The percentage of music lovers tapping into the wealth of artist information is minuscule compared to those simply listening. We know enough of the artists we love to refer to them, to seek out their work, but do we really get as invested in knowing bands as we once did in the days of physical media?
Streaming from online music sources brings with it an unexpected blur. Instead of hand selecting albums and CDs, online music libraries offer such an endless thread of tunes that we tend to connect with only a few standouts.
This double-edged sword means more music with less interaction. I enjoy more varied music at the expense of less connection.
In the album/CD day, I knew precisely what I was delving into. Duke Ellington’s Money Jungle with Mingus and Roach explores the bandleader’s piano chops. Knowing the players changes the way I think about that performance. If it were simply part of a streaming playlist I would never be as connected as holding the album cover in my paws and reading.
On the flipside is the wealth of music and information through the use of a good music management program, like Roon, or PS Audio’s upcoming Octave.
That’s when we get the best of both worlds.