How do you acquire music?

Discussion in 'Salsa Music' started by DJ Yuca, Feb 20, 2017.

  1. DJ Yuca

    DJ Yuca El Sabroso de Conguero

    How many people buy vinyl and/or CDs?

    Do you get downloads? (I'm sure that will be a yes for most of us.)

    For those who download:

    Are they legal (i.e. you pay for them)?

    What format(s) do you download?

    The reason I ask is because more and more good new releases in salsa are download only, yet the only site I know of that has WAVs to download is Fania, which doesn't have many new releases as it's only for stuff on their own labels. Consequently the only way to obtain a lot of tracks is illegal download (I don't do it personally), burn from YT (which means a very flat sound - not recommended either) or buy from the likes of Amazon or Itunes, none of which offer WAVs.

    Maybe WAVs are not essential for decent sound, but I find lesser formats sound flat compared to CDs or vinyls. However WAV downloads are passable imo.

    Otoh some people insist that legal downloads sound fine, whatever the format.

    P.S. If you do get illegal downloads then please don't mention the names of the sites you use! (Or post links.)
    elanimal likes this.
  2. matty

    matty Shine Officer

    I dont accept this

    if you cant find the file in a digital format you want, then you can buy the CD or the LP and rip it to WAV yourself. if its a new band then whats to stop you sending them a message and asking for the music ? you might be pleasantly surprised.
    afincao and Smejmoon like this.
  3. I buy CD's when I can, otherwise I buy digital downloads (mp3), which I'm not hugely keen on because I like the art/booklet, and they're not WAVs.
    It's tough though to find all the CD's I want, even with Amazon/eBay, I have to periodically check to see if any music i'm interested in appears. It's often been the case that the CD has taken ages to arrive as well which is a bit deflating. I have tried to find record shops in London which sell Timba but that's a losing battle (any suggestions?).

    My last resort is ripping music from YT.
    I find songs on Spotify as well but that doesn't really fit the criteria of your questions.
  4. timberamayor

    timberamayor Maestro 'Guaguanco' Rodríguez

    I prefer CDs when possible. In the meantime I will buy the albums from digital retailers. Sometimes DJ friends will send me something that isn't out yet. Sometimes bands will send me stuff that isn't released yet. Sometime I will rip something from YouTube if it isn't available for purchase yet. I try to keep track of releases and buy the digital when it becomes available and a CD if and when I can find one. With Cuban bands your best bet is to go to a concert shortly after the CD is released because they often sell them at the show, especially when they tour.
  5. SnowDancer

    SnowDancer Clave Commander

    I got most of my salsa from a few years ago. It was inexpensive, legal, and the songs are all in mp3 format. They were much less expensive back then, something like $10/month for 30 (or even 50) downloads. It's not as good a deal now, but still a lot cheaper than Itunes. The catch is that you pay monthly for a certain number of songs, and it's use-it-or-lose-it.
  6. DJ Yuca

    DJ Yuca El Sabroso de Conguero

    Thanks for the tip off re. asking bands, however you don't appear to have read my post properly as I did not say that illegal downloads are the only option in this case. I said there are a limited number of options of which that is one. (One I don't do myself I hasten to add. For one thing there is a high risk of infection.)
  7. iTunes/Cubamusic/etc, they are dirt cheap usually. I haven't set aside any room for CD's in my house and as I'm a DJ and a dance teacher I need it all on my PC and laptop anyway! I would, of course, be in danger if it was all on just my laptop. That is the reason why everything I buy is always saved in at least 3 places, one of which is off-site and non-powered. :) Call me a backup freak but hey, never say never!
    timberamayor likes this.
  8. DJ Yuca

    DJ Yuca El Sabroso de Conguero

    My problem exactly! If I could buy WAVs I might accept the download thing, but the other formats are aurally inferior imo.
  9. nowhiteshoes

    nowhiteshoes Pattern Police

    I used to use emusic a lot many years ago and had loads of downloads a month but they cut back on their libraries. Probably used them for 3-4 years.

    I checked out their site with a couple of searches. They had 3 Andy Harlow albums so not great but OK. Less Charlie Palmieri albums than quite a few years ago...pretty much sums up why i stopped using them. It helped me save for a mortgage though :vulcan:
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2017
  10. timberamayor

    timberamayor Maestro 'Guaguanco' Rodríguez

    CD Bbay has FLAC which is supposed to be good. But I don't know how much of the music you look for is there.
  11. DJ Yuca

    DJ Yuca El Sabroso de Conguero

    I think they have a lot of salsa new releases so I will definitely bear that in mind.

    With the old stuff, which of course has come out on vinyl and/or CD in the past, I simply cannot bring myself to spend good money on downloading it, even if it is no longer the earlier formats.
  12. matty

    matty Shine Officer

    oh i did , i read all of it

    im just saying i dont accept that as an option. If they are an old band then the song has to have been on LP or CD at one point, and if they are a new band then it may be available on limited addition CD plus the new bands really need you to buy their music, so pirating just seems so lame to me. I would not think of illegal downloading as an option when looking for 'quality' anyways, because you literally dont know where its been. How do you know the WAV wasnt downloaded from a 720p youtube video? anyways.. just think if a track is available in high quality illegal download, then where did the person who uploaded that get it from? see? you can get it from there. :D enjoy the thrill of the chase.

    side note:
    A lot of people would say 320kbps mp3 is as good as WAV. and 256kbps is also fine for most peoples listening needs.
  13. DJ Yuca

    DJ Yuca El Sabroso de Conguero

    I don't mean it is an option as in it's an option to consider - I mean it's an option as in, like it or not, it does exist. But personally I wouldn't consider it, I've never done it and I wouldn't recommend it. (I am curious to know if anyone who comes on here does it though.)
  14. DJ Yuca

    DJ Yuca El Sabroso de Conguero

    I have read such sentiments when I've been researching the topic. However some of my bachata MP3s, which I've bought from Amazon, sound really flat in comparison to vinyl or CD. Fortunately it's only bachata so I don't listen to it at home I just use it for DJing purposes. But for the good stuff - no way. Also there's the lack of sleeve, booklet etc (which has already come up in the thread).

    In fact there is an old salsa album I really want and can't find anywhere so I downloaded one of the tracks from Amazon - it just doesn't sound good enough to me and I won't be listening to it or DJing with it. I'll wait until I find a real copy. (I've also seen a compilation CD that's available that has some of these tracks, but it's on Rareza so that's a big gamble re. sound quality. That's another topic I suppose.)
  15. terence

    terence Maestro 'Descarga' Cachao

    I posted this site before.. Latin Music ( an Italian site ) what I like ,is the opportunity to listen, in many cases , the whole album
  16. timberamayor

    timberamayor Maestro 'Guaguanco' Rodríguez

    I think a ot of the old stuff wasn't even as well mixed as things are today so I expect digital versions of the vinyl might be bad even if they are lossless. maybe you need to master them :) A friend of mine did that with a bunch of old Cuban music.
  17. DJ Yuca

    DJ Yuca El Sabroso de Conguero

    Buying old music on CD and even repress vinyl is also a gamble, but generally it's ok. Particularly if one avoids bootleg reissues. A poster did say on another thread a while ago that he only buys 1st pressing vinyls. Great if you have the dedication and funds, but personally most of my CDs sound reasonable or better, whereas I can't say the same for downloads.
  18. matty

    matty Shine Officer

    are you playing them on the same system? or are you playing the CDs on a CD deck and the mp3s on a computer for example? what sound system?
    also what do you mean by flat? you mean poor dynamic range? or loss of high frequencies.

    most Djs i spoke to seem to agree that its near impossible to notice the difference between a 320Kbps mp3 and a wav when playing on a PA system. though i havent done a side by side comparison in a long time
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2017
  19. DJ Yuca

    DJ Yuca El Sabroso de Conguero

    I burnt them onto CD then listened to them at home to prepare for using them whilst DJing. They sounded flat to me, but I'm pretty sure no bachata dancers would notice or care. For one thing I imagine they sound better than the audio quality of what many if not most bachata DJs and instructors use. And of course the quality of the PA makes a big difference too.

    I don't think the difference between WAVs and MP3s is always so great, but I think it's there.

    Still, now that some tunes are not even available on legal download, I realise MP3 is a hell of a lot better than nothing. I know at least 2 decent, modern (last 5 years) salsa tunes that I hear played on Colombian radio regularly, have good hits on YT but are totally unavailable on Amazon, Itunes, CD Baby, Solar, Latinway and Fania. How can it be that it is not even possible or profitable for a band to sell downloads of their hits?
  20. DJ Yuca

    DJ Yuca El Sabroso de Conguero

    Matty, I believe you started a thread a few years back on a similar subject, i.e. buying CDs that have wack audio quality due to being dodgy pressings (probably unlicensed).

    It seems for those who want free music no matter the sound quality then things are great, but for those of us who want to play music on a decent sound system (plus be able to do a good job whilst DJing), and are willing to pay for it, we often have no options.

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