Over the holidays I was complaining to one of our daughters (ten points if you can tell me what building they’re standing in front of)
that Rhapsody had turned its back on me. After waxing so, um, rhapsodic, about it only a year ago the twenty-five free plays a month have dwindled to… let me see… ummm, none. Okay, I know a big part of the Internet is about making money, but I was really not happy to have my listening (and exploring) habits crimped by Rhapsody’s profit motive – though you can still get a fourteen day free trial.
Fortunately, not all is lost. As our youngest (L) enlightened me, there are other sites where music is still available for (at least for now) an indefinite time, for free. In particular, she turned me on to Grooveshark, a music sharing, streaming, and recommendation site.
In my wanderings on Grooveshark, much like I used to enjoy on Rhapsody, I landed on Supertramp’s “Brother Where You Bound.” This is an album I got (on vinyl) in 1985. I remember that it really struck me at the time. Listening to it again, especially the sixteen-minute-plus title track today I found myself thinking, “Wow, this really sounds like Pink Floyd.”
Even though I immediately liked the album and its title track it wasn’t until today – after becoming a Floyd fan late in life (I must have been almost 30 at the time) – that it really occurred to me why. And then, wouldn’t you know, and I swear I didn’t know this, that David Gilmour (Pink Floyd lead guitarist and a major musical force in that band) was featured on the album. Listening to “Brother Where You Bound” again after all this time I can immediately see the influence from such Pink Floyd works as “The Wall, ” “The Final Cut” (as Pink Floyd became something else after Roger Waters’ departure), and “Momentary Lapse of Reason” (the first album with Gilmour as the primary artist).
While I have no idea how much of a following Supertramp may have, and I have often enjoyed “The Logical Song, ” “Goodbye Stranger,” and other more popular hits, I am definitely going to get a digital copy of “Brother Where You Bound” and put it right next to my collection of Pink Floyd and Alan Parsons (another Floyd alum).
When I was in high school I used to go to the public library after jazz band practice. Now, granted, I was already into music, but it was at the library I discovered the symphonies of Mozart. I took them all home and listened to them from beginning to end with hardly a break. Now, I can’t remember them all, but I remember the experience, and it has led to a lifetime of exploration, enjoyment, and love of music – all started, essentially, for free. Put a price on that, Rhapsody.