Line Out Music & the City at Night

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

How the Music Biz Used to Do Things

Posted by on Tue, Jul 26, 2011 at 10:43 AM

Back in the pre-internet age, record companies often solicited feedback from consumers by including forms inside LPs. Purchasers of records would fill out the questionnaire with a pen or pencil and then mail it, via the United States Postal Service, to the record company—which didn't even have the courtesy to provide a stamp. From our 21st-century vantage point, we can laugh at such crude methods of info-harvesting, but back in the '70s and '80s, this was a state-of-the-art business strategy in action.

I bring this up because I just found the form below in my copy of Steve Reich's Music for 18 Musicians on ECM. Its quaintness (the questionnaire's, not the music's) struck a deep chord of pathos in me. The copy reads:

Dear Record Buyer:

Thank you for adding this recording to your library. We hope you will enjoy it for years to come. If you wish to be added to our mailing list, kindly fill out and mail the coupon below. We appreciate the time you take to send us your comments. They are extremely helpful to us and our artists. Thank you for your patronage.

How much progress we've made since then!



Comments (2) RSS

Oldest First Unregistered On Registered On Add a comment
I remember sending in stuff like this even in the 80s.
Posted by brokn2pieces on July 26, 2011 at 3:33 PM · Report this
Speaking of how the music business has and hasn't changed, did you see this, Dave?…
Posted by brokn2pieces on July 26, 2011 at 3:48 PM · Report this

Add a comment

Most Commented on Line Out

All contents © Index Newspapers, LLC
1535 11th Ave (Third Floor), Seattle, WA 98122
Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Use | Takedown Policy