Re: [rumori] THE DROPLIFT PROJECT - new copyright infringement compilation

From: Steev Hise (
Date: Sun Jul 30 2000 - 12:10:26 PDT

29 Jul 2000 found writing:

>So here it is! Listen to it! We're not doing this for our health. This
>is a deliberate attempt not only for our talents to be heard, but to
>encourage some discussion about artists' use of sound samples in their
>work. If you like the disc, spread the word! Write an article, play it
>on your radio show, make tapes for friends, and help us get it out

I received a copy in the mail (thanx Tim!) a few days ago and have been
meaning to mention it on the list. There's quite a few nice tracks on it.
But more interesting than that, I'm hoping to spark a discussion here
about this project.

[Maybe all the things I'm going to bring up have already been discussed
and debated at length on the Snuggles list, since I know that's where this
project was incubated. But i'm not on Snuggles anymore and even when i
was I tried not to read it very often. My apologies to those for whom this
maybe be old and tired... ]

I'm interested in what people think about the potential efficacy of this
Droplift Project. My polite concerns are:

First, I'm not sure how much issues of copyright infringement have to do
with giving away copies of a CD to record stores so they can sell it and
take all the money. Is this supposed to be ironic? If so, who, really, is
the butt of the joke?

Second, who is the intended recipient of the message that the project is
presumably sending? the PR says: "Down among the established pop hits and
top 40 product, these CDs await those curious few who take them to the
counter." So, apparently this is directed at people who don't know about
the project, who just happen upon this CD accidentally, who normally buy
pop music and hits. But how many of these people are going to actually
buy this? They're the kind of people who only buy what major label
promotion tells them to buy. Why would they go to the trouble of taking
this up to the counter and waiting for the salesperson to figure out what
it is and how much to charge them? And if it's dropped into experimental
bins, then you're preaching to the converted...

Maybe this is a hoax and the droplifting isnt really being done, which
would be a wonderful PR double-fake... You'd never get to "Witness the
confused faces of cashiers and customers alike", but you probably won't
anyway, unless you hang around the store for a long long time. What would
be great is to *pretend* to be a customer trying to buy one, with some
hidden microphones and cameras to document the experience. Do this all
over the country and then make a nice little documentary video about the

Another alternate project: What would have been much more interesting, in
my opinion, is if the CD looked like something else that the customers
would recognize, like a new Jennifer Lopez album. Or a soundtrack album
to a nonexistent major motion picture! The cover could mention all these
big stars in the film, Bruce Willis, Cindy Crawford, Hillary Clinton,
whoever, and then a list of famous bands who supposedly are on the disc,
everyone from the Offspring to Britney Spears to Aphex Twin. But inside
is the fucked-up sound collage by the various obscure artists.
The wide appeal of the names on the outside would guarantee a lot of
interest by a large range of customers, the kind of customers who MOST
need to be exposed to this "strange" music and these "difficult" concepts.

Anyway, I don't' mean to be overly critical. The actual music on the CD is
mostly quite good, and I would recommend the disc to anyone who can find
it (try to buy it from a participant, rather than a store). I just have
my questions about its intended purpose.



Steev Hise, Infoserf
"Music involves living, its not just the execution of sounds in space."
            -Anthony Braxton

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