Sunday, May 22, 2005

today i spent the day cd shopping with mack of the far eastern audio review who is visiting taiwan. we bought tickets for the grass music festival, and made plans for going to the chung he flea market before the festival on saturday.

mack had some things to do in the evening so we didn't get the chance to go to the big eslite, but i went later by myself. while there i heard this music that i couldn't place. when i went up to the desk, the "now playing" shelf was empty. and i asked the man behind the desk who it was, but he didn't know. but another clerk came back with the cd - a compilation of work by nina simone.

the man behind the counter was all excited to see i had a mirah cd in my hand, and later he searched me out and showed me the other mirah cds they had. then he went on to tell me that avant garden records is his company. avant garden records is responsible for getting bands like the postal service, niza, rita calypso etc distribution in taiwan. in many cd shops in taipei you can see listening stations with these things on sale. due to the large licensing fees and the cheap price these releases sell for here, he's barely breaking even. and he told me he may have to give it up soon. i was really sad to hear that, because i love seeing this sort of stuff in the shops here and i buy quite a bit of it. sometimes i wonder if taiwan maybe doesn't have a big enough audience for this kind of music for such endeavors to make money or last.