless and obsolete.

The music industry is no exception to this phenomenon.  It is still struggling to overcome the market obstacles.  It is trying to adapt.  Trying to find its way through all the changes.  However, at the moment,  piracy still remains a big problem that needs solving.

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It is really ironic how current advancements in technology which have the power to bring all known musical works available at the click of a button, and have the power to consolidate the entire body of musical works originating from all parts of the world, since the beginning of time until now,  is actually also killing the music industry because of piracy and a lack of financial benefits to the artists.

How does one arrest the current financial decline in the music industry?

If the income trends continue as they do, we can see the stagnation or at worst the death of the music business.

However, there is one bright spot in the music industry that has shown itself as of late. Streaming services are helping revive the music industry by allowing consumers to have access not only to current releases but to a vast library of musical works.  Streaming services like what we have at Shayarana Music provide the added value of curating the body of musical works to guide the users in navigating and finding the music they will like, based on their taste and whatever other purposes they may have for using a piece of music.

Hopefully, through innovation, the industry can keep on finding ways to use current technological and market developments to hurdle the present problems posed by piracy.  Through collaboration and inventiveness, technology can be used to instead benefit the industry, and that by primarily boosting its revenues.

Let’s give our contribution to the lives of our musical artists. By resisting the temptation to download from piracy sites, we are doing our small part to revive an industry under threat.

 

Shayarana music – About Us And Our Plans

Shayarana is a Roman Urdu word which means “poetic”

Here at Shayarana Music, music is powerful poetry that is expressed not only in the lyric verse.   Profound thoughts and emotions which cannot be described by words are effortlessly communicated by music.  With music, one person touches the spirit of another without need of translation.

Shayarana Music celebrates music as a potent expression of the beauty of the human spirit.

shayarana music

We are awed by how music can transcend geographic and language barriers.  There can be an infinite combination of melodies, beats and instrumentation in music.   By sampling the music composed and appreciated by any one person, nation or culture, we can learn so much more than we ever can by just talking or reading.

With beautiful music, we can witness the best in man.   Listening to it, we can delight in the unfathomable depth of the human mind with its power to feel, express and create.

Future Plans

We are building our music library with the intent of allowing our visitors to navigate the immense body of musical works through the following user options:

Explore through Genres – There are an innumerable diversity of musical styles, genres and subgenres.  We will try to make it easier for our users as we enable them to explore by musical styles. The two main genres of western and oriental have their subgenres. Rock, jazz, blues, classical, R&B, country, reggae, hip hop, funk, African, electronic are just a few styles under western music.  Oriental music includes Indian, Chinese, Southeast Asian, and oriental pop.

Explore through time – Music has changed through history.  Since the earliest of times, men have expressed themselves through their music compositions.  The ancient Sumerians inscribed their music in the mud of their cuneiform tablets.  Meanwhile, the ancient Greeks left us with the Seikilos Epitaph -the oldest musical composition to have ever been found complete with its musical notations.

“While you live, shine. Have no grief at all.  Life exists only for a short while.  And time demands an end.”  – Seikilos Epitaph

Ancient, Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque, Classical, Romantic, 20th and 21st century. These epochs have their own music that characterizes the particular sensitivities of their age.  Music can actually reveal the spirit of each chapter in history.

Our users will be able to explore music based on the time period in which it was composed.

Explore by Geography–  Music differs across nations and their various cultures.  Africa, Byzantium, Asia, Middle East, Persia, Greece, the Pacific Islands.  Our users can travel the world and savor its varied cultures by sampling music according to geography or the nation where it originated.

Explore by Moods and Emotions– Music can also be classified by the moods or emotions it evokes in us.  Joy, mourning, delight, rage, frenzy, calm, heroism, fear.  It would be futile to attempt to curate all the feelings that comprise the entire spectrum of the human psyche.  But we’ll try our best to allow our users to decide what music they listen to based on their chosen mood or emotion.

How To Win Investors For Your Project Or Business

If you have zero money, but you still want to invest on your business or your project that you think you could profit from it one day, don’t lose hope because I have here some good news for you. Most people would advice that you go loan something from the bank, but let’s face it; sometimes it is not that easy to get approved. Banks could be really strict and they would usually ask a collateral from you. It is all fine and well if you have those, but let’s say what if you don’t have that as well? Are you just going to give up on your dream? I say no.

I have here the best idea that would work for you that in the end, you wouldn’t even have to worry about a debt to pay from anyone nor do you have to think about interest rates if you ever missed a payment. This one is called crowd funding. It’s a genius idea because you won’t need collaterals to show a bank or any lending institution just so they would fund you. This is something that we all could thank the Internet for because without it, this idea won’t even be possible.

 

It is called crowd funding because you are going to practically ask help from anyone in the world through the Internet. There are websites who support this kind of thing and among them are Kickstarter, IndieGoGo and GoFundMe just to name a few.

 

how to win investorsAlthough it won’t be as hard as getting funded with the help of banks and other lending institutions,
this one would still require an effort on your part. But it’s going to be fun for you, as it will require your creativity when you pitch your project or business. It could be something that you invented, a music album that you want to release, or a business that would make you sell something really unique and useful. It doesn’t matter as long as you pitch it well, then there’s a huge chance that people would invest in your project.

 

The rules are different per website, but most of them would require you to upload a video for your pitch. You have to make it interesting and worthy of people’s attention and money as well. It would be best if you share it to your social network and have your friends tell about your page to their friends.

 

The beauty of crowd funding to start up your business is that people who would invest in your project won’t have to pay so much. You could start with a $5-donation going up. You will also need to give something back to your investors. It doesn’t have to be a huge thing, but for every person who would invest in your project, it is best that you at least send them a token of appreciation.

 

This is why there is no longer an excuse for anyone not to pursue a business that they want because of technologies like this. Don’t be afraid to start pitching today!