Author Topic: Box Blather  (Read 80914 times)

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Ken B

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Box Blather
« on: April 19, 2014, 06:07:51 PM »
We have had some discussions on various threads about various boxes. Rather than clutter those threads with side discussions Baklavaboy suggested a thread. So I am starting one. Random discussions  related to boxes that don't really fit on SDCB or other threads. Box blather.

Ken B

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2014, 06:16:55 PM »
There is only one thing I dislike about the world of boxes. Sometimes I find myself thinking uck or some other negative of a box filled with standard stuff or stuff I already have a lot of. Perlman plays sonatas and concertos at $2 a disc and I think, blah. Perlman plays Beethoven and I think blah!
It's not a good reaction. It's not good when you forget your own life. I talked to a friend recently about something or other. He said it might lead to students having less sex and added " a good thing in my opinion." He has forgotten his own life.
Even boxes I do not want are awesome. I am just lucky enough to have a lot of awesome right now.

Offline Jay F

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2014, 07:43:46 PM »
I had more fun shopping for individual CDs 30 years ago than these enormoboxes. Of course, I liked actually going to a store and buying something. Now the stores don't exist, and neither do individual CDs for the most part. I'm glad I lived in that period of time.

Offline Dancing Divertimentian

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2014, 10:11:57 PM »
I had more fun shopping for individual CDs 30 years ago than these enormoboxes. Of course, I liked actually going to a store and buying something. Now the stores don't exist, and neither do individual CDs for the most part. I'm glad I lived in that period of time.

Amen. I miss those days, too. Prices may be lower (way lower) nowadays but that doesn't diminish what I already have.

My main problem with most of these Jumbotron-sized boxes (the ones I'm interested in) is the duplication I'd incur if I were to indulge in them. Not necessarily a doubling of an identical recording but potentially I'd end up with a surplus of certain repertoire which I already own.

25 years ago no one could have guessed things would've turned out this way but if I had waited I might have come out ahead, at least with my bank account. Plus I might've had a more visually striking collection with fancy decorative boxes garnishing every corner of my listening quarters (I'm OCD like that). But I can't say as I feel the least bit disappointed that I can't partake in the Jumbotron box boom. I've already passed the point of needing to fill major holes in my collection so I can kick back and watch the Jumbotron box world turn with no impetus to jump aboard. 

Of course I do take pride in my lone "big" box, though hardly in the Jumbotron league: it's my 24-disc complete Berlioz cube (Philips). Peanuts compared to what else is out there, but it has a Jumbotron-sized heart!


« Last Edit: April 20, 2014, 09:40:27 AM by Dancing Divertimentian »
Veit Bach-a baker who found his greatest pleasure in a little cittern which he took with him even into the mill and played while the grinding was going on. In this way he had a chance to have the rhythm drilled into him. And this was the beginning of a musical inclination in his descendants. JS Bach

Offline amw

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #4 on: April 19, 2014, 11:19:36 PM »
Someone got my parents a 150CD Complete Bach Edition box as a gift a few years back. As far as I know they still haven't opened it. (Which actually doesn't surprise me, because I think their CD player has been in storage for about a decade.)

Online Brian

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #5 on: April 20, 2014, 05:07:02 AM »
I had more fun shopping for individual CDs 30 years ago than these enormoboxes. Of course, I liked actually going to a store and buying something. Now the stores don't exist, and neither do individual CDs for the most part. I'm glad I lived in that period of time.

As a 24-year-old, I started off in the days of walking into stores and buying something, but those days ended after I graduated college and moved from Houston (which has a great classical shop) to London (which, unaccountably, does not). And now my CD-buying process is incredibly painstaking. I do tons of research on each album, get multiple GMGer opinions on most of them, keep many recordings on a wishlist for months or even years, and budget every order carefully. The good news is that this way, it's very rare that I buy a CD I dislike. The bad news is that sometimes I really wonder what it must feel like to purchase something impulsively, or without knowing anything about it.  :-X
« Last Edit: April 20, 2014, 05:08:46 AM by Brian »

Offline JCBuckley

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #6 on: April 20, 2014, 05:24:11 AM »
Not quite true that London doesn't have a great music shop - http://www.hmrecords.co.uk/. Not a huge place, but the staff really do know their stuff.

Online Mandryka

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #7 on: April 20, 2014, 06:09:59 AM »
Not quite true that London doesn't have a great music shop - http://www.hmrecords.co.uk/. Not a huge place, but the staff really do know their stuff.

In all the years that I've known them I've never once bought a record from them. The HMV shop on Oxford Street at Tottenham Court Road was five minutes away, had a bigger stock and their staff were equally knowledgeable -- more so for baroque in fact. Now I rarely buy CDs, never from shops. I did try to sell CDs to Harold Moors recently but delivering the CDs to the store was too hard because parking isn't easy near there. I ended up selling them to Roger at Gramex in The Cut near Waterloo, who tried to rip me off, the bastard.

If you don't know Gramex, it's worth checking out.

As far as the topic goes, I've gave up collecting CDs long ago, I mainly use streaming services, so these big boxes have passed me by.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2014, 06:14:13 AM by Mandryka »
Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darĂ¼ber muss man schweigen

DavidW

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #8 on: April 20, 2014, 06:37:56 AM »
As a 24-year-old, I started off in the days of walking into stores and buying something,

Those days were already over when you were in college.  Since you lived next to a good cd shop you just didn't notice!  I remember growing up there would be multiple music stores in a city, any city not just a large metropolis.  In the late 90s online shopping grew into power, and music sharing became the rage.  By the early 2000s alot of music stores couldn't make a profit anymore and many of them shut their doors.  Large chains like Tower Records went bankrupt (and yes I know it exists now as an online seller, but that doesn't change the fact that the b&m side is gone).  In classical music in particular the model was simply not sustainable.  Large volumes were being ordered and stocked in small stores, many of which couldn't and wouldn't sale.

I saw the stores start to go away when I was in college in the late 90s, and when I was in grad school in the early 00s before I even graduated it was over.  There are some holdouts.  For instance there is a small cd shop in the small town that I live in.  But since nobody frequents the shop, I can't help but think that it's a front for something! :P


Ken B

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2014, 07:34:22 AM »
I had more fun shopping for individual CDs 30 years ago than these enormoboxes. Of course, I liked actually going to a store and buying something. Now the stores don't exist, and neither do individual CDs for the most part. I'm glad I lived in that period of time.
I had more fun buying vinyl. Or so my selective memory tells me. Strong visual and tactile appeal. But how much of that was because I was exploring a greater terra incognito. First exploring Mozart or Bach or Schubert. And being younger. I enjoyed apples more then my memory tells me. Pining for the good old days is mostly pining for lost youth, and selective memory. This is the golden age of music buying, and boxes are one manifestation of that, but not the only one.

Offline Jay F

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #10 on: April 20, 2014, 09:01:41 AM »
I had more fun buying vinyl. Or so my selective memory tells me. Strong visual and tactile appeal. But how much of that was because I was exploring a greater terra incognito. First exploring Mozart or Bach or Schubert. And being younger. I enjoyed apples more then my memory tells me. Pining for the good old days is mostly pining for lost youth, and selective memory. This is the golden age of music buying, and boxes are one manifestation of that, but not the only one.

Vinyl = rock & pop in my life, with the occasional exception of a movie soundtrack (Barry Lyndon, Kramer v. Kramer, Woody Allen movies). I didn't start to buy classical in its own right until 1987, after I got my first CD player, and realized I didn't have much interest in merely rebuying my pop records on CD. I heard Schubert's Wanderer by Brendel in a CD store and had to have it. Since they were 3 for $25, I also bought Beethoven 9 (HVK 1977) and Mozart PCs 23 and 27 (Brendel/Marriner). I've been a collector, as well as a listener, ever since.

There are some advantages to everything coming in box sets nowadays. I would not have discovered Shostakovich, probably, if I'd had to buy his SQ CDs individually. But there's disadvantage there, too. I bought his symphonies in one big purchase, well over a year ago, and I still don't know which I'm listening to without looking it up. I bought Beethoven and Mozart and Mahler piecemeal 30 years ago, and each piece is more individually memorable to me.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2014, 09:03:23 AM by Jay F »

snyprrr

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #11 on: April 20, 2014, 09:13:17 AM »
Hey! Let me in this circle jerk!

Sallinen, Sallinen, Sallinen, woooo!!

Sallinen, Sallinen, Sallinen, woooo!!

Salli... cough,..excuse me, I think I pulled something... limp... limp...

Ken B

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #12 on: April 20, 2014, 10:08:27 AM »
Hey! Let me in this circle jerk!

Sallinen, Sallinen, Sallinen, woooo!!

Sallinen, Sallinen, Sallinen, woooo!!

Salli... cough,..excuse me, I think I pulled something... limp... limp...

One of these days I am going to understand a snyprrr post. This is not that day.

Offline Sergeant Rock

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #13 on: April 20, 2014, 10:19:00 AM »
One of these days I am going to understand a snyprrr post. This is not that day.

He might be talking (gibbering) about the CPO symphony box. Either that or he went off his meds again.

Sarge
the phone rings and somebody says,
"hey, they made a movie about
Mahler, you ought to go see it.
he was as f*cked-up as you are."
                               --Charles Bukowski, "Mahler"

DavidW

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #14 on: April 20, 2014, 02:25:53 PM »
I had more fun buying vinyl. Or so my selective memory tells me. Strong visual and tactile appeal. But how much of that was because I was exploring a greater terra incognito. First exploring Mozart or Bach or Schubert. And being younger. I enjoyed apples more then my memory tells me. Pining for the good old days is mostly pining for lost youth, and selective memory. This is the golden age of music buying, and boxes are one manifestation of that, but not the only one.

When I was young, I had limited money.  I didn't own many tapes, I couldn't afford cds (I'm young and did not grow up with vinyl).  I played the heck out of what I had.  I like that because now I wonder how many composers I would not get into if I started.  It is so easy to split and go in a million different directions.

But tapes, I do not miss them.  I can see vinyl being different.  What I do miss is the sense of discovery when you find something cool in a store.

Offline Mookalafalas

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #15 on: April 20, 2014, 04:24:35 PM »
But tapes, I do not miss them.  I can see vinyl being different.  What I do miss is the sense of discovery when you find something cool in a store.

  I lived in South Texas when I was 16 in 1982. I used to borrow the folks car and drive into Brownsville on Tuesday nights with my best friend, and we would go to the music store in the mall and literally flip through every album in the store, row by row (they didn't have much stock) and see if anything new or "different" had come in.  A new LP was equal to about 3 hours of work (after taxes) and this stayed true for many years, cuz CDs increased prices by about 80% (in spite of CDs being cheaper to produce and ship than vinyl after the first 20 months or so, which is why Vinyl was yanked so quickly--record companies made a mint by switching to CDs).  Buying an album/CD was always a big deal.  I like having a lot of music, and hearing tons of new things and being surprised by what I hear.  That's why I dislike the radio and looooove these big boxes--the more grab-bag, random the mix the better.   At first I was disappointed by the repetition in the repertoire (not another Beethoven/Brahms/Mahler/Mendelssohn cyle ???) but then came the Mercury, Teldec, Erato, and Early Music and Baroque boxes, all this Harmonia Mundi and Vivarte.  It's a dream come true for me.   
It's all good...

Online Brian

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #16 on: April 20, 2014, 04:51:34 PM »
One of these days I am going to understand a snyprrr post. This is not that day.
This could be a good GMG slogan.

Offline Mookalafalas

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #17 on: April 20, 2014, 04:55:09 PM »
Moonfish? Where are you?  I'm wondering how much you are actually playing this:



   I like Bream a lot, but don't play that much guitar music (but then again, I don't have much guitar music.  I passed on this box because I was sure it was one of those where ten is as good as 40 because the sound is relatively homogeneous for a non-specialist.  To test this, I started playing my few Bream discs...but the more I play, it seems the more I like it.  BTW, price at Amazon.de is pretty good.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2014, 04:58:25 PM by Baklavaboy »
It's all good...

Ken B

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #18 on: April 20, 2014, 05:06:47 PM »
  I lived in South Texas when I was 16 in 1982. I used to borrow the folks car and drive into Brownsville on Tuesday nights with my best friend, and we would go to the music store in the mall and literally flip through every album in the store, row by row (they didn't have much stock) and see if anything new or "different" had come in.  A new LP was equal to about 3 hours of work (after taxes) and this stayed true for many years, cuz CDs increased prices by about 80% (in spite of CDs being cheaper to produce and ship than vinyl after the first 20 months or so, which is why Vinyl was yanked so quickly--record companies made a mint by switching to CDs).  Buying an album/CD was always a big deal.  I like having a lot of music, and hearing tons of new things and being surprised by what I hear.  That's why I dislike the radio and looooove these big boxes--the more grab-bag, random the mix the better.   At first I was disappointed by the repetition in the repertoire (not another Beethoven/Brahms/Mahler/Mendelssohn cyle ???) but then came the Mercury, Teldec, Erato, and Early Music and Baroque boxes, all this Harmonia Mundi and Vivarte.  It's a dream come true for me.

Young pup!

I would never fork out 10 plus a disc for the living stereo, but the box is great. Nostalgic value plus great musicianship. Even if I only go through it two or three times I got good value for my money. And some boxes I eventually sell.
Like Bak I enjoy being frugal and chortling over a bargain.

Online Madiel

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Re: Box Blather
« Reply #19 on: April 21, 2014, 01:20:09 AM »
Well, I still buy most of my pop music by walking into a store to get it. Those days are definitely fading for my classical music, although two trips to Melbourne this year enabled me to revive the habit.

I think, though, that even with online buying I'm going to continue to shy away from much in the way of big boxes. And the reason is much the same as one of the reasons I dislike the streaming services: I want to own my music.

Now, box sets ARE a little different from streaming, in that once I have a disk it really is mine. But I'm also talking about the psychological process. The process of choosing. The process of saying, out of all the vast expanse of recorded music, this is the music I'm choosing to take into my home.

I worry that a steady diet of vast boxes would dilute that process. I worry that I would end up not really getting to know the music in them, other than a vague recollection that "I've got that on disc somewhere".

I do in fact have quite a few 'sets' because I like completeness, but most of them are of the half-dozen disc variety, not the 40-disc variety. Even with these smaller sets, the process of properly getting to know the music/the recordings can be quite lengthy. Right now I'm listening to Rachmaninov's 3rd symphony, from a mere 3-disc set, and my records tell me it's nearly 5 years since the last time I listened to this particular work. And I'd have to confess that I wouldn't immediately be able to tell you whether a passage came from Rachmaninov's 1st, 2nd or 3rd symphony even though I know I like them all.

I honestly don't see much benefit in throwing vast quantities of music at myself, quantities SO vast that I can't possibly get to know it in real depth, because it's knowing music in depth that creates the most pleasure.

I would much rather spend a little more money per disc if it means getting something I'm genuinely going to treasure as a listening experience, over something that's going to glare at me balefully from the shelf, reminding me that I still haven't got to know 70% of it properly. I want it to be mine, not just happen to live in my house.

In fact, even with some of the boxes where I'm interested in a fair proportion of the contents, I think I'm still more likely to go and get the bits I'm most interested in via smaller collections. More than once I've seen someone point out that something can be found in a jumbo box at not much more than the price at which it can be found in a collection of 3 or 4 discs, but my instinct would be to go for the 3 or 4 discs.
« Last Edit: April 21, 2014, 01:24:59 AM by orfeo »
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