Buying swing music electronically

I’m a Swing DJ.  Well, I’d like to call myself a Swing DJ.

But what is a Swing DJ?  The word DJ might conjure up visions of 2 turntables, a cross fader mixer, headphones…

In the swing dancing scene, a Swing DJ is less glamorous – no we don’t “mix” one tune into another.  We don’t tamper with the BPM or pitch of recordings.

But we do have the same passion for the music we play and the same challenges of working the floor, choosing the right music for the mood, building up a set, etc.

Buying music is a huge part of being a DJ and the “collector’s” mentality is one element that is required.  Finding new recordings, buying the music.

Some things that set some swing DJs apart from techno/pop DJs is that some of us are on the look out for new remasterings of old recordings, releases of little known bands or hard to find recordings, good liner notes with details of the players and maybe some history of the recording and band.

As it’s a niche market, sometimes recordings are very rare to find and hence the price can be relatively high for a CD (thinking $50-$100). 

Last night I was searching around for 2 CDs that were recommended to me – The Three Peppers chronological, and the Mills Blue Rhythm Band 1936-1937.  Both very hard to find CDs, out of print. 

Luckily iTunes came to the rescue.  I could buy the whole album electronically for ~AUD$16 each.  Bargain! The only thing I’m missing is that physical CD that I can add to my CD cupboard, the liner notes and photos with the recording details like personnel, date, location, etc.

In the past, although I did do the odd purchase from eMusic and iTunes, I tried to buy physical CDs rather than electronic tracks,

But with a more limited budget nowadays, I think my buying behavior has to change.  Buying just the tracks I want, or whole albums electronically that are hard to find as a CD just might be the way I need to go from now.

2 thoughts on “Buying swing music electronically”

  1. A nice post that echoes my thoughts. As much as I’d like the actual CD sitting on my shelf, I have to tell myself that once it’s on my computer anyway I barely touch the physical CD anyway. I’m slowly getting used to the electronic-only concept.

  2. I’m with you guys – it was a hard to move from buying CDs to buying electronically. But the price and immediate ownership of buying downloads won me over. It’s just so much cheaper buying download.

    So far as the personnel stuff goes, I make extensive use of the jazz discoveries in the university library. I’ve found that since I started using these I’ve actually learnt far more about jazz than I did with just liner notes (I could see a band’s entire recording career there on the page and figure out which sesions (with which musicians) would interest me).

    You can access these discoveries online with a yearly subscription or just pop into the university library with your laptop to play with the books. The latter is quite painful sometimes – each letter is at least a volume long – but you learn a lot.

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